Introducing Operations Bridge 2021.11

by in IT Operations Management

We are pleased to announce the availability of Micro Focus Operations Bridge 2021.11. This release brings the new versions of the Operations Bridge Classic and Container deployments offering numerous new features and usability improvements in various areas. Release highlights include the updates to the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Cloud monitoring service, authentication against external Identity providers using modern protocols with Classic Operations Bridge Manager, as well as the new Automatic Event Correlation (AEC) Explained UI that enables you to get insights into how AEC works and better understand AEC correlation results. In addition, you can now ingest metrics from Management Packs and Operations Connectors for VMware vRealize Operations (VROPS) and Microsoft SCOM into the OPTIC Data Lake (DL) and utilize the new OPTIC reports.

Summary of enhancements

Changes in the Operations Bridge Container deployment

  • Deployment enhancements:
    • New deployment option for Operations Bridge on OpenShift (on-premise deployments)
    • AWS: Deployment of Operations Bridge is now possible across multiple availability zones
    • Centralized container monitoring for ITOM software: The new ITOM Monitoring Pack and OPTIC Health Insights dashboards
    • Improved scalability for Agent Metric Collector (AMC): Reduced resource requirements for metric collections using AMC and SiteScope integrations (better scaling for large SiteScope systems with a high number of custom monitors)
  • Operations Bridge OPTIC Reporting:
    • New Management Pack reports for Oracle DB, MS SQL Server, WebLogic, WebSphere, Active Directory and Microsoft Exchange MPs
    • Additional data in the OPTIC DL for SAP, SAP HANA, JBoss, PostgreSQL Management Packs and VROPS and SCOM Connectors
    • Downtime-aware System Infrastructure reports
    • Scheduled reports (CLI)
  • Automatic Event Correlation:
    • The new AEC Explained UI
  • Cloud Monitoring:
    • Integration with OBM Classic
    • New monitored AWS services
    • Using an external IdP/SAML for AWS authentication is now supported
    • Increased certified scale up to 30K AWS resources
  • OBM:
    • The OBM version 2021.11 included as a container. For the new release features, see Operations Bridge Manager 2021.11 updates in the Changes in Classic Operations Bridge section in this blog article.
  • Business Value Dashboard (BVD):
    • Roles can now be defined in either BVD or ITOM Identity Management (IDM)
  • Sizing Calculator updates:
    • Re-organized to separate cluster questions from Operations Bridge Suite deployment questions, usability improvements, additional data sources (Management Packs, SCOM and VROPS Connectors)

Changes in the Operations Bridge Classic deployment

Operations Bridge Manager (OBM) 2021.11:

  • OBM Classic: Authentication against external identity providers
  • Monitoring dashboard enhancements:
    • Dynamic views
    • Exclude events for CIs in downtime
  • Hierarchy view enhancements
  • Flash binaries removed from OBM
  • Additional HTML Policy Editors
  • Show last login/failed login attempts
  • CI Context Menu for CI Explorer
  • Performance Dashboard enhancements
  • Integrity check for Operations Agent (OA) configurations
  • Forwarding of downtimes to the OPTIC DL

SiteScope 2021.11

  • Group and Alert API Enhancements
  • Addressed enhancement requests:
    • Determine custom monitor execution as "out of schedule“
    • Include the instruction text into the SiteScope Monitor report
    • Provide the ability to upload x509 certificates in web service monitors
  • SiteScope Secure Shell (SSH) client library MindTerm has been replaced with open-source Apache Mina
  • New platform and version support:
    • CyberArk integration now supports CyberArk 12.x
    • Vertica solution template now supports Vertica 10.x
    • Microsoft (MS) SQL Server monitor now supports MS SQL Server 2019 on Windows and Linux

Operations Bridge Analytics (OBA) 2021.11:

  • Transport Layer Security (TLS) improvements – OBA self-signed certificates can now be used when integrating with the Operations Bridge Suite
  • Fine-tuning OBA Anomaly Detection with parameterization
  • Event properties "External ID" and "control transferred" are now synchronized to OBA by default and can be used in searches and analytics

