Azure OMS: One Tool To Rule Them All

With cloud adoption continuing to grow and many enterprises making use of multi-cloud infrastructures, today’s IT organizations need to quickly adapt their IT infrastructure to manage and monitor both public cloud infrastructure and existing on-premises resources. Traditionally, this leads to the implementation of multiple tools in separate environments, managed by separate teams for a wide range of functionalities, such as:

  • Server monitoring
  • Network monitoring
  • Configuration management
  • Log analytics
  • Backup
  • Recovery
  • Network Threat Detection

It can quickly become a challenge to gain a holistic view of your enterprise health; to troubleshoot fast and remediate quickly in a unified manner.  But now some good news: These capabilities (and more!) have all been integrated as part of the Azure Operations Management Suite (OMS).

What’s the advantage of Azure Operations Management Suite? Aside from the above mentioned items, it was designed in the cloud and all components are entirely hosted in Azure. So not only does it excel at native cloud capabilities such as PaaS, it also provides full functionality for on-premises resources, offering a single pane of glass for managing and monitoring diverse infrastructures and resources. There is no setup and configuration is minimal, which gives you the ability to manage and monitor your entire enterprise in a matter of minutes rather than hours. Read on for even more benefits to using Azure OMS.

Overview

The Azure OMS portal gives your IT organization the ability to monitor and manage your enterprise from the cloud down rather than from your datacenter up, and provides accessibility for the IT team through computers, tablets, and even smartphones! By automating builds and server configurations you can decrease costs while increasing efficiency. The need for building out large infrastructure is eliminated, as alerts and monitoring can scale and descale environments based on load rather than having systems underutilized. Utilizing backup and recovery will decrease system and storage costs within your enterprise as everything is in the cloud.

Now let’s dig into the full range of solutions provided by Azure OMS.

Insight and Analytics

Collect all data in your enterprise, either structured or unstructured from either on-premises and/or cloud environments. Once the data is collected, it will automatically be correlated to identify trends and give you the capability to monitor and set up alerts on key metrics in real time. This will enable your IT organization to detect abnormalities and resolve them before failures begin to occur.

Summary of capabilities

  • Assess the health and identify risks proactively of major workloads including Active Directory, SQL, and other major enterprise applications.
  • Create custom alerts, alert rules, and notification timeframes or utilize the out-of-the-box ones.
  • Analyze unlimited data from the cloud with no retention requirements.
  • Connect to Linux and Windows VMs.
  • Ingest data from System Center and other enterprise monitoring/management tools.
  • Securely send log data through proxy server and OMS Gateway.

Security and Compliance

Gain increased visibility into your on-premises and/or cloud environments, which allows you to protect, detect, and respond to threats proactively. You can create customized policies or utilize the out-of-the-box recommendations to monitor security configurations and leverage Microsoft’s own security data and analysis to proactively identify threat detection.

Summary of capabilities

  • Centrally manage the automation and configuration controls granularly.
  • Increase speed and efficiency of identifying security threats by leveraging Microsoft Security and third-party intelligence.
  • Single point of control to see the security posture of all data sources in your enterprise both cloud and on-premises.
  • Information is supplied in a comprehensive and searchable platform. Results can be exported to ensure complete compliance to organizational and security policies.
  • The dashboard can be accessed from anywhere, including your smartphone or tablet.

Automation and Control

Gives you the ability to deliver and manage continuous IT services as well as rapid change across your enterprise. Provides the ability to fully control your environment through automating administrative tasks that will allow for your IT staff to focus on work that provides greater business value.

Summary of capabilities

  • Identify and resolve configuration issues or deviations from identified best practices.
  • Reduce impact of patching by utilizing insights to workload dependencies to accurately estimate completion time.
  • Automate administrative tasks for your enterprise systems, both on-premises and cloud based.
  • Ensure compliance while tracking all changes.
  • Reduce recovery time objectives (RTO) by automating your disaster recovery process.

Protection and Recovery

Provides a simple, cost-effective solution to meet the increasing need for backing up and restoring your data while eliminating the need for tape backups. Protects your enterprise regardless of location and increases compliance with your backup and recovery systems.

Summary of capabilities

  • Backup and restore all data within your enterprise into one always available solution.
  • Reduces cost of maintaining backups due to eliminating servers and the requirement for tape storage and all data is encrypted.
  • Provide item level recovery and restore to applications such as SharePoint.
  • Can be leveraged as a disaster recovery solution in order to reduce the high cost of maintaining multiple environments.
  • Utilize replication capabilities to geographically disperse your enterprise while lowering costs.

Conclusion

Azure Operations Management Suite (OMS) brings innovation and modernization into an IT organization. The functionality of many applications has been replicated into this single powerful suite of capabilities provided on Azure. With OMS you are able to completely manage all of your enterprise systems and applications from a single dashboard while increasing efficiency and maintain SLAs within your IT department. When evaluating tools to manage your enterprise, consider that OMS can offer competitive or equivalent services to all of the following (separate) solutions:

  • Splunk for log analytics
  • Solarwinds and Aternity for enterprise system and network monitoring and compliance
  • System Center Configuration Manager for patch management
  • Integration with System Center Operations Manager increases functionality of the on premise solution.
  • Tanium for enterprise management and patching

As an all-inclusive cloud solution, OMS is a strong candidate to move IT organizations forward and reduce overall cost, and prepare them for cloud first initiatives by ensuring the IT organization can effectively manage and monitor business assets.

About Daniel Suenkel

Daniel Suenkel is an AIS Sr. Infrastructure Engineer with over 20 years of professional experience in architecture, design, build out, operations and maintenance of Information Technology infrastructure, web based, and client server environments at all phases. As a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer, Daniel has experience engineering, managing, monitoring, designing, and building enterprise SharePoint environments from backend to authentication.