Category: System Center

Monitoring Windows Server 2016 Nano Server with SCOM 2016

The following post is intended to demonstrate how to monitor your Windows Server 2016 — Nano Server, via System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) 2016.

Also, a quick note, the SCOM team released the Windows Server 2016 Operating System Management Pack today, see HERE for the download/MP. One of the many updates to this MP (version 10.0.8.0) is the added compatibility of the Nano agent! So without further ado, let’s try installing the SCOM 2016 agent on a Nano server!

mp

To begin, I have an out-of-the-box Windows 2016 (No UI) VM. I gave it 1GB of memory, and 2 vCPU’s.

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Once the VM is online, first things first, we need to add this machine to our domain, unless you want to go the DMZ/Certificates route…. For simplicity, I am adding the Nano server to my domain, same domain as the SCOM Management Server(s) — The Nano Server and SCOM Management Server MUST be on the same domain. Same network space, etc. etc.

Assuming the above is completed, let’s begin with assigning a static IP address to the server. However, before we do this, we need to get the name of the Network Adapter(s).

Network Adapter Information

Get-NetAdapter
Get-NetIPConfiguration

These cmdlets will give us the network adapter name and current settings. As you can see below, the domain controller/DHCP has already given our server a dynamic IP (10.10.10.50). We want to change this….

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Assign Static IP

New-NetIPAddress -InterfaceIndex 2 -IPAddress 10.10.10.37 -PrefixLength 24 -DefaultGateway 10.10.10.1

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By default, the -PrefixLength 24, will assign the subnet mask of 255.255.255.0.

Next, since this is Active Directory, we want to assign the DNS Server(s) to our Network Adapter.

Assign DNS Server(s)

Set-DnsClientServerAddress -InterfaceIndex 2 -ServerAddresses 10.10.10.30, 10.10.10.31

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If you only have one DNS/DC server, then remove the second entry.

Now that we have communication with the domain controllers, now we can add our machine to the domain.

First, let’s change the server name from its random default, to something we like. I am going to go with “NANO01“.

Change Server Name

Rename-Computer -NewName "NANO01" -Restart

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Next, we can now add the server to the domain.

Add Server to Domain

Add-Computer -DomainName "RaviLocal.com" -Restart

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To quickly verify our server has been added to AD, we can take a looking at the AD Users and Computers UI:

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Great, there it is! Now we can go ahead and deploy our Microsoft Monitoring Agent (MMA)/SCOM Agent.

Deploy SCOM 2016 Agent

Since I am taking the lazy approach, I will be deploying the agent via SCOM console. If you want to make use of PowerShell, see Microsoft’s TechNet article HERE.

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Great, MMA deployed as expected! Quickly verify it is now communicating with SCOM:

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All good!

 

Happy SCOM’ing 2016!

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Step-by-Step – Upgrading to SCOM 2016 from SCOM 2012 R2

So you’ve decided to take the jump and upgrade to System Center Operations Manager 2016? Assuming you are running a SCOM 2012R2 (UR11) environment, this post will be exactly what you need to have a successful SCOM 2012 R2 to SCOM 2016 upgrade. **Although the recommended path is to upgrade from UR9**

In my environment, here is the quick breakdown:

  • SCOM 2012 R2 environment has two Management Servers.
    • Handful of clients (Windows 2012R2) being monitored.
  • Both Management Servers live on a Windows 2012 R2 operating system.
    • Both Management Servers are running with UR 11 (Update Rollup) **Microsoft recommends upgrading the environment at latest version number minus one (latest – 1), so in this case, UR9 (UR10 was never issued for SCOM 2012R2)**.
  • The SQL environment is a SQL Server 2014 SP2 also running on Windows 2012 R2.
    • The Operations and Data Warehouse live on dedicated SQL instances, however reside on the same server.

Pre-Upgrade Tasks

Let’s get started!

First, we need to do some “Pre-Upgrade” Tasks. Follow these in order.