Operations Agent 12.21:

  • Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) compliance for SiteScope -> OBM integrations
  • Integrity check for the OA configuration using the new ovconfcheck CLI
  • Possibility to truncate large annotations
  • OA Content Pack for internal message filtering
  • Improved data forwarding into the OPTIC DL
  • Stagger sending of agent system data over time to avoid flooding on the server

Application Performance Management (APM) 9.51 IP2:

  • Now supports the IPv6 single stack deployment
  • Support for multiple NIC Cards – you can now tie APM with a specific IP/NIC
  • Downtime information added to the Triage Raw data report
  • Resizing capability for CI Name column added to 360-dashboard
  • Internal component refresh: Tomcat 9.0.30, Angular JS 1.82.2, jQuery 3.6.0

Business Process Monitor (BPM) 9.53 patch:

  • A hotfix to support the IPv6 single stack

Real User Monitor (RUM) 9.52 patch:

  • RUM to the OPTIC DL data integration now offers improved scalability in data streaming ingestion into the OPTIC DL:
    • Streaming data to the OPTIC DL at scale
    • Store and Forward (SNF) for the RUM data

Operations Bridge Integration enhancements:

  • The new Operations Bridge integration for Nagios integrating topology, metrics and events from Nagios into OBM
  • Miscellaneous performance and documentation improvements

Content updates:

For additional information, please check out the Containerized Operations Bridge 2021.11 Release notes and OBM 2021.11 Release notes. Also, take a look at the latest Operations Bridge support matrices for information on supported components, versions, software and hardware requirements, as well as obsolescence announcements. 

Changes in Containerized Operations Bridge

Deployment enhancements

  • Operations Bridge OPTIC Reporting, Stakeholder Dashboards, Cloud Monitoring and AEC capabilities can now be deployed on OpenShift. Please, see the Operations Bridge support matrices for information on supported OpenShift platforms. For detailed information, see Install on OpenShift.
  • Deployment of Operations Bridge on AWS is now possible across multiple availability zones: By default, Operations Bridge automatically spreads Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS) and Relational Database Service (RDS) worker nodes across multiple availability zones. You can now adjust the number of zones used for worker nodes based on the number of available zones in the region (2 by default). Keep in mind the following:
    • Cross-zone traffic charges apply when using the multi-availability zone setup
    • Adding or removing zones after the deployment is not supported
    • The Vertica cluster is always deployed in the first zone (and cannot be deployed across multiple availability zones)
    • Elastic Container Service (ECS), Elastic File System (EFS), Simple Storage Service (S3) and Route53 Amazon services are zone-agnostic, meaning that availability zones do not matter for these services
  • Centralized container monitoring for ITOM software:
    • The new ITOM Monitoring Pack is now available, offering a cloud-native monitoring solution for your ITOM containerized suites that is based on the Prometheus and Grafana open-source projects. You can install the ITOM Monitoring Pack during the CDF installation by using the value "Monitoring=true" to the --capabilities option (enabled by default).
    • OPTIC Health Insights dashboards are now provided inside the monitoring capability of CDF (Operations Bridge adds the dashboards into the same Grafana). The single URL for all dashboards is https://<externalAccessHost>:5443/grafana. Note that Infrastructure dashboards and OPTIC dashboards are located in separate folders (for multi-suite deployments, dashboards from each namespace are located in a separate folder). 

Figure 1. OPTIC Health Insights dashboard example

  • Improved scalability:
    • Reduced resource requirements for metric collections using Agent Metric Collector (AMC). In the past, each (custom) collection configuration required one AMC (even if querying only a small number of metrics from a small number of nodes). System Infrastructure AMC replicas were created automatically and you had no control over this process. Now, the collection configuration no longer requires a dedicated AMC, with all configuration jobs being distributed over the available AMCs. In addition, the AMC replica count is now configurable.
    • Improved SiteScope -> OPTIC Data Lake integration enabling better scaling for large SiteScope systems with a high number of custom monitors. This is relevant in situations if you want to integrate the data from a large SiteScope system (with the load of approximately 1000 monitor runs per minute, most of which are custom monitors) into the OPTIC DL. Note that prior to using the integration, you need to configure an optimal batch size for streaming. For details, see Configure the opcgeni SNF batch size.                             

