Competitive Advantages of Hyper-V over VMware vSphere


I’ve been MIA for quite sometime now due to my busy schedule, anyway to keep in touch with you guys, here’s my latest findings

Competitive Advantages of Hyper-V over VMware vSphere

Your customers might throw you with something similar but is developed by VMware, please ask them to check the publication date =’)



SCO2012: Full Features/Capabilities

Holla Guys,

Orchestrator is a workflow management solution for the data center. Orchestrator lets you automate the creation, monitoring, and deployment of resources in your environment

Key Values of SCO are:

  • Multi-Vendor Integration, NO-RIP & REPLACE or Vendor Lock-in
  • Pre-built activities & workflow processes
  • Coding & Scripting IS NOT NEEDED for Configuration or workflows
  • Cross Platform Integration with Microsoft & Non-Microsoft Products

*All items in RED are SP1 Features

System Center Orchestrator 2012

Key Features:


  • Activities Performs 3 actions Access Published Data, Perform Some Action & Publish New Data
  • Workflow Control
  • Tools
    • Create, Manage & Run Runbooks
  • Runbook Tester
  • Building Runbooks
    • Create, Add Activities, Link Activities, Configure Runbook Properties & Check in the runbook
  • Data Manipulation
  • Published Data
  • Deployment Manager
  • Runbook Activity Reference
    • Tasks


    Run system commands.


    Perform schedule-based activities.


    Monitor processes or system-level events.


    Manage file interactions such as copying and moving files.

    File Management

    Send e-mail notifications.


    Support other notification types.


    Search for or modify data within a workflow.


    Manipulate text files.

    Text File Management

    Manage workflows.

    Runbook Control

  • Runbook Samples
  • Management

  • Service Provider Foundation (Allows Hosters to design & implement multi-tenant self-service portals that integrates IaaS capabilities)
  • Integration

    • Integration Packs
  • Integration Toolkits
  • As usual, the whole SC2012 compilation can be found here in this link below
    2013 – System Center 2012 Features.docx

    Signing Off

    SCSM2012: Full Features/Capabilities

    Holla Guys!

    Service Manager provides an integrated platform for automating and adapting your organization’s IT service management best practices, such as those found in Microsoft Operations Framework (MOF) and Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL). It provides built-in processes for incident and problem resolution, change control, and asset lifecycle management.

    The beauty of SCSM truly lies in the tight integration with Microsoft System Center Product which leverages on what has been discovered, managed & link up all these resources belonging to the same Entity. The tight integration allows real-time resources without the need of manual labor from IT administrator.

    * Features listed in RED is part of SP1 features

    System Center Service Manager 2012

    Key Features

    IT Service Management

    • · Service Design
    • Capacity Management
    • Availability Management
    • Risk Management
    • Compliance Management
    • Supplier Management
  • · Service Transition
  • Release Management
  • Knowledge Management
    • Title
    • Description
    • Comments
    • Keywords
    • External URL
    • Internal Content
    • Analyst Content
  • Service Operation
  • Problem Management
  • Event Management
  • Service Request Fulfillment
  • Notification
  • Continual Service Improvement
  • Service Measurement
  • Service Reporting
  • Management
    • Managing Work Items & List:
  • Customization of User Interface
  • Management via PowerShell
  • Limiting Concurrent Sessions & Calls
  • Configuring Self-Service Portal Attachment File Size
  • Simple Task for Operators to Troubleshoot Computer Problems
  • Authoring & Customizations
  • Windows Server 2012 supports all Service Manager Roles, except for SSP & SharePoint Web parts.
  • Windows 8 supports Service Manager Console & End-users access Self-Service Portal
  • IT-as-a-Service

  • Role-Based Offering
  • · User Role Profiles
    • EndUser
    • ReadOnlyOperator
    • IncidentResolver
    • ChangeInitiator
    • ActivityImplementer
    • ProblemAnalyst
    • ServiceRequestAnalyst
    • ReleaseManager
    • ChangeManager
    • AdvancedOperator
    • Author
    • Workflow
    • ReportUser
    • ImpliedIncidentAffectedUser
    • ImpliedReviewer
    • ImpliedActivityEditor
    • ImpliedConfigItemCustodian
    • ImpliedPrimaryComputerUser


  • System Center Operations Manager (Monitoring Tool)
  • System Center Configuration Manager (Asset Management Tool)
  • System Center Orchestrator (Automation Tool)
  • System Center Virtual Machines Manager (Hypervisors Management Tool)
  • Manual Data & Configuration Items (Mobile Devices, Printers, Copier & etc)
  • Business Intelligence (Reporting)

    • System Center Data Warehouse
    • OLAP/Cube
    • Supports SQL Server 2012

    Common Scenarios for System Center Service Manager 2012

    As usual, the whole SC2012 compilation can be found here in this link below
    2013 – System Center 2012 Features.docx

    Signing Off

    SCVMM2012: Full Features/Capabilities

    Holla Guys,

    I’m back with SCVMM 2012 3rd part of my mini project!

    As Virtualization/Cloud becomes a household name, Administrators will need a single superior tool to manage their resources in a more efficient and yet cost effective at the same time.

    In a true cloud datacenter, Microsoft recognize that management of multiple Hypervisors is unavoidable hence, we are the pioneer in providing a single VM Management Tool that manages different Hypervisors in the market today.

    SCVMM provides administrators to manage not only Microsoft Hyper-V Host Servers but also VMware ESX Host servers and Citrix XenServers.

