DPM as a Distributed Application in SCOM

In Operations Manager 2012 there is something known as a Distributed Application (DA). The purpose of a DA is to give you the overall health of an application made up of different multiple objects. DA’s pull in objects that are already being monitored by SCOM. An example of using a DA could be to provide the health of a web application that consists of backend databases and front end web servers. Both the backend databases and front end web servers are objects that are monitored separately but together make up the entirety of the web application. Monitoring these alone lets you know what the health is of each object but when one of the objects is in a critical state it does not always help put two and two together that these objects make up the components of the web application.

When an infrastructure has multiple DPM servers a DA can be used to get an overall health of your DPM as a service vs… the health of each DPM server through state views trying to track down the root issue. We are going to create a new name for our multiple DPM servers. We need to do this because multiple DPM’s brought together in a DA become a service. We are going to call this "DPM Service". DPM as a DA can be useful for quick spot checking of your DPM service health. Using a DA also allows you to connect relationships between the health of objects that make up DPM. For example you can see the health of disks in the DPM storage pool, tape libraries, SQL databases, protected servers and the DPM servers.

In this post I am going to cover setting up DPM as a DA using the Distributed Application Designer (DAD) and show what it looks like after DPM is a DA. There are a few items that need to be covered before you can setup DPM as a DA. These are:

  • You need to have DPM Central Console installed in SCOM.
  • All DPM servers that will be a part of your DA DPM Service will need to have the SCOM agent installed.
  • Create a custom management pack to store your new DA in SCOM.

Setting up a DPM DA using the Distributed Application Designer

In the SCOM console go to: Authoring.

Right click on Distributed Applications and select Create new distributed application.

The Distributed Application Designer (DAD) will open.

Enter in the information about your DPM Service.

The fields you will need are highlighted in the following screenshot.


In the Template box, select the template for the starting point of the distributed application. Chose Blank (Advanced).

Choosing advanced is going to give us a blank template to work from and this is what we want.

Select your custom management pack that you made for this DA and click OK.

Now we need to create a couple of component groups. Let’s create the following:

  • Databases
  • Servers

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SCOM: Heartbeat Failure Alert Tuning

I recently deployed SCOM in a highly distributed network. Most of the edge locations had slow WAN links. These edge locations would often go offline. With the combination of the slow WAN links and them going offline SCOM would flood with alerts/emails on Health Service Heartbeat Failure and Computer Not Reachable monitors.

This had to be tuned out because these alerts were overwhelming for the team. Also as soon as these edge locations would go offline the team would be notified through other network location monitoring tools and from the staff at these edge locations.

These edge locations would often go offline for reasons of power outages or ISP’s going down. These edge locations could also be down for long periods from 2-3 days at a time. Fixing the issues were often out of the control of the team. Receiving alerts during these outages from the edge locations was not helpful. The team still needed alerts right away if servers at the corporate locations went offline. There are several ways to tune alerts for these monitors.

One way to tune Health Service Heartbeat Failure and Computer Not Reachable monitors is to adjust the heartbeat interval (default is 60 seconds) and the amount of missed heartbeats SCOM will tolerate. Note this would be a global change in SCOM across all monitored servers. To access these settings do the following:

In the SCOM console go to Administration>>Settings  in the right hand pane under Type: Agent you will see Heartbeat. Right click on Heartbeat and open the properties.  In the same pane under Type: Server you will see another Heartbeat. Right click on Heartbeat and open the properties. You can see this in the following screenshot:


Another way to tune the alerts on these monitors would be to go adjust the heartbeat interval on an individual server level. This would only be useful if you have a small amount of servers generating these alerts and know what servers they are. To access these settings in the SCOM console go to Administration>>Settings>>Agent Managed. Find your server/s. Right click on the server and select properties. Under the Heartbeat tab select the checkbox next to Override global agent settings and then adjust the Heartbeat interval.


For more information about both of those visit:

Heartbeat and Heartbeat Failure Settings in Operations Manager 2007


Neither of those helped in my situation because we needed these alerts right away from one group of servers but not from another. Here is what I did to tune these monitors so that the team would not become overwhelmed by the alerts.

In this particular environment there were some things I need to point out before I go into the solution.

  • The team did not want to monitor heartbeat or ping basically connectivity to the edge servers at all. They were more interested in gathering performance data, status of the applications on those servers and more.
  • The servers that live in the edge had different sequence in the computer name vs. the servers that lived in the corporate locations. The naming schema was structured like this:
    • Corporate location # 1 server names: PROD100-xxV or PROD100-xxP.
    • Corporate location # 2 server names: PROD200-xxV or PROD200-xxP.
    • Edge server names: PROD404-xxV or PROD404-xxP (404 would actually match the number of that edge location. This would vary from edge to edge.).

