System Center Operations Manager Saves The Day … Even In A vSphere Site

Way-back-when, I deployed Microsoft Operations Manager 2005 just after it had RTMd.  My boss, the IT infrastructure manager, decided that we should do our initial agent deployment in our DR site.  We had Windows and HP ProLiant management packs imported.  The DR site in question was rarely visited: pretty much whenever we needed to install something new or when we had a test invocation scheduled.

Within minutes, the agents started reporting degraded hardware: memory DIMMs, RAM, and PSUs.  That won my boss over.  Once the network team were happy, we started deploying agents 17 worldwide sites.

This week I’ve been involved with a proof-of-concept deployment of OpsMgr 2007 R2 CU5 in a VMware environment.  The customer wanted to see how it would handle monitoring of a critical service that had received significant investment and attention from the business.  The management group was built, and agents were deployed to the application servers (any consultant who deploys agents to hundreds machines at once is being negligent because the customer will reject the un-tuned full of noisy alerts monitoring solution).  A handful of management packs were imported, including Windows and SQL Server.  And within minutes we had detected an issue.  The SQL log file for the application was not able to expand and the critical LOB app was about to fail.  Nice timing Smile (I swear I didn’t cause it!).  The customer’s IT staff were on it and the problem was avoided.  Then a day later, once the data warehouse was populated with some info, I ran some performance reports and identified a vCPU bottleneck in the SQL server VM and a recommendation was made there.

To quote Charlie Sheen: WINNING!

It would be easy to think that SysCtr is irrelevant to VMware.  Sure, in my opinion System Center + Hyper-V exceeds the alternative.  But, elements of SysCtr + vSphere easily exceeds vSphere by itself or with some overpriced point solution with a “v” badge stuck on it.

We know the business values applications (or services).  They couldn’t care less about vSphere VS Hyper-VS any other virtualisation.  Now this customer has SLA monitoring/reporting on this particular LOB application and thanks to the early warning from OpsMgr, it’s sitting nicely at 100%, and the IT department’s customer is a happy camper.

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