Tag: System Center Orchestrator

Tips for Applying Update Rollup 2 on System Center 2012 R2 and Windows Azure Pack

I’ve been applying UR2 across almost all System Center 2012 R2 components so I’ve decided to share some tips with you: Continue reading “Tips for Applying Update Rollup 2 on System Center 2012 R2 and Windows Azure Pack”

System Center 2012 R2 Update Rollup 2 and Windows Azure Pack Update 2 are Now Available

Time flies by and Update Rollup 2 for System Center 2012 R2 is now available. Almost all components are receiving update. There are a lot of nice fixes in this update that you will want to squash. Before doing that in production make sure you test them in your dev environment. Continue reading “System Center 2012 R2 Update Rollup 2 and Windows Azure Pack Update 2 are Now Available”

From Orchestrator to Service Management Automation: Migration Scenarios

Service Management Automation (SMA) is the next gen IT Automation tool. SMA has some certain advantage over Orchestrator but also some limitations and vise versa. Nevertheless I am taking in consideration that you are aware of these advantages and limitations and you’ve decided to move fully or partially from SCO to SMA. Continue reading “From Orchestrator to Service Management Automation: Migration Scenarios”

Orchestrator Web Service Does Not Work After Adding The Server to Infrastructure Servers in VMM 2012 R2

I have a couple of Orchestrator servers with Web Features role installed on them. I’ve recently added those servers as Infrastructure Servers in VMM 2012 R2 in order to update them from there. After adding them the Orchestrator Web Service on those server stopped working. Continue reading “Orchestrator Web Service Does Not Work After Adding The Server to Infrastructure Servers in VMM 2012 R2”

Request Error on Calling Freshly Installed Orchestrator 2012 R2 Web Service

Previously I’ve encountered this error on the Preview build of Orchestrator 2012 R2 and now I’ve encountered in the RTM bits.

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This error appears in the following scenario:

You have SQL server to store the Orchestrator DB. In my case it is SQL Cluster. You have one server where you want to deploy all Orchestrator roles.If you use the installation wizard and deploy all Orchestrator roles at once you will not have this error. The Orchestrator web service will work perfectly fine. But using the all in one installation doesn’t give you the flexibility to have different service accounts. So if you deploy with the all in one installation wizard first the management server and the web features the Orchestrator web service works fine. But as soon you start the installation again and deploy the Runbook server role on the same server the web service starts to give request error upon calling it. Apparently when you deploy the Runbook server role on the management server separately something is changed in the Orchestrator database and the web service stops working. Even if you have other servers with the web service they will also start giving the error.

The workaround

If you are OK of using all Orchestrator roles with one service account just install all roles at once. If you want to use different accounts have a dedicated server for Orchestrator management role and separate servers for Runbook and/or web features roles. As long as you do not install the runbook role on the management server separately your Orchestrator web service will be fine.

Book Review: System Center 2012 Orchestrator Unleashed

I’ve been waiting for this book for a long time and when I finally got it can fairly say it is worth it. Two of the authors I had pleaser to meet in person – Pete Zerger and Anders Bengtsson. If you have a chance to be on a event where they have presentation do not hesitate to attend it, it is a must see. The other three authors are also well known in the community – Kerrie Meyler, Marcus Oh and Kurt Van Hoecke. So when you join the powers of these five great experts you get great book about Orchestrator.

I will not go into details but the book will explain you in very understanding way the concept of Orchestrator. Once you are done with the concept you will learn how to install it and implement it which will help you to design Orchestrator implementations for a real world scenarios. Also in this part you will learn how to make runbooks and how you can achieve the same goal in many ways and most important how to improve your runbooks. The last part covers integration with the other System Center components. In this part the focus in showing you examples on how to accomplish certain scenarios and explaining how the runbooks for these scenarios were created and the logic behind them.

As a summary the best part of the book is that in every chapter there are tips from the field that will learn you for the best practices not only about Orchestrator and runbooks but also for orchestration, automation and integration as concepts. If you are looking for a source to learn Orchestrator I recommend you this book:

SCOM APM for Orchestrator, SPF, SMA and WAP

Orchestrator, Service Provider Foundation, Service Management Automation and Windows Azure Pack are all web applications or web services or both. They are all monitored by IIS 8 Management Pack in Operations Manager but that MP can only provide monitoring to certain levels to solve these limitations in SCOM (SP1 and R2 for IIS8) we have Application Performance Monitoring (APM). This blog post does not aim to show you some advanced features in APM but rather to show you how to enable some advanced monitoring for those services. As SMA and WAP are available only in R2 I will use the R2 wave. Let’s start with enabling APM for every service:

Service Provider Foundation

Open SCOM console. Go to Authoring pane. Start Add Monitoring Wizard.

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Select .NET Application Performance Monitoring

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Give a friendly name to the application and create new management pack where the settings for this application will be saved.

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Select Add.

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Click on Search and add the two web service in SPF – VMM and Admin. Click OK.

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It is always a good practice to put Environment.

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Accept the default settings. The idea is to fine tune these settings depending on the performance of the application in your environment. If you have more than one environment (development, test, production and etc.) these settings can be different because some environments will have less resources than other and the application can perform slowly because of that. SPF is only web service and because of that does not have portal so client-side monitoring is not relevant. On summary page click Create and wait until the APM for SPF is created.

And the result is:

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From now on when you have data for a long term period you can fine-tune the APM settings. You can even set exceptions for some methods.

Orchestrator Web Service and Console

Orchestrator has Web Service and Console (Web Application).

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One Web service and Web application (portal) added,

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Orchestrator has web application but do not enable client-side monitoring for now.

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To enable client-side monitoring you need first have to check if the web application could be enabled for this client side monitoring. This is done trough a task Check Client-Side Monitoring Compatibility which is available in Monitoring Pane –> Application Monitoring –> .NET Monitoring –> IIS 8.0 ASP.NET Web Application Inventory View. Select the web application you would like to test and execute the task from the Task pane.

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I’ve enabled the client-side monitoring for the Orchestrator console but even I didn’t received any error in SCOM or on the Orchestrator portal no performance counters were shown from client-side:

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Windows Azure Pack

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You need to add all found Web Applications for Windows Azure Pack:

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I am not using WAP intensively in this environment  so I do not have so much data:

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Because I do not have even database created for WAP you can see the performance exception created for that:

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APM can very useful to public user portal like Tenant Site in WAP:

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Because of that I’ve tried to check if client-side monitoring can be enabled but unfortunately the check returned negative results:

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Service Management Automation

Service Management Automation is part of Orchestrator setup but can be connected to WAP.

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Only one web service is available so no client-side monitoring will be available:

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As a summary I hope this will help you in providing advanced monitoring for these Web Services and Application as they are of the Microsoft Cloud OS and critical for Cloud Providers. What I would like to see in the future instructions or possibility from Microsoft on how to enable client-side monitoring for at least the Tenant Site.