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Essential Microsoft Operations Manager by Chris Fox

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Summary

The entire MOM 2005 infrastructure exists to execute the instructions in management packs, and MOM 2005 serves no purpose without them. The management pack life cycle should be predictable. This chapter described the necessary steps to control the versioning, tuning, backup, and restore of management pack life cycles. Management packs consist of rule groups, providers, computer groups, scripts, attributes, and tasks, although only rule groups, computer attributes, and providers are required for the most basic management pack.

Tuning management packs occurs in two phases: the first is in preproduction where you enable and disable rule groups and individual rules based on their applicability to your environment. Ensure alerts are of the desired severity and that the right people are being notified. Once a management pack is deployed into production, the second phase of tuning occurs, focusing on alert reduction. Noise alerts are tuned out by creating overrides. Alerts that are generated by a single rule are more tailored to the different machines that they have been applied to and, therefore, produce more relevant information.

In addition to tuning out noise, once in production, a management pack is enriched with company knowledge gained from the troubleshooting efforts. This makes the management pack invaluable to anyone else that must troubleshoot an alert raised in MOM. The solution to this problem has already been found and captured.

To protect your company-specific management packs and to provide a test environment that is as close as possible to the production environment, this chapter covered how to back up the production management packs and synchronize them into preproduction at the same time.

Hopefully, vendors will update their management packs and release updates at regular intervals. When they do, you need to merge the new vendor management pack with your current knowledge-rich company version of the management pack. It pays to compare them so you know what the new vendor management pack will change and what to expect. The chapter covered some tools and provided guidance on how to do this.

Creating simple management packs based on event, performance, and service monitoring was covered. The management pack wizard utility will create a basic management pack based on services, events, and performance monitor counters. This includes the creation of a basic health state model that is reflected in the State view of the Operator console. For guidance on authoring advanced management packs that have complex health state models (beyond whether a single service is up or down), see the Management Pack Development Guide from Microsoft.

To round out the coverage of how MOM 2005 administrative tasks and functions work together to manage the management pack environment, Chapter 5 details the global settings in a MOM 2005 management group that control functions of agents, management servers, security, communication, and the operations database.

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