    SCVMM also provides administrators to configure & deploy from servers with different processors, OEM Hardwares, Network, Fibre Channel, iSCSI and many more. The idea for SCVMM is to assign dedicated and shared resources whether if it’s utilized for development or for production environment.

    SCVMM does not stop there but also provide a delegated capacity control and deploys standardized services via templates and do away with disruptive unstandardized service model.

    *Features in RED is found in SP1

    System Center Virtual Machine Manager

    Key Features

    • Hierarchical
    • Location based
    • Supports moving a host group from one location to another
  • Host Group Allows Configuration of the following:
    • Host Name & The Location Name
    • Allow Encrypted/Unencrypted File Transfer
    • Configure Placement Rules (VMM can automatically identifies the most suitable host to deploy your virtual machines)
    • Configure Host Reserves:
    • CPU
    • Memory
    • Disk I/O
    • Disk Space
    • Network I/O
  • Dynamic Optimization – Balances the VM load within a host cluster
  • Power Optimization – Enables to evacuate hosts of a balanced cluster and turn them off to save power.
  • Network – Configure to inherit or not the network logical resources from Parent Host Groups.
    • IP Address Pools
    • Load Balancers
    • Logical Networks
    • MAC address pool
  • Storage – View & allocate storage to a host group
  • Custom Properties
    • Virtual Machine
    • Virtual Machine Template
    • Host
    • Host Cluster
    • Host Group
    • Service Template
    • Service Instance
    • Computer Tier
    • Cloud
  • Library (Catalog of resources that provides access to virtual hardisk, virtual floppy disk, ISO, scripts, drivers, application packages, virtual machines, service templates and profiles.)
  • Library Resource

    File Name Extension

    Virtual hard disks

    .vhd (Hyper-V and Citrix XenServer), .vhdx (Hyper-V), .vmdk (VMware)

    ISO image files


    PowerShell scripts


    SQL Server scripts


    Web Deploy (MSDeploy) packages


    SQL Server data-tier applications (DACs)


    Server App-V packages


    Driver files


    Answer files

    .inf, .xml

    Custom resources

    Folders with .CR extension

    Virtual floppy disks

    .vfd (Hyper-V), .flp (VMware)

    • Templates & Profiles – Used to standardize the creation of VM & Services
    • Stored in VMM Database
    • Service Creation Template
    • Host Profile to deploy hyper-v host from bare-metal
    • Capability Profiles of VM on each type of supported hypervisors
  • Equivalent Objects – User-defined grouping of library resources.
  • Cloud Libraries – Consist of Read-Only Library shares that are assigned to a private cloud for Self-Service users.
  • Self-Service User Content – Allows Users to upload their own resources to the VMM Library:
    • Templates
    • VHD
    • ISO
    • Application files
    • Scripts
    • Other building blocks
  • Store Virtual Machines & Services – Location for users to store their unused Virtual Machines
  • Orphaned Resources – Location for all objects which do not belong to a library share (Library Shares which was removed)
  • Update Catalog & Baselines – Provides administrators to update their VM through VMM Management via WSUS.
  • Networking (Allows administrator to efficiently provision network resources for a virtualized environment.)
    • Scenarios for VMM Networking
    • Logical Networking – Allows administrators to connect VM to a network e.g. “BackEnd”, “FrontEnd” or “Backup” Network.
  • Hardware Load Balancer Integration with VMM
  • VIP Templates – Virtual IP Template contains LB configuration settings
    • Configure Port & Switches (Allows you to consistently configure identical capabilities for network adapters across multiple host.

    Networking item in VMM

    Uses and settings

    Native port profile for uplinks

    A native port profile for uplinks (also called an uplink port profile) specifies which logical networks can connect through a particular physical network adapter.

    To enable teaming of multiple network adapters, you can apply the same logical switch and uplink port profile to those network

    Native port profile for virtual network adapters

    The following list provides details about these capabilities:

    · Enable virtual machine queue (offload setting)

    · Enable IPsec task offloading (offload setting)

    · Enable Single-root I/O virtualization (offload setting)

    · Allow MAC spoofing (security setting)

    · Enable DHCP guard (security setting)

    · Allow router guard (security setting)

    · Allow guest teaming (security setting)

    · Allow IEEE priority tagging (security setting)

    · Bandwidth settings

    Port classification

    A port classification provides a global name for identifying different types of virtual network adapter port profiles.

    Logical switch

    A logical switch brings port profiles, port classifications, and switch extensions together so that you can apply them to multiple network adapters.

    Switch extensions:

    · Monitoring extensions can be used to monitor and report on network traffic, but they cannot modify packets.

    · Capturing extensions can be used to inspect and sample traffic, but they cannot modify packets.

    · Filtering extensions can be used to block, modify, or defragment packets. They can also block ports.

    · Forwarding extensions can be used to direct traffic by defining destinations, and they can capture and filter traffic. To avoid conflicts, only one forwarding extension can be active on a logical switch.

    Virtual switch extension manager

    A virtual switch extension manager makes it possible for you to use a vendor network-management console and the VMM management server together.

