DNS Management Pack Optional Configuration

Standard

When you have imported the DNS management pack and configured it there are some optional configuration options:

  • External Resolution Monitor
  • Global Zone Resolution Monitor
  • Forwarder Availability Monitor

External Resolution Monitor

When imported the DNS management pack the external resolution monitor that performs an NSLOOKUP query for a host(NS) record at www.microsoft.com to verrify that external resolution is functioning properly. If you want, you can change the Host, Query or disable te monitor.

  • Open the System Center Operations Manager Console 2007 r2, and click the "Authoring" workspace.
  • In the "Authoring" workspace, expand "Management Pack Objects, and select "Monitors"

    SelectMonitor

  • In the "Monitors" pane, use the "Look for:" box to find "External Resolution Monitor"

    ExternalResolutionMonitor

  • Right Click "DNS 2008/R2 External Resolution Monitor", select "Overrides", select "Override the Monitor", click "For all objects of class: DNS 2008/R2 Server"

    CreateOverride

  • On the "Overrides Properties" page, select "Host" and change the "Override Value" to the value that you want

    Override

  • On the "Overrides Properties" page, Select a "Destination management Pack" click "Apply" and click "OK"

Global Zone Resolution Monitor

The Global zone resolution monitor performs an NSLOOKUP query for a test(A) record named "placeholder" to verify that global zone resolution is working. If you want it to work you can create a DNS A record named "placeholder" or you can create a override to change the target name.

When you are going to change the target name you need to create a override to change the target name

  • Open the System Center Operations Manager Console 2007 r2, and click the "Authoring" workspace.
  • In the "Authoring" workspace, expand "Management Pack Objects, and select "Monitors"
  • In the "Monitors" pane, use the "Look for:" box to find "Global Zone Resolution Monitor"
  • Right Click "Global Zone Resolution Monitor", select "Overrides", select "Override the Monitor", click "For all objects of class: DNS 2008/R2 Global Zone"

     GlobalZoneMonitorOverride

  • On the "Overrides Properties" page, select "Host" and change the "Override Value" to the value that you want

    GlobalZoneOverrideHost

  • On the "Overrides Properties" page, Select a "Destination management Pack" click "Apply" and click "Ok"

Forwarder Availability Monitor

The forwarder availability monitor uses www.microsoft.com as a host in an NSLOOKUP query by default for unconditional forwarders. If your environment does not have A type records for all zones, you can override the default record type to Start of Authority (SOA) type record in Forwarder Availability Monitor with the following steps:

  • Open the System Center Operations Manager Console 2007 r2, and click the "Authoring" workspace.
  • In the "Authoring" workspace, expand "Management Pack Objects, and select "Monitors"
  • In the "Monitors" pane, use the "Look for:" box to find "Forwarder Availability Monitor"
  • Right Click "Forwarder Availability Monitor", select "Overrides", select "Override the Monitor", click "For a specific object off class: DNS 2008/R2 Forwarder"

    DNSsoaOverride

  • On the "Select Object" page, select the object that you want to Override and click "OK"
  • On the "Overrides Properties" page, select "Debug flag" and change the "Override Value" to the value "True"

    DebugFlagTrue

  • On the "Overrides Properties" page, Select a "Destination management Pack" click "Apply" and click "Ok"

The DNS management Pack can be found here. The Management Pack guide can be found here

Agentless Monitoring Part 2

Standard

In Part 1 of agentless monitoring I explained how to configure Agentless Monitoring. In this Part I will explain Agentless Exception Monitoring(AEM).

Agentless Exception Monitoring is an extension of Dr. Watson. Dr Watson is responsible for capturing application errors and the forward the to Microsoft if needed. When you are a home user this could be a viable option. When you are working in a organisation , the data that is collected by Dr Watson is could contain insight information of the organization that you don’t want to share with Microsoft.

When you implement Agentless exception Monitoring, Dr Watson collects the application errors and stores them in on the AEM infrastructure that is hosted by your organization.

