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No Lines, No Waiting, No Rainchecks - SolarWinds NCM 7.6 Beta 1 is now available!

 

The NCM Engineering team has been busy preparing this exclusive SolarWinds NCM beta ahead of Black Friday!  Packed with some amazing new functionality, this beta can be yours to test over the long holiday weekend.  If you were looking for that perfect reason to avoid the In-Laws, SolarWinds NCM has delivered.  I can't give away all of the details, but this beta includes some of the features listed here; What We Are Working On For NCM After 7.6 (Updated on March 17, 2017).

 

Click the link below to sign up.

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Must be under active maintenance for NCM to gain access.

 

 

 

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All active beta participates who provide feedback will be awarded 3,000 THWACK points!

Virtualization Manager (VMAN) 7.0 is now available with predictive and alert recommendations. VMAN 7.0 started with the basis to expand on Solarwinds current strengths of Discovery, Alerting, & Reporting and grow our toolset to provide advanced remediation and troubleshooting capabilities to support the *D.A.R.T framework. We tackled this challenge with intelligent actions that remediate existing alerts and predictive recommendations that pro-actively avoid downtime time and performance issue in your virtual infrastructure. Our goal was to stay true to Solarwinds tenants of simplicity and provide a toolset that was designed by systems engineers for systems engineers.  I feel confident that we have done that with VMAN 7.0.

What is included VMAN 7.0:

 

  • Updated UI Look and Feel - This release updated the SolarWinds Orion Web Console’s user interface, navigation, and notifications.

 

  • Predictive Recommendations - Advanced trending analysis is used to identify workload patterns of your virtual infrastructure to provide strategic recommendations. Based on historical data and trending, recommendations are created for Performance Optimization, Maximum Environment Utilization, and Problem Prevention.  Since these recommendations require historical data a minimum of 7 days of data is required.
      • Performance Optimization - Recommendations balance the workload of the virtual infrastructure to ensure the best performance is attained.  Based on historical trending, VMAN will identify the true work-load patterns, and determine where to place VMs. This ensures that all VMs have the necessary resources and that VMs residing on the same host have compatible workloads.
      • Maximum Environment Utilization - The goal of these recommendations is to ensure that the resources in the environment are leveraged to their full capacity with no loss of performance.  Essentially, do more with less!!
      • Problem Prevention  - These recommendations prevent situations where a lack of resources caused by resource depletion would affect the performance of a VM.

 

  • Active/Alert RecommendationsThese are tactical recommendations are that are meant to solve an immediate problem.  Think of these as alert recommendations, where their sole purpose is to resolve virtualization issues (aka put out an immediate fire)  or capacity issues as a result of an alert.  Since VMAN does not use historical data to make real-time recommendation it does not take into account future workloads when making the recommendation. Therefore only 1 hr of polling is required for VMAN to generate any necessary Active Recommendations.  These recommendations can be identified with a NOW icon preceding the recommendation.

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Recommendations Walk-through

 

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Once you log into your VMAN integrated Orion Instance  you will immediately notice the updated UI and new Navigation bar.

1. From the My Dashboards drop-down choose Virtualization Summary from the list.

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Once on the Virtual Summary page the new Recommendations resource can be found in the upper right hand corner.  The recommendations resource will provide you an at-a-glance view of clusters and their associated recommendations as well as the severity of the recommendation (Critical, Warning , Low).  This will be your gateway to recommendations.  You can access and view recommendations via 2 methods in the resource.

1. All Recommendations link -   This can be found in the upper right hand corner of the resource and will present all individual recommendations for all clusters.

2. Recommendations by Cluster link - This can be found in the third column next to the associated cluster it represents.  Entering recommendations using this link will pre-filter all recommendations to display only those associated to the host.

 

The severity references the the nature of the problem at hand based on Orion thresholds.

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The All Recommendations page provides a high-level overview of individual recommendations.  This is broken out based the problem that needs to be solved on the left with the recommendation to remediate the problem on the right.  The ability to filter by Cluster/Host, Recommendation Type (Active/Predictive), and Problem Severity (Critical, Warning, or Low), or Strategy is available on the left-hand side of the screen.  Tabs across the top of the screen allow you to view current recommendations, scheduled, recommendations currently running, and completed/failed recommendations.

 

From this view it is easy to identify Active recommendations with the NOW tag preceding the recommendation.

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By selecting an individual recommendation, related contextual details can be reviewed.  The recommendation details clearly break down the problem and the details of a recommendation to assist the administrator in making a decision to execute or ignore the action. Active recommendations will the associated alert that will be resolved by executing the recommendation. 

