Tag Archives: Azure

Speaking at NIC 2017

I’m very happy that I have been selected as a speaker again for next years NIC 2017!

I will have at least one session to present, and hoping for a second session but the organizers have a lot of interesting session proposals to choose from so we’ll see.

My session will be about Enterprise Applications and Publishing in the new Azure AD Management Experience:

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In this session we will look into the new management experience of Azure AD Applications in the new Azure Portal. The session will cover publishing and management of Application Proxy applications, Web App/API Applications and Enterprise Applications including SaaS Applications, and how and in which scenarios we can use the new Azure Portal, PowerShell or the Classic Portal for administration. Another important topic that will be covered is how you can configure Conditional Access for those applications for Users and Devices with the Enterprise Mobility & Security offering.

NIC 2017 is 2nd and 3rd of February, with a Pre-Conf day at the 1th. Read more at www.nicconf.com.

Hope to see you there!

Experts and Community unite at last ever #SCU_Europe 2016! #ExpertsLive next

This years SCU Europe 2016, for the first time outside Switzerland in the 4th year running, was held in Berlin at the BCC (Berlin Congress Center) close to the Alexander Platz in the eastern parts of “Berlin Mitte”.

 

 

The intro video introducing the Experts:

Let’s begin with the end: at the closing note SCUE general Marcel Zehner announced and with a little bit of emotion that this was the last ever SCU Europe to be held.. You and your organization should be proud of what you have achieved, Marcel, it is one of the best community conferences around, and I have been fortunate to be able to visit all 4 starting with Bern in 2013, Basel in 2014 and 2015, and now Berlin in 2016. It’s only cities with B’s is it? In fact, you never know what twists and turns your career takes, but looking back I’m not sure I would be where I am now in turn of being presenter, MVP and community influencer myself if I had not travelled alone to Bern 4 years ago, that’s where I really started working with and for the Community (with a capitol C)!

Luckily SCU Europe will continue as Experts Live Europe next year! Same place at BCC, same organization and format, and the same dates only next year it will be: 23rd – 25th of August 2017. A new web page was launched, www.expertslive.eu, and Twitter (@ExpertsLiveEU) and Facebook have been changed to reflect that. The hash tag #SCU_Europe will eventually be inactive and you should now use #ExpertsLive.

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I think this is a very good decision, there has already been discussion on that the name “System Center Universe” is not really reflecting the content and focus of the conference, now embracing the Cloud, with content areas for Management, Productivity, Security, DevOps, Automation, Data Platform and more. ExpertsLive, originally a 1-day community conference in Netherland running each year back from 2009 and with up to 1200 participants, will now be a network of conferences, ranging from region based (ExpertsLive Europe, but also SCU APAC and SCU Australia will be ExpertsLive APAC and Australia next year), and local, country based ExpertsLive like the one in Netherlands, but more will come.

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The closing note video announcing Experts Live Europe:

This year at SCU Europe I was one of the Experts and presented two sessions on “Premium Identity Management and Protection with Azure AD” and “Deep Dive: Publishing Applications with Azure AD”. I also took part in a “Ask-the-Experts” area together with Cameron Fuller and Kevin Greene where we took questions on the topic System Center 2016. I participated on a discussion panel on Friday morning with Markus Wilhelm from Microsoft Germany on the subject Defense Strategies and Security, and of course we had the Meet and greet with the Experts at the Networking party. It was a really great experience speaking at this conference, thanks for having me!

 

 

 

 

The content of the conference this year was great, and for the first time there was 5 tracks, with over 70 sessions presented! All presentations and session recordings will be at Channel 9 in a few weeks time, so make sure you look at anything you missed or want to see again if you where there, or if you weren’t at the conference this year you can look at your sessions of interest.

I was travelling with a group this year, both from my company and some of our customers, in total we were 7 in the group, and also had 3 cancellations the last week before the conference from some customers that could not make it after all. Moving the conference to Berlin is a big part of why it now was easier to attract more Nordic attendance I think. We stayed at the Park Inn by Radisson right by the Alexander Platz and BCC, so it was really central and nice.

 

 

 

 

In good tradition there are a lot of parties and social networking going on. On the first night there are the Sponsors and Speakers Party, which was held in Mio right by the TV Tower by Alexander Platz, on Thursday we had the attendee Networking Party at the conference center. Later that night our group and some more partners/customers of Squared Up went on to another party at Cosmic Kaspar. It was really hot, so basically the party was at the pavement! On the last day we had the Closing Drinks, sponsored by Cireson and itnetX at Club Carambar, also close to the Alexander Platz. In addition, there are a lot of unofficial gatherings going on, lots of laughs and new and old friends have a good time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

See you next year at Experts Live Europe in Berlin 23-25th August, 2017!

