Archive for April, 2013

CSMCollector service becomes inactive and doesn’t process requests after enabling 32-bit applications in “OperationsManagerCsmCollector v4.0” app pool configuration

Friday, April 26th, 2013

We have been working with ViaCode to deploy our APM monitoring, we have notice a strange behavior dealing with CSM monitoring implementation

As you know on 64-bit boxes in app pool configuration you can check to “Enable 32-Bit Applications” option. Say, for some reasons I had to enable it for CSMCollector app pool (“OperationsManagerCsmCollector v4.0”):



Having done this I noticed that I started missing CSM data. Albeit the web application pages are injected with uX scripts, the requests are sent to CSMCollector (I can check this with Fiddler), but I get no client-side events and statistics received at all.

I enabled APM trace log on affected server and got plenty of “CSMCollector ServiceManager is not active” errors like below:

Agent version: 7.0.5000.0
.NET Framework: v4.0.30319.269
ProcessID: 30488; InstanceID: 0;
InstanceName: w3wp.exe;
ApplicationPool: OperationsManagerCsmCollector v4.0;
Full Domain name: /LM/W3SVC/8/ROOT/CSMCollector-1-129917338260256050;

[0]30488.21608::09/10/2012-02:57:03.248 [Agent.CSMCollectorService] []
[Error] :CsmCollectorService.ProcessCsmEvent{csmcollectorservice_cs257}( 015DF0E0 )CSMCollector ServiceManager is not active.
[8]30488.1648::09/10/2012-02:58:34.369 [Agent.CSMCollectorService] []
[Error] :CsmCollectorService.ProcessCsmEvent{csmcollectorservice_cs257}( 020CF7FB )CSMCollector ServiceManager is not active.


When you enable 32-bit applications on the pool, it might start looking for CSMCollector keys in 32-bit branch and cannot find it there, while actually it’s registered in 64-bit registry path.

as MVP I have contacted Microsoft , and we filed up a bug.

Deploy SQL VM using SCVMM 2012 SP1

Friday, April 26th, 2013

Takeaway: Islam Gomaa explains how to deploy SQL server 2012 Sp1 as a service oriented  using Microsoft System Center Virtual machine Manager 2012 Sp1 using Windows 2012.


There are four (4) main steps on the deployment process  in order to deploy SQL Server as a service using SCVMM.

1- Prepare the VM

It’s strongly recommended to follow the SQL Server instructions on a VM to prepare an image. You can find how to do it with UI from here:

2- Create SQL Profile

The process of deploying SQL Server as a Service with System Center 2012 SP1 VMM starts with creating a SQL Server Profiles that contain the following

a. Deployment Name, Instance Name, Instance ID, Product Key and the Installation account 




3- Create a VMM Service template

VMM runs SQL setup for you–after joining the VM to the domain, thus completing the other half of the SQL sysprep process.

The SQL Server service template, seen in below diagram view, includes in the center, a single machine tier. That tier consists of one VM that includes a SQL Server Profile deployment to install as part of this VM instance.


4- Deploy the service

  1. Select the Service Template for the SQL Server service and click the Configure Deployment button in the ribbon.
  2. Type your name for this SQL Server application instance (this will not be the name of the VM), and in the drop-down list, optionally change which private cloud to deploy the service into, and click OK.
  3. A diagram view of the service that is about to be deployed will pop up. If everything looks OK, click the Deploy Service button in the ribbon.


Protecting Server 2012 VMs on Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V go into Saved State

Monday, April 22nd, 2013


A buddy of mine recently ran into an issue were a 2008R2 Hyper-V host was running Server 2012 virtual machines.

SCDPM 2012 SP1 was being used to back up all the virtual machines. Some of the virtual machines running Server 2012 would go into a saved state during the backup process. With virtual machine backups we want them to stay online as we back them up.

Now it is always assumed the issue is with SCDPM but something that is still not clear after many years of SCDPM being on the market is that SCDPM is often dependent on the health of the servers it is protecting especially VSS.

The problem is not with SCDPM in this case the issue is on the Hyper-V host itself. If another backup product was being used in this case that also utilizes VSS on the server the same issue would occur. Here is an example of this same issue occurring while using Symantec backup Exec to protect virtual machines running on Hyper-V.


There is a way to see what state will be used on your virtual machines the next time a VSS backup is performed on them.

This will give you more insight into what is going on with your VM backups. Note that these results are from the Hyper-V VSS writer and therefore if you used Windows Server Backup, Backup Exec, or SCDPM the result would be the same.

To check this follow these steps.

Open an elevated command prompt and type the following syntax below:

copy con checkbackup.txt

list writers

Press CTRL + Z (this will save the checkbackup.txt file to the path you are in)


diskshadow /s checkbackup.txt | find /i "caption: backup using"

You should see similar output seen in the screenshot below. Now you will know what virtual machines will back up in a saved or online state the next time a backup is run.


The next step would be to troubleshoot this at the hyper-v host level. Here are some common items you can look at.

  • Backup (Volume Snapshot) Integration Service is disabled or not installed.
  • The virtual machine has one or more dynamic disks.
  • The virtual machine has one or more non-NTFS based volumes.
  • The virtual machine Cluster Resource Group in a cluster setup is offline.
  • The virtual machine is not in a running state.
  • A ShadowStorage assignment of a volume inside the virtual machine is explicitly set to a different volume other than itself.
  • An App-V drive is installed on the virtual machine that creates a non-NTFS volume.

If one of the previously mentioned items are not the issue ultimately you will need to upgrade the Hyper-V host to Server 2012. Hopefully this post was helpful. Here is a link to another blog about the requirements for online Backup of a Hyper-V guest virtual machine via Hyper-V VSS Writer:

Windows Server/System Center MVP Speaker Series Starting This Week!

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

We are launching a new Windows Server/System Center MVP Speaker Series this week!  This continuing education series of presentations will be delivered by some of our MVPs on various topics around Window Server and System Center.  The content will be deep dive, advanced, and very technical.  The MVPs are some of the most knowledgeable people about the products in the world,  especially when it comes to real world experience and practical application.

Anyone can attend because all of the meetings will be presented over Lync.  The meetings will also be recorded and made available afterwards for on demand viewing.

This week we will have two sessions and we’ll normally have one per week.  The two sessions coming up this week are:
•Automating Hyper-V Administration with PowerShell (Tuesday at 8:00 AM Pacific time)
•Keeping your CIO Happy: Executive Scorecarding with SQL, SharePoint, and System Center 2012 Operations Manager (Thursday at 8:00 AM Pacific time)

You can grab all the meeting invites for the speaker series from this location.

You will need the Lync 2013 client to be installed on your computer to view and hear the presentation.   You can download and install that from here.

Watch the Windows Server/System Center Partner and Customer Solutions blog for announcements on this series including the schedule for next quarter’s sessions.