Operations Bridge OPTIC Reporting enhancements

  • OBM Management Pack (MP) reporting. This release introduces new Executive Summary reports for the following MPs: Oracle DB, MS SQL Server, WebLogic, WebSphere, Active Directory, and Microsoft Exchange.

Figure 2. The new WebLogic Executive Summary report

  • Enhanced System Infrastructure reports now factor scheduled downtime in availability reporting use cases 
  • Report scheduling: You can now schedule and email the PDF format of the reports using the pdf-print CLI

AEC Explained UI

The new AEC Explained UI provides you with the insights on how AEC works. It demonstrates how AEC uses topology partitions and correlation groups to categorize and automatically correlate events.

The following UI pages are available:

  • AEC Overview with the general information, such as:
    • A chart displaying the event count over time (the overall number of events in your system and the events correlated by AEC). You can specify the timeframe you are interested in with the time range selector.
    • General information on existing partitions, correlation groups and the events correlated by AEC, with the option to drill down for the detailed analysis
  • Drilldowns from the AEC landing page to partitions, correlation groups and correlation events
  • Pages with the detailed information for individual correlation groups (Group Details) and correlation events (Occurrence Details)

In addition, you can trigger promote/prohibit from the UI and give custom names to partitions and correlation groups.

Figure 3. AEC Overview page

For more information, see Automatic Event Correlation Explained UI.

AWS Cloud Monitoring enhancements

  • The Cloud Monitoring capability is now supported with OBM Classic 2021.11
  • Static thresholding improved: Count-based or time-based windowed thresholding can now be used when defining thresholds via the CLI
  • Added support for the following AWS services: Elastic Container Registry (ECR), Elastic Container Service (ECS), Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS), Lambda, Dynamo DB, and Virtual Private Cloud (VPC):

Figure 4. The new Cloud monitoring content: AWS Lambda

  • Federated SSO using AsumeRoleWithSAML authentication: The AWS service now supports AssumeRole with SAML. SAML helps you use your single sign-on (SSO) credential by authenticating on your identity provider server to access AWS resources. For details, see AWS credential configuration.
  • Increased monitoring scale: Cloud Monitoring is now able to retrieve metrics from up to 30,000 AWS resources every 5 minutes. For more information, see Considerations for AWS metric collection.

Operations Bridge Sizing Calculator enhancements

  • Sizing Calculator has been re-organized to separate cluster questions from Suite deployment questions
  • New Kubernetes Cluster Sizing Calculator now offers improved sizing of the Kubernetes cluster. Works for single deployment and multiple deployments and allows you to calculate:
    • How many worker nodes are required (especially useful for Cloud deployments)
    • What CPU/Memory per worker node is needed (mainly for on-premises environments)

Note: OpenShift has been added as a selectable Kubernetes platform.

  • Updated OpsB+NOM Calculator (NOM + Operations Bridge deployments using shared OPTIC DL/BVD services)
  • Updated OPTIC DL sizing: The SiteScope section now allows you to specify the number of other monitors (in addition to System Infrastructure monitors). Also, when a total monitor count exceeds 1000, a note pops up saying that streaming is supported for 1000 monitor runs per minute.
  • Agent Metric Collector sizing: A new questionnaire for OPTIC DL Management Pack Metric Collections has been added, as well as other smaller changes shown in the figure below:

Figure 5. Sizing Calculator: Updates in the AMC sizing

  • SCOM and VROPS Connectors have been added
  • Updated Vertica Calculator
  • The Sizing Calculator Readme has been updated with the new descriptions based on the new release features

Changes in Classic Operations Bridge

Operations Bridge Manager 2021.11 updates

  • OBM Classic: The integrated ITOM Identity Management (IDM) component now enables authentication against external identity providers (IdPs) with modern protocols. This brings the following benefits:
    • Support for advanced authentication methods, for example SAMLv2 or OAuth 2.0, to enable cross-product single sign on
    • Increased security with custom authentication methods, such as multi-factor authentication
    • The ability to leverage advanced features from IDM for internal users (password policies, password reset, etc.).

