Thursday, February 10, 2011

SCOM R2: Am I Healthy? – Part V – Let’s Use The Community

Postings in the same series:
Part   I The Introduction
Part  II – Know What You Have
Part III – Are the DBs OK?
Part IV – Is SCOM R2 Up-to-date or Outdated?

In the fifth and last posting of this series I will talk about the Community for SCOM. You can ask yourself the question what the Community has to do with the Health of your SCOM R2 environment.

Actually a lot. I know when I first started with SCOM (RTM…) and the issues I bumped into. Soon I found the blog of David Allen, an UK based SCOM MVP. After that I found Kevin Holman’s blog and soon I was mailing those guys with all kinds of questions. And guess what? They even answered them! Wow! How nice and special it was.

Then a colleague of mine pointed me to the Big Orange SCOM Bible, SCOM Unleashed. It was liking finding an oasis after being in the desert for so long. All the questions I had were answered in that book!

Through that book I found the blogs of Pete Zerger, Cameron Fuller and even Belgium based SCOM MVP, Alexandre Verkinderen. Of course, I was already a regular visitor of Maarten Goet’s blog.

Thanks to effort of people like that I got up to steam with SCOM rather quickly and was taught the ropes. I gained more knowledge and experience in order to help out my customers in a better way.

I know for sure, without those blogs and their efforts to answer all the mails I sent to those guys, it would have been way much harder to get the job done. Therefore I want to share some good blogs and other Community based resources with you all hoping that it will aid just as much as it did (and still does for that matter) for me.

So let’s start. Here are the blogs which are really good.

01 – Premier Field Engineers
These people are a special breed. They bump into Enterprise environments and have direct contact with the team who build SCOM R2. So they have a broad experience and are deep into the product. When they blog, it is serious stuff.

These blogs I do follow:

  1. Kevin Holman;
  2. Steve Rachui;
  3. Stefan Stranger (former MVP really into scripting, programming and the lot);
  4. Jimmy Harper;
  5. Russ Slaten;
  6. Tim McFadden;
  7. Anders Bengtsson (former MVP with a very good blog).

Some of them do not blog on a regular basis but the QUALITY is key here which is really good. So when you want to learn something about SCOM, visit their blogs.

02 – Fellow MVPs
Some of them blog a lot, some less. But again, QUALITY is key here. Here is a shortlist:

  1. David Allen (WMUG);
  2. Alexandre Verkinderen (SCUG);
  3. Cameron Fuller (Go here to his old blog, still containing tons of good information);
  4. Kerrie Meyler;
  5. Graham Davies (Also an aggregator of topics from the official OpsMgr Forums);
  6. Blake Mengotto;
  7. Systen Center Central (A site where many MVPs write about System Center Products, tons of good stuff to be found there);
  8. Marcus Oh;
  9. Danielle Grandini.

03 – Microsoft, like the Product Teams, the OpsMgr Forums
Much good information is to be found there as well:

  1. Operations Manager Team Blog;
  2. Charles Joy (Opalis, Opalis and Opalis);
  3. OpsMgr Forums (many RSS feeds to get from there and MUCH to learn);
  4. Operations Manager Support Team Blog;
  5. Micheal Pearson;
  6. Nexus SC: The System Center Blog (about all SC products).

As you can see the Community out there is really HUGE! Make use of it. And whenever you bump into a situation which needs additional minds to think it over, go to the OpsMgr Forums and post your question. You will definitively get an answer there.

So the health of your SCOM R2 environment is based on multiple pillars. I hope to have clarified that in this series of postings. But no matter what, YOU are in the middle of it all, so stay in CONTROL. When you take care of SCOM R2, it will take care of your ICT environment.

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