Working in the datacenter arena, I’m trained to parse through logs, look at events and just making sense of it all. However, I tend to think of working smarter not harder. Thus, allow me to introduce Microsoft Azure – Operational Insights. It’s still in preview due to Microsoft wanting to nail the security and data privacy of their service. They’ve published a security PDF which contains the official statement that “…The Operational Insights software development and service team is actively working with the Microsoft Legal and Compliance teams and other industry partners to acquire a variety of certifications including ISO before general availability of the Operational Insights service”. You may also remember a vaguely similar service called System Center Advisor which was announced at the Microsoft Management Summit a few years back; that service has formed the foundation and rolled up the functionality into Operational Insights.
By now, you may be asking yourself why I’m bringing up such a technical topic in a classroom or institutional context? Well, I believe that a LOT of hard work and insights have been digested down into a proactive dashboard with a TON of great data driving it. Such items as failed logons, log management (including IIS), capacity planning, patch state as well as a host of other data points which are important to an institution! Take a stroll over to the Microsoft Azure Operational Insights website and see what’s in store. You do NOT need to be running System Center Operations Manager to gain insights into your environment however you’ll get a ton of value when using them together! Take a quick look at my video introduction! Happy computing!