Tag Archives: SCOM 2012

SCOM: Sample Maintenance Mode MP works on SCOM 2016

With all the great changes related to Maintenance Mode in SCOM 2016 you probably only miss the possibility to easily set Maintenance Mode on the agent without the need of knowing the PowerShell script details.

My old Sample Maintenance Mode management pack can help you with this also on SCOM 2016. I have imported it into my SCOM 2016 test environment and set a server into maintenance mode through it without any problem.

It was required in the past, that you deploy the files separately to the agents to have the Splash Screen available. Now I have added the files to the Visual Studio solution and deploy them to c:\it\mom\mm. The solution also adds a shortcut to the default user desktop and to the public startup folder on Windows Server 2012 and above (also applies to the corresponding client versions). I have used the examples from David Allen’s blog post.

I have posted the sample sealed mpb file on github including also the whole solution.

To adjust the solution to your needs I recommend to change the text in the file OpsMgrMM.ps1 which runs the Splash Screen.
Also you can change the target directory in the DeployableFile.ps1:

$TargetDirectory = “C:\IT\MOM\MM”

You will find both files in the Resources folder.

When you have done your adjustments, then build the solution (seal the mps) and import the mpb file into your SCOM environment. If you had a previous version installed, then you will need to remove that first.

Have fun with it!


SCOM 2012: Monitor MSAs with the HP Storageworks MP 4.2.1

If you ever implemented the HP Storageworks Management Pack for System Center Operations Manager 2012 then you will find that it needs some improvements. Beside the missing monitor alerts and the view properties there is one other topic: it would require a better documentation about the prerequisites on the monitored systems.

I have recently implemented the HP Storageworks MSA Management Pack which is one part of this Storageworks solution and followed Chiyo’s blog to do the initial configuration. But I had problems to connect some MSAs to the Management Server (Error: “Unable to connect to the remote system” in the HP Storage Management Pack User Configuration Tool) and there was nothing in the Management Pack documentation about how to fix it.

Here is what I found out, what was missing:

  • The Firmware had to  be updated (Firmware TS240* or later is required for SMI-S)
  • SMI-S unencrypted had to be enabled (new setting in the newer Firmware)
  • The monitoring user (which you enter in the HP Storage Management Pack User Configuration Tool) needs SMI-S access permissions.

With that the error went away and SCOM started to monitor.

I hope this helps you too.


SCOM 2012: Updated SCUtils APC PDU MP V1.1

I already wrote about the SCUtils APC PDU Management Pack for SCOM 2012 in this post. That was about the version 1.0 which had problems with monitoring the PDUs from a Gateway Server.

SCUtils has now released the new Version 1.1, which enables the monitoring from Gateway Servers. I have tested it and it works. So download the latest version and implement it.

Here is what you need to do to get this working (directly taken out of the SCUtils APC PDU MP documentation):

1. Install the Operations Manager console on each gateway server that is a member of a resource pool for monitoring APC PDUs.

2. If the gateway server and management server are separated by a firewall, you have to adjust the firewall to open the following ports in both directions between the gateway server and its management server:

1. TCP 5723
2. TCP 5724

3. Prepare an account that is a member of Operations Manager Read-Only Operators group.

4. Copy SetAccountToRegistry.exe from the installation folder (the default path is ‘C:\Program Files\SCUtils\ SCUtils Management Pack for APC PDU’) to each gateway server that is a member of a resource pool for monitoring APC PDUs.

5. Run SetAccountToRegistry.exe using a local administrator account. Fill in all the required fields. And click on Test button.


6. If the connectivity test has succeeded, click on Save button (the password will be encrypted before saving). Otherwise, reenter the information and try to test again.

7. Repeat the procedure on each gateway server that is a member of a resource pool for monitoring APC PDUs.



SCUtils APC PDU monitoring

I already wrote a blog post about the free SCUtils APC UPS monitoring pack a while ago. Now SCUtils provided the promised APC PDU Monitoring pack for System Center Operations Manager 2012 SP1/R2. The only disadvantage is that this one is with costs. You pay 716,14€ without VAT (852,21€ incl. VAT) per license which includes monitoring for 10 devices and you get one year support.

The management pack monitors two types of PDUs: PDU and PDU2, which are two different generations of APC PDUs. PDU objects are first generation devices of the AP7000 series. PDU2 objects are from the second generation AP8000 series, they have sensors included which are monitored also.

Here are some more details about the monitoring pack.

Included MPs:
SCUtils.APC.PDU.FirstDiscovery.Overrides.xml (only required to speed up the discoveries => changes frequency to 700 sec. You can remove that after all PDUs are discovered.)

The regular discoveries run ever 12 hours, that is ok. Most of the monitors run every 5 min, rules run every 10 min. All are enabled by default.