Note: For APIs/CLIs/local client authentication, authentication via external IdPs is not possible, so you should use internal IDM users instead.

  • Performance Dashboard (PD) enhancements:
    • Advanced filter capability for charting system process data, which offers the flexibility to analyze process performance data more efficiently. For more information, see Editing charts.
    • Graphing support from multiple Connectors: Previously, PD could only graph the data from one connector-based integration per system. Therefore, customers using multiple connectors could not view the metrics from more than one Connector. Now, PD supports graphing metrics for nodes monitored by multiple connectors (SCOM and VROPS).
  • Monitoring dashboards now offer increased usability with dynamic views:
    • View-based dashboards allow service-specific automatic dashboards (the dashboard content is adjusted based on the service topology)
    • Widgets with dynamic and fix views can be combined on the same dashboard, meaning that one dashboard template can be is used for different views. Therefore, administrators need to create and maintain fewer dashboards
    • Event statistics and status for a specific service is combined with the overall status to get an at-a-glance overview
    • Nested dashboards allow drilldowns to the next level of detail for a service topology overview

Tip: You can set view filters via wiring or via a view picker in the UI.

In addition, you can now configure the widgets in a monitoring dashboard to not count the events from the CIs in downtime.

  • New HTML5 Policy editors for the following monitoring polices types: 
  • Flash-free OBM: With OBM 2021.11, all Flash binaries has been removed
  • Extra-large deployments: The new deployment size option is now available, for the environments with more than 15.000 monitored nodes (OBM Classic only). For more information, see Hardware requirements.
  • Hierarchy view enhancements: You can now show/hide KPI columns via the new side panel
  • A new banner on top of the screen displays the time of the last successful login and the number of failed logins since then. (This leads to increased security as users get aware of potential attacks on their account.)
  • CI Explorer now supports a CI context menu: Actions in the CI context can now be triggered from the components without the RtSM view context
  • Support for multi-subnet failover on MSSQL Server Always-On environments (you can select the multi-subnet failover option when configuring OBM)

For more information on these and other features, check out the OBM Release notes and navigate through the OBM documentation as appropriate.

Operations Agent 12.21 updates

  • Integrity check for OA configurations. You can now check the integrity of policy and instrumentation deployments from OBM to OA using new opr-node -node_config_revision option. The result shows any deviation between what should be deployed and what is actually present. The benefits of this enhancement include:
    • Efficient reporting of configuration deviation (fast, using buffered data sent by OA)
    • Simplified configuration reporting
    • Check if the configuration on the OA is correct and up to date

Note: Deployment check can also be done on the Agent side by using the new ovconfcheck CLI.

  • Possibility to truncate large annotations. Large event annotations can cause increased load on the OBM server and the network. With this release, OA introduces the new XPL configuration variable, OPC_MAX_ANNO_TEXT_SIZE, to limit the maximum size allocated for the annotation text on the OA side. For detailed information on how to restrict the size of annotations, see Configure the large event annotations.
  • Improved data forwarding into the OPTIC DL. Opcgeni stores the OA data and then forwards it to the OPTIC DL. Data forwarding can slow down in cases when opcgeni forwards the data at a rate greater than the HTTP post turnaround time of the OPTIC DL, or when it forwards more policy data in parallel using the same SNF channel. This problem can now be solved by enabling the sizing of data in batches and then forwarding the batch to the OPTIC DL using the new SNF_BATCH_SIZE configuration variable. For more information, see Configure the opcgeni SNF batch size.
  • The enhancement to avoid ASSD flooding by staggering it over time. When multiple systems are started/re-started at the same time, ASSD messages from these systems are sent to OBM at the same time, which can cause a delay in processing other messages that use the same channel. Since periodic ASSD messages are not time-critical, they can be staggered over time if necessary. For details on how to enable staggering of ASSD messages over time, see ASSD Messages.
  • OA Content Pack for internal message filtering. The Content Pack enhances Agent internal events with message keys and additional useful information, such as the instruction text. This improves event correlation and makes internal events more actionable.

