System Center 2016 Operations Manager – MP Updates and Recommendations (Management Pack Assessment)

System Center Operations Manager users may face the following common challenges during the lifecycle of a Management Pack (MP):

  1. Continually reviewing the ever-changing IT environments (dynamic) for new workloads or updates to old workloads to add or update the requisite MP
  2. Understanding which MPs were not installed or imported while setting up monitoring of a workload so that the missing MPs can be installed or imported to monitor the workload completely (a situation wherein not all MPs required to monitor a workload completely were installed, resulting in partial monitoring of the workload)
  3. Tracking availability of updates from the Online Catalog (OC) to an already installed MP, corresponding to a Workload
  4. Searching the desired MP on Online Catalog Manually (a time-consuming process)

The new management pack Updates and Recommendations feature in System Center 2016 Operations Manager of provides an indispensable solution to these challenges by introducing significant automation in these often cumbersome activities. At the same time, it provides a single location to perform these interrelated activities for ease of use.

The workloads listed here are supported by this feature. Also, for this feature to work, agents should be installed on the servers (on which workloads are running), and the machine hosting the console must be connected to the internet. This feature along with the Data Driven Alert Management feature provides a holistic solution to the challenges faced during Lifecycle Management of a management pack.

Feature Description

This feature enables allocation of a status relevant to the state a workload is in, from the perspective of MP Lifecycle Management. Based on the same following scenarios are enabled from a single end point/ screen:

  1. Discovering: Recognizes supported workloads (whether new or old) that aren’t being monitored but are a part of the respective management group
  2. Resolving partial installations: Recognizes which MP files are missing to enable complete monitoring of a Workload
  3. Updating: Recognizes and indicates availability of updates to various MPs that have been installed
  4. Finding: The above mentioned scenarios are empowered by the ability of the feature to leverage Microsoft Management Pack Catalog Web Service and pin-point the updates and missing MPs, so that users can resolve inconsistencies within a few clicks

Updates& reco

Users can delve deeper on the action items by using the more information option which will help them understand why a recommendation was displayed and why a particular workload has a specific status, view the corresponding DLC page and guide by using the respective option, and install/ import or update MPs with respect to a selected workload or all listed the workloads listed on the main screen by using Get MP or Get All MPs options respectively.

Also, for users that rely on non-English management packs, the enhanced Get MP option includes language selection settings, if available.

Note: The discovery logic runs every 24 hours by default, and can be modified to run at a higher frequency using appropriate Cmdlets in Operations Manager Shell. One can also use the script that can be found here.

The detailed steps to use this feature can be found under Updates and Recommendations section of the corresponding Technet documentation.

You can find the System Center 2016 GA here.

We request you to try out MP Updates and Recommendation feature in Operations Console. You can submit your feedback at our SCOM Feedback site.