The following folder/view structure gets created:

Diagram View:  (PDU Generation 1 => PDU2 Generation 2 would have additional objects)

You need to install the management pack on the management server and activate the license through a task. To do that go to the administration pane in the SCOM console and find the SCUtils Settings.

Select SCUtils Products Activation, then the Activation view is shown.

On the right side you have three Tasks:
Check a license Task
Get unique ID for offline activation
If your console machine has internet access, then you can run the Activate task. Otherwise you can also use the Get Unique ID for an offline activation task to request the activation through email.

In the Activate task you override the LicenseKey and the CompanyName fields:ActivateTaskDetails

The management pack will work after activation.

I only tested PDU devices not PDU2.

This management pack closes the APC monitoring gap. So with both offered management packs (UPS/PDU) you can monitor your APC environment.

Attention! Version 1.0 of this MP only works if you monitor the devices through a management server not on a gateway server! A new version of this MP has been released, which also works on a Gateway Server.

SCOM 2012: Get Pool Member monitoring details

I recently had a problem that a custom rule was not running correctly, so I wanted to find out which of my SCOM 2012 Management Servers was running the All Management Servers Resource Pool instance, where the rule was targetted to.

I could not find a something which matched in the web so I contacted some of my great SCOM colleagues and got feedback from Kevin Holman with the correct solution. Thanks Kevin!

There are two tasks in SCOM already, which can give you more deatils about which Management Server takes care of which instance (class).


I will show now where you find them and what you need to enter.

Both tasks you require the ID of the resource pool which handles the instances. In my case it is the ‘All Management Servers Resource Pool’.

To find that run the Operations Manager Shell and enter the command:

Get-SCOMResourcePool | FT Displayname, IDgetscomresourcepool

The output shows the resource pool names and the IDs. So copy the ID of the pool you need.

Then go to your Operations Manager Console.

Open the Management Servers State Dashboard view:

Select one of the Management Servers in the Management Server State section.


Then run the task ‘Get the Pool Member Monitoring a Top Level Instance’.


Here you need to override the PoolId and the ManagedEntityID. In my case the IDs are both the same as I want to know which pool member of the All Management Servers Resource Pool manages the pool. In your case you perhaps want to know that for another class. You can find the ManagedEntityID of the class through the PowerShell command: (Get-SCOMClass -Displayname ‘xxx’).Id.

The output of the Task gives you the Management Server Name:


The second task has another approach. It gives you all top level instances which a Pool Member monitors.

So run the ‘Get Top Level Instances Monitored by a Pool Member’ task.


Here you only need to override the PoolId.


The output lists all classes monitored by the pool member you selected in the Management Server State view.

With that information you can now go on and troubleshoot the logs why things are not working correctly on that Management Server.


SCOM 2012: OperationsManager module not found after WMF update

I recently had the situation in my System Center Operations Manager 2012 SP1 environment that Windows Management Framework was updated on all of the management servers. At first sight everything looked good. At second sight I recognized that one management server had a problem. It was running a PowerShell script to set custom properties on alerts and this script did not find any alerts anymore.

During investigation I found this error:

import-module : The specified module ‘OperationsManager’ was not loaded because no valid module file was found in any module directory.


I checked the PowerShell module directory, the module was there, but I couldn’t call it.

I ifxed it by running a repair of the SCOM console installation.

  • Go to Control Panel
  • Select Programs: Programs and Features
  • Select System Center 2012 – Operations Manager and click Uninstall/Change
  • Select Repair the Operations Manager InstallationRepairSCOM.JPG
  • Select Operations consoleSelectSCOMconsole.JPG
  • Click Repair

Additionally I recommend to reinstall the latest Update Rollup for the console again.



SCOM 2012: SCUtils APC Monitoring

It is already a while ago when I found out that there is a free management pack from SCUtils which monitors APC UPS devices, the SCUtils APC Monitoring Management Pack.
When I wanted to test it, I realized that it was only available for SCOM 2012 R2. So I contacted the support and asked if they can also provide a SP1 version for me.
And they really did it and were very responsive – a big plus!

So I was able to implement it in my test environment and checked it out.
Here are my findings.

The management pack is well designed. The bundle consists of two MPs:


It monitors APC UPS devices and APC EMUs (environmental monitoring unit). APC PDUs are not covered yet, but the support promised, that this will be added in the near future.
All discoveries run on a 4 hour schedule, the rules every 5 min and the monitors between 5 and 15 min. That is ok.

It creates all necessary views, including a Diagram View:

APC Folder

UPS Diagram View

With the UPS Dashboard you get a good overview of your APC environment.

UPS Dashboard


APC Monitors

All monitors are enabled by default, but there are also overrides, which disable some EMU monitors:

APC Overrides


APC Rules

Only one rule is disabled by default.

