Cruise Mode for your Active Directory Monitoring

 

Cruise mode is a luxury most of us would desire not only for our drive to work, but even our life. Shouldn’t this luxury be available for IT Operators working around the Crusie_Control.jpgworld who are managing complex and vast IT infrastructure? 

 

IT Infrastructure today is dynamic in nature with frequent updates to the existing configurations or additions of new resources. As an IT Operator/Administrator you are responsible for infrastructure monitoring . Any new addition of, or changes to infrastructure needs to comply with the standardized and best practice driven monitoring guidelines. The operators are required to deploy the monitoring configuration to the newly added resource. Applying the monitoring configuration to these resources is basically repetitive. Operators could save time with deployment automation and apply the time saved to more productive work.

 

In this blog I will describe how we can use HP Operations Manager i (OMi) and Management packs to achieve complete automation of the deployment, activation as well as decommissioning of monitoring configuration to your IT Infrastructure. To illustrate this, let’s examine a typical Active Directory deployment in an enterprise.

 

How does it happen today?

A typical active directory deployment consists of one or more Forests, multiple Sites, Domains and domain AD_Manual_Steps.pngcontrollers. The number of domain controllers can range anywhere from 10 to 50 depending on the size of the
enterprise. Monitoring is deployed to all the domain controllers generally in a phased manner.  

 

In a typical scenario you need to follow the below sequence of steps:

  • Node is added to the monitoring solution
  • Detect if the node hosts domain controller. This is achieved by deployment of the discovery component of the monitoring solution
  • Configure the monitoring for the domain controllers. Here again the user must identify the right configuration and deploy it to the domain controllers manually

All the above steps are manual and should be repeated for each of the domain controllers.

 

How will it work with OMi Management Pack for Active Directory?

AD_Automated_Steps.png

With the new OMi Management Pack (MP) for Microsoft Active Directory it is just few steps to automate the monitoring of your entire Active Directory environment.   

 

All you need to do is follow the below sequence of steps:

  • Node is added to the OMi

Yes, that is it. 

 

All you need to do is add the node to OMi and it will auto detect that it hosts a domain controller. It will deploy the appropriate monitoring configuration automatically. It not only deploys monitoring for the Active Directory environment but also for the underlying infrastructure (e.g. CPU Monitors, Memory monitors, Storage monitors etc..). Even adding the node to the OMi can be automated with various automation tools.

 

Note that use of Monitoring Automation, a feature of OMi, is a prerequisite for the above mentioned features.

 

So what it takes to enable auto-deployment?

To enable the auto-deployment of monitoring you just need to configure two auto assignment rules—a single time. Once done, they will be applied to every instance discovered from thereon, and the reverse when they are decommissioned.

 

The rules are:

  1. Auto-assign Active Directory Discovery
  2. Auto-Assign Management Template

Let us now dive into the details.

 

Step 1: Auto-assign Active Directory Discovery

With OMi Management Packs, monitoring begins with the discovery of the underlying application infrastructure. HP OMi MP for Active Directory comes with an aspect “Microsoft AD Discovery” which discovers your Active Directory topology. All that is needed for discovery, is the deployment of the “Microsoft AD Discovery” aspect to the domain controllers.  This deployment can also be automated by creating an Auto Assignment rule which will automatically deploy the discovery aspect to the domain controllers as mentioned:

 

  1. Create a pattern view that will query for the domain controllers
  2. Create an auto assignment rule that will assign the discovery aspect to this view 

Step 2: Auto-Assign Management Template

To automate the monitoring of your Active Directory environment you need to:

 

1. Identify or Create the Management template

OMi MP for Active Directory comes with out of the box Management Templates to suit different needs. You need to identify the Management Templates that best suit your environment.

 

 AD_MT.jpg

For example the “Extensive Management Template” can be used for comprehensive monitoring.

 

You can also create your own Management Template by adding appropriate Aspects.

Note: You can also go ahead adjust the default values of various monitoring parameters to suit your environment and monitoring SLAs.

 

2. Create an Auto Assignment Rule

Once the Management Template is identified and tuned, the next step is to assign to an appropriate view. You can create a new auto assignment rule and assign the Management Template to the view “AD_Logical_View”. This out of the box Active Directory view is made available with the Management Pack. 

 

Takeaway

With the two assignment rules you can completely automate the deployment of monitoring for your entire active directory environment. This can reduce the amount of time you spend performing these repetitive tasks. It is like switching on cruise mode because any new domain controller is automatically monitored without your manual intervention. Now you can now focus your effort on solving the critical problems—rather than performing repetitive tasks.

 

To learn more, visit the OMi Management Pack for Microsoft Active Directory page.

 

Download the OMi Management Pack for Microsoft Active Directory here to experience this monitoring capability for yourself. 

 

Other References:

HP OMi now includes Automation to simplify IT Monitoring

Do you Hadoop? Very Vertica? Overly ORACLE ? Incredibly Infrastructure? Let HP OMi help out

OMi Management Pack for Vertica - Part 1: The Need

Demystifying Oracle Database Monitoring with Omi Management Pack for Oracle Database

The New Deal: Monitoring Microsoft SQL Server with OMi Management Pack

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About the Author
Manoj Mohanan is a Software Engineer working in the HP OMi Management Packs team. Apart being a developer he also dons the role of an enable...


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