This is the second of a three part blog series highlighting the integration available between System Center Operations Manager 2012 and SolarWinds Server & Application Monitor. This topic was initially mentioned around the timeframe of the Microsoft Management Summit this year – information is available at: http://myitforum.com/myitforumwp/2013/04/09/monitor-the-monitor-alert-on-operations-manager-health/.

I’ve been working with the folks at SolarWinds to provide a win/win between these two products – focusing on the “Monitor the Monitor” question. In many client engagements, the question is raised – “Who is monitoring the monitor solution?” For environments which have both of these products, each product can answer this for the other product. In the first part of the series, we discussed what steps are involved and what to expect when integrating the SolarWinds management pack for Operations Manager 2012. In this blog post we will discuss the “Monitor the Monitor” solutions available from SolarWinds for monitoring Operations Manager.

SolarWinds has provided a pre-built application template to monitor Operations Manager 2012 which is available at:  http://thwac.k.solarwinds.com/docs/DOC-170696. This includes two templates (one for the Operations Manager server(s) and one for the SQL server Operations Manager is using. This blog post will discuss how to add the template to SolarWinds and how to configure the template for your Operations Manager environment.

 

Adding the template to SolarWinds:

In SolarWinds, from the home page go to Manage Applications:
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And then change to the Application Monitor Templates:

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Import the templates downloaded from the link earlier in this blog post.

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Configuring the template in SolarWinds:

After successful import of the application templates they will appear as shown below:
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Use the assign to node option to assign the Operations Manager server(s) and the SQL back-end database server to these application templates.

Once these have been assigned correctly they should indicate that they are assigned as shown below:

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Depending on your environment, tuning may need to occur for a few of the items monitored. For my environment it initially appeared with three monitors in a critical state:

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  • The HTTP Monitor was failing due to an access denied error. This ended up being due to a test to a website which could not be synthetically tested on (the MonitoringView website which I provided to SolarWinds for monitoring but isn’t viable to test via synthetic transaction).
  • The Windows Service Monitor had an error due to the OpsMgr Audit Collection Service not running. But I am not using Audit Collection Services in this environment.
  • The TCP Port Monitor was for port 51909 which is the Audit Collection Service Forwarder which I am not using in my environment.

To change these configurations I edited the properties of the assigned application monitors for the Operations Manager 2012 assigned application monitor.

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To change these settings for my environment, I edited the properties of the application template as shown below to disable the components which I did not want to monitor in my Operations Manager environment including the synthetic web transaction which was monitoring the “MonitoringView”.

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After disabling the monitors which were not relevant to my environment, Operations Manager 2012 appears as healthy as shown below.

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And viola! SolarWinds is now monitoring the critical pieces of my Operations Manager environment – effectively answering the “Whose monitoring the monitor” question using SolarWinds to provide the “Monitor the Monitor” solution for Operations Manager.

Summary: The installation of the SolarWinds application monitoring template for Operations Manager was pretty straightforward and it appears to do a good job monitoring key pieces of Operations Manager. In the next blog post of this series I will look into how Operations Manager 2012 can monitor SolarWinds to assist with answering the “Monitor the Monitor” question.