Speaking at System Center Universe Europe 2016 – Berlin

I’m really excited that I will have two sessions at this years SCU Europe in Berlin, August 24th – 26th. System Center Universe Europe is a really great community conference that focuses on Cloud, Datacenter and Modern Workplace Management, covering technologies like Microsoft System Center, Microsoft Azure, Office 365 and Microsoft Hyper-V. Read more about SCU Europe here: http://www.systemcenteruniverse.ch/about-scu-europe.html

I have been visiting all SCU Europe Conferences since the inaugural start in Bern 2013. I met some amazing MVPs, sponsors and community leaders already then, in fact it inspired me even more to share more of my own workings and knowledge by blogging, using social media and eventually speaking at technical  and community conferences myself.  The following two years SCU Europe were held in Basel, both the great conference venue at Swissotel and lest not forget Bar Rouge had its fair share of memorable moments 🙂

This years SCU Europe will be held in Berlin from the 24th to the 26th of August. Moving the conference to Berlin is a smart move I think, it will make the conference even more accessible to most European and overseas travelers, and attract the attendance it deserve.

A few months ago I received some great news, I had two sessions accepted for SCU Europe, and received my first Microsoft MVP Award for Enterprise Mobility. I’m really happy to not only go and learn and enjoy the conference sessions and community, but also to contribute myself along with over 40 top, top speakers from all over the world!

My first session will cover “Premium Management and Protection of Identity and Access with Azure AD”:

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In the session I will focus on Azure AD Identity Protection, Azure AD Privileged Identity Management for controlling role and admin access, how to monitor it all will Azure AD Connect Health, and how Azure Multi-Factor Authentication works with these solutions. The session will cover the recent announcements regarding Enterprise Mobility + Security.

The second session will be a deep dive on “Publish Applications with Azure AD”:

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In this demo-packed session I will go deep into what you need to get started on publishing the different types of applications, and how to configure and troubleshoot user access to these applications. The session will cover Azure AD Single Sign-On and Password Single Sign-On, integrating Azure AD SSO with your internally developed applications, and publishing applications with Azure AD App Proxy that either use pre-authentication or pass through.

Hope to see you at the conference, and if you haven’t registered yet there is still time: http://www.systemcenteruniverse.ch/registration.html

Trigger Azure AD Connect Sync Scheduler with Azure Automation

In this blog post I will show how you can trigger the Azure AD Connect Sync Scheduler with an Azure Automation Runbook PowerShell Script. Since the Azure AD Connect build 1.1.105.0 was released February 2016, a new scheduler is built-in that per default sync every 30 minutes (previously 3 hours). For more detail on Azure AD Connect Sync Scheduler, see https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/articles/active-directory-aadconnectsync-feature-scheduler/.

Normally a sync schedule of 30 minutes is sufficient for most use, but sometimes you will need to do an immediate sync. So I thought it was a good idea to create a PowerShell script that creates a remote session to the Azure AD Connect Server, and then triggers a delta sync.

Now, this PowerShell script can of course be used with any of your favorite automation solutions, for example Orchestrator or SMA on-premises. But why not just use Azure Automation and a Hybrid Worker to run this script. This way you can trigger the script in a number of ways including in the Azure Portal, via Webhooks, remediating alerts in OMS and more.

Requirements

Lets first take a look at the requirements for this solution:

  • You will have to have an Azure Subscription, so that an Azure Automation Account can be created (or use your existing account), and that a runbook script with the related assets can be created.
  • You will need to have an OMS Workspace for the Azure Subscription, and have a Hybrid Worker set up that can communicate with the Azure AD Connect Server. The Hybrid Worker will use a credential asset and variable asset created in the first part.

In the following two parts I will look at these two requirements and how you can set it up to start triggering Azure AD Connect Scheduler with your Azure Automation Runbook.

Part 1 – Set up the Azure Automation Runbook and Assets

To set up the Azure Automation part of the solution, I have created a GitHub Repository  where you can deploy the solution directly from https://github.com/skillriver/Trigger-AzureADSyncScheduler. This repository contains the Azure Resource Manager deployment template and PowerShell script that you need to get started.

You can also click this deploy button directly:

 

Lets step through what you experience when you click to “Deploy to Azure”. Please make sure that you are logged in to your correct Azure Subscription first.

Deploying with the Template

I will not go through how I created the ARM based JSON templates, but I will quickly show the user experience when doing the deployment.

The custom deployment will ask you for some parameter values:

  • AUTOMATIONACCOUNTNAME. If you specify an existing Automation Account, this will be used, or else a new one will be created with the Free pricing tier.
  • AAHYBRIDWORKERCREDENTIALNAME. There is a default value there, this will be used as a Credential Asset in the PowerShell script. You can change the value, but then you must remember to change it in the script as well.
  • AAHYBRIDWORKERDOMAIN. The NETBIOS Domain Name for where the Azure AD Connect Server belongs to.
  • AAHYBRIDWORKERUSERNAME. This is this the user name for the service account or other user account that has permission to connect to the Azure AD Connect Server and trigger the sync schedule.
  • AAHYBRIDWORKERPASSWORD. The password for the user above.
  • AADSSERVERNAME. The server name of the Azure AD Connect Server.