    • VM Network (Offer the ability to use Network Virtualization)
    • Network Virtualization (Multi-Tenant Support)
    • vLAN-based Configuration
    • One VM network that gives direct access to the logical network
    • Using external networks that are implemented through a vendor network-management console
  • Gateways (Allows you to connect VM to other network)
  • IP Static Pools
  • VMM Network Configuration Diagrams
  • Network Sites (Associates one or more subnets, vLAN, subnet/vLAN pairs with a logical network)
  • MAC Address Pools
  • Multicasting or Broadcasting
  • · Storage (Allows administrators to manage storage for VM)
    • VMM recognize Local Storage (Storage Attached to Server)
    • VMM recognize Remote Storage (e.g SAN, NAS & etc)
    • Supports Virtual(Synthetic) FibreChannels
  • VMM supported Storage Solutions:
  • Deployment & Management Storage Resources
    • Storage Discovery (Allows administrators to automatically discover local & remote storage including Storage arrays, pools, LUN, Disk, Volumes & Virtual Disk
    • Storage Classification (Allows administrators to classify discovered storage using friendly descriptive names to create & expose a simplified storage model
    • Storage Provisioning (Create new logical units from available capacity)
    • From Available Capacity
    • By Creating a Writeable snapshot of an existing logical unit
    • By Creating a Clone of a Logical Unit
  • Storage Allocation (Allocate available storage & LUN to defined host groups
  • Storage Decommission (Decommission any storage VMM manages)
  • SMI-S Provider for iSCSI Target Server (Utilize Microsoft iSCSI Target Server Feature in WS2012)
  • Virtual Machine Host & Host Clusters
  • VMware
  • Citrix XenServer
  • Dynamic Optimization & Power Optimization
  • Managing Fabric Updates in VMM
  • System Center Operations Manager integration with VMM
    • Capacity Utilization
    • Chargeback
    • Host Group Forecasting
    • Host Utilization Growth
    • Power Savings
    • SAN Usage Forecasting
    • Virtual Machine Allocation
    • Virtual Machine Utilization
    • Virtualization Candidates
    • Self Service (Delegate Management & Usage to users)
    • Resource Pooling (Present aggregate set of resources)
    • Opacity (Self-Service Users have no knowledge of the underlying physical resources)
    • Elasticity (Allows administrators to add resources to Private Cloud to increase the capacity)
    • Optimization (Usage of the underlying resources is continually optimized with affecting user’s experience.)
    • Example Scenario
  • Rapid Provisioning of Virtual Machines
  • Availability Options for Virtual Machines
  • Resource Throttling
    • Processor (CPU) Throttling
    • Memory Throttling & Weight
  • Virtual NUMA for VMM
  • Virtual Machines & Storage Migration
    • Network Migration (Shared Nothing Migration using BITS)
    • Quick Migration (Cluster Transfer)
    • Quick Storage Migration
    • SAN Migration
    • Live Migration (No Noticeable Downtime)
    • Non Cluster Live Migration
    • Between 2 Different Cluster
    • Live Migration of VM Storage
    • Live VSM (Live migrate VM & their Storage with a single action
    • Concurrent Live Migration
    Role-Based Administration
    Self Service
    • Leverage on AppController as Self-Service Portal
    • Self-Service Users can use VMM Console


    As usual, the whole SC2012 compilation can be found here in this link below
    2013 – System Center 2012 Features.docx

    Signing Off

    SCOM2012: Full Features/Capabilities

    Holla Guys,

    I’m back with the second product in SC2012. SCOM puts large focus not only on the Datacenter Admin but Application Owner as well. Enabling monitoring from Datacenter – Network – Servers – Operating Systems – Applications – Code Level (.Net) as well as Client-Side Monitoring!

    *Do note that the items in RED is SP1 Features

    System Center Operations Manager 2012

    SCOM puts large focus not only on the Datacenter Admin but Application Owner as well. Enabling monitoring from Datacenter – Network – Servers – Operating Systems – Applications – Code Level (.Net) as well as Client Monitoring!

