Exchange monitoring with SCOM 2012

More and more organization monitor their Exchange environment with SCOM 2012, and like any other Microsoft product there is a lot of documentation of the web on how to implement and configure the monitor. Just enter ‘Monitor Exchange SCOM’ and you’ll see lots of results on how to import the Exchange MP, configure the additional discovery rules and how to extend the basic monitoring using tools like synthetic transactions.

In this post I want to show you how to get some extra info from your Exchange server and to view in SCOM console and reports. This information is not only very interesting but also very critical for every Exchange administrator. For example, basic Exchange monitoring on SCOM only monitors Availability, Performance and Configuration of your Exchange servers. But what about the following situation – lets say you have 2 CAS servers that provide services like OWA, EAS and Outlook connectivity, and those servers are a part of a single CAS array. Most Exchange admins assume that all users are distributed between both servers equally. Are you sure?

Here’s an example of a view I took from one of my implementations:

EAS Current Requests

EAS Current Requests

This view shows a distribution of EAS connections between two servers. You can see immediately that one of the servers is very active, while the other is very stale…

What about OWA:

OWA Current Users

OWA Current Users

What we can learn from both those views is that in-spite the fact that both our CAS servers are online – the load between them is not distributed evenly.

To get the extra information to SCOM all you need to do is to configure it to collect some additional information out of your Exchange servers. This information is some Performance counters running on the Exchange server – They are already running there so you dont have to change anything on the Exchange side.

1. Go to your Operations Manager Console and then Authoring pane

2. Click on Management Packs Objects and choose Rules

3. You can scope to just Exchange Server 2010 (or any other version)

Scope Exchange server 2010

Scope Exchange server 2010

4. Enter the ‘Collect:‘ in the find field to decrease the list size

Find Collect

Find Collect

5. You will see that some of the rules are enabled by default and some are not.

 

Review the list of disabled features and decide what kind of information you want to get. I recommend not to enable all at once – it will impact your SCOM server performance and the amount of data stored.

In this example I chose ‘Collect: EAS Current Requests

1. Right click it and choose to create a new Override. I recommend you save the override to a specif group

EAS Current Requests Override

EAS Current Requests Override

2. Change the setting of Enabled to True and save the Override to a MP.

EAS Current Requests Override Settings

EAS Current Requests Override Settings

Thats it!

You wont see the information immediately so be patient 🙂

 

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