  1. Back up the Operations Manager Databases
  2. Review the Operations Manager Event Logs
  3. Cleanup the Database (ETL Table)
  4. Remove Agents from Pending Management
  5. Disable the Notification Subscriptions
  6. Stop the Services or Disable any Connectors
  7. Verify that the Operational Database Has More Than 50 Percent Free Space
  8. Back up the Operations Manager Databases

To Cleanup the ETL Tables, you will need to run the following script:

  • The following script will determine the number of rows that will (need) be deleted:

DECLARE @SubscriptionWatermark bigint = 0;

SELECT @SubscriptionWatermark = dbo.fn_GetEntityChangeLogGroomingWatermark();

Select COUNT (*)
FROM EntityTransactionLog ETL with(nolock)
WHERE NOT EXISTS (SELECT 1 FROM EntityChangeLog ECL with(nolock) WHERE ECL.EntityTransactionLogId = ETL.EntityTransactionLogId)
AND NOT EXISTS (SELECT 1 FROM RelatedEntityChangeLog RECL with(nolock) WHERE RECL.EntityTransactionLogId = ETL.EntityTransactionLogId)
AND EntityTransactionLogId < @SubscriptionWatermark;

etl-cleanup-1

  • Now we can go ahead and clean up the ETL table running the script below:

DECLARE @RowCount int = 1;
DECLARE @BatchSize int = 100000;
DECLARE @SubscriptionWatermark bigint = 0;
DECLARE @LastErr int;

SELECT @SubscriptionWatermark = dbo.fn_GetEntityChangeLogGroomingWatermark();
WHILE(@RowCount > 0)
BEGIN
DELETE TOP (@BatchSize) ETL
FROM EntityTransactionLog ETL
WHERE NOT EXISTS (SELECT 1 FROM EntityChangeLog ECL WHERE ECL.EntityTransactionLogId = ETL.EntityTransactionLogId)
AND NOT EXISTS (SELECT 1 FROM RelatedEntityChangeLog RECL WHERE RECL.EntityTransactionLogId = ETL.EntityTransactionLogId)
AND ETL.EntityTransactionLogId < @SubscriptionWatermark;

SELECT @LastErr = @@ERROR, @RowCount = @@ROWCOUNT;

END

etl-cleanup-2

Great! Let this run, which may take a few minutes, or hours depending on your environment..

Now we are ready to get started with the upgrade. (Don’t get to backup your databases (Report Server, Operations, Data Warehouse!!)

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Upgrading to SCOM 2016

After you have downloaded the RTM image file, as you may have noticed, it is not an ISO file. So let’s extract the file contents locally…

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Before moving on with the install, I stopped the following SCOM services on all of the Management Servers:

  1. Microsoft Monitoring Agent (healthservice)
  2. System Center Data Access Service (OMSDK)
  3. System Center Management Configuration (cshost)

Now we can run the installer (Run As Administrator or, SCOM Data Access/SDK account)

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Sweet! Although this was expected, since no new changes were required for Windows Server 2012 R2.

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I cannot stress how useful it is to use dedicated service accounts. Here input your Data Access/SDK account.

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Once quick review before we begin the Upgrade..

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Let this run… For me, the upgrade took around 50 minutes for the first Management Server..

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Sweet! All good. Remember to install the license key before the 120 days are up.

Let’s launch the console just to make sure we are in all working order.

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Great! Now we will need to repeat the process for the second/other Management servers…

Once complete, let’s upgrade our client agents to SCOM 2016 (v 8.0.10918.0)

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At this time we can make use of the SCOM 2016 features, and update our out-dated Management Packs. Remember this feature really only works for Microsoft based Management Packs, ie. SQL, Windows Server, Client OS, etc.

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I hope this helped! For additional information, and or upgrading other items such as Gateways, ACS (Audit Collection Services), etc. Please visit Microsoft’s guides HERE.

 

Lastly, it is highly recommended to upgrade to SCOM 2016 Update Rollup 1 (UR1). For that guide, please visit this LINK.

 

Happy SCOM’ing 2016!

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SCOM 2016 Web Console Face-Off

I had some free time so, I figured let’s test out the SCOM 2016 Web Console with respect to HTML5…

In my test, I tested the following browsers. Please note, metrics/data collected was within the built-in browser development tools.

  • Internet Explorer 11 (Obviously)
  • Chrome (v 54.0.2840.71 m)
  • Firefox (v 49.0.2)

I tested out the following views within each browser:

  • Alerts View
  • State Views
  • Performance Views
  • Diagram Views
  • Dashboard Views

Let’s get started:


First, let’s try my default (go-to) browser, Chrome

Alerts View:

alerts

State View:

state

Performance View:

performance

Diagram View:

diagram

Dashboard View:

dashboard

Verdict: Well, that’s a bummer… All but the dashboard view worked. I suspect Silverlight is still required… But good to know most, or at least in this exercise 80% of the functionality tested works in Chrome.

 


Next, let’s test Firefox.

Alerts View:

alerts

State View:

state

Performance View:

performance

Diagram View:

diagram

Dashboard View:

dashboard

Verdict: (See Chrome…)


 

Lastly, Internet Explorer (not Edge).

