SCOM: Configure a monitor recovery task for a healthy state

During a recent project a client had a small request to create a monitor and run a command when a device was not accessible anymore. Easy right! But (yep there’s always a but) they wanted to run a command when the monitor was returning back to a healthy state to restart a service when the device came back online… Hmmm and all in 1 monitor. So the conditions were as follows: Monitor: Action: Run a PowerShell based monitor to test the connection with the device BAD: Device is down => Run recovery task to remediate GOOD: Device is up again => Run recovery task to restart service (note: Always do this small matrix of a monitor design to exactly know what the customer wants) I don’t have the device to simulate but came up with a small example in my lab to show you how to get this working with just 1 monitor. The situation in my lab is very simple. I want to turn on my...
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SCOM: Monitor the monitor part 1: PowerShell

Recently I got a question of an engineer during a community event why SCOM didn’t notify him when SCOM was down. My first response was very similar to the response of my favorite captain below: But this got me thinking actually because the engineer made a good point. That to have a full monitoring you should have another mechanism in place to monitor the monitoring system. Most companies still have a legacy monitoring system in place that can be leveraged to monitor the servers of SCOM but let’s face it: keeping another monitoring system alive just to monitor the SCOM servers only adds complexity to your environment for a small benefit. That’s why I started building a small independent check with PowerShell. In part 1 of this series I’ll go over how to monitor whether your management servers are still up and running. To do this we need to make sure that we have a watcher node which is able to ping the...
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SCOM: PowerShell tip: Set Resource Pool Automatic members

  Today I ran into a situation where I had to test an advanced notification setup to send alerts to another helpdesk system. The notification channel activated a PowerShell script with parameters out of the alert to send data to the other system. After creating the notification channel there was no way to check whether the server I already configured was functioning correctly. My 2 management servers were automatically part of the Notifications resource pool thus making it not possible to force my testing through my configured management server. These are the steps to troubleshoot the notifications on 1 management server and rectifying the situation again after testing and configuring both management servers: These are my resource pool: Notice the difference in Icon for an automatic and manually populated resource pool. Right click the notifications Resource Pool and select manual membership. An automatic properties dialog will pop up...
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SCOM: Connect management groups between on-prem and Azure

  During a recent project I explored the benefits on hosting a 2 legged SCOM environment for both on-prem and cloud services. Although this is possible with just one management group and site to site VPN to the cloud they opted for a 2 management group approach to keep a certain sort of divider between the on-prem and the cloud. In this blog post (who knows it could become a series) I’ll show you how to connect the management groups to each other so they can exchange alerts and use 1 console but benefit from presence of a management group on both platforms. In this scenario I’m going to use connected management groups. As explained here http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh230698.aspx Connecting management groups in SCOM 2012 gives you a couple of benefits. The biggest one in my opinion is the fact you can have multiple management groups with different settings but use 1 console to get all...
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Microsoft System Center Advisor Limited Preview is live!

There are days that products become hot on the spot. It’s all about cloud lately and sometimes it’s amazing how fast things are evolving for us ITPRO’s. One of these cool products which leverages the possibilities of the cloud, uses the full potential of the virtually endless storage space to store data and use the computing power of the cloud is System Center Advisor. When System Center advisor first emerged it was a small service in the cloud where you had to seperately make a small proxy agent to send data into the cloud and configure it to get usefull data. You had to set up or designate a server as a gateway to send data to the online service. The data was only updated once per day and was only available through a webconsole. It was a nice product but it was way ahead of it’s time for the time being. One of the problems it had was the fact that...
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A first glance at Squared-Up Operations 1.8

