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Monitors and Rules in Operations Manager – Learn it!!!

January 30, 2014

I feel I need to bring this subject under the attention again. Why?

Many, many, MANY, many customers do not quite (or not even at all 😦 ) understand how important it is to know the difference between rules and monitors in Operations Manager. This needs to be basic knowledge when you start working with this fantastic monitoring solution.

The key difference is: Monitors affect the health state of a managed object, rules don’t.

Closing an alert generated by a monitor can create as what i like call a “blind Spot”. A monitor only fires an alert when the state changes to a warning and/or critical state. When the monitor is in that unhealthy state it might turn healthy again in the next interval. If it doesn’t and you closed the alert, you never see an alert again!! (unless a miracle happens).

For each alert you should identify if it is coming from a rule or monitor. Select the alert and check the Alert Details:


Clearly a monitor…

When you analyzed an alert created by a rule you can simply close it. When it’s created by a monitor you have the following options:

Option 1: Solve the problem, set the alert resolution state to Resolved and let Operations Manager close the alert

The Resolved resolution state is one of the default resolution states since Operations Manager 2012 SP1.
Most monitors are configured to auto-resolve an alert. The interval a monitor checks the object state can differ so some alerts stay active longer.
If you don’t want the alert hang around in the resolved state to long you can use option 2.

Option 2: Reset the monitor

When you reset a monitor you tell Operations Manager to set the specific monitor to a healthy state. This is done in the health explorer:


You can, and only need to reset Unit monitors. (just once!!)
If the monitor is configured to do so the alert is set to the closed state. When on the next interval the monitor turns unhealthy again a new alert will be generated.

Dude, i see a Recalculate Health option too. Can i use that?
No, forget about this option:

“RECALCULATE doesn’t work on 99% of monitors. This option on works for monitors that implement on-demand detection. A monitor in which on-demand detection has been implemented can recalculate its Health at any moment and is not dependent of the interval set for these calculations to run. It requires that the UNIT monitor author wrote an on-demand probe capability within the monitor.  As with RESET, the option is not greyed out where it’s not applicable.”

As taken from

A few tips for Operations Manager admins:

  • Create a view for alerts in the resolution state Resolved. This way you can keep an eye on the ones that do not close;
  • Look for objects in an unhealthy state regularly. Several PowerShell scripts can be found on the web;

Operations Manager will make your life easier if you know how to use it!!

From → System Center

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