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Monitor Configuration Manager Sites and Hierarchy

Updated: August 1, 2013

Applies To: System Center 2012 Configuration Manager, System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP1, System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager

Use the information in the following sections to help you monitor the infrastructure and common operations for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager.

To monitor infrastructure and operations in Configuration Manager, use the Monitoring workspace in the Configuration Manager console.

noteNote
The exception to this location is Migration, which is monitored directly in the Migration node in the Administration workspace. For more information, see Monitor Migration Activity in the Migration Workspace.

In addition to using the Configuration Manager console for monitoring, you can use the Configuration Manager reports, or view Configuration Manager log files for Configuration Manager components. For information about reports, see Reporting in Configuration Manager. For information about log files, see About Configuration Manager Log Files.

When you monitor sites, look for signs that indicate problems that require you to take action. For example:

  • A backlog of files on site servers and site systems.

  • Status messages that indicate an error or a problem.

  • Failing intrasite communication.

  • Error and warning messages in the system event log on servers.

  • Error and warning messages in the Microsoft SQL Server error log.

  • Sites or clients that have not reported in a long time.

  • Sluggish response from the SQL Server database.

  • Signs of hardware failure.

To minimize the risk of a site failure, if monitoring tasks reveal any signs of problems, investigate the source of the problem and repair it as soon as possible.

Use the information in the following sections to help you monitor the infrastructure and common operations for Configuration Manager.

Configuration Manager provides several methods to monitor the status and operations of your hierarchy. You can check system status of sites throughout the hierarchy, monitor intersite replication from a site hierarchy or geographical view, monitor replication links between sites for database replication, and use the Replication Link Analyzer tool to remediate replication issues.

The Site Hierarchy node of the Monitoring workspace provides you with an overview of your Configuration Manager hierarchy and intersite links. You can use two views:

  • Hierarchy Diagram: This view displays your hierarchy as a topology map that has been simplified to show only vital information.

  • Geographical View: This view displays your sites on a geographical map showing site locations that you configure.

Use the Site Hierarchy node to monitor the health of each site and the intersite replication links and their relationship to external factors, such as a geographical location.

Because site status and intersite link status replicate as site data and not global data, when you connect your Configuration Manager console to a child primary site, you cannot view the site or link status for other primary sites or their child secondary sites. For example, in a multi-primary site hierarchy, when your Configuration Manager console connects to a primary site, you can view the status of child secondary sites, the primary site, and the central administration site, but you cannot see the status for other nodes of the hierarchy below the central administration site.

Use the Configure Settings command to control how the site hierarchy display renders. Configurations to the Site Hierarchy node that you make when your Configuration Manager console is connected to one site are replicated to all other sites.

The hierarchy diagram displays your sites in a topology map. In this view, you can select a site and view a status message summary from that site, drill through to view status messages, and access the Properties dialog box of the sites.

Additionally, you can pause the mouse pointer on a site or replication link between sites to view high-level status for that object. Because replication link status does not replicate globally, in a hierarchy with multiple primary sites, you must connect your Configuration Manager console to the central administration site to view the replication link details between all sites.

The following options modify the hierarchy diagram:

  • Groups: You can configure the number of primary sites and secondary sites that trigger a change in the hierarchy diagram display that combines the sites into a single object. When sites are combined into a single object, you see the total number of sites and a high-level rollup of status messages and site status. Group configurations do not affect the geographical view.

  • Favorite sites: You can specify individual sites to be a favorite site. A star icon identifies a favorite site in the hierarchy diagram. Favorite sites are not combined with others sites when you used groups and always are displayed individually.

The geographical view displays the location of each site on a geographical map. Only sites that you configure with a location are displayed. When you select a site in this view, replication links to parent or child sites are shown. Unlike the hierarchy diagram view, you cannot display site status message or replication link details in this view.

noteNote
To use the geographical view, the computer to which your Configuration Manager console connects must have Internet Explorer installed and be able to access Bing Maps by using the HTTP protocol.

The following option modifies the geographical view.

