Simplicity is no longer a theme with NetApp® Active IQ® Unified Manager, it’s a continuous improvement cycle. A cycle that brings goodies for customers in all spheres with every release, whether it’s better NetApp ONTAP® management or simplified operational monitoring capabilities. The Active IQ Unified Manager 9.7 release announces several enhancements, exciting new features, and product integration meant for the new breed of infrastructure and automation engineers. A lot of new features focus on a few areas—simplicity, automation, active management, and virtualization layer monitoring and reporting, along with strengthening dark site support.

 

he new NetApp Active IQ Unified Manager

I’m breaking this blog into a three-part series so that I can talk into each feature in detail. In this blog post, I discuss the brand-new UI, simplified navigation, and enhanced troubleshooting. The next posts will focus on integration with Active IQ Unified Manager and virtualization layer support.

Refreshingly new dashboard

With Active IQ Unified Manager 9.7, you get a brand-new dashboard that can be scoped by the data center or by an individual cluster for better visibility of your environment. The HTML5-based GUI (with no flash dependency) gives you simple navigation capabilities; starting with a brand-new dashboard consisting of several cards, each card presents an overview of various aspects of the clusters it is monitoring, ranging from capacity metrics to security adherence to workload conformance.

 

Active IQ Unified Manager Dashboard from NetApp

Security dashboard

The Security dashboard presents a layered view—an overall representation and a detailed view that checks for conformance against all the ONTAP security hardening best practices. This means that you don’t have to write any custom script to check for compliance; in fact, you can leave the whole conformance monitoring aspect to Unified Manager. The conformance monitoring checks against clusters, storage virtual machines, data at rest, and the authentication mechanism.

 

Performance monitoring checks against clusters, storage virtual machines and the authentication mechanism.

There is also an option to check the details in each of these categories against individual clusters to find granular details, then take appropriate steps according to the recommendations. For example, in the following screenshot I have expanded the general settings recommendation for one cluster.

 

Active IQ Manager – Individual Cluster illustration

You can expand all the categories for each individual cluster view. At any point you can click the help icon to view what each conformance card compares the clusters against.

 

Active IQ Manager – Cluster Compliance

Self-healing capabilities with the Management Actions dashboard

There are three big announcements about the current release:

 

  • Active IQ and Active IQ Unified Manager integration
  • NetApp Service Level Manager and Active IQ Unified Manager are now a single installer
  • With VMware awareness, gain visibility into VMs through the eyes of Unified Manager

Before discussing each of these items in detail in subsequent blog posts, let me describe the Active IQ and Active IQ Unified Manager integration to explain the actionable alerts. Unified Manager is now tightly integrated with the Active IQ portal to provide insights from the community learning available in the SaaS tool that is available with Unified Manager. Some common ONTAP events are included with scripts to help you resolve the alerts with the click of a button.

 

This is a journey we started with this release with a promise to bring in a lot more in this area in future releases.

Troubleshooting ONTAP is easy with the Workload Analysis feature

Unified Manager has always been the go-to solution for ONTAP (performance) analysis. Our customers love the way that Unified Manager helps in breaking down a problem with the right KPIs, saving operational cycles while dealing with medium to complex problems. The 9.7 release pursues this goal further by providing a single page where each object can be referenced against all performance vectors to determine the bottleneck. Again, simplicity is the primary goal, reducing performance analysis from multiple clicks to just a couple.

 

For example, let’s say that you get a slow performance event for a storage target. Even though the event details and the relevant topology show suggested actions to fix the issue, you may want to understand the event better. Just click the Analyze Workload tab to go to Workload Analysis page.

 

The analyzer shows all the performance vectors for the time frame when the event occurred, including details of all the other events that might have occurred during that time. The following truncated screenshot of the Workload Analysis page shows all the metrics that matter for you to diagnose the cause of the event.

 

Active IQ Manager – Workload Analysis screen

In addition, the 9.7 release introduces new metrics (delay centers) to broaden the troubleshooting model.

 

The next blog posts in this series will focus on the three new announcements about how NetApp Active IQ Unified Manager 9.7 simplifies your operational complexities.

For more information

Please follow the video on overall demonstration of Active IQ Unified Manager 9.7:

 

 

For all your ONTAP active management needs, monitoring virtual environments and running ONTAP securely look no further. NetApp® Active IQ® Unified Manager 9.7 is your one-stop solution. As long as you plan to manage and monitor ONTAP, Unified Manager 9.7 comes with no licensing obligations. The install guide is available here.

 

Download your installer and get started today!

Dhiman Chakraborty

Dhiman Chakraborty is a Technical Marketing Engineer (TME) at Netapp focusing on OnCommand Unified Manager. As a TME, he offers consulting services to Customers and Field Solution architects on various manageability challenges they foresee in their environment. With several years of experience, working for multiple Fortune 500 Companies in the BFSI, Insurance, Manufacturing, Media & Publishing and Utilities space; Dhiman has a deep understanding of IT infrastructure and Management both in the traditional and in the hybrid/public cloud space.

Add comment