You will have to select the correct subscription, and either create a new Resource Group, or an existing one (please note that Azure Automation is not available in every region).

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After saving the parameters, and reviewing and accepting legal terms, you are ready to create the custom deployment.

If everything went OK, you should see a confirmation:

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You will have an Automation Account:

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You will have a PowerShell Script Runbook with the name Trigger-AzureADSync:

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The script can be viewed as shown below. This script is short and simple, it will get the Asset Variable for Azure AD Connect Server name, and get the Credential Asset for the Hybrid Worker Account. It will the create a remote session, and run the delta sync cycle:

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Lets take a look at the Assets created with the deployment as well, the Variable:

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The Credential:

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That’s the whole solution for this first part. If you for any reason could not or would not deploy the template directly, and would prefer to create this manually, you should be fine just following the images above. Just follow these steps:

  1. Create a Azure Automation Account (Free tier, and in your chosen supported Azure Region).
  2. Create a Variable Asset, with the name of the Azure AD Connect Server.
  3. Create a Credential Asset, with the DOMAIN\UserName of the account you will use to remote session to the Azure AD Connect Server.
  4. Create a new PowerShell Script Runbook, typing the CmdLets from above and using your variable assets.

By now you should be ready for the next step, because you cannot run this Automation Runbook just yet. You have to have in place OMS and a Hybrid Worker first, and that will be shown in the next part.

Part 2 –  Set up the Hybrid Worker and Remote session permission

To be able to run Azure Automation Runbooks in your own datacenter, you will need to have an OMS workspace and at least one Hybrid Worker configured that will be able to execute the Runbook locally and connect to the Azure AD Connect Server.

Hybrid Runbook Worker Components

I will not go through the details here on how to set up an OMS workspace and a Hybrid Worker if you don’t have this from before, you can just follow the documentation here https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/articles/automation-hybrid-runbook-worker/.

After setting up and registering your Hybrid Worker, you will have a Hybrid Worker Group with at least one Hybrid Worker.

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Now, running the Runbook with the right security is going to be essential here, after all the Runbook is going to connect to the Azure AD Connect Server and initiate the sync cycle. Lets first check the settings of the Hybrid Worker Group. We can either select a Default Run As account as I have here:

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Or you can select a Custom Run As, specifying a credential Asset to use for all Runbooks running on this Hybrid Worker Group:

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In my example here, I will use the Default Run As Account, because I specify my own credentials in the PowerShell Runbook, as shown earlier in Part 1 of this blog post:

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Next, I will have to create a domain account in my local Active Directory. I have created a service account to be used for Azure Automation Hybrid Workers. This is the same account you specified when creating the credential asset in Part 1 in Azure Automation:

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This account will need permission to remote PowerShell to the Azure AD Connect Server. In Computer Management and Local Users and Groups on the Azure AD Connect Server, add this service account to the Remote Management Users group:

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And add the account to the ADSyncOperators group, so that the user has permission to Azure AD Connect operations:

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That should be it, we are now ready to start the Runbook and verify that it works.

Starting the Runbook

From the Automation Account and the Trigger-AzureADSync Runbook, select Start and under Run Settings select Hybrid Worker and your Hybrid Worker Group:

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You can verify that the job completed and with no errors:

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Looking into the Synchronization Service on the Azure AD Connect Server, I can verify that the sync cycle has been running:

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That concludes this blog article, hope it has been helpful!

Displaying Azure Automation Runbook Stats in OMS via Performance Collection and Operations Manager

Wouldn’t it be great to get some more information about your Azure Automation Runbooks in the Operations Management Suite Portal? That’s a rhetorical question, of course the answer will be yes!

While Azure Automation is a part of the suite of components in OMS, today you only get the following information from the Azure Automation blade:

The blade shows the number of runbooks and jobs from the one Automation Account you have configured. You can only configure one Automation Account at a time, and for getting more details you are directed to the Azure Portal.

I wanted to use my OMS-connected Operations Manager Management Group, and use a PowerShell script rule to get some more statistics for Azure Automation and display that in OMS Log Analytics as Performance Data. I will do this using the “Sample Management Pack – Wizard to Create PowerShell script Collection Rules” described in this blog article http://blogs.msdn.com/b/wei_out_there_with_system_center/archive/2015/09/29/oms-collecting-nrt-performance-data-from-an-opsmgr-powershell-script-collection-rule-created-from-a-wizard.aspx.

I will use the AzureRM PowerShell Module for the PowerShell commands that will connect to my Azure subscription and get the Azure Automation Runbooks data.