Alerts View:

alerts

State View:

state

Performance View:

performance

Diagram View:

diagram

Dashboard View:

dashboard

Verdict: Well, there you have it, the SCOM 2016 Web Console is not all HTML5, as it still requires Silverlight. Maybe the MOM team will step their game up, and have this fully integrated in SP1 or maybe R2 versions — After all, HTML5 was released in 2014. Or maybe, this is Microsoft’s gentle way of pushing users to OMS (Operations Management Suite).

Also, Google Chrome was notably faster than Firefox and IE.

OpsMgr Page View; Browser Google Chrome Firefox Internet Explorer (11)
Alerts View 1.84 s 2.73 s 2.73 s
States View 2.62 s 2.13 s 2.12 s
Performance Views 2.88 s 4.68 s 5.50 s
Diagram Views 0.87 s 2.97 s 1.76 s
Dashboard Views 1.96 s 1.40 s 2.18 s

 

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Step-by-Step – SCOM 2016 Update Rollup 1 (UR1) Install Procedure

Well, that was fast… System Center/Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) team just released Update Rollup 1 for SCOM 2016, only weeks after the System Center 2016 suite and Windows Server 2016 were released.

The MOM team did not indicate what exactly the fixes were in this Update Rollup, so your guess is good as mine. However, I believe one of the issues that may have been resolved was the SCOM 2012R2/SCOM 2016 Console crash due to the October Cumulative Update, October 2016 Windows Server Cumulative Update(s).

Below step by step procedures below are the steps I took and in no way shape or form do I accept responsibility for any data loss, and/or issues within your environment. It is advised to always take a backup of your SQL databases and/or snapshots of your SCOM environment(s). Please take these notes as suggestions. Always refer to Microsoft’s KB (posted below) for full documentation steps.

Here are the key updates for UR1 (source Microsoft):

Issues that are fixed in this update rollup can be found here, https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3190029

Once you are ready to begin your upgrade, it is recommended you do the following server/roles in the order specified below:

  1. Install the update rollup package on the following server infrastructure in the order below:
  • Management server(s)
  • Web console server role computers
  • Operations console role computers
  1. Apply SQL scripts.
  2. Manually import the management packs.
  3. Apply the nano agent update to manually installed agents, or push the installation from the Pending view in the Operations console.

Once you have downloaded the rollup files, I like to extract and only keep the language I need, in this case, ENU (English). You will need to install these with Administrative rights, I like to use PowerShell as Local Administrator. It really does frustrate me, as there is no indication that the rollup installed correctly, (other than looking at the file version number change via File Explorer; Build Number 7.2.11719.0 (RTM) –> 7.2.11759.0 (UR1)).

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Personally, I prefer to execute the MSP files via PowerShell (RunAs Administrator) console.

Again, the order needs to be:

  1. Management Servers
  2. Web Console Role Servers
  3. Operations Console Role Servers

Once the Update Rollups are installed, you will now need to apply the SQL scripts. In this UR, only the Data Warehouse is affected.. However, before doing the SQL part, I highly recommend rebooting all of the SCOM Management Server(s), as none of the installers requested a reboot. I ran into some errors with the SQL script update. After a reboot, the script executed just fine.

The scripts can be found here, “%SystemDrive%\Program Files\Microsoft System Center 2016\Operations Manager\Server\SQL Script for Update Rollups\

Please note, the user executing these scripts needs to have read and write permissions to the database(s).

Execute the flowing SQL script on Data Warehouse DB SQL Server against OperationsManagerDW database, UR_Datawarehouse.sql.

*** !WARNING! AT THE TIME OF THIS POST, MICROSOFT’S KB IS WRONG! I have reported the incorrect files/documentation notes to their MOM team. Please note, after the MSP files have extracted, only the “update_rollup_mom_db” is to be found, this script needs to be run against the OperationsManager Database NOT the Data Warehouse.***

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Once you have successfully executed the SQL script, you will now need to import the updated Management Packs (MP). These MPs can be found here, “%SystemDrive%\Program Files\Microsoft System Center 2016\Operations Manager\Server\Management Packs for Update Rollups\“.

You will need to import the following MPs, please see below:

  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.Advisor.Internal.mpb
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.OperationsManager.Library.mp
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.Image.Library.mp
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.Visualization.Library.mpb
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.Advisor.mpb
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.AlertAttachment.mpb
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.IntelliTraceProfiling.mpb
  • Microsoft.SystemCenter.2007.mp

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Don’t forget, once the MPs have been imported, you should now go back to your Pending Management view, under the Administrations pane, and update all servers.