    Key Features

    SCOM Monitoring
    Transaction Monitoring
    • ASP.NET Web Application
    • ASP.NET Webpage
    • ASP.NET MVC Page
    • ASP.NET Web services
    • WCF Method
    • Function
  • ASP.NET Web Services
    • ASP.NET Webpage
    • ASP.NET MVC Page
    • ASP.NET Web services
    • WCF Method
    • Function
  • WCF Service
    • ASP.NET Webpage
    • ASP.NET MVC Page
    • ASP.NET Web services
    • WCF Method
    • Function
  • Windows Service
    • WCF Method
    • Function
    Health Service Watcher
    • Monitors the state of remote health service which includes 4 dependency monitors
      • Local Health Service Configuration
      • Local Health Service Performance
      • Local Health Service Security
      • Local Health Service Availability
    Microsoft Applications
    Unix & Linux Server Operating System
    • Monitors Health (See Below), Performance, Obtain Reports, Run Tasks, Implement Needed Customizations.
      • Services & Applications
      • File System, Disk Space, Swap Space & System Memory
      • Network Interfaces
      • Core Processes & Attributes
      • Key Configurations
    • Ability to elevate privileges using “sudo”
    • Supported Unix & Linux
    • Additional Supported Linux OS
    • CentOS 5 (x86/x64)
    • CentOS 6 (x86/x64)
    • Debian 5 (x86/x64)
    • Debian 6 (x86/x64)
    • Oracle Linux 5 (x86/x64)
    • Oracle Linux 6 (x86/x64)
    • Ubuntu Server 10.04 (x86/x64)
    • Ubuntu 12.04 (x86/x64)
    Oracle Database
    • Auto Discover key JEE application Server properties
    • Collect key JEE application Server Performance Counters
    • Auto discover application
    • Monitor Application State
    Audit Collection Services
    • ACS provides a means to collect records generated by an audit policy & store in a centralized Database.
    Cross Platform
    • IBM WebSphere (6.1 & 7.0)
      • Supported on RHEL, SLES, AIX & Windows
    • Oracle Weblogic (10gRel3, 11gRel1)
      • Supported on RHEL, SLES, Solaris & Windows
    • Redhat JBoss (4.2, 5.1, 6.0)
      • Supported on RHEL, SLES & Windows
    • Apache Tomcat (5.5, 6.0, 7.0)
      • Supported on RHEL, SLES & Windows
    Console & Dashboards
    • Various Console
      • Operations Manager 2012 Console
      • Web Console
      • SharePoint Console
    • Dashboard
      • Surface Information
        • Group Health Dashboard
        • Agent Health (Health State, Performance & Version)
        • Infrastructure Health:
          • Management Configuration Service
          • Management Data Access
          • Management Server
          • Gateway & Management Server State
          • Network Discovery
          • Notification
        • WebParts
      • Network Summary Dashboard View
        • Nodes with Slowest Response (ICMP ping)
        • Nodes with Highest CPU Usage
        • Interfaces with Highest Utilization
        • Interfaces with Most Send Errors
        • Interfaces with Most Receive Errors
        • Nodes with the Most Alerts
        • Interfaces with the Most Alerts
    Management Packs
    • Management Pack Templates
      • .Net Application Performance Monitoring Template
      • OLE DB Data Source Template
      • Windows Process Monitoring Template
      • TCP Port Template
      • Unix & Linux Log File
      • Unix & Linux Process
      • Web Application Availability Monitoring Template
      • Web Application Transaction Monitoring Template
      • Windows Service Template
      • Watcher Nodes (agent that runs monitors & rules that test an application or feature on another computer.)
    Application Performance Monitoring
    • Supports IIS7 hosted ASP.Net Application & WebServices
    • Provide Consistent Monitoring from Server to Client Perspectives
    • Bridge the gap between IT & Application Teams
  • Enabled APM for SharePoint 2010
  • 360 .NET Application Monitoring Dashboards
    • Provides you different perspectives of application health in one place—360 .NET Application Monitoring Dashboards.
    • The 360 .NET Application Monitoring Dashboards display information to provide a summary of health and key metrics for 3-tier applications in a single view for
    • Global Service Monitor
    • .NET Application Performance Monitoring
    • Web Application Availability Monitoring.
  • The 360 .NET Application Monitoring Dashboards show where an application is unhealthy and provide a launch point for detail dashboards that highlight component-level issues.
  • The 360 .NET Application Monitoring Dashboards display data from powerful monitoring tools.
    • .NET Application Performance Monitoring looks deep into the application to get details that can help you pinpoint solutions from server- and client-side perspectives.
    • Web Application Availability monitoring in Operations Manager monitors internal synthetic transactions.
    • Global Service Monitor monitors the availability of applications from an outside location, measuring availability from where the user is.
  • The 360 .NET Application Monitoring Dashboards show the following:
  • Key application metric or action

    Type of monitoring used


    Web Application Availability Monitoring and Global Service Monitor


    .NET Application Performance Monitoring


    .NET Application Performance Monitoring and Global Service Monitor


    .NET Application Performance Monitoring


    The Team Foundation Server (TFS) Connector management pack takes an alert, assigns it to development in TFS with all appropriate detail.

    • Servers/Systems
    • Storage
    • Virtualization Host
    • Connecting SCOM with other Management System
      • Connects with other Management System (SCOM as Primary or Secondary)
      • Connects to Trouble-Ticketing Systems
    • Active Directory Integration
    • Integrating SCOM with Development Processes (Team Foundation Server & Visual Studio)
      • Import Operational Issues
      • Configure Notification when Developers Reassign Work Items
      • Automatically Assign New Alerts to Engineering
      • Automatically Close Alerts when work items are resolved in TFS
      • Synchronize Alerts with TFS
      • Integration with IntelliTrace Historical Profiling
      • File Attachments
    • Setup Infrastructure
      • SMTP (Email)
      • SIP (IM)
      • SMS
      • Custom
    • Alert Aging (Help meet SLAs)
    • Create User Roles

    Let me know if I misses out on anything. The aim for this documentation is to showcase Out of The Box SCOM2012 with Free Management Packs.

    For a  full listing of SCCM 2012 & SCOM 2012, Please download it from here
    2013 – System Center 2012 Features


    Signing Off

    SCCM2012: Full Features/Capabilities

    Holla Guys,

    I’ve got a mini project going on! I’m compiling a list of features/capabilities in System Center 2012 Products so that at a glance, you will know what each of SC2012 components can or cannot do.

    This list is still a Work In Progress(WIP) hence I would appreciate if you guys have any information to update or enhance this list further, it would be much appreciated.

    * All in red are SP1 Features

    System Center Configurations Manager 2012

    User-Centric Management

    • Managing Users rather than Managing Machines\Devices
    • Moving to a State-based design, for applications, deployments, contents on DPs
    • Full application life cycle model: Install, Revision Management, Supersedence, & Uninstall
    • Understands and intelligently target the relationship between user systems
    • Management solution tailored for application

    Empower Users (Consumerization of IT)

    • Device Freedom: Extends management to all devices connected to Exchange ActiveSync (Includes Non-Microsoft; IOS, Android & Symbian)
    • Optimized, personalized application experience: Evaluates user identity device type, and network capabilities to deliver great experience regardless of user’s locations
    • Application Self-Service: Offers an easy to use web catalog for highly secure employee self-provisioning.