For more information on these enhancements, check out the OA Release notes and navigate through the OA documentation as appropriate.

Operations Bridge Analytics 2021.11 updates

  • TLS improvements: OBA self-signed certificates can now be used when integrating with the OPTIC DL, simplifying demo and POC setups. In addition, you can now verify that the certificate is valid for using with the OPTIC DL integration. For the procedure on how to set up integration using a self-signed certificate, see Integrate OBA with OPTIC DL. For details on how to verify a self-signed certificate, see SSL certificate troubleshooting.
  • Anomaly Detection (AD) tuning improvements: OBA administrators can now configure AD parameters using the opsa-paco parameter configuration tool. This enables finer granularity for AD as many parameters can now be set per entity (instead of globally). For more information, see Anomaly Detection Parameters.
  • OBM event collection improvements: Event properties "External ID" and "control transferred" are now synchronized from OBM to OBA by default and can be used in searches and analytics

SiteScope 2021.11 updates

  • FIPS compliance for SiteScope -> OBM integrations
  • The custom monitor now has the ability to depict the status of monitor execution as "out of schedule" post-metric changes along with a summary
  • Monitor reports now include the "Instruction Text" field as a column picker
  • LDAP authentication for nested AD groups: nested AD group users can now be allowed to log in with the super group user role
  • The ability to upload x509 certificates in web service monitors
  • SiteScope is now certified to work with:
    • Vertica 10.x
    • The latest version of CyberArk (12.x)
  • SiteScope CyberArk integration updates:
    • CyberArk integration now supports Hashing
    • CyberArk Caching mechanism support 
  • Group and alert REST API enhancements

For more information on these and other enhancements, see the SiteScope Release notes and navigate through the SiteScope documentation as appropriate.

Content enhancements

OBM Management Pack for Oracle Database

  • The MP for Oracle is now cluster-aware and can monitor an Oracle database running in a cluster. The following functionality is available:
    • Discovery of the logical CI (a new cluster resource group CI); the aspect assignment is done on the logical CI
    • Auto-closure of events from multiple nodes in a cluster
    • Performance dashboard is now able to continuously plot the graph, even in the failover scenario
  • New Management templates:
    • Essential Oracle Failover Cluster Management template
    • Extensive Oracle Failover Cluster Management template

For more information, see the Management Pack for Oracle Database Release notes.

Operations Connectors for VROPS and MS SCOM

  • Metrics from these Connectors can now be ingested into the OPTIC DL. Note that the current release does not yet offer out-of-the-box graphs and reports.

You can find the latest integration documentation in the Integrations section of the Operations Bridge Content page.

We encourage you to try out our new features and enhancements! For further information on our offerings, visit the Operations Bridge product page, explore our documentation resources and check out our videos and blogs.

If you have feedback or suggestions, don’t hesitate to comment on this article.

Explore the full capabilities of Operations Bridge by taking a look at these pages on our Practitioner Portal: Operations Bridge Manager, SiteScope, Operations Agent, Operations Connector (OpsCx), Operations Bridge Analytics, Application Performance Management (APM) and Operations Orchestration (OO).

Events

To get more information on this release and how customers are using Operations Bridge, we are happy to announce the following recent and upcoming events:

See all the Micro Focus events worldwide.

Read all our news at the Operations Bridge blog.

Related items:

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