AEM Relies on two configuration options to Function:

  1. Run the configuration Wizard from the System Center Operations Console
  2. Create a Group Policy to configure the Clients

Run the configuration Wizard from the System Center operations Console

  1. Start the System Center Operations Manager Console 2007 r2
  2. Select the "Administration" workspace
  3. Expand "Device Managed" and select "Management Servers"
  4. Right click the RMS and select"Configure Client Monitoring"

    ConfigureClientMonitoring

  5. On the "Introduction" page, click "Next"
  6. On the "CEIP Forwarding" page, click "Yes, use the selected management server to collect and forward CEIP data to Microsoft", Clear the "Use Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protocol" and click "Next"

    CustomerExperienceImprovementProgram

  7. On the "Error Collection" page, Fill in the "File Share Path", Check of the "Collect error from Windows Vista-based or later clients" is checked and clear the "Use Secure Sockets (SSL) protocol" check box. In the Organization Name type the name you want to Use

    ErrorCollection

  8. On the "Error Forwarding" page, Click "Next"
  9. On the "Create File Share" page, Click "Other user account(will not be saved)" and fill in a domain administrator account
  10. On the "Create File Share: Task Status" page, click "Next"
  11. On the "Client Configuration Settings" page, Select a location where you want to store the administrative template and click "Finish"

Create a Group Policy to Configure the clients

  1. Start the Group Policy Management Console
  2. Browse to the Organizational Unit where you want to create the Group Policy
  3. Right click the Organizational Unit and click "Create a GPO in this domain, and link it here…"
  4. Give the New GPO a name and click "OK"
  5. Edit the GPO
  6. Navigate to "Computer Configuration, Policies, Administrative Templates"
  7. Right click "Administrative Templates" and click "Add/Remove Templates"
  8. On the "Add/Remove Templates" dialogue click "Add" and select the created template from above click "Open". Click "Close"
  9. Navigate to "Computer Configuration, Policies, Administrative templates, Classic Administrative Templates(ADM), Microsoft Application, System Center Operations Manager (Scom)"
  10. Select "Scom Client Monitoring CIEP Settings", Open "Configure CEIP (Customer Experience Improvement Program)" click "Enable" and configure the CEIP Settings "http://rms.ms-opsmgr.eu:51907/" Click "Apply", click "OK"
  11. Select "Scom Monitoring", Open "Configure Error Reporting for Windows Vista and later operating Systems" , click "enable" and verify that the correct settings are configured and click "Apply" and click "OK"
  12. Select "Scom Monitoring", Open "Configure Error Notification", click "Enable" and verify that "ShowUI" in unchecked and "DoNotDebugErrors" is checked. CLick "Apply" and "OK"
  13. Navigate to "Computer Configuration, Policies, Administrative templates, Classic Administrative Templates(ADM), Microsoft Application, System Center Operations Manager (Scom), Scom Monitoring"
  14. Select "Advanced Error Reporting settings", open "Application reporting settings (all or None)", "Enable" check if all options are selected and Click "Apply" and "OK"
  15. Select "Advanced Error Reporting settings", open "Report Operating System Errors", "Enable" check if all options are selected and Click "Apply" and "OK"
  16. Select "Advanced Error Reporting settings", open "Report unplanned shut-down events, "Enable" check if all options are selected and Click "Apply" and "OK"
  17. Navigate to "Computer Configuration, Policies, Administrative templates, Classic Administrative Templates(ADM), Microsoft Application, System Center Operations Manager (Scom)"
  18. Select "SCOM Client monitoring for Office 10.0 Applications" open "Configure Error Notification, "Enable and make sure that the Option "ShowUI" is not selected. Click "Apply and "OK"
  19. Close the Group Policy Management Console

Now the configuration is done. Time to do some testing and see if it’s working. You can add a registry key to a client computer to add the feature to generate a crash.

  1. Start the registry editor on your windows test system
  2. browse to "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\i8042prt\Parameters"
  3. Create a new DWORD Value. Name the new key "CrashOnCtrlScroll", and set value 1
  4. Restart the computer

When you computer is up and running again, you should be enable to generate a blue screen by holding down the right Ctrl key and click Scroll Lock twice.

When you open the System Center Operations Manager Console and you select Agent less acceptation Monitoring. You could select a view to see the alerts generated

MonitoringAgentless

Big thank’s to Pete Zerger and Anders Bengtsson who wrote a great article on Agent less Exception Monitoring. This can be found at System Center Central

Agentless Monitoring Part 1

Standard

In this blog post I will explain how to configure agentless monitoring in System Center Operation Manager 2007 r2. There are two types off Agentless Monitoring:

  • Agentless Monitoring
  • Agentless Exception Monitoring

In this Part I will explain how to configure Agentless-Monitoring.