    User-Centric Device Management

    Light Management:

    • Windows Phone 7
    • Nokia
    • Apple IOS
    • Google Android

    Basic Management for all Exchange ActiveSync Connected Devices:

    • Exchange ActiveSync-Based Policy Delivery
    • Discovery and Inventory
    • Settings Policy
    • Remote Wipe

    Full Management:

    • Windows Mobile
    • Windows CE, 5.0, 6.0
    • Windows Mobile 6.0, 6.1 & 6.5
    • Nokia Symbian

    Integration of System Center Mobile Device Manager & Configuration Manager features:

    • · Secure over-the-air enrollment
    • · Monitor & Remediate out-of-compliance devices
    • · Deploy & Remove Applications
    • · Inventory
    • · Remote Wipe

    Personalized Application Experience

    SCCM 2012 examines the following:

    • User Identity
    • Application Dependencies
    • Devices Types
    • Network Bandwidth

    It then determines which of the following ways to deliver the application to the users:

    • Full Install (MSI)
      • Local installation using Windows Installer
      • SCCM2012 Distribution PointTechnology delivers packaged software
      • User can require self-service styled from Web-Based Software Catalog
    • App-V
      • Streamed from Distribution Point or delivered as a local package for mobile/offline users
      • Virtual Formats of application can be requested self-service style from web-based Software Catalog
    • Device Formats
      • Windows Mobile CAB
      • Symbian
      • iOS (through Citrix)
      • SCCM 2012 Application Model can determine device category dynamically to provide correct format
    • Alternative Delivery
      • VDI Users
      • Presentation Layer (Locally Launched delivered Software Packages)
      • Remote Desktop (Full remote desktop redirection)

    Key Features:

    Asset Management

    • Hardware Inventory
      • Collects Full Inventory on first scan & subsequent on Delta Changes
      • Methods of Viewing
        • Create Queries that return devices based on a specific hardware configurations
        • Create query-based collections based on specific hardware configurations
        • Run reports that display specific details about hardware configurations
        • Use Resource Explorer to view detail information
      • o Extending Configuration Manager Hardware Inventory
        • Add or Remove Inventory Classes from SCCM Consoles
        • NOIDMID Files (Asset Number)
        • IDMIF Files (Projectors, Photocopiers, Network Printers)
    • Software Inventory
      • Collects Full Inventory on first scan & subsequent on Delta Changes
      • Methods of Viewing
        • Create Queries that return devices based on a specific hardware configurations
        • Create query-based collections based on specific hardware configurations
        • Run reports that display specific details about hardware configurations
        • Use Resource Explorer to view detail information
    • Asset Intelligence
      • Catalog (Provides over 300,000 software tiles & versions)
      • Asset Intelligence Home Page (Summary Dashboard views of Asset Intelligence Catalog)
      • Asset Intelligence reports
        • Hardware (Present information about USB devices, hardware that must be upgraded, and even computers that are not ready for a specific software upgrade.)
        • License Management (Provide data about licenses in use)
        • Software (Reports can be used to identify adware, spyware, and other malware, and identify software redundancy to help streamline software purchasing and support)
      • Supports 7 mandatory identification tags that are defined in ISO/IEC 19770-2
      • Collects information about Application Virtualization 5 applications & AppV 4 Apps.
    • Software Metering (Collect software usage data)
      • How many copies of a particular software program have been deployed to the computers in your organization. Among those computers, you can determine how many users actually run the program.
      • How many licenses of a particular software program you have to purchase when you renew your license agreement with the software vendor.
      • Whether users are still running a particular software program. If the program is not being used, you might retire the program.
      • Which times of the day a software program is most frequently used.
    • Remote Management
    • Power Management (Monitor & reduce Power Consumption)
    • Remote Control (remotely administer, provide assistance, or view any client computer)
    • Remote control now supports sending the CTRL+ALT+DEL command to computers.
    • You can apply different remote control settings to collections of computers by using client settings.
    • You can lock the keyboard and mouse of the computer that is being administered during a remote control session.
    • Copy and paste functionality between the host computer and the computer
    • If the remote control network connection is disconnected, the desktop of the computer that is being administered will be locked.
    • You can start the remote control viewer from the Windows Start menu.
    • Remote control client settings can automatically configure the Windows Firewall on client computers to allow remote control to operate.
    • Remote control supports connecting to computers with multiple monitors.
    • A high visibility notification bar is visible on client computers to inform the user that a remote control session is active.
    • The account name of the administrative user who starts the remote control session is automatically displayed to users during the remote control session. This display helps users to verify who is connecting to their computer.
    • If Kerberos authentication fails when you make a remote control connection to a computer, you are prompted to confirm that you want to continue before Configuration Manager falls back to using the less secure authentication method of NTLM.
    • Only TCP port 2701 is required for remote control packets
    • Responsiveness for low-bandwidth connections
  • vPro Integration
    • Out of Band Management Task
    • Powering on one or many computers (for example, for maintenance on computers outside business hours).
    • Powering off one or many computers (for example, the operating system stops responding).
    • Restarting a nonfunctioning computer or booting from a locally connected device or known good boot image file.
    • Re-imaging a computer by booting from a boot image file that is located on the network or by using a PXE server.
    • Reconfiguring the BIOS settings on a selected computer (and bypassing the BIOS password if this is supported by the BIOS manufacturer).
    • Booting to a command-based operating system to run commands, repair tools, or diagnostic applications (for example, upgrading the firmware or running a disk repair tool).
    • Configuring scheduled software deployments to wake up computers before the computers are running.


