During a recent blog post on how to solve the “Monitor the Monitor” question using SolarWinds and Operations Manager, I wrote three blog posts on the topic:
I’ve also been discussing how to use the OpsLogix Ping MP and the built-in ICMP based network monitoring in Operations Manager:
And all of my network devices are being provided by the Jalasoft SNMP simulator which is a great piece of free software!
I received an excellent point of feedback after the first blog post in the series about Operations Manager and SolarWinds:
“Ideally I would love to see an MP that allowed for the forwarding of network device alerts from SolarWinds…..as well as allow SolarWinds-monitored network devices to be modeled in SCOM Distributed Applications. That would eliminate the need to have SCOM doing duplicate monitoring of devices that are already being monitored by SolarWinds.“
For this blog post we will focus on showing that alerts can be forwarded on from SolarWinds, and that network devices from SolarWinds (and other sources) can be modeled in a distributed application within Operations Manager. For network devices we will review what information we get from these network devices, and we will discuss how to add these network devices into a distributed application.
Forwarding alerts from SolarWinds to Operations Manager:
The blog post referenced in the beginning of this blog (Operations Manager and SolarWinds: Integrating the SolarWinds management pack for Operations Manager 2012) discusses how to install and configure the SolarWinds management pack for Operations Manager. Once this is working, alerts will be generated in Operations Manager based on what is monitored by SolarWinds and integrated with Operations Manager.
Using the SolarWinds management pack, we can forward alerts for issues with network devices from SolarWinds into Operations Manager. As an example the Operations Manager alert below was raised when a network device monitored by SolarWinds was no longer available.
Alert Forwarding Summary: The SolarWinds management pack can forward network device alerts from SolarWinds to Operations Manager.
What information do we get from various network device monitoring options in Operations Manager?
To test whether network devices from SolarWinds could be used in a distributed application, I decided it would be most interesting to see how network devices monitored by a variety of sources could be added to a single distributed application.
Network devices from SolarWinds:
Monitoring with SolarWinds management pack providing information to Operations Manager for the network devices which are monitored as shown below. By right-clicking on the Network Nodes view and going to the properties we can see that they are of type “Node”.
Network devices from Operations Manager:
Monitoring with Operations Manager’s network monitoring shows the network devices which are monitored by Operations Manager as shown below. By right-clicking on the Network Devices view and going to the properties we can see that they are of type “Node” (notice the different icon versus the same named object “Node” provided from Solarwinds).
We can right-click on a network device and open the performance view to see the performance counters which are available from Operations Manager:
(If ping monitoring is available, only a single counter is available as expected and shown below).
Ping-only devices from OpsLogix:
Monitoring with the OpsLogix ping pack shows the status of objects which are being pinged by the OpsLogix management pack. By right-clicking on the Status view and going to the properties we can see that they are of type “Target Host”.
We can right-click on the device being pinged by this management pack and open the performance view to see the performance counters which are available from the OpsLogix ping pack:
TCP Port monitoring in Operations Manager:
Why stop with just SolarWinds network device monitoring, Operations Manager network device monitoring and the OpsLogix ping pack for monitoring. TCP port monitoring can also be used in Operations Manager to provide rudimentary network device monitoring in Operations Manager. Monitoring with Operations Manager’s TCP port monitoring shows the network devices which are monitored by Operations Manager as shown below. By right-clicking on the TCP Port Checks State view and going to the properties we can see that they are of type “TCP port check Perspective”
We can right-click on the device being monitored by the TCP port monitoring functionality and open the performance view to see the performance counters which are available for devices monitored by a TCP port monitor:
Modeling a distributed application with devices from multiple sources:
To model a distributed application, open the authoring pane and create a new distributed application. From the previous section of this blog post, we know what the names of the objects are that we will be searching for. To add these types of devices, use the Advanced Search capability:
Operations Manager Network Devices:
Operations Manager network’s object type was “Node”. There were two on the list, chose the first one and did a search to see if the network devices listed matched those monitored by Operations Manager.
Added the appropriate object to a New Component group.
The SolarWinds network’s object type was “Node”. There were two on the list, chose the second one and did a search to see if the network devices listed matched those monitored by SolarWinds.
Once this was added, now both the Operations Manager network device and the SolarWinds network device appeared within the distributed application.
OpsLogix Ping management pack:
Once this was added, now the Operations Manager network device, the SolarWinds network device, and the OpsLogix ping device appeared within the distributed application.
TCP Port monitoring:
The TCP port monitoring within Operations Manager had an object type of “TCP port check Perspective”. There was only one of these objects listed. Searched to find objects monitored by the TCP port monitoring.
Once this was added, now the Operations Manager network device, the SolarWinds network device, the OpsLogix ping device, and the TCP port device are available within the distributed application.
Once this is created, we can see the final distributed application in the monitoring pane. This really shows the power of a distributed application – in the screenshot below we see a single distributed application which includes network devices monitored by Operations Manager, SolarWinds, OpsLogix, and TCP port monitoring in a single view.
After shutting down a couple of network devices (one monitored by SolarWinds, one by Operations Manager) they changed health state as expected:
Distributed Application Summary: Network devices monitored by SolarWinds and integrated through the management pack can be used as distributed application components in Operations Manager.