AgentLess Monitoring

Agentless management of computers is different from Agentless Exception Monitoring. Agent Exception Monitoring is used tot aggregate, vies and report on error reports that are sent by the Windows Error Reporting Service

The discovery wizard can find and Setup systems for agentless management. It is almost the same as deploying a agent to a client. The difference is that you need configure a proxy for each agentless-managed system.

Configure a Proxy for agentless-managed computers

  1. Start the System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2 Operating Console
  2. Click the tab "Administration"
  3. Select "Agent Managed"
  4. Open the "Agent Properties" and click the "Security" tab

    ProxyAgent

  5. On te "Security" tab, select "Allow this agent to act as proxy and discover managed objects on other computers" and click "OK"

    ProxyAgentEnabled

When you enabled enable a agent to serve as proxy. You will see the following event logged on your System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2 Server and on the server that you configured as agent Proxy

EventViewerNewConfiguration

When you remove the agent Proxy the agentless systems are no longer managed.

Discover windows Computers to manage them as Agentless-managed Computers

  1. Start the System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2 Operating Console
  2. Click the tab "Administration"
  3. Start the "Discovery Wizard"
  4. On the "Discovery Type" page, select "Windows Computers" and click "Next"
  5. On the "Auto or Advanced" page, select "Advanced discovery"
  6. On the "Auto or Advanced" page, in the "Computer and Device Classes" list, select "Server and Clients"
  7. On the "Auto or Advanced" page, in the "Management Server" list, select the Management Server you want to use to discover the computer and click "Next"
  8. On the "Discovery Method" page, select "Browse for, or type-in computers name",browse for the computer you want to discover and click "Next"
  9. On the "Administrator Account" page, select "User selected Management Server Action Account" and click "Discover"
  10. On the "Select Objects to Manage" page, select the discovered Server. Click "Change" and select the Proxy Agent you want to Use. In the "Management Mode" select "Agentless" and click "Next"

    AgentlessConfigurationDiscovery

  11. On the "Summary" page, click finished
  12. In the System Center Operations Manager Console, click Administration and select "Agentless Managed" and check if the windows computer is monitored

    AgentlessMonitored

More Information on agentless Monitoring can be found here.

Management Pack XML Architecture Explained

Standard

In this post I will explain what the management pack architecture is. When you installed System Center Operations Manager, SCOM wil only monitor some basic OS related services. When you import Management Packs you can monitor a white array of server health indicators.

Management Packs delivers:

  • Alerts
  • Rules and Monitors
  • Views
  • Reports

Management Packs are XML based and use the Service Modelling Language to define health models. Health Service models define when a system is healthy or unhealthy.The native format of an System Center Operational Manager Management Pack is a (Extensible Markup Language )XML Document. The management Pack schema is decided into 8 major sections. The only required required section is the Manifest. In the figure below you see the architecture of a Management Pack.

Management Pack Schema

  • Manifest: The manifest element is the only required child element of the root Management Pack element. It contains the required identifiers for the management pack Such as:
    • Identity (manifest): Contains the id and the version
    • Name (manifest): Contains the Name of the management pack
    • References (manifest): References are used in your management pack when you want to reference the public type definitions and monitoring work flows of other sealed management packs.