The MP has successfully detected the low battery runtime (8 min) and you can see that the Description, Path, Source is always very descriptive.APC Alert

They also added some nice reports:

APC Reports

So from what I see, it has all you need to monitor APC UPS devices. SCUtils promised to create a documentation for that MP bundle soon, but there is not really a lot you need to do to implement the management pack. The only thing is that you add the APC devices through the Network Monitoring to your environment and import the MPs. That’s it.
Very easy. And it is free at the moment.
I will only wait for the PDU monitoring to be added, then it will have all I want.

Information: I have created the Monitor, Rule and Report-Overview with MP Studio

Update: The APC PDU monitoring packs has been released. Here is my review.




PowerShell: Temperature monitoring

If you want to monitor the temperature of your server rooms, then you have a lot of options. One is a temperature module, which is directly connected to your network and where you can access the temperature value through a XML file like: http://moduleIP/state.xml.


We have used a solution from ControlByWeb, a PoE module with one sensor.

The idea is to have a System Center Orchestrator runbook, which checks the temperature of all sensors and creates a SCOM alert when the temperature is higher than the threshold of 30°C.


Then we also wanted to have a view directly in SCOM with the current values for all sensors. I used the PowerShell Web Widget for this.


The main part for all of this is a PowerShell script.

You can even use parts of the script and collect the data in SCOM.


But herefore you will need one rule for each sensor.

Functionality description:

The script reads a text file from a share with all IP addresses and names of the temperature modules.
Example:, Frankfurt, Paris

Then it connects to each module, loads the state.xml and reads the value of the first sensor.
With that data it creates an HTML table and writes that to a HTML file in a share on a web server.
The last step is that it can load the web page in the PowerShell Web Widget.

You can download the script on TechNet Gallery.




SCOM 2012: Remove-SCOMManagementPack

Happy New Year!

I recently had a problem in my SCOM test environment with a management pack, which already should have been removed, but really wasn’t.

The situation was this:
I tested the Solarwinds Orion Management Pack which also required a connector to be installed on the management server – which makes my skin crawl. After testing this management pack I came to the decision to remove it again. I didn’t like that I should manually add new devices in the connector wizard and it also created alerts with the same name and I could only see the real problem in the description – more shivers over my back. I uninstalled the connector through Add/Remove Programs and deleted the management pack in the console. The problem was that the Solarwinds.Orion.SCOM.Library still stayed in the database. It was not deleted! Strange. Have not seen this before.

So I tried to use PowerShell. I opened up the OpsManager Shell and ran the Remove-SCOMManagementPack cmdlet as shown in this Picture:


But it timed out after 30 minutes.


In the OpsManager event log on the management server I had these events (4508):


Which showed me that the MP really still was alive, but the assemblies of the connector were missing. Sure, because I uninstalled it.

I tried to remove the MP again from the console. It ran and ran and ran and during that I saw that my management servers slowly greyed out.

I checked the event logs and found this event (20034):


My console was fozen and I could only kill it.

I contacted my SQL admin colleague and she found blockings on the database:


After an hour or so, I asked her to kill these tasks. I had no clue how to get this crazy MP out of my environment. I was glad that it was only my test environment – one more reason why I highly recommend to have that!

Then I remembered that I met Vlad last time at MMS. So I contacted him and he was so kind to forward my request to his colleagues. They helped me out. Here is what I had to do:

I opened up SQL Server Management Studio on my SCOM DB Server

  1. I performed a backup of my OperationsManager database
  2. Then I ran the following query to get the ManagementPackId:
    SELECT ManagementPackId,MPName
    FROM [OperationsManager].[dbo].[ManagementPack]
    where MPName like ‘Solarwinds%’
  3. Then I ran this query:
    exec [dbo].[p_ManagementPackRemove] ‘ManagementPackId

This still took 45 min to finish but it worked!

Be careful with this solution because it is not officially supported from Microsoft and don’t forget to perform the backup before running the queries. I also would recommend to do this out of normal Business hours if you Need to run it on a production Environment because it influences the management Server Performance.





SCOM 2012: Detect Event Storm

System Center Operations Manager collects a lot of events but one System with a flapping service can cause SCOM to be flooded by events – an Event Storm. Operations Manager does not recognize this until the database is too full which causes performance issues or even greyed out management servers because they cannot proceed the data anymore.

It is important to avoid that Situation. There is one easy solution: a Monitor based on a PowerShell script which checks the number of events written to the database in a predefined schedule. If the number of events is higher than a given threshold an alert is created which shows the top 5 machines creating events. This makes it easy to find the cause of the problem. 

I have mentioned this situation in my presentation “Getting The Most From Operation Manager” at MMS 2015.

You can download the solution here. It also includes the rule to check greyed out agents.

A big thank to Thomas Peter from Vaserv EU who helped with this solution.