Monday, October 3, 2016

Did You Know #1 - Controlling Alerts Storms During Maintenance with vROps!

Welcome to a new series of "Did You Know" Facts about vRealize Operations Manager! With this series, I will help unearth the Best Kept Secrets of vRealize Operations Manager. 

This could be across, features, functionalities, use cases, integrations, APIs or any tips or tricks which can help make day to day operations of Software Defined Datacenter easier and fun with vRealize Operations Manager!

In this first part of the series, we will look at a generic activity of maintenance which is applicable to every datacenter. In most environments activities like patching, power cycle, upgrades, hardware replacements etc are conducted during change windows. While all these activities are important, it is also important that you use the Maintenance Schedules or Maintenance options on vRealize Operations manager to disable any activity on objects which are under any kind of maintenance. This will help you ensure that you do not trigger any FALSE alerts which you might have configured on that object type.

For instance, if you have an alert which would trigger when a virtual machine is powered off, you should ensure that you put virtual machines in maintenance if you are planning to shut them down due to a scheduled downtime for activities such as patching, migrations, hardware version upgrades etc.

To do this follow the steps mentioned below. Do note that you should be on vROps 6.x or above to make use of these steps:

The GUI way:

1- Login to vRealize Operations Manager instance using credentials with permission to perform maintenance activities. Use admin if you do not have a strict Role Based Access Control (RBAC)

2- Click on Administration -> Inventory Explorer

3- On the top right corner of this page, search for the Object which you want to put in maintenance, in my case I want to upgrade my SQL server from SQL 2008 to SQL 2012, hence I will search for this VM.




4- Once I see the Virtual Machine in the List, I just need to select the same and click on the Maintenance Icon:



5- You will see pop-up which you can use to enter the details of maintenance window on this object. You have the option of either entering the maintenance in minutes or an end date.


That's it. This will ensure that the concerned object is in maintenance and I will not get any alerts for the same when I reboot.

In case you choose the first option to end the maintenance manually, please ensure that you do the same, as soon as you are done with the change you were implementing. You would need to come back to inventory explorer, search for the Virtual Machine, select the Virtual Machine name, and click on End Maintenance as shown below:



The API way:

For the cool kids out there, you can also do this programatically by using the vRealize Operations Manager API. Here are the API details, along with JSON and XML sample requests which can be used to build a script or a workflow and you can put one or multiple Objects into maintenance easily. You can use the API calls to end the maintenance as well.

To access the API documentation, you will need to access the following URL:

https://<your-vrops-ip-or-fqdn?>/suite-api/docs/rest/index.html




Hope this helps with day to day datacenter operations using vRealize Operations Manager.


Stay tuned for more goodies!


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