    Example of a XML Manifest

  • TypeDefinitions: Contains all types defined in the management pack. These are the child elements of the typeDefinitions:
    • EntityTypes: Contains the definition of all entities that are used as targets for all monitoring work flows. The EntityType of the management Pack also contains the service model definition of your application or the service in the form of an object that consist of:
      • ClassTypes: Represents a class type definition in the management pack
      • RelationshipType: Represents a relationship type definition in the management pack
    • DataTypes: Contains Data type definitions in a management pack
    • SchemaTypes: Contains a reusable schema definition type within a management pack
    • SecureReference: Contains a secure reference type or a RunAs Profile
    • ModuleTypes: Module Types defines the building block of work-flows. They are used in rules, monitors, diagnostics, recoveries and discoveries. The following child elements are member of the parent element ModuleTypes:
      • DataSourceModuleType: Represent a data source module type definition in a management pack. Implemented when the module is to be used to output work flow data or either notification or information purposes
      • ProbeActionModuleType: Represents a probe action module type definition in a management pack. Implemented when the module is used to output work flow data.
      • ConditionDetectionModule: Represents a condition detection module type definition in a management pack. Implemented when the module is used to provide some kind of data filtering or condition reasoning within a work flow.
      • WriteActionModuleType: Represents a write action module type definition in a management pack. Implemented when the module is used to write to or change the system in some way.
    • MonitorTypes: The only monitor type is a UnitMonitorType element. Most of the unit monitor types are defined in the Microsoft.Windows.Library management pack. Generally, you would use these predefined types to create your own UnitMonitor definitions.

    Example of a XML TypeDefinition

  • Monitoring: The Monitoring element of a management pack contains discoveries and monitoring type work-flows that comprise the health model of your management pack. these are the child elements of the monitoring:
    • Discoveries: Defines a discovery work flow that returns discovery data for class and/or relationship type instances.
    • Rules: Defines a work flow that is used for stateless monitoring.
    • Tasks: Defines an on-demand work flow designed to be initiated by the user on an agent computer.
    • Monitors: The Monitors element of a management pack contains the state-based monitors of your health model. Two of the monitor types, AggregateMonitor and DependencyMonitor, are monitors that roll up other monitors (including other dependency and aggregate monitors). Use these types to create the appropriate hierarchy of your application’s health model. The UnitMonitor element is a monitor that implements a UnitMonitorType definition and targets a specific aspect of a class type to monitor. Unit monitor types always roll up to one of the other two monitor types.
      • AggregateMonitor: Defines a state machine whose health state is determined by an algorithmic analysis of its children.
      • UnitMonitor: Defines an implementation of a unit monitor type definition that determines the health of targeted class type instances.
      • DependencyMonitor: Defines a state machine whose health state is determined by an algorithmic analysis of a hosting or containment relationship’s target instances
    • Diagnostics: Represents a diagnostic definition targeted at a specific class type and associated monitor.
    • Recoveries: Represents a recovery definition that is associated with a specific monitor.
    • Overrides: Overrides fall into two categories: configuration overrides and property overrides. Configuration overrides allow the user to override configuration elements defined in a work flow. Property overrides allow the user to override the property values that are common amongst all work-flows or of a particular type of work flow. Overrides can be created for the following work flow types.
      • Rules
      • Discoveries
      • Monitors
      • Diagnostics
      • Recoveries
    • ServiceLevelObjectives: Service level objectives allow users to define the availability or performance goals of a targeted class type that can optionally be scoped by a ConfigurationGroup element. Service-level objectives are tracked against either a Rollup monitor or a performance counter.
      • MonitorSlo: Defines a service-level objective that is tracked against a monitor.
      • PerformanceSlo: Defines a service-level objective that is tracked against a performance counter.

    Example of a XML Monitor

  • Templates: Represent a template definitions. The creation of custum management Pack templates is not supported in System Center Operation Manager 2012

    Example of a XML Template

  • PresentationTypes: The following child elements are inside the parent PresentationTypes element
    • ViewTypes: Contains the view types that are available within the Operations console.
    • Images: Contains images that represent an object in the Operations console
    • UIPages: Contains references to Windows Forms that are used in either a wizard or a property page set.
    • UIPageSets: Contains groups of user interface pages that are used to configure a monitor type, template, or module type.

    Example of a XML PresentationTypes

  • Presentation: The following child elements are inside the parent Presentation:
    • ConsoleTasks: Contains console task definitions in a management pack.
    • Views: Contains view type implementations in a management pack.
    • Folders: Contains all folder definitions to be displayed in the Operations console.
    • FolderItems: Contains all folder item definitions in a management pack.
    • ImageReferences: Contains all image reference definitions in a management pack.
    • StringResources: Contains all string resource definitions in a management pack.

    Example of a XML Presentation

  • LanguagePack: Represents all localizable strings in the management pack for the specified language.

    Example of a XML LanguagePacks

More information on the XMl elements inside a Management Pack can be found on MSDN