Getting Ready

Before I can create the PowerShell script rule for gettting the Azure Automation data, I have to do some preparations first. This includes:

  1. Importing the “Sample Management Pack – Wizard to Create PowerShell script Collection Rules” to my Operations Manager environment.
    1. This can be downloaded from Technet Gallery at https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/Sample-Management-Pack-e48040f7.
  2. Install the AzureRM PowerShell Module (at the chosen Target server for the PowerShell Script Rule).
    1. I chose to install it from the PowerShell Gallery using the instructions here: https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/documentation/articles/powershell-install-configure/
    2. If you are running Windows Server 2012 R2, which I am, follow the instructions here to support the PowerShellGet module, https://www.powershellgallery.com/GettingStarted?section=Get%20Started.
  3. Choose Target for where to run the AzureRM commands from
    1. Regarding the AzureRM and where to install, I decided to use the SCOM Root Management Server Emulator. This server will then run the AzureRM commands against my Azure Subscription.
  4. Choose account for Run As Profile
    1. I also needed to think about the run as account the AzureRM commands will run under. As we will see later the PowerShell Script Rules will be set up with a Default Run As Profile.
    2. The Default Run As Profile for the RMS Emulator will be the Management Server Action Account, if I had chosen another Rule Target the Default Run As Profile would be the Local System Account.
    3. Alternatively, I could have created a custom Run As Profile with a user account that have permissions to execute the AzureRM cmdlets and connect to and read the required data from the Azure subscription, and configure the PowerShell Script rules to use that.
    4. I decided to go with the Management Server Action Account, in my case SKILL\scom_msaa. This account will execute the AzureRM PowerShell cmdlets, so I need to make sure that I can login to my Azure subscription using that account.
  5. Next, I started PowerShell ISE with “Run as different user”, specifying my scom_msaa account. I run the commands below, as I wanted to save the password for the user I’m going to connect to the Azure subscription and get the Automation data. I also did a test import-module of the AzureRM modules I will need in the main script.

The commands above are here in full:


# Prepare to save encrypted password

# Verify that logged on as scom_msaa
whoami

# Get the password
$securepassword = Read-Host -AsSecureString -Prompt Enter Azure AD account password:

# Filepath for encrypted password file
$filepath = C:\users\scom_msaa\AppData\encryptedazureadpassword.txt

# Save password encrypted to file
ConvertFrom-SecureString -SecureString $securepassword | Out-File -FilePath $filepath

Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\AzureRM
Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\AzureRM.Profile
Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\AzureRM.Automation

At this point I’m ready for the next step, which is to create some PowerShell commands for the Script Rule in SCOM.

Creating the PowerShell Command Script for getting Azure Automation data

First I needed to think about what kind of Azure Automation and Runbook data I wanted to get from my Azure Subscription. I decided to get the following values:

  • Job Count Last Day
  • Job Count Last Month
  • Job Count This Month
  • Job Minutes This Month
  • Runbooks in New State
  • Runbooks in Published State
  • Runbooks in Edit State
  • PowerShell Workflow Runbooks
  • Graphical Runbooks
  • PowerShell Script Runbooks

I wanted to have the statistics for Runbooks Jobs to see the activity of the Runbooks. As I’m running the Free plan of Azure Automation, I’m restricted to 500 minutes a month, so it makes sense to count the accumulated job minutes for the month as well.

In addition to this I want some statistics for the number of Runbooks in the environment, separated on New, Published and Edit Runbooks, and the Runbook type separated on Workflow, Graphical and PowerShell Script.

The PowerShell Script Rule for getting these data will be using the AzureRM PowerShell Module, and specifically the cmdlets in AzureRM.Profile and AzureRM.Automation:

To log in and authenticate to Azure, I will use the encrypted password saved earlier, and create a Credential object for the login:

Initializing the script with date filters and setting default values for variables. I decided to create the script so that I can get data from all the Resource Groups I have Automation Accounts in. This way, If I have multiple Automation Accounts, I can get statistics combined for each of them:

Then, looping through each Resource Group, running the different commands to get the variable data. Since I potentially will loop through multiple Resource Groups and Automation Accounts, the variables will be using += to add to the previous loop value:

After setting each variable and exiting the loop, the $PropertyBag can be filled with the values for the different counters:

The complete script is shown below for how to get those Azure Automation data via SCOM and PowerShell Script Rule to to OMS:


# Debug file
$debuglog = $env:TEMP+\powershell_perf_collect_AA_stats_debug.log

Date | Out-File $debuglog

Who Am I: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
whoami |
Out-File $debuglog -Append

$ErrorActionPreference = Stop

Try {

If (!(Get-Module –Name AzureRM)) { Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\AzureRM }
If (!(Get-Module –Name AzureRM.Profile)) { Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\AzureRM.Profile }
If (!(Get-Module –Name AzureRM.Automation)) { Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\AzureRM.Automation }

# Get Cred for ARM
$filepath = C:\users\scom_msaa\AppData\encryptedazureadpassword.txt
$userName = myAzureADAdminAccount
$securePassword = ConvertTo-SecureString (Get-Content -Path $FilePath)
$cred = New-Object -TypeName System.Management.Automation.PSCredential ($username, $securePassword)