  • Software Update Management
    • Software Updates
    • Auto-Deployment Rules (Auto deploy)
    • State-based Update Groups (Deploy to particular group)
  • Operating System Deployment
    • Operating System Deployment
      • Offline Servicing of Images
      • Boot Media Updates (Auto detect the correct Management Point & OS Images)
      • USMT 4.0 (shadow copy & hardlinking supported with scans to minimize syntax errors)
    • Task Sequence
      • Default Task Sequence Optimized for OS Deployment starting from Windows 7
      • Supports computers that are in UEFI mode
      • Default Task Sequence automatically partitions computer based on whether it was booted in UEFI mode or BIOS mode.
  • Content Management
    • Distribution Points
    • Preferred Distribution Points
    • Bandwidth Throttling & Scheduling
    • PXE & Multicast
  • Content Management
    • Prestaging Content
    • Managing Content
    • Content Monitoring & Validation
  • App-V Integration (Provision Software without installing on local computers)
  • Mobile Device Management
  • Internet Based Client Management
  • SCCM Supported Configurations:
    • Support Windows Server 2012 on Site Systems & Clients
    • Support SQL Server 2012 for Configuration Manager database
    • PowerShell cmdlets are available for Configuration Manager Automation
    • Distribution Points can be deployed in Windows Azure
    • Support for multiple Software Update Points(SUP) & Multiple Management Points
    • Email alert subscriptions are now supported for all features
  • Compliance Management

    • Unified Settings Management across Servers, Desktops & Mobile Devices
    • Reports configuration drift & auto remediate via registry, WMI & scripts
  • Available Compliance Settings:
    • Apply Gold System Template
    • Microsoft Compliance Packs
    • Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act (GBLA)
    • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
    • Sarbanes–Oxley Act (SOX)
    • European Union Data Protection Directive (EUDPD)
    • Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA)
  • Monitoring Client Activity, Health & Auto Remediate
    • Server-Side
    • Policy Request
    • Hardware & Software Inventory
    • Heartbeat DDR
    • Status Message
  • Client Side Monitoring/Remediation
    • Dependent Windows Components & Services
    • Configuration Manager Client prerequisites
    • WMI repository & namespace evaluation
    • In-console & web reporting
  • Server Monitoring
    • Alerts – Near Real-Time Awareness for Changes
    • Monitor – Status of your DB replication
  • Windows 8 Supports:
    • Metered Internet Connections
    • Always On Always Connected
      • Detects whether networking is on or off
      • Detects whether devices is on battery power or plugged in
      • Detects the amount of battery power remaining
      • Detects whether devices is in idle mode
      • Detects whether devices is in its Windows Automatic Maintenance Window
    • User Data & Profile Configurations items can be configured for Folder Redirection, Offline Files and Roaming Profiles


    • Role-Based Administration
    • Network Access Protection
    • Endpoint Protection (Manage antimalware policies and Windows Firewall security)
    • Tight Integration with Active Directory

    Beyond Windows

    • Supports AIX, HP-UX & RedHat Enterprise
    • Hardware inventory (for a set of core classes and properties), and viewing inventory with Resource Explorer. This includes listing of installed packages (e.g. RPMs) like Windows Add/Remove Programs list.
    • Ability to create dynamic collections containing Windows, Linux, and/or UNIX computers, based hardware inventory queries
    • Classic software distribution (packages and programs) — can distribute Linux/UNIX applications, software updates, or run arbitrary scripts
  • Supports MAC Computers.
    • MAC OS X Configuration Items enables:
    • Evaluate & Remediate property list (.plist) Settings
    • Can utilize Shell Scripts to evaluate & remediate other MAC settings
  • Supports deployment of applications to MAC OS
  • Reporting

    • Over 300 Out of the Box Drilldown Report
    • Customizable Reports
    • Report based on SQL Reporting Services


    Alright, that’s all for now, hope you guys find it useful! Please do share if I’ve missed any out, if you would like a Microsoft Word copy, please feel free to download it here. 

    Signing Off

    SCOM: Application Monitoring – Code Level Monitoring


    I’m so inspired with SCOM’s capability. SCOM can monitor your Datacenter from Temperature, Rack Doors, Humidity up to code-level monitoring.

    Imagine with me a traditional scenario where you have a Server Operator, Network Operator and Developer. When an application fails, traditionally the 3 stooges above will blame one another because no one actually knows the root cause of the failure.

    Now with SCOM, you will be able to pinpoint the exact root cause and remediate it without long downtime and countless blame assigning meetings.

    In 2010, Microsoft made a purchase on a product that does code-level monitoring on .Net Application (AVIcode). Today, AVIcode is integrated natively in SCOM 2012 and is able to provide you with code-level diagnostic with great reporting tools via Out of the Box App Advisor.

    App Advisor provides different reports from Client-Side Reporting to Server Analysis Reporting. You can view a short video of AppAdvisor in action here or you can download for a clearer view here

    App Advisor

    So, it looks great with .Net through AVIcode. What about Java Application Servers?

