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Monitoring Windows Small Business Server 2011 : Using Windows SBS Console Monitoring (part 1) - Using the Network Essentials Summary

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1/24/2013 6:17:43 PM

The Windows SBS Console provides administrators with many of the most vital Windows SBS controls and settings, leaving the details and comprehensive access to the standard Windows Server 2008 R2 tools. The same is true when it comes to monitoring and reporting. The console can provide administrators with basic real-time monitoring, programmed alerts, and reports that it generates on a regular basis.

1. Using the Network Essentials Summary

On the Home page of the Windows SBS Console, as shown in Figure 1, the Network Essentials Summary pane provides a high-level, real-time view of four basic performance areas:

  • Security Checks for the presence of virus and spyware protection, as well as active firewalls, on both your servers and workstations

  • Updates Makes sure that Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) is running and that all the network servers and workstations have the latest updates installed

  • Backup Checks to see that the server is configured to perform regular backups and whether the backups are completing successfully

  • Other alerts Checks for a variety of other conditions, including Error events in the System log, required services that are not running, and other important system status alerts

The Home page of the Windows SBS Console.

Figure 1. The Home page of the Windows SBS Console.

Each of the four areas in the Network Essentials Summary pane has a status indicator with a colored icon specifying the current status of the area: OK (green check mark), Warning (yellow exclamation point), or Critical (red X). There is also an arrow in each area that you can click to display more information about the network’s current condition and expose a link to a console page providing more detailed information, as shown in Figure 2.

An expanded Networking Essentials Summary area display.

Figure 2. An expanded Networking Essentials Summary area display.

Unfortunately, the conditions that trigger a change in these status displays are not configurable. If, for example, you have deliberately stopped one of the services on your server that Windows SBS considers to be essential, the Other alerts status always appears as Critical, and clicking the arrow only tells you that one of your servers has reported an alert. You have to click the Go to computers link and seek more information about the problem before you can determine whether the alert concerns the stopped service you know about or a new condition.
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