  • Site Location: You can specify a geographical location for each site. You can specify the location as a street address, a place name such as the name of a city, or by latitude and longitude coordinates. For example, to use the latitude and longitude of Redmond Washington, you would specify N 47 40 26.3572 W 122 7 17.4432 as the location of the site. You do not need to specify the symbols for the degree, minutes or seconds of longitude or latitude. Configuration Manager uses Bing Maps to display the location on the geographical view. This provides you the option to view your hierarchy in relation to a geographical location, which can provide insight into regional issues that might affect specific sites or intersite replication.

    When you specify a location, you can use the Location box to search for a specific site in your hierarchy. With the site selected, enter the location as a city name or street address in the Location column. Configuration Manager uses Bing Maps to resolve the location.

In addition to high level details that are accessible from the Site Hierarchy node in the Monitoring workspace, beginning with Configuration Manager SP1 you can monitor details for database replication when you use the Database Replication node in the Monitoring workspace. From the Database Replication you can monitor the status of replication links between sites, and the initialization details and replication details for replication groups at the site to which your Configuration Manager console is connected.

TipTip
Although a Database Replication node also appears under the Hierarchy Configuration node in the Administration workspace, you cannot view the replication status for database replication links from that location.

Database replication between sites involves the replication of several sets of information, called replication groups. Each replication group replicates with different replication priorities. By default, the data contained in a replication group and the frequency of replication cannot be modified.

When a replication link is active, and does not have a status of failed or degraded, all replication groups replicate in a timely manner. When one or more replication groups fail to complete replication in the expected period of time, the link displays as degraded. Degraded links can still function, but you should monitor them to ensure that they return to active status, or investigate them to ensure that additional degradation or replication failures do not occur.

Beginning with Configuration Manager SP1, for each replication link you can specify the number of times that an unsuccessfully replicated replication group retries to replicate before the status of the link is set to degraded or failed. Even if all but one replication group replicate successfully, the status of the link is set to degraded or failed because the one replication group fails to complete replication in the specified number of attempts. For information about replication thresholds, see the Plan for Database Replication Thresholds section in the Planning for Communications in Configuration Manager topic.

Use the information in following table to understand the status of replication links that might require further investigation.

 

Link description More information

Link is active

No problems have been detected, and communication across the link is current.

Link is degraded

Replication is functional, but at least one replication object or group is delayed. Monitor links that are in this state and review information from both sites on the link for indications that the link might fail.

A link can also display a status of degraded when the site that receives replicated data is unable to quickly commit the data to the database. This can happen when large volumes of data replicate. For example, if you deploy a software update to a large number of computers, the volume of data that replicates might take some time to be processed by the parent site on the link. A processing lag at the parent site can result in the link status being set to degraded until the parent site can successfully process the backlog of data.

Link has failed

Replication is not functional. It is possible that a replication link might recover without further action. You can use the Replication Link Analyzer to investigate and help remediate replication on this link.

This status can also indicate a problem with the physical network between the parent and child site on the replication link.

While a parent site is in the process of upgrading to a new service pack and you view the link status from the child site, the link status displays as active. After the upgrade, until the child site is also at the same service pack as the parent site, the link status displays as active when viewed from the parent site, and as being configured when viewed from the child site.

You can use the Database Replication node in the Monitoring workspace to view the status of replication for a replication link, and view details about the site database at each site on the replication link. Beginning with Configuration Manager SP1, you can also view details about replication groups. To view details, select a replication link, and then select the appropriate tab for the replication status you want to view. The following table provides details about the different tabs for replication status.

 

Tab Details

Summary

View high level information about the replication of site data and global data between the two sites on a link.

You can also click View reports for historical traffic data to view a report that shows details about the network bandwidth used by replication across the replication link.

Parent Site

For the parent site on a replication link, view details about the database, which include:

  • Firewall ports for the SQL Server

  • Free disk space

  • Database file locations

  • Certificates

Child Site

For the child site on a replication link, view details about the database, which include:

  • Firewall ports for the SQL Server

  • Free disk space

  • Database file locations

  • Certificates

Initialization Detail

For System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP1 and System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager only:

View the initialization status for replication groups that replicate across the replication link. This information can help you identify when initialization of replication data is in progress or has failed.

Additionally, You can use this information to identify when a site might be in interoperability mode. Interoperability mode occurs when the child site does not run the same version of Configuration Manager as the parent site.