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And that is that! You are now on the latest and greatest System Center Operations Manager release for SCOM 2016.

Step-by-Step – Installing System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) 2016 on Windows Server 2016 with SQL 2016

This post I will be installing System Center Operations Manager 2016 (SCOM) RTM, Build Number 7.2.11719.0.

Here is some of the background information. As this post will concentrate on the installation of SCOM 2016, I am going to omit the setup and configuration of the Domain Controller, Windows Server 2016 for both SCOM Management Server and SQL Server (Please note, I am using SQL Server 2016, both servers on Windows 2016).

If you need help setting up SQL 2016 for SCOM 2016, please visit HERE.

Environment:  Virtual; ESX 6.0 Hypervisor

SCOM Management Server:

  • Windows Server 2016
  • 4 vCPU (2.00GHz)
  • 12 GB memory
  • 100GB Diskspace
  • 1GB vNIC

SQL Server:

  • Windows Server 2016
  • SQL Server 2016
  • 4 vCPU (2.00GHz)
  • 24 GB memory
  • 300GB Diskspace
  • 1GB vNIC

Service Accounts and Local Administrator:

Domain\Account Description Local Admin on…
domain\SCOM_AA SCOM Action Account SCOM & SQL
domain\SCOM_DA SCOM Data Access/SDK Account SCOM & SQL
domain\SCOM_SQL_READ SCOM SQL Reader SQL
domain\SCOM_SQL_WRITE SCOM SQL Writer SQL
domain\SCOM_Admins SCOM Administrators Group SCOM
domain\SQL_SA SQL Service Account SQL
domain\SQL_SSRS SQL Service Reporting Services Account SCOM

 

Now, if you’re lazy like me, or are tired of doing this setup for environments, I have scripted the automation of these accounts. You can find that link here, Microsoft TechNet Gallery.


Let’s Begin:

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For completeness, let’s install all the features of SCOM 2016. (I am hosting a default SQL 2016 instance on the SCOM Management Server for SSRS)

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Well, that’s not new… Errors. Since this is a clean, vanilla Windows 2016 server, we will need to install all the necessary Web Console components, along with Report Viewer Controls (probably SQL CLR Types too..).

  • For the Report Viewer Prerequisites, go HERE.

Note, oddly I was unable to install with CLR SQL 2016, Reports Viewer still complained and required CLR SQL 2014.

  • Here is the PowerShell command I ran to install the necessary IIS features/roles:
Import-Module ServerManager
Add-WindowsFeature Web-Server, Web-WebServer, Web-Common-Http, Web-Default-Doc, Web-Dir-Browsing, Web-Http-Errors, Web-Static-Content, Web-Health, Web-Http-Logging, Web-Log-Libraries, Web-Request-Monitor, Web-Performance, Web-Stat-Compression, Web-Security, Web-Filtering, Web-Windows-Auth, Web-App-Dev, Web-Net-Ext45, Web-Asp-Net45, Web-ISAPI-Ext, Web-ISAPI-Filter, Web-Mgmt-Tools, Web-Mgmt-Console, Web-Mgmt-Compat, Web-Metabase, NET-Framework-45-Features, NET-Framework-45-Core, NET-Framework-45-ASPNET, NET-WCF-Services45, NET-WCF-HTTP-Activation45, NET-WCF-TCP-PortSharing45, WAS, WAS-Process-Model, WAS-Config-APIs -restart

 

Once the server is back online, you will need to register ASP.Net.

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You will need to apply the following using Command Prompt (as Administrator)).

  1. cd %WINDIR%\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319\
  2. aspnet_regiis.exe -r
  3. IISRESET
  4. Reboot your server…

Once the server is back online, let’s try that Prerequisites check again….

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Great! Now all of Prerequisites have been met!

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Provide a meaningful Management Group Name (there’s no going back after this…)

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SQL Server will be where your SCOM SQL instance(s) were installed. For me, I have built two instances on my SQL2016 server (SCOM_OPSMGR & SCOM_DW).

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I recommend always keeping this off, and manually updating your SCOM infrastructure.

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One quick review. Looks good. Hit Install, and get some fresh air!

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A few minutes later….

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Sweet! All good. I hope this helps. If you have any questions or issues, please drop me a line.

Please note, it is STRONGLY ADVISED to install the Update Rollup 1 once you have deployed SCOM 2016. For that walk-through, please visit the following post, HERE.

Happy 2016 SCOM’ing!

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