    Well for that, we do have excellent MP as well. The table below summarizes what SCOM can monitor on which OS Layer. * The table below is extracted from 








    IBM WebSphere

    6.1, 7.0






    Oracle WebLogic

    10gRel3, 11gRel1






    Redhat JBoss

    4.2, 5.1, 6.0





    Apache Tomcat

    5.5, 6.0, 7.0





    Here’s a video that explains Application Monitoring very well with demo as well In short, this video will share about how SCOM 2012 can monitor from network and deep line-of-business application such as .Net and Java

    Beside the video link above, I would like to share with you 2 other PowerPoint Slides for your consumption.

    1. Application Monitoring with AVIcode
    2. OS & Application Monitoring

    If you would like to have further resources about JBOSS, Tomcat, WebLogic and WebSphere, please feel free to visit

    1. More ReadOuts & MP Downloads
    2. Managing Tomcat 7

    Signing Off

    SCOM: Understanding Different Methods of SCOM Monitoring


    Microsoft SCOM is a very powerful piece of Cross-Platform monitoring software and is able to monitor just about anything!

    From a simple out of the box monitoring capabilities to extending it to monitor applications with the existing 300 over Management Packs, or if you are a kickass administrator cum developer the possibilities is near limitless.

    Out of the box:
    The Vanilla flavour of SCOM provide great ways to monitor your applications by first discovering the objects via the following methods:

    1. Registry
    2. WMI
    3. Scripting
    4. OLE DB
    5. LDAP
    6. Custom Codes

    Followed on with Different Monitors you can use such as below:

    1. Unit Monitors
      • SNMP
      • WMI Performance
      • Log Files
      • Windows Events
      • Windows Services
      • Windows Performance Counters,
      • Scripting
      • WMI Events
    2. Aggregate Rollup Monitor
      • Collections of several monitors and state can be monitored on either a best-case or worst-case basis
    3. Dependency Rollup Monitor
    1. Similar to item 2. but provides more granularity or flexibility.

    Management Packs (MP):
    Management Packs typically contain Monitoring Settings for applications or services which extends the basic out of the box functionality of SCOM.

    You can opt for an easier way to monitor your applications through a range of Management Packs that is available free from Microsoft or Paid from 3rd Party Products.

    You can find these MP here 

    Introducing too many MP can prove to be useless, therefore you should know what you need and enable them.

    Management Packs at the very least should contain 1 or more from the following:

    1. Monitors, which directs an agent to track the state of the managed component
    2. Rules, which direct an agent to collect information such as performance, alerts, events and etc
    3. Tasks, defines activities that can be executed
    4. Knowledge, provides textual advise to help operators to diagnose and fix a problem
    5. Views, offer customized user interfaces for monitoring or managing the component
    6. Reports, defines specialized ways to report on the managed component
    7. Object Discoveries, identify objects to be monitored
    8. Run As Profiles, allows you to run different rules, tasks, monitors, or discoveries under different accounts on different computers.

    For more information on each of the parts, please feel free to read it at

    **Read Only if you are a Kickass Administrator cum Developer!:
    Alternatively, if you are a kickass administrators and has a developer background, SCOM’s capabilities is near limitless.

    Apart from the fact that you can monitor anything, you can also make additional $$$ by selling each Management Packs you created.

    Following the guide below will teach you how to make your first million and also being able to maintain your IT Infrastructure.

    MP Element:


    So, if today, someone walks up to you and ask you, what can SCOM monitor, you can just in short tell them… SCOM can monitor just about anything.

    Signing Off

    Microsoft Assessment & Planning Toolkit (MAP 8)


    I feel MAP Toolkit is a great product but is often a black sheep. Why do I say that? Simple, It’s because MAP did not get the lime light it is supposed to get!

    Determine your Windows Server 2012 readiness

    MAP 8.0 assesses the readiness of your IT infrastructure for a Windows Server 2012 deployment. This feature includes detailed and actionable recommendations indicating which machines meet Windows Server 2012 system requirements and which may need hardware updates. A comprehensive inventory of servers, operating systems, workloads, devices, and server roles is included to help in your planning efforts.

    Determine your Windows 8 readiness

    MAP 8.0 assesses the readiness of your IT environment for a Windows 8 deployment. This feature evaluates your existing hardware against the recommended system requirements for Windows 8. It provides recommendations detailing which machines meet the requirements and which may need hardware upgrades. 

    Key benefits include:

    · Assessment report and summary proposal to help you understand the scope and benefits of a Windows 8 deployment

    · Inventory of desktop computers, deployed operating systems, and applications

    Assess your environment for Office 2013 and Office 365

    MAP 8.0 assesses readiness for Office 2013 and Office 365 and provides an in-depth assessment of client desktops for upgrading or migration. This feature also offers support for Office 365 features such as web apps, Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, or full Office 365 client support.

    Migrate to Windows Azure Virtual Machines

    MAP 8.0 performs a comprehensive assessment of Windows Server and Linux machines to determine feasibility of a migration to Windows Azure Virtual Machines. MAP then provides suggested changes to prepare targeted machines for migration. This feature helps you reduce the operating costs of hosting on-premise servers, as well as estimating the required size and monthly network and storage usage required to migrate on-premise Windows and Linux servers to Windows Azure Virtual Machines using actual data from the targeted environment.

