SCOM 2012 review - Part 4: Infrastructure improvements

In the fourth part of this SCOM 2012 review series we’ll look at the removal of the Root Management Server (RMS), it’s replacement, how to build a Highly Available SCOM infrastructure easily and acquaint ourselves with the new Resource Pool concept.
Profile gravatar of Paul Schnackenburg

Paul Schnackenburg

Paul Schnackenburg works part time as an IT teacher as well as running his own business in Australia. He has MCSE, MCT, MCTS and MCITP certifications. Follow his blog TellITasITis.
Profile gravatar of Paul Schnackenburg

Root Management Server (RMS) in SCOM 2007 ^

Because of the unique role that the RMS plays in SCOM 2007 R2 it’s a single point of failure. It’s the connection point for consoles / web consoles, it runs the configuration service, it handles connectors and health aggregation as well as role based access control. The way to build High Availability (HA) in SCOM 2007 R2 is to cluster the RMS server which is operationally and technically complex and also relies on an active / passive model with the associated hardware and licensing costs. There’s also the option to manual promote a secondary management server to RMS in a disaster situation but this isn’t straightforward.

SCOM 2012 high availability ^

SCOM 2012 changes the game by doing what Exchange and other Microsoft applications have already done by providing HA out of the box. Management servers are pooled and automatically share the load, no server is more important than any other and simply by having several of them availability is ensured. Each server runs the configuration service and they store their data in the database instead of in an XML configuration file / memory like SCOM 2007 R2 did (this file could be up to several GB in large environments), leading to quicker start-up of each management server.

Failover is not instantaneous and it can take up to two minutes whilst the pool reloads managed instances. All management servers should be located in the same datacentre (less than 5ms latency) and you should deploy Gateway servers in other locations. These servers connect SCOM to branch offices or untrusted domains and can also be in resource pools but you can’t mix Management and Gateway servers in the same pool.

In SCOM 2007 R2 the RMS has special characteristics and some current management packs (Exchange 2007 and 2010 are examples, a full list is forthcoming from Microsoft) rely on a RMS to report to. Since there isn’t an RMS server in SCOM 2012 one management server is assigned the RMS Emulator role to provide compatibility with these MPs. This role can be manually moved between management servers (using the PowerShell cmdlet Set-SCOMRMSEmulator) and there’s a management pack coming that will automate the failover of the role. Management Groups don’t rely on the RMS emulator; it’s there for backwards compatibility with MPs.

SCOM 2012 Resource Pool ^

Know that all management servers are treated as having equal capacity; differences in processors and memory capacity are not taken into account so it’s best to plan on having all servers identical. Different workloads are also not taken into account and are simply distributed amongst the available servers in a pool. There’s are three default pools ; All Management Server Resource Pool, the Notification Pool and an AD Integration pool but you can create your own pools for specific monitoring situations.

SCOM 2012 - Resource Pools

The three built in Resource Pools

Roles within a pool can be manually controlled, this is suitable for instance if you have a hardware text/SMS alerting device connected to a particular management server, there’s no point in failing that function over to a server without the hardware attached. Cross platform (Unix/Linux) monitoring and network device monitoring is also targeted at pools rather than individual management servers.

SCOM 2012 maintenance mode ^

An issue in SCOM 2007 R2 is when you put a management server into maintenance mode, because the workflow to take the server out of maintenance mode after the designated time is also running on that server it never automatically comes out of maintenance mode, in SCOM 2012 the workflow is moved to the All Management Servers resource pool negating the need to manually take a server out of maintenance mode.

SCOM 2012 - Web Console

The new Silverlight based web console is your friend when you’re away from your monitoring station.

The new home on the web for all management packs is http://systemcenter.pinpoint.microsoft.com and for those who’ve been less than impressed by the Pinpoint site and finding management packs in the past it’s good to know that the above address is focused solely on System Center.

In the next part of this SCOM 2012 RC technical review series we’ll look at my favourite new feature: Network Monitoring, what’s required and how it works.

Take part in our competition and win $100!

7 Comments
  1. avatar
    Hemalatha Abalur 11 months ago

    Hi

    We have scom 2012 sequel servers installed and other MS servers are installed.

    But those are not appearing in High availability section. What is the cause for this?

    0
  2. Profile gravatar of Paul Schnackenburg Author
    Paul Schnackenburg 11 months ago

    Hi,

    Not sure what you mean by this question. As for deploying SCOM with HA SQL servers, see here https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh298610(v=sc.12).aspx and here https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj899851(v=sc.12).aspx.

    Hope that helps,

    Paul Schnackenburg

     

    0
  3. avatar
    Hemalatha Abalur 11 months ago

    Thank you for the reply.

    The problem is, we have SQL servers which are supposed to be appeared  under "Alwaysonhigh availability" section.

    Which is not happening. How do we find the cause for the problem? Not sure how to troubleshoot.

    0
  4. Profile gravatar of Paul Schnackenburg Author
    Paul Schnackenburg 11 months ago

    Hi again Hemalatha,

    OK, that makes more sense. I don't know why they're not showing up in that section, I haven't seen that problem. I found this comprehensive article, https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff877954.aspx, on monitoring SQL AlwaysOn databases, perhaps you can find the answer in there.

    Good luck!

    Paul

    0
  5. avatar
    Hemalatha Abalur 11 months ago

    Thank you again Paul

    0
  6. avatar
    Hemalatha Abalur 11 months ago

    Hi Paul,

    We are trying to work on bringing back reporting pane components, with no luck

    The reporting pane appears blank. What would be the cause of this problem? Some time back on the right side of the "reporting overview" section it displayed message saying upgrade to full version.. We did that. However, nothing shows up.

     

    0
  7. Profile gravatar of Paul Schnackenburg Author
    Paul Schnackenburg 11 months ago

    Hi again,

    I'm not sure why the reporting pane is blank, I've never come across that.

    Have you tried asking at http://www.systemcentercentral.com?  There are a lot of smart people there.

    Sorry I couldn't help further, good luck.

    /Paul

    0

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

CONTACT US

Please ask IT administration questions in the forum. Any other messages are welcome.

Sending
© 4sysops 2006 - 2017
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!

Log in with your credentials

or    

Forgot your details?

Create Account