 

Additional actions can be found within the Steps To Perform tab such as power on/off the VM prior to performing the action. By default any migration action will not power off the VM unless the admin specifies.  All reconfiguration of Memory & CPU will power off the VM by default unless specified by the admin.

 

 

 

From here you can Apply, Ignore, Export & Schedule the recommendation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By selecting More Actions, an administrator can choose to ignore a recommendation to a later date.  This will remove the recommendation from the list until the specified date and will only return the recommendation if it is still valid.

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The Statistics tab will provide advanced graphical data to provide context as to why a recommendation has been created for your environment.  All graphs will have a Now delimiter line in the graph to identify the expected results on the virtual environment after the proposed recommendation is applied. Metrics associated to counters used for the recommendation will provide a current and predicted value.

 

TIP:  You can zoom in on the graph by selecting a section and sliding your cursor  across the graph.

 

 

 

SImilar to the Steps to Perform tab the recommendation can be applied, ignored or exported.

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To view running recommendations choose the RUNNING tab on the all recommendations page.  Running will provide you the current status of an in-progress recommendation with a progress bar indicator next to the action being run.  To cancel a running recommendation select Cancel & Revert .

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To view all past recommendations choose the HISTORY tab on the all recommendations page.  This will display both successful and failed recommendation attempts as well as time initiated and time completed.

 

Double click on the completed recommendation to view details such as who executed the action and steps performed in the action.

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In the event that a recommendation is no longer required for an entity select Manage Policies from the All Recommendations Page and select the Policies tab.

 

From here the admin can select the Add Exclusion.  The next screen will provide the option to select the object types you want to exclude (virtual machine, cluster, host, datastore).

 

After selecting the objects to exclude the exclusion policy can saved.

 

This will exclude the object from all future recommendation calculations until the exclusion policy is removed.

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By selecting the Strategies Tab the recommendations can be completely disabled.  The individual strategies can be disabled/enabled from this page.

 

VM Right Sizing

Over-Allocation

Under-Allocation

 

Host Performance & Capacity Assurance - Identifies hosts that will run of CPU or memory resources.

Active recommendations

Predictive recommendations

 

Storage Capacity Assurance

 

Balancing VM Workloads on Hosts

 

Selecting Recalculate Now the recommendation calculations can be manually run.  The default running of the calculations occurs every 12 hrs unless an environment change occurs in which case the recalculation will immediately run.  An environment change includes:

  • add/remove VM
  • add/remove Hosts (including maintenance mode)
  • Add/Remove storage
  • Migration of VMs to another host
  • Migration of VMs to different storage
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Existing customers can find the VMAN 7.0 & VIM 7.0 download files from the customer portal and new customers can find the download links here.  Visit the VMAN 7.0 customer support center to find all information related to VMAN 7.0 install and upgrades.

 

Before upgrading :

  • VMAN 7.0 requires Orion Platform 2016.2, NPM 12.0.1, SAM 6.3, NCM 7.5.1. VIM 7.0 released with VMAN 7.0 includes Orion 2016.2. You must upgrade to Orion Platform 2016.2 products to upgrade to VMAN 7.0.

 

  • For VMAN integrated with the Orion Web Console, you need to upgrade to VIM 7.0. Regardless of your installed Orion product version (such as NPM 12.0.1 or SAM 6.3), you should run the VIM 7.0 upgrade. This upgrade includes additional feature additions and fixed issues.

We are excited to share, that we've reached GA for Web Help Desk (WHD) 12.5.

 

 

This release includes new dashboards delivering a much needed UI and performance boost to WHD. The release also contains user interface improvements aligned to our Unexpected Simplicity theme.  The new features include:

  • Dashboard interface - New and improved dashboard user interface and functionality. The WHD development team did some fantastic work here to produce a new ground-up dashboard using a modern framework.

 

  • Technician interface - Manage ticket approvals from the technician interface. This request was one of the most highly requested features taken from Thwack. This feature empowers WHD technicians with an efficient and simple method to approve tickets.

 

Additional Improvements:

  • New email processing producing more reliability within WHD messaging queue.
  • Fixes for customer issues and security vulnerabilities

 

We encourage all to upgrade to this latest release which is available within your customer portal.

 

Thanks!

Solarwinds Team

We have been working hard to bring another bulk of enhancements to the Storage Resource Monitor (SRM).

SRM 6.4 Beta 2 is available and it contains some of the enhancements listed in the following post: What we are working on for SRM after v6.4 -- Updated on March 14, 2017.

 

To find out more and get access to the beta, you need to be a customer on active maintenance for SRM and sign up here:

 

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As an added incentive, beta users who submit feedback will receive 2,000 Thwack points to buy swag at the Thwack Store.

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