Lindsay Hill automation, networking, product management

IMC - Clearing up Misconceptions about Templates

I’d just like to clear up a little confusion that people have about HP IMC templates, and how they are used. Templates can be used to define credentials for different access methods - SNMP, Telnet, SSH, WMI, PowerShell, SOAP. You can define multiple templates for each access method, and they can have a range of options - e.g. Username/Password, Username/Password + enable password, Private Key + enable password, SNMPv3-Priv-Aes128-Auth-Sha, etc.

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IMC - Network Discovery Methods

Auto-discovery can help you populate your NMS, and keep it up to date. HP IMC supports several methods of adding devices - either by manually adding them, or getting IMC to automatically discover them. Here’s an overview of the options available to us:

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IMC NTA Licensing - Watch the Fine Print

HP IMC has an optional add-on module for NetFlow/sFlow Analysis called “Network Traffic Analyzer (NTA).” This comes in 10-, 20- or 50-node license packs. Based on the license names, you might think that it’s as simple as counting up the number of NetFlow-generating devices in your network, and purchasing sufficient licenses. Not quite so fast.

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WMI Corruption on Citrix XenApp Servers

The Windows WMI repository can become corrupted on Windows 2008 R2 servers being used with XenApp. WMI corruption can cause problems for monitoring systems, and potentially some applications. Here's how to fix the issue. (Read more...)

Has HP Abandoned Operations Manager?

HP Operations Manager has been around a long time in the Enterprise server management space. I first started working with it around 2001, and I’ve always had a soft spot for it, but I’m ready to declare it abandoned. HP has failed to develop the product, and they now seem to be actively working on a viable alternative.

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NNMi - replacing LDAP SSL Certificate

NNMi can use LDAP for authenticating users, with or without SSL. Recently a customer changed the SSL certificate used on their LDAP server, which broke NNMi authentication. NNMi trusts one specific certificate for verifying SSL connectivity to the LDAP server, so changing the certificate broke the chain of trust. To save me time when this comes around again, I’ve documented the steps for fixing this:

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IMC or NNMi - Which One is For Me?

This is a companion post to my review of the technical differences between NNMi and IMC. That one tried to stay focused on technical matters, but this post is more opinion-based. It is intended to help potential customers decide which one is right for them. I am not going to directly compare them to the many other NMS products on the market - let’s keep this to a straight HP vs HP discussion.

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HP IMC vs HP NNMi - Technical Differences

It can be hard to understand the differences between HP's NNMi and IMC. Both offer a great range of network management capabilities. Here I outline the technical similarities and differences between the products. (Read more...)

Certifications - Should I Renew Them?

Getting a certification isn't like a degree - it expires. Each renewal cycle, you need to decide if it's worth putting in the effort to renew it. My advice: Think carefully, and don't just casually let them lapse. (Read more...)

HP SIM 7.2 Upgrade - SNMP polling fails

Recently I upgraded an HP SIM system from 7.1 to 7.2 on Windows 2008 R2. After the upgrade, SNMP discovery and data collection failed for all systems - servers, switches, blade enclosures, etc. WMI monitoring/discovery of Windows-based systems was working, and SNMP traps were being received, but SNMP polling was failing. Here's how I diagnosed and fixed it. (Read more...)