# Log in and sett active subscription
Login-AzureRmAccount -Credential $cred

$subscriptionid = mysubscriptionID

Set-AzureRmContext -SubscriptionId $subscriptionid

$API = new-object -comObject MOM.ScriptAPI

$aftertime = $(Get-Date).AddHours(1)
$afterdate_lastday = $(Get-Date).AddDays(1)
$afterdate_lastmonth = $(Get-Date).AddDays(30)
$afterdate_thismonth = $(Get-Date).AddDays(($(Get-Date).Day)+1)

$AutomationRGs = @(MyResourceGroupName1,MyResourceGroupName2)

$PropertyBags=@()

$newrunbooks = 0
$publishedrunbooks = 0
$editrunbooks = 0
$scriptrunbooks = 0
$graphrunbooks = 0
$powershellrunbooks = 0
$jobcountlastday = 0
$jobcountlastmonth = 0
$jobcountthismonth = 0
$jobminutesthismonth = 0

ForEach ($AutomationRG in $AutomationRGs) {

$rmautomationacct = Get-AzureRmAutomationAccount -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG

$newrunbooks += (Get-AzureRmAutomationRunbook -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
|
Where {$_.State -eq New}).Count

$publishedrunbooks += (Get-AzureRmAutomationRunbook -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
|
Where {$_.State -eq Published}).Count

$editrunbooks += (Get-AzureRmAutomationRunbook -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
|
Where {$_.State -eq Edit}).Count

$scriptrunbooks += (Get-AzureRmAutomationRunbook -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
|
Where {$_.RunbookType -eq Script}).Count

$graphrunbooks += (Get-AzureRmAutomationRunbook -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
|
Where {$_.RunbookType -eq Graph}).Count

$powershellrunbooks += (Get-AzureRmAutomationRunbook -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
|
Where {$_.RunbookType -eq PowerShell}).Count

$jobcountlastday += (Get-AzureRmAutomationJob -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
-StartTime
$afterdate_lastday).Count

$jobcountlastmonth += (Get-AzureRmAutomationJob -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
-StartTime
$afterdate_lastmonth).Count

$jobcountthismonth += (Get-AzureRmAutomationJob -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
-StartTime
$afterdate_thismonth.ToLongDateString()).Count

$jobsthismonth = Get-AzureRmAutomationJob -AutomationAccountName $rmautomationacct.AutomationAccountName -ResourceGroupName $AutomationRG `
-StartTime
$afterdate_thismonth.ToLongDateString() | Select-Object RunbookName, StartTime, EndTime, CreationTime, LastModifiedTime, @{Name=RunningTime;Expression={[TimeSpan]::Parse($_.EndTime $_.StartTime).TotalMinutes}}, @{Name=Month;Expression={($_.EndTime).Month}}

$jobminutesthismonth += [int][Math]::Ceiling(($jobsthismonth | Measure-Object -Property RunningTime -Sum).Sum)

}

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Job Count Last Day)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$jobcountlastday)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Job Count Last Day: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$jobcountlastday | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Job Count Last Month)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$jobcountlastmonth)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Job Count Last Month: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$jobcountlastmonth | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Job Count This Month)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$jobcountthismonth)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Job Count This Month: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$jobcountthismonth | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Job Minutes This Month)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$jobminutesthismonth)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Job Minutes This Month: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$jobminutesthismonth | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Runbooks in New State)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$newrunbooks)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Runbooks in New State: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$newrunbooks | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Runbooks in Published State)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$publishedrunbooks)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Runbooks in Published State: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$publishedrunbooks | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Runbooks in Edit State)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$editrunbooks)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Runbooks in Edit State: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$editrunbooks | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, PowerShell Workflow Runbooks)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$scriptrunbooks)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

PowerShell Workflow Runbooks: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$scriptrunbooks | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Graphical Runbooks)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$graphrunbooks)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Graphical Runbooks: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$graphrunbooks | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, PowerShell Script Runbooks)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$powershellrunbooks)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

PowerShell Script Runbooks: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$powershellrunbooks | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBags

} Catch {

Error Catched: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$(
$_.Exception.GetType().FullName) | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$(
$_.Exception.Message) | Out-File $debuglog -Append

}

PS! I have included debugging and logging in the script, be aware though that doing $ErrorActionPreference=Stop will end the script if any errors, for example with logging, so it might be an idea to remove the debug logging when confirmed that everything works.

In the next part I’m ready to create the PowerShell Script Rule.