The name schema was a big helping in breaking things out. So I basically created an edge server group in SCOM dynamically excluding all corporate locations. Here is what it looked like to build this:


Building the logic:


What it looks like in the group:


By doing that the members would consist of all servers from all edge locations without including any servers from corporate locations.  This member list was built dynamically so that the team did not ever have to worry about adding edge servers to the membership.

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Monitor Tomcat Running as a Windows Service with SCOM

In this post I want to detail my experience monitoring Tomcat with SCOM 2012.  In my case the application servers were Windows Server 2008 R2 running Tomcat 7 as a windows service. When Tomcat is running as a windows service SCOM does not automatically detect the Tomcat instance. So this blog post will focus around monitoring Tomcat Running as windows service and the steps you have to take to get this working.


There are two other things you need to take care of that I do not cover in this post. These are:


#1 The application servers that are hosting your Tomcat need to have the Agent Proxy enabled.

See this link on how to do this:


or this link to enable proxy for all agents:



#2 You will need to deploy BeanSpy to your Tomcat server first.

See step 5 of this post on how to do this:



BeanSpy is a WAR file. WAR files are used  to deploy web applications to Tomcat.

BeanSpy is essentially a web application deployed to Tomcat that SCOM uses to gather data. 


After you deploy BeanSpy  verify that it is working. Access this URL:




If an XML page such as the one in the following screenshot appears then we have verified BeanSpy is working.




You can also view BeanSpy by accessing the web manager using this URL:







Here are the steps to configure SCOM to monitor Tomcat running as a windows service:


Download OpsMgr_MP_Tomcat.docx and SC2012OM_JEE_MP.msi. from:



Run SC2012OM_JEE_MP.msi. This will extract all JEE management packs.


Now that the management packs are extracted. Import these JEE Monitoring packs into SCOM 2012 for Tomcat:


         Libraries monitoring packs:




         Tomcat monitoring packs:






(NOTE: Only import MP’s for your version/s of Tomcat.)


As stated in the beginning of this post Tomcat running as a windows service will not automatically be discovered.

The following two screenshots demonstrate what you will see.






There are two options to discover the Tomcat servers when they are running as a windows service.


#1 Run your Tomcat instances as a process instead of a Windows service.

#2 Use some PowerShell scripts to discover the Tomcat instances.


In this post we are going to go with


Next you will need to use some PowerShell scripts to add the Tomcat servers. You will need these PowerShell scripts:






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Manually remove dependency from Microsoft.SystemCenter.SecureReferenceOverride

I recently needed to uninstall the Exchange 2007 Management Pack from SCOM 2012. I could remove all the Exchange MP’s except Microsoft.Exchange.Server.2007.Library. This was getting stuck because the Microsoft.SystemCenter.SecureReferenceOverride was dependent on it. This was the message I would get when I tried to remove it. Here are the “Dependencies” properties from Microsoft.SystemCenter.SecureReferenceOverride. I did … Read more

New System Center book & SC troubleshooting tool

This is an exciting week for System Center. First there is a new tool released by Microsoft called System Center 2012 SP1 Configuration Analyzer (SCCA). The System Center 2012 SP1 Configuration Analyzer works these System Center products in the stack:   Operations Manager Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) Service Manager Orchestrator (plus Service Provider Foundation) Configuration … Read more

MCSE: Private Cloud Certification

I am happy to announce that today I passed the final exam to obtain the MCSE: Private Cloud certification.   I was able to upgrade from the MCITP: Server Administrator requiring me to only pass two exams. Out of the 70-246 Private Cloud Monitoring and Operations with System Center 2012 and 70-247 Private Cloud Configuration … Read more

SCOM failed to open service control manager

Problem: When pushing a SCOM agent installs or updates you get this error: The Operations Manager Server failed to open service control manager on computer SERVERNAME. Therefore, the Server cannot complete configuration of agent on the computer. Operation: Agent Install Install account: NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM Error Code: 80070005 Error Description: (null) Notice in the screenshot the … Read more

Network device emulation in the cloud

There has been discussion lately around running SCOM 2012 and other SC products in the cloud for DEMO and POC purposes. One problem with running SCOM in a cloud solution is not having access to network device/s. There is a solution to this. You can run a network device emulator. This is available as software … Read more