    Here’s my take on MAP. MAP is an awesome tool if you want to do the following:

    1. Agentless Inventory
      • Provides you a free way to assess your environment to let you know how many PC/Servers running which Operating System, what application(s) is installed and what kinda hardware you got there!
    2. Windows Server & other workloads Sizing Tool
      • How many times do you look for a Hyper-V sizing tool and when you tried it, it doesn’t do justice to your sizing?
      • MAP provides you detail sizing after analyzing your environment and frankly it’s the best Sizing Tool ever!
    3. Microsoft Product(s) Readiness
      • Windows 8
        Windows 7
        Windows Vista
        Windows XP Professional
        Office 2010 and previous versions
        Windows Server 2012
        Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2
        Windows Server 2003 or Windows Server 2003 R2
        Windows 2000 Professional or Windows 2000 Server
        Windows Internet Explorer 9 and previous versions
        VMware vSphere
        VMware vCenter
        VMware ESX
        VMware ESXi
        VMware Server
        Selected Linux distributions
        LAMP application stack discovery
        SQL Server
        System Center Configuration Manager
        Forefront Endpoint Protection

    Not enough? GO over to and check it out yourself!

    Signing Off

    SC2012 Configuring: Installing HAVMM


    I’m currently attending Malaysia’s 2nd System Center Boot Camp 2012! So I got myself some hardware to play around and this post is a lil long, but I’ll be sharing some steps + screenshots on how you can configure a HAVMM(Highly Available Virtual Machine Manager). The guide here is purely for testing purposes and is not meant for Production!

    For this environment we have the following Config:

    • VM: PCloud.Local (Active Directory Server 2012)
    • VM: VMMSQL01 (SQL Server 2012)
    • VM: VMM01 (SCVMM Server 2012)
    • VM: VMM02 (SCVMM Server 2012)

    Installing SQL Server

    Fire Up SQL Setup & Select Installation

    Select “New SQL Server stand-alone installation or add features to an existing installation

    Allow the Setup Support Rules to finish its course and click OK

    image image
    You can skip the scanning for Product Updates if you chooses, but if you have Internet Connection, you should allow it to run. Click on Install & allow it to run its course.

    After the previous screen, the Setup Support Rules will run again, click next when it completes

    image image
    Warning shows that the server cannot access internet hence there will be delay in starting .Net App. We can ignore this. Warning shows that we should allow appropriate Ports Open (This is important)

    Read through & Accept the license terms & click Next

    After you’ve agreed to the license term & clicked next, you should select “SQL Server Feature Installation” & Click Next

    image image
    Select Database Engine Services Select Management Tools – Basic & Complete

    Once you’ve click Next after your roles selections, It will run another check. Click Next once it’s completed

    I’d leave it default to make things easier for me, Click Next Twice

    I’d leave it as default as well & Click Next

    Click on “Add Current User” & Click on “Add” your “SCVMMADMIN” user

    Point to note, SCVMMADMIN is also a member of Domain Admin

    On Error Reporting Page Click Next and allow the Installation Configuration Rules to complete its check and click Next

    image image
    Click Install! Click Close & WahLah, you’re done, Only for SQL portion =’)

    Installing FailOver Cluster

    Click on VMM01 and Add Roles & Features

    image image
    Select Role-Based or Feature-Based Installation & Click Next Select your preferred Server & Click Next
    image image
    Click Next to get to Features Select Failover Clustering
    image image
    Add all additional Features Click Install

    Click Close & Repeat the process but This time around, Install it on VMM02

    Once both servers has complete it’s Feature Installation, Fire up the FailOver Cluster Manager & Click on “Create Cluster

    Click on Browse

    Select Both of your VMM Servers! In this case it should be VMM01 & VMM02

    Once you click Next after the server validation, you will be prompted to run a Cluster Configuration Validation. Select “Yes” & Click Next

    Select Run all test & Click Next. Follow the wizard and finish the Cluster Configuration!

    Installing Highly Available Virtual Machine Manager

    Fire up the SCVMM Setup file & Click on “Install

    Setup detects that the Server you are installing is a HAVMM, click Yes & Proceed

    Select “VMM Management Server“ & the VMM Console will be automatically selected. Click Next

    image image
    Key in something meaningful for you & leave the product key blank Accept the Term & Click Next
    image image
    Click Yes @ the CEIP Screen Select On to Use Microsoft Update & Click Next

    For this particular installation, I’ve hit an interesting Error Message.

    image image
    VMM requires Deployment Tools & WinPE Features Fire up ADK Setup & Select “Deployment Tools”
    “Windows PE”
    image image
    Re-Run the Prerequisite Checks again & Click Next Provide the Server Name & Proper Credentials (SCVMMADMIN) & Click Next

    Here’ I stumbled again to another problem. I’m using SQL Server 2012 btw.

    image image
    Warning says that it cannot find my SQL Server!!!! Looks like I’ll need to install 2 other add-ons!

    Fire Up “SQL Native Client” & “SQL Server 2012 Command Line Utilities” and follow the wizard.

    image image
    Well, I click next & I Hit the same error message again. This time around… It’s the Firewall in SQL Server Head over to SQL server & Turn Off all Windows Firewall *This is not for Production*
    Head back & Click Next
    image image
    Provide a meaningful name “HAVMM” & Provide a IP Address “” Provide the proper Username & Password with a proper Distributed Key Management

    Click Next for the next 3 Screens & Complete the Installation by Clicking on Install Button

    Click Close & Repeat the installation process to VMM02 & remember about the Prerequisites so that you don’t hit the same problem

    Fire up SCVMM on both VMM Servers and you will get an error message.

    Turn Off the VMM Server which DO NOT have the Error Message.

    That’s it, After this, you can install the VMM Console on any machine & you will be able to experience HAVMM =’)

    Signing Off