Creating the PowerShell Script Rule

In the Operations Console, under Authoring, create a new PowerShell Script Rule as shown below:

  1. Select the PowerShell Script (Performance – OMS Bound) Rule:I have created a custom destination management pack for this script.
  2. Specifying a Rule name and Rule Category: Performance Collection. As mentioned earlier in this article the Rule target will be the Root Management Server Emulator:
  3. Selecting to run the script every 30 minutes, and at which time the interval will start from:
  4. Selecting a name for the script file and timeout, and entering the complete script as shown earlier:
  5. For the Performance Mapping information, the Object name must be in the \\FQDN\YourObjectName format. For FQDN I used the Target variable for PrincipalName, and for the Object Name AzureAutomationRunbookStats, and adding the “\\” at the start and “\” between: \\$Target/Host/Property[Type=”MicrosoftWindowsLibrary7585010!Microsoft.Windows.Computer”]/PrincipalName$\AzureAutomationRunbookStatsI specified the Counter name as “Azure Automation Runbook Stats”, and the Instance and Value are specified as $Data/Property(@Name=’Instance’)$ and $Data/Property(@Name=Value)$. These reflect the PropertyBag instance and value created in the PowerShell script:
  6. After finishing the Create Rule Wizard, two new rules are created, which you can find by scoping to the Root Management Server Emulator I chose as target. Both Rules must be enabled, as they are not enabled by default:

At this point we are finished configuring the SCOM side, and can wait for some hours to see that data are actually coming into my OMS workspace.

Looking at Azure Automation Runbook Stats Performance Data in OMS

After a while I will start seeing Performance Data coming into OMS with the specified Object and Counter Name, and for the different instances and values.

In Log Search, I can specify Type=Perf ObjectName=AzureAutomationRunbookStats, and I will find the Results and Metrics for the specified time frame.

In the example above I’m highlighting the Job Minutes This Month counter, which will steadily increase for each month, and as we can see the highest value was 107 minutes, after when the month changed to March we were back at 0 minutes. After a while when the number of job minutes increases it will be interesting to follow whether this counter will go close to 500 minutes.

This way, I can now look at Azure Automation Runbook stats as performance data, showing different scenarios like how many jobs and runbook job minutes there are over a time period. I can also look at how what type of runbooks I have and what state they are in.

I can also create saved searches and alerts for my search criteria.

Creating OMS Alerts for Azure Automation Runbook Counters

There is one specific scenario for Alerts I’m interested in, and that is when I’m approaching my monthly limit on 500 job minutes.

“Job Minutes This Month” is a counter that will get the sum of all job minutes for all runbook jobs across all automation accounts. In the classic Azure portal, you will have a usage overview like this:

With OMS I would get this information over a time period like this:

The search query for Job Minutes This Month as I have defined it via the PowerShell Script Rule in OMS is:

Type=Perf ObjectName=AzureAutomationRunbookStats InstanceName=”Job Minutes This Month”

This would give me all results for the defined time period, but to generate an alert I would want to look at the most recent results, for example for the last hour. In addition, I want to filter the results for my alert when the number of job minutes are over the threshold of 450 which means I’m getting close to the limit of 500 free minutes per month. My query for this would be:

Type=Perf ObjectName=AzureAutomationRunbookStats InstanceName=”Job Minutes This Month” AND TimeGenerated>NOW-1HOUR AND CounterValue > 450

Now, in my test environment, this will give med 0 results, because I’m currently at 37 minutes:

Let’s say, for sake of testing an Alert, I add criteria to include 37 minutes as well, like this:

This time I have 2 results. Let’s create an alert for this, press the ALERT button:

For the alert I give it a name and base it on the search query. I want to check every 60 minutes, and generate alert when the number of results is greater than 1 so that I make sure the passing of the threshold is consistent and not just temporary.

For actions I want an email notification, so I type in a Subject and my recipients.

I Save the alert rule, and verify that it was successfully created.

Soon I get my first alert on email:

Now, that it works, I can remove the Alert and create a new one without the OR CounterValue=37, this I leave to you 😉

With that, this blog post is concluded. Thanks for reading, I hope this post on how to get more insights on your Azure Automation Runbook Stats in OMS and getting data via NRT Perfomance Collection has been useful 😉

Collecting Service Manager Incident Stats in OMS via PowerShell Script Performance Collection in Operations Manager

I have been thinking about bringing in some key Service Manager statistics to Microsoft Operations Management Suite. The best way to do that now is to use the NRT Performance Data Collection in OMS and PowerShell Script rule in my Operations Manager Management Group that I have connected to OMS. The key solution to make this happen are the “Sample Management Pack – Wizard to Create PowerShell script Collection Rules” described in this blog article http://blogs.msdn.com/b/wei_out_there_with_system_center/archive/2015/09/29/oms-collecting-nrt-performance-data-from-an-opsmgr-powershell-script-collection-rule-created-from-a-wizard.aspx.

With this solution I can practically get any data I want into OMS via SCOM and PowerShell Script, so I will start my solution for bringing in Service Manager Stats by defining some PowerShell commands to get the values I want. For that I will use the SMLets PowerShell Module for Service Manager.

For this blog article, I will focus on Incident Stats from SCSM. In a later article I will get in some more SCSM data to OMS.

Getting Ready

I have to do some preparations first. This includes:

  1. Importing the “Sample Management Pack – Wizard to Create PowerShell script Collection Rules”
    1. This can be downloaded from Technet Gallery at https://gallery.technet.microsoft.com/Sample-Management-Pack-e48040f7
  2. Install the SMLets for SCSM PowerShell Module (at the chosen Target server for the PowerShell Script Rule).
    1. I chose to install it from the PowerShell Gallery at https://www.powershellgallery.com/packages/SMLets
    2. If you are running Windows Server 2012 R2, which I am, follow the instructions here to support the PowerShellGet module, https://www.powershellgallery.com/GettingStarted?section=Get%20Started.
  3. Choose Target for where to run the SCSM commands from
    1. Regarding the SMLets and where to install, I decided to use the SCOM Root Management Server Emulator. This server will then run the SCSM commands against the Service Manager Management Server.
  4. Choose account for Run As Profile
    1. I also needed to think about the run as account the SCSM commands will run under. As we will see later the PowerShell Script Rules will be set up with a Default Run As Profile.
    2. The Default Run As Profile for the RMS Emulator will be the Management Server Action Account, if I had chosen another Rule Target the Default Run As Profile would be the Local System Account.
    3. Alternatively, I could have created a custom Run As Profile with a SCSM user account that have permissions to read the required data from SCSM, and configured the PowerShell Script rules to use that.
    4. I decided to go with the Management Server Action Account, and make sure that this account is mapped to a Role in SCSM with access to the work items I want to query against, any Operator Role will do but you could chose to scope and restrict more if needed:

At this point I’m ready for the next step, which is to create some PowerShell commands for the Script Rule in SCOM.

Creating the PowerShell Command Script for getting SCSM data

First I needed to think about what kind of Incident data I wanted to get from SCSM. I decided to get the following values:

  • Active Incidents
  • Pending Incidents
  • Resolved Incidents
  • Closed Incidents
  • Incidents Opened Last Day
  • Incidents Opened Last Hour

These values will be retrieved by the Get-SCSMIncident cmdlet in SMLets, using different criteria. The complete script is shown below:

# Debug file
$debuglog = $env:TEMP+\powershell_perf_collect_debug.log

Date | Out-File $debuglog

Who Am I: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
whoami |
Out-File $debuglog -Append

$ErrorActionPreference = Stop

Try {

Import-Module C:\Program Files\WindowsPowerShell\Modules\SMLets

$API = new-object -comObject MOM.ScriptAPI

$scsmserver = MY-SCSM-MANAGEMENTSERVER-HERE

$beforetime = $(Get-Date).AddHours(1)
$beforedate = $(Get-Date).AddDays(1)

$PropertyBags=@()

$activeincidents = 0
$activeincidents = @(Get-SCSMIncident -ComputerName $scsmserver -Status Active).Count
$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Active Incidents)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$activeincidents)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Active Incidents: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$activeincidents | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$pendingincidents = 0
$pendingincidents = @(Get-SCSMIncident -ComputerName $scsmserver -Status Pending).Count
$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Pending Incidents)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$pendingincidents)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Pending Incidents: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$pendingincidents | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$resolvedincidents = 0
$resolvedincidents = @(Get-SCSMIncident -ComputerName $scsmserver -Status Resolved).Count
$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Resolved Incidents)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$resolvedincidents)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Resolved Incidents: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$resolvedincidents | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$closedincidents = 0
$closedincidents = @(Get-SCSMIncident -ComputerName $scsmserver -Status Closed).Count
$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Closed Incidents)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$closedincidents)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Closed Incidents: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$closedincidents | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$incidentsopenedlasthour = 0
$incidentsopenedlasthour = @(Get-SCSMIncident -CreatedAfter $beforetime -ComputerName $scsmserver).Count
$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Incidents Opened Last Hour)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$incidentsopenedlasthour)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Incidents Opened Last Hour: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$incidentsopenedlasthour | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$incidentsopenedlastday = 0
$incidentsopenedlastday = @(Get-SCSMIncident -CreatedAfter $beforedate -ComputerName $scsmserver).Count
$PropertyBag = $API.CreatePropertyBag()
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Instance, Incidents Opened Last Day)
$PropertyBag.AddValue(Value, [UInt32]$incidentsopenedlastday)
$PropertyBags += $PropertyBag

Incidents Opened Last Day: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$incidentsopenedlastday | Out-File $debuglog -Append

$PropertyBags

} Catch {

Error Catched: | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$(
$_.Exception.GetType().FullName) | Out-File $debuglog -Append
$(
$_.Exception.Message) | Out-File $debuglog -Append

}

Some comments about the script. I usually like to include some debug logging in the script when I develop the solution. This way I can keep track of what happens underway in the script or get some exceptions if the script command fails. Be aware though that doing $ErrorActionPreference=Stop will end the script if any errors, so it might be an idea to remove the debug logging when confirmed that everything works.

In the next part I’m ready to create the PowerShell Script Rule.

