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David Mills and I hooked up with the TechNet Edge folks at TechEd 2009 and shot another video on System Center Essentials 2010.
Check out this video that we shot at TechEd 2009 for details on the next release of System Center Essentials.
Have you wondered why some of the performance views and dashboards in the Monitoring Space don’t have any data to display, yet others do?
You can see an example of this by going to the Monitoring Space, expanding the Microsoft Windows Server folder and then expanding the Performance sub Folder.
The "Disk Capacity", "Memory Utilization (Page File)" and "Processor Performance" dashboards all let you select performance counters for your servers and view pretty graphs.
The "Disk Performance", "Disk Utilization", "Memory Utilization (Physical)" and "Network Adapter Utilization" don’t show a list of performance counters to select. Why is this, and how do we get a list of performance counters to display?
The performance counters available for display are controlled by rules in management packs. Not all of the rules responsible for data collection are enabled by default and this is why we don’t see a list of counters to select from in the views listed above.
To get a list of counters for these views we need to enable data collection by setting overrides on performance collection rules, and this is done in the Authoring Space.
Note: Enabling performance collection rules will increase the size of the Essentials database. If you are using SQL Server Express, collecting additional performance data may reduce the number of days of historical data available for reporting.
Let’s work through an example and enable data collection to populate the Windows Server Performance graphs we listed above.
For the Disk Performance dashboard view we will need to override the following rules:
For the Disk Utilization dashboard view we will need to override the following rules:
For the Memory Utilization (Physical) dashboard view we will need to override the following rules:
For the Network Adapter Utilization dashboard view we will need to override the following rules:
To override a rule to enable performance data collection:
You will have noticed at Step 9 that for each rule there is a copy of the in the rule in the Windows Server 2000 Operating System and Windows Server 2003 Operating System Management Packs. If you want to enable collection for both Operating Systems you will need to override both copies of the rule.
As a general guide, the title of the graph in the dashboard view identifies the performance counter being collected. The rule to collect this counter will also have the counter name in it. You can use this information to find the rules that you need to enable for a particular graph.
As Dustin mentioned in the previous post, we recently released an update to the Microsoft.SystemCenter.Essentials.2007.mp. We have also released KB956890 which provides additional details.
This update resolves an issue where the Remote Assistance task fails to execute if the System Center Essentials console is running on Windows Vista or Windows Server 2008. Without the fix, attempting to run Remote Assistance results in the following error message:
Application: C:\Windows\pchealth\helpsctr\binaries\helpctr.exe Parameters: -FromStartHelp –url hcp://CN=Microsoft%20Corporation,L=Redmond,S=Washington,C=US/Remote%20Assistance/Escalation/Unsolicited/SCEUnsolicitedRCUI.htm -ExtraArgument NOVICECOMPUTER=<ComputerName>&NOVICEUSERID= Error Message: The system cannot find the file specified
Parameters: -FromStartHelp –url hcp://CN=Microsoft%20Corporation,L=Redmond,S=Washington,C=US/Remote%20Assistance/Escalation/Unsolicited/SCEUnsolicitedRCUI.htm -ExtraArgument NOVICECOMPUTER=<ComputerName>&NOVICEUSERID=
Error Message: The system cannot find the file specified
In Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, Remote Assistance is started from the Help and Support Center (helpctr.exe), while in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008, Remote Assistance is started via msra.exe.
This update modifies the Remote Assistance task to call the correct command line based on the operating system that the Essentials console is running on.
You are recommended to install this update if you use the Essentials console on Windows Vista or Windows Server 2008 and want to use the Remote Assistance task.
When using Windows Server 2008, please ensure you have the Remote Assistance feature installed. The Remote Assistance feature is not installed by default, but you can use the Add Feature Wizard within Server Manager to enable it.
More information is available in KB956890.
This update is available from the Microsoft Download Center via the following link: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=8F74CC26-5E0E-42F1-96CC-7AE064099190&displaylang=en
A management pack is a definition file (either with an .xml or .mp extension) that contains predefined monitoring settings that enable an agent to monitor a specific service or application in Operations Manager 2007 or Essentials 2007. These predefined settings include discovery information that allows Operations Manager and Essentials to automatically detect and begin monitoring services and applications, and a knowledge base that contains error and troubleshooting information, alerts, and reports to help you correct the problems detected in your environment. You import a new or updated management pack into Essentials using the Management Pack Import Wizard (found in the Administration space in the Essentials console).
Almost all of the management packs developed for Operations Manager 2007 can also be used in Essentials 2007. To help you identify these management packs, you can filter the System Center Pack catalog on Essentials:
One management pack that you might want to import into Essentials straight away is the updated Essentials 2007 management pack that resolves an issue that was preventing the Remote Assistance task from running on Windows Vista and Server 2008. You can download this management pack from this location: