2 Key Features and Capabilities

This chapter contains a brief overview of some features and capabilities of the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center software. The Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide contains in-depth information on these and other features:

2.1 Overview

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center offers comprehensive system management for physical and virtual Oracle hardware and heterogeneous operating systems. The Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center software is designed to monitor, patch, provision, virtualize, and support operating systems, virtualization technologies, Oracle servers, storage, and networks from a single user interface.

Use the discovery feature to add assets to the user interface. The software begins monitoring the assets when you discover and add them to the UI.

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center enables you to easily customize many management functions. When you add assets, they are also added to pre-defined groups, such as Servers and Linux Operating Systems. You can create customized groups and rules that place newly discovered assets in these groups. These groups enable you to apply changes or create reports to multiple assets at the same time.

Reusable profiles and plans enable you to define the actions, images, and configurations for tasks, such as installing a server or creating an Oracle VM Server for SPARC system and guests. You can reuse the profiles and plans to quickly and consistently perform a task. Specialized plans, called operational plans, enable you to run your custom scripts as part of a larger plan or as an individual plan. Use operational plans to apply your customized configuration options or to resolve an incident.

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center software is designed to help you manage and maintain your datacenter. For details on the features and capabilities described in this document, other features, and examples, see the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide and other documentation that is located in the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center documenting library at http://docs.oracle.com/cd/E40871_01/index.htm

2.2 Asset Monitoring and Incident Management

Monitoring detects components or attributes of a managed resource of Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center that are not operating within specified parameters.

Monitoring rules and policies define the monitoring parameters and are the main components of a complete monitoring configuration. Default monitoring policies contain a set of rules that are automatically applied to managed resources. You can change the alerting conditions for all assets, or create special rules for a group of assets that are more critical for your day-to-day operations.

The software uses a help desk approach to manage the incidents in your data center. All open incidents appear in the Message Center. New alerts update an open incident. You can assign incidents to others for resolution, add comments, provide a list of possible causes and impacts, provide recommendations, add utilities or scripts to resolve an issue, and view progress. You can build an Incident Knowledge Base that contains your annotations from specific incidents, or add suggested fixes or automated fixes for a specific type of incident. You can create an Incident knowledge base to store recommended solutions or to add annotations that run scripts to resolve commonly known incidents.

Incident Reports enable you to view a summary of all alerts and incidents for a specified category, such as alarm state, alarm owner, asset type, date range, severity levels, and affected asset groups. The reports also include an audit trail for state-change annotations, alert annotations, suggested-fix annotations, comment annotations, operation annotations. The Reports chapter in the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide defines all of the available reports, and how to create report templates and reports.

When you cannot resolve an incident, you can use the information in the asset's summary and dashboard pages to quickly file a service request. Instead of manually filing a service request, you can enable the Auto Service Request (ASR) feature to automatically open a service request for a critical incident. The software populates the service request with the asset details, the Customer Service Identifier (CSI) associated with the asset, and adds an annotation to the incident to indicate the status of the ASR creation. Once they are created, ASRs are identical to other service requests and can be viewed and managed using the same processes and tools. You can view auto service requests in the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center UI or with the traditional service request processes and tools.

2.3 Server and Hardware Management

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center facilitates complete management for supported Oracle servers and hardware, including the new generation of Oracle servers.

You can install and update system component firmware for a variety of service processors for a single system, or a group of systems.

Monitor the hardware status, view system details, service processor connectivity details, incidents, service requests, jobs and other details. Enter your energy expenses to begin tracking energy utilization for ILOM x64, ILOM CMT, M-Series servers, chassis and the power budget of ILOM 3.0 systems.

Use the Firmware Report to maintain consistent firmware versions across your managed hardware. The Firmware Report feature compares the firmware images specified in a firmware profile to the firmware images installed on your hardware. Use the System Information Report to obtain the information on assets such as operating system, server, chassis, logical domains, global zone, non-global zone, and M-Series server. See the Reports chapter in the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide for more about firmware and system reports.

2.4 Operating Systems Management

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center facilitates lifecycle management for your Oracle Solaris and Linux operating systems, including installing, updating (patching), upgrading, and monitoring your Oracle Solaris and Linux operating systems.

Use the software libraries, profiles, and plans in Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center to consistently provision, update, or upgrade a specific operating system release or package with your defined configuration on a discovered and managed hardware asset. Details for software libraries, profiles, and plans are in the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide.

Install and Provision Operating Systems

You create reusable OS Provisioning and OS Configuration profiles to define how to install the software. The OS Provisioning profiles define the OS image or package and basic OS configuration and boot network information. The OS Configuration profiles define the networking configuration, including advanced networking configurations for Oracle Solaris. You can mix and match compatible OS Provisioning and OS Configuration profiles in OS Provisioning Deployment Plans. A plan defines the profiles to use and the targets to provision. When you apply a plan, you provide a specific IP address and have the option to make changes to the network and interface for the target. You can apply the plan immediately, or schedule the plan to provision the operating system during off-peak times without your intervention.

Update and Upgrade Operating Systems

Similar to OS provisioning, the software uses OS Update profiles and plans to standardize how you perform updates and upgrades. You use Update Profiles and deployment plans to define which components or packages to install and the level of automation during the installation. You can simulate an update job, update an operating system immediately, or schedule the update job to run later.

A variety of OS reports enable you to easily maintain your supported operating systems, determine if an asset has the latest updates and packages and to apply updates to a group of assets. Use the Reports feature to check for security advisories. For example, the Common Vulnerability and Exposure (CVE) report identifies systems that might have security vulnerabilities.

Monitor Operating Systems

Monitor operating system status, view operating system details, utilization (such as CPU, memory, and network utilization), associated zones, incidents, storage and Oracle Solaris boot environments. Use the OS Analytics feature to track, evaluate, and improve the performance of supported operating systems and zones. The charts, reports, and utilization data provide details of an individual operating system or zone.

2.5 Network Management

Networks are the discovered and managed IP subnets. Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center manages network resources, from the physical to the virtual. Fabrics provide the physical infrastructure and network domains provide the logical infrastructure. Networks are created from the resources of a network domain. Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center supports Ethernet and InfiniBand network protocols.

After a network is discovered, you can perform the following tasks:

  • Discover and manage switches

  • Add fabric to a network domain

  • Create network domains to support specific purposes.

  • Create public networks and private networks to support virtualization hosts and virtual datacenters.

2.6 Virtualization Management

In Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center, you can create and manage the virtualization hosts that provide the physical resources for creating guests. These options require access to storage and networks.

The supported virtualization technologies are:

System Information Reports provide information on assets, including logical domains and zones.

2.6.1 Oracle Solaris Zones

Oracle Solaris Zones enable you to virtualize operating systems on SPARC and x86 platforms. A zone is a virtualized operating system environment created within a single instance of the Oracle Solaris operating system. Each zone provides an isolated and secure environment for running software applications.

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center provides lifecycle management of zones from a unified user interface. You can discover and manage existing zones, create zones, view zone analytics, and perform operations such as booting and shutting down a zone. You can create server pools for your zones, enabling you to migrate zones between different operating systems to provide load balancing. You can configure the software to automatically balance the load, or you can manually balance the load. Beginning with 12.2.2, you can disable Automatic Recovery at the server pool level or the zone level. You can also limit the number of attempts to recovery an asset.

2.6.2 Oracle VM Server for SPARC

Oracle VM Server for SPARC is virtualization of SPARC servers. You can create and manage multiple virtual machine instances simultaneously on a single SPARC machine. Each virtual machine, or guest, can run a different operating system. To extend virtualization further, you can create zones on your virtual machines.

With Oracle VM Server for SPARC, you can allocate the various resources of the system such as memory, CPU threads, and devices, into logical groupings and create multiple discrete systems. You can either select to allocate the CPU resource to a logical domain as CPU Threads or whole-core. When you specify to allocate a core to a logical domain, all the CPU Threads in the core are allocated to the logical domain. You can also limit the number of maximum number of whole-core to be allocated to the domain. You can edit the configuration of the logical domain and switch back and forth from virtual CPU to whole-core CPU.

You can discover and manage existing Oracle VM Server for SPARC systems, or you can use Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center to create logical domains and install the Oracle Solaris OS on them.

A logical domain is a virtual machine that has its own operating system and identity within a single SPARC server. You can create, reconfigure, reboot, and destroy a logical domain independently, without requiring the server to be powered off. You can run a variety of applications in different logical domains to keep them independent for performance and security purposes.

You can create logical domains with the following roles: Guest Domains, I/O Domains, Root Domains, and HA Guest Domains.

  • I/O domains have direct access to physical I/O devices such as PCIe Controller or Endpoint Devices.

  • Root domains also have direct access to physical I/O devices such as PCIe Root Complex.

  • Guest domains have access to virtual devices, such as virtual disks and virtual network interfaces.

  • HA guest domains have access to virtual devices, have at least two network connections, and have redundant access to virtual disk storage to provide high availability.

Beginning with 12.2.2, the software detects when a logical domain is in a delayed reconfiguration state. A message in the center pane is visible to all logical domains attached to the affected control domain. You can cancel the delayed reconfiguration in the control domain, or a PCIe root domain (if supported.)

As with hardware and OS management, virtualization management uses profiles and plans to help you to reduce the complexity of using virtualization technology and provides a method of consistently creating new virtual hosts.

SR-IOV Enabled Networks

Single Root I/O Virtualization is a PCI-SIG standard specification that enables efficient use of PCIe devices. A single PCIe card owned by a PCIe root complex is made to physically appear in multiple domains simultaneously. A virtual machine shares a single I/O resource also know as physical function. A physical function is a PCIe device that is SR-IOV enabled and with the appropriate hardware and OS support can appear as multiple, separate physical devices, each with its own configuration space. Each physical function can have up to 64000 virtual functions associated with it. You can directly assign a virtual function to a logical domain.

An SR-IOV enabled network interface has virtual functions created on the physical function. You can connect to a network using an SR-IOV enabled network interface and assign the virtual functions to the logical domains. SR-IOV enabled networks are available from the Control Domain and Root Domain. If you assign a PCIe card to an I/O domain, then the SR-IOV feature is not enabled.

2.7 Storage Management

Oracle Solaris Zones, Oracle VM Servers for SPARC, Oracle VM Servers for x86, their server pools, and virtual datacenters store their metadata and their operational data in storage libraries.

Use Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center to create and modify storage libraries and change the storage capacity. Manage and monitor storage servers and appliances, discover and provision storage capacity on these appliances, and then make the storage available to virtual assets through its storage libraries.

  • Opaque storage: When Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center discovers a virtualization host or virtual host that uses storage that is not backed by a managed asset, Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center can identify the virtual disks used by the host and can share them with other hosts of the same type.

  • Multipath storage: You can create more than one path from a logical domain to its storage to ensure that the logical domain continues to operate if one path is not accessible. Using multiple I/O Domains provides this redundant access.

2.8 Cloud Management

Create and manage a virtual datacenter, or vDC. By consolidating your virtualization servers, storage, and network resources, you can optimize resource utilization.

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center provides the platform to consolidate the physical resources (virtualization servers, storage, and network) in your data center, enabling you to build and operate your cloud services.

The software provides a comprehensive management solution to deploy, configure, and manage the virtualization servers, storage resources, and network fabrics. You can deploy these features as an Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud platform service model in Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center.

The IaaS cloud platform service is available as vDC Management. Virtual Datacenter or vDC is a collection of server pools that share common storage and network resources. A cloud administrator sets up the infrastructure and provides access to cloud users. The cloud users use the allocated resources to create guests and install operating systems, deploy applications, monitor, and manage the applications. The cloud user logs into the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center user interface to view and manage their applications.

A cloud user can perform the following actions to use and manage the allocated resources in a vDC account:

  • View account quotas and virtual resources

  • Create and manage vServers

  • Create and manage virtual networks

  • Create and manage snapshots

  • Create and manage volumes

  • Create and manage server templates

See the Virtual Datacenters chapter in the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide and the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Cloud Infrastructure API and CLI Reference Guide for details on using the Cloud feature.

2.9 Oracle Engineered Systems Management

Oracle Engineered Systems is a complete set of integrated hardware and software designed to reach a predetermined level of capability, capacity, and scale. Oracle Engineered Systems provide optimized pre-defined hardware and software. As the hardware and software are engineered together for a complete system, there are multiple opportunities to improve the overall system performance.

Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center can be installed on Oracle Engineered Systems. You can manage the system using an Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center instance. You can also manage multiple Oracle SuperCluster systems and other assets in the datacenter directly from a single Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center instance. Use Oracle Engineered Systems reports to view the rack setup for each of the rack within the system, including the asset details related to the rack. These reports also provide information about your assets, such as job history, firmware, operating system updates, and incidents.

You can use Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center to monitor and manage the following Oracle Engineered Systems:

2.9.1 Oracle SuperCluster

Oracle SuperCluster is a complete stack of hardware and software, computing, storage, and network, all engineered to work optimally together to provide a consolidated platform for running database, middleware, or third party applications.

You can use the software to manage the following Oracle SuperCluster systems:

Oracle SuperCluster M6-32

SuperCluster M6-32 is ideal for large scale database and application consolidation and private cloud. You can run a variety of workloads including OLTP and data warehousing, complex applications, and mixed workloads for extreme performance. SuperCluster M6-32 can run databases and applications in memory while providing the highest levels of availability and serviceability.

Oracle SuperCluster T5-8 and T4-4

The Oracle SuperCluster T5-8 and Oracle SuperCluster T4-4 are Oracle Engineered Systems which integrate SPARC compute nodes, a Sun ZFS Storage Appliance, InfiniBand switches, PDUs, and Exadata Storage Servers into a multi-rack system.

2.9.2 Oracle Exadata

Oracle Exadata is a database appliance with support for both OLTP (transactional) and OLAP (analytical) database systems.

The Exadata Storage Server provides storage for an Oracle SuperCluster system. It is a sub-type of the Linux server installed to be a database node. The Exadata Storage Servers are grouped together in the Navigation pane. In the same way that you view an Oracle SuperCluster system and its rack, you can also view the Exadata Storage Servers.

2.10 Resources

Our documentation library includes installation guides, an administration guide, reference materials, and examples to guide you through Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center. The documenting library is located at http://docs.oracle.com/cd/E40871_01/index.htm

For additional details about features, see the Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Feature Reference Guide. For workflows and end-to-end examples about how to use the software to perform an operation, see the Deploy How Tos tab and the Operate How Tos tab in the library. The Oracle Enterprise Manager Ops Center Command Line Interface Guide contains information about the command-line interface.