Creating the PowerShell Script Rule

In the Operations Console, under Authoring, create a new PowerShell Script Rule as shown below:

  1. Select the PowerShell Script (Performance – OMS Bound) Rule:I have created a custom destination management pack for this script.
  2. Specifying a Rule name and Rule Category: Performance Collection. As mentioned earlier in this article the Rule target will be the Root Management Server Emulator:
  3. Selecting to run the script every 30 minutes, and at which time the interval will start from:
  4. Selecting a name for the script file and timeout, and entering the complete script as shown earlier:
  5. For the Performance Mapping information, the Object name must be in the \\FQDN\YourObjectName format. For FQDN I used the Target variable for PrincipalName, and for the Object Name ServiceManagerIncidentStats, and adding the “\\” at the start and “\” between: \\$Target/Host/Property[Type=”MicrosoftWindowsLibrary7585010!Microsoft.Windows.Computer”]/PrincipalName$\ServiceMgrIncidentStats I specified the Counter name as “Service Manager Incident Stats”, and the Instance and Value are specified as $Data/Property(@Name=’Instance’)$ and $Data/Property(@Name=Value)$. These reflect the PropertyBag instance and value created in the PowerShell script:
  6. After finishing the Create Rule Wizard, two new rules are created, which you can find by scoping to the Root Management Server Emulator I chose as target. Both Rules must be enabled, as they are not enabled by default:
  7. Looking into the Properties of the rules, we can make edits to the PowerShell script, and verify that the Run as profile is the Default. This is where I would change the profile if I wanted to create my own custom profile and run as account for it.

At this point we are finished configuring the SCOM side, and can wait for some hours to see that data are actually coming into my OMS workspace.

Looking at Service Manager Performance Data in OMS

After a while I will start seeing Performance Data coming into OMS with the specified Object and Counter Name, and for the different instances and values.

In Log Search, I can specify Type=Perf ObjectName=ServiceMgrIncidentStats, and I will find the Results and Metrics for the specified time frame.

I can now look at Service Manager stats as performance data, showing different scenarios like how many active, pending, resolved and closed incidents there are over a time period. I can also look at how many incidents are created by each hour or by each day.

Finally, I can also create saved searches and alerts that creates for example alerts when the number of incidents for any counters are over a set value.

Thanks for reading, and look for more blog posts on OMS and getting SCSM data via NRT Perfomance Collection in the future 😉

How to enable Conditional Access for Azure RemoteApp Programs

Last week I published a blog article on how to publish the System Center Service Manager and Operations Manager Consoles as Azure RemoteApp Programs. (See https://systemcenterpoint.wordpress.com/2016/02/02/publish-operations-and-service-manager-consoles-as-azure-remoteapp-programs/)

One great feature if you are using Azure AD Premium is that you can enable Conditional Access for your Azure RemoteApp Programs. Conditional Access will enable your organization to require Multi-Factor Authentication or required that the programs only can be accessed when at work. In this blog post I will show how this can be configured.

Requirements for Conditional Access for Azure RemoteApp Programs

The following requirements must be met to enable Conditional Access for Azure RemoteApp Programs:

  • Conditional Access are an Azure AD Premium feature, so your organization must be licensed for that
  • You must have created at least one Azure RemoteApp Collection
  • At least one user/group must be assigned to a Program in the Azure RemoteApp Collection

If all these requirements are met, you will see this “Microsoft Azure RemoteApp” Application in your Azure AD:

Configuring Conditional Access for Microsoft Azure RemoteApp

Select the Microsoft Azure RemoteApp Application and go to the Configure tab:

When enabling Access Rules, you can select to enable it for All Users, or for selected Groups. Both options can have exceptions for groups that you don’t want to have Access Rules:

For the Rules you have 3 options for Conditional Access:

You can require Multi-Factor Authentication for the groups/users you selected above, every time they launch a RemoteApp Program Session. I

Another scenario, if you define your work network locations, you can require MFA when not at work, or block the application completely.

To configure trusted IPs, click on the link to get to the MFA Service Settings:

User Experience for Azure RemoteApp Conditional Access

So, how does this look for the user when accessing Azure RemoteApp Programs?

Require Multi-Factor Authentication

I launch my selected Azure RemoteApp Client, and clicking on a RemoteApp Program:

When launching the program, I’m prompted for MFA as expected:

If I sign in with the Azure RemoteApp HTML5 Preview client, https://www.remoteapp.windowsazure.com/web, the Multi-Factor Authentication will be performed before you see your Work Resources.

Block access when not at work

If I selected the Access Rule for Blocking Access when not at work, I will get this message if I’m not on a trusted network:

Conclusion

Meeting the requirements, we can verify that Conditional Access can be enabled for selected groups of users, and it will apply to all the Azure RemoteApp Programs you have published. Note that you cannot enable this specifically for selected Azure RemoteApp Programs, it will be for all the RemoteApp Programs or none.