Face it: In my believe Operations Manager is a cool product with lot’s of capabilities out of the box. But there is room for improvement as well. One of these areas of improvement is showing the data which you eagerly collect in SCOM to the operators or even to people who are not that tech minded. All they want to see is whether everything is running fine and they can happily (I do hope so) continue their work. SCOM is very good in showing the data to the Operators but is lacking these capabilities of showing data in a more simple way. Don’t get me wrong on this… It DOESN’T need to have this capability on board by default… Luckily there are a number of players on the market regarding easy setup dashboards and visualizations of this data in your SCOM environment like Squared-up. During MMS 2013 I came across Squared-up. A small UK based company who took a rather different approach...
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SCOM 2012 Notice: Trying to access array offset on value of type bool in /customers/5/1/0/obvus.be/httpd.www/wp-content/themes/square/inc/template-tags.php on line 138

SCOM 2012 R2 UR2: version number agent not increased

  Recently the new update rollup version (UR2) for SCOM 2012 R2 was released to the general public. One of the things that came up in the community was the fact that the agent number was not increasing in the SCOM console when it was pushed through the console. Stanislav Zhelyazkov worked closely with other community members to pinpoint the problem and found a workaround which is both genious and simple: Run repair from the console. Please read his full blog post here: http://cloudadministrator.wordpress.com/2014/05/10/system-center-2012-r2-operations-manager-ur2-does-not-updated-agents-trough-the-console/...
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Home automation: Putting a child lock on my Nest thermostat using SCOM

  This post is part of a series on how I demonstrate how to use SCOM to basically monitor everything. The other parts can be found here: Part 1: How did I get data Part 2: Get data into SCOM from MySQL Part 3: Create the MP Part 4: Seeing it in action After I have successfully been able to get data into SCOM from my Nest Thermostat and my Flukso energy meter it’s time to do some cool stuff with it. More devices are in the pipeline to get data into SCOM to create the ultimate Domotics controller or should I say “SCOMotics”… One problem I have in real life is the fact that it’s very hard to explain to my wife and kids the process off radiant floors. It takes some time to heat up but it stays warm a long time so there’s no point in setting the thermostat to a higher point to get instant heat because it takes approx 1 hour to...
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SCOM: Creating a PowerShell script monitor with Silect MPAuthor

Sometimes it’s necessary to create a monitor to monitor something which is not included in the standard management packs. Unfortunately it’s not possible in SCOM  to use PowerShell to crerate a script monitor in the scom console. Although it’s not a good idea to start authoring in the operations console it sometimes can be a quick and easy way to create a monitor. Recently Silect Sofftware released a free version of MPAuthor to create your management packs. I’m using this to create my script monitors to collect and monitor the data which I use in my monitoring my home series: http://scug.be/dieter/2014/02/19/monitor-your-home-with-scom/ Download the tool here: http://www.silect.com/mp-author Below is an example of how I monitor the target temperature set on my Nest Thermostat. So open the tool and create a new management pack => Create New Script Monitor… Name the script (if you have the script somewhere as a PS1 file it will load the script body automatically. This is the script I’m using: [xml] param([int]$maxtarget) [void][system.reflection.Assembly]::LoadFrom(“C:\Program Files (x86)\MySQL\MySQL Connector...
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SCOM: Agentpostinstall.ps1 PowerShell demo script Webcast 01042014

On april 1st 2014 (a day I will remember for a long time due to various reasons) I held a webcast for Microsoft Technet Belux regarding automation of admin tasks in SCOM. I went over the basics to get started, the pitfalls and gave some tips and tricks to get you going. This session was recorded and together with the slide deck it’s made available here: http://www.slideshare.net/technetbelux/make-scom-work-for-you-and-not-the-other-way-around In this demo I created a small PowerShell script that could save you some time when agents are installed in your environment through an image. In this particular scenario the agents are automatically in the “pending approval” list in SCOM. Running this PowerShell will add them to the environment, make them remotely manageable, point them all to a management server of your choice and put agent proxying on true. Feel free to adapt the script for your needs. The script in question: [xml] #===================================================================================================== # AUTHOR:    Dieter Wijckmans # DATE:        01/04/2014 # Name:        agentpostinstall.PS1 # Version:    1.0 # COMMENT:    Approve agents after install, make remotely manageable,...
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