Replication Detail

For System Center 2012 Configuration Manager SP1 and System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager only:

View the replication status for each replication group that replicates across the link. Use this information to help identify problems or delays for the replication of specific data, and to help determine the appropriate database replication thresholds for this link. For information about database replication thresholds, see the Plan for Database Replication Thresholds section in the Planning for Communications in Configuration Manager topic.

TipTip
Replication groups for site data are sent only from the child site to the parent site. Replication groups for global data replicate in both directions.

Configuration Manager includes Replication Link Analyzer which you use to analyze and repair replication issues. You can use Replication Link Analyzer to remediate replication link failures when replication has failed and when replication stops working but has not yet been reported as failed. Replication Link Analyzer can be used to remediate replication issues between the following computers in the Configuration Manager hierarchy (the direction of the replication failure does not matter):

  • Between a site server and the site database server.

  • Between a sites site database server and another sites site database computer (intersite replication).

You can run Replication Link Analyzer in either the Configuration Manager console or at a command prompt:

  • To run in the Configuration Manager console: In the Monitoring workspace, click the Database Replication node, select the replication link that you want to analyze, and then in the Database Replication group on the Home tab, select Replication Link Analyzer.

  • To run at a command prompt, type the following command: %path%\Microsoft Configuration Manager\AdminConsole\bin\Microsoft.ConfigurationManager.ReplicationLinkAnalyzer.Wizard.exe <source site server FQDN> <destination site server FQDN>

When you run Replication Link Analyzer, it detects problems by using a series of diagnostic rules and checks. When the tool runs, you can view the problems that the tool identifies. When instructions to resolve an issue are known, they are displayed. If Replication Link Analyzer can automatically remediate a problem, you are presented with that option. When Replication Link Analyzer finishes, it saves the results in the following XML-based report and a log file on the desktop of the user who runs the tool:

  • ReplicationAnalysis.xml

  • ReplicationLinkAnalysis.log

When Replication Link Analyzer runs, it stops the following services while it remediates some problems, and restarts these services when remediation is complete:

  • SMS_SITE_COMPONENT_MANAGER

  • SMS_EXECUTIVE

If Replication Link Analyzer fails to complete remediation, review the site server and restart these services if they are stopped.

Successful and unsuccessful investigation and remediation actions are logged to provide additional details that are not presented in the tool interface.

The following items are prerequisites to use the Replication Link Analyzer:

  • The account that you use to run the Replication Link Analyzer must have local administrator rights on each computer that is involved in the replication link. The account does not require a specific role-based administration security role. Therefore, an administrative user with access to the Database Replication node can run the tool in the Configuration Manager console, or a system administrator with sufficient rights to each computer can run the tool at a command prompt.

  • The account that you use to run the Replication Link Analyzer must have sysadmin rights on each SQL Server database that is involved in the replication link.

Use the following procedures to monitor database replication in Configuration Manager.

  1. In the Configuration Manager console, click Monitoring.

  2. In the Monitoring workspace, click Site Hierarchy to open the Hierarchy Diagram view.

  3. Briefly pause the mouse pointer on the line between the two sites to view the status of global and site data replication for these sites.

  1. In the Configuration Manager console, click Monitoring.

  2. In the Monitoring workspace, click Database Replication, and then select the replication link for the link that you want to monitor. Then, in the workspace, select the appropriate tab to view different details about the replication status for that link.

System status in Configuration Manager provides an overview of the general operations of sites and site server operations of your hierarchy. It can reveal operational problems for site system servers or components, and you can use the system status to review specific details for different Configuration Manager operations. You monitor system status from the System Status node of the Monitoring workspace in the Configuration Manager console.

Most Configuration Manager site system roles and components generate status messages. Status messages details are logged in each components operational log, but are also submitted to the site database where they are summarized and presented in a general rollup of each component or site systems health. These status message rollups provide information details for regular operations and warnings and error details. You can configure the thresholds at which warnings or errors are triggered and fine-tune the system to ensure rollup information ignores known issues that are not relevant to you while calling attention to actual problems on servers or for component operations that you might want to investigate.

System status is replicated to other sites in a hierarchy as site data, not global data. This means you can only see the status for the site to which your Configuration Manager console connects, and any child sites below that site. Therefore, consider connecting your Configuration Manager console to the top-level site of your hierarchy when you view system status.

Use the following table to identify the different system status views and when to use each one.

 

Node More information

Site Status

Use this node to view a rollup of the status of each site system to review the health of each site system server. Site system health is determined by thresholds that you configure for each site in the Site System Status Summarizer.

You can view status messages for each site system, set thresholds for status messages, and manage the operation of the components on site systems by using the Configuration Manager Service Manager.

Component Status

Use this node to view a rollup of the status of each Configuration Manager component to review the component’s operational health. Component health is determined by thresholds that you configure for each site in the Component Status Summarizer.

You can view status messages for each component, set thresholds for status messages, and manage the operation of components by using the Configuration Manager Service Manager.

Conflicting Records

Use this node to view status messages about clients that might have conflicting records.

Configuration Manager uses the hardware ID to attempt to identify clients that might be duplicates and alert you to the conflicting records. For example, if you have to reinstall a computer, the hardware ID would be the same, but the GUID that Configuration Manager uses might be changed.

Status Message Queries

Use this node to query status messages for specific events and related details. You can use status message queries to find the status messages related to specific events.

You can often use status message queries to identify when a specific component, operation, or Configuration Manager object was modified, and the account that was used to make the modification. For example, you can run the built-in query for Collections Created, Modified, or Deleted to identify when a specific collection was created, and the user account used to create the collection.

Use the following information to manage the site status and component status:

You can view the status messages for individual site system servers and components.

To view status messages in the Configuration Manager console, select a specific site system server or component, and then click Show Messages. When you view messages, you can select to view specific message types or messages from a specified period of time, and you can filter the results based on the status messages details.

Configuration Manager provides built-in monitoring from within the Configuration Manager console. You can monitor many tasks including those related to software updates, power management, and the deployment of content throughout your hierarchy.

Use the information in the following table to help you monitor common Configuration Manager tasks.

 

Monitoring task More information

Alerts

See Monitor Alerts in Configuration Manager.

Compliance Settings

See How to Monitor for Compliance Settings in Configuration Manager.

Content Deployment

For general information about monitoring content, see the Monitor Content section in the Operations and Maintenance for Content Management in Configuration Manager topic.

For information about monitoring specific types of content deployment:

Endpoint Protection

See How to Monitor Endpoint Protection in Configuration Manager.

Out of Band Management

See How to Monitor Out of Band Management in Configuration Manager.

Monitor Power Management

See How to Monitor and Plan for Power Management in Configuration Manager.

Monitor Software Metering

See How to Monitor Software Metering in Configuration Manager.

Monitor Software Updates

See the Monitor Software Updates section in the Operations and Maintenance for Software Updates in Configuration Manager topic.

Alerts are generated by Configuration Manager when a specific condition occurs. Typically, alerts are generated when an error occurs that you must resolve. However, alerts are also generated to warn you that a condition exists so that you can continue to monitor the situation.

You can view alerts in the Alerts node of the Monitoring workspace. Alerts have one of the following alert states:

  • Never triggered: The condition of the alert has not been met.

  • Active: The condition of the alert is met.

  • Canceled: The condition of an active alert is no longer met. This state indicates that the condition that caused the alert is now resolved.

  • Postponed: An administrative user has configured Configuration Manager to evaluate the state of the alert at a later time.

  • Disabled: The alert has been disabled by an administrative user. When an alert is in this state, Configuration Manager does not update the alert even if the state of the alert changes.

You can take one of the following actions when Configuration Manager generates an alert:

  • Resolve the condition that caused the alert, for example, you resolve a network issue or a configuration issue that generated the alert. After Configuration Manager detects that the issue no longer exists, the alert state changes to Cancel.

  • If the alert is a known issue, you can postpone the alert for a specific length of time. At that time, Configuration Manager updates the alert to its current state.

    You can postpone an alert only when it is active.

  • You can edit the Comment of an alert so that other administrative users can see that you are aware of the alert. For example, in the comment you can identify how to resolve the condition, provide information about the current status of the condition, or explain why you postponed the alert.

For more information about how to manage alerts, see Configuring Alerts in Configuration Manager.

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For additional resources, see Information and Support for Configuration Manager.

Tip: Use this query to find online documentation in the TechNet Library for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager. For instructions and examples, see Search the Configuration Manager Documentation Library.
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