I’m happy to announce the general availability of a brand new feature for our Office365Mon customers today. A slice of our Office365Mon cloud monitoring infrastructure can now run on one or more machines on your network and works in conjunction with your Office365Mon subscription to issue health probes and diagnose issues. We call this the Office 365 Diagnostics feature and it is now available for immediate use by all of our Office365Mon customers. You can see more about it on our web site at https://www.office365mon.com/Configure/OnPremProbes.
What’s It Do?
The Office 365 Diagnostics feature expands the surface area of knowledge available to you when experiencing issues with Office 365. Our cloud monitoring solution keeps you apprised of things at the service level, but what if you still have users having trouble connecting even when the Office365Mon cloud service says your tenant is up? In that case you have a checklist of things you need to begin investigating in your on-premise networks to try and determine the cause of these issues. The Office 365 Diagnostics feature works to help you with that checklist by issuing health probes from within your network, and when it encounters issues it begins a set of diagnostic checks and reports back when and where it finds a problem.
At a high level, here’s a diagram of the diagnostics done by the Office 365 Diagnostics feature:
A more detailed explanation of each of these checks is below. At a higher level this feature is intended for customers where:
- Your users are geographically dispersed, so you can run the Office 365 Diagnostics application from a variety of locations. This allows you to see what the performance is like for your users from the different offices where they reside, instead of only from our cloud service.
- The Office 365 Diagnostics application allows you to set thresholds on the minimum acceptable response time, and when it takes longer than that it will log a warning event to the local Event Log. You can then monitor the event log for these events and act accordingly when locations are not meeting your performance requirements.
- When the application is unable to complete a health probe successfully, it will run a set of diagnostics on the local environment. These are the set of diagnostics described in the picture above:
- The local network cards
- Your DNS server(s) to ensure they are up.
- The addresses that your DNS servers are resolving for your Office 365 resources so you can verify that it is resolving them to the correct location.
- Your gateway server(s)
- A public Internet site, to see if all Internet access is down or just access to Office 365
- Failures in any of these diagnostic checks are also written to the local Event Log so they can be monitored as well.
What do You Need to Run the Office 365 Diagnostics Feature?
- An active subscription with Office365Mon that is monitoring your Office 365 resources.
- A server that you have administrative access into. The servers needs to be available all the time. If the server goes down or sleeps, you will not be able to monitor during that time.
That’s pretty much it. The Office 365 Diagnostics feature includes complete illustrated installation instructions that will have you up and running in just a few minutes.
How do You Get and Configure Office 365 Diagnostics?
You start by downloading the Office 365 Diagnostics installation package from https://www.office365mon.com/Office365MonOffice365Diagnostics.zip. When you unzip it you will find the installation files as well as a PDF with detailed step-by-step instructions. Once it’s installed and configured any failures it detects are written to the local Windows Event Log. We don’t try sending those errors to Office365Mon in the cloud because you may not have connectivity during a failure in the network infrastructure.
There are a variety of software packages that can be used to monitor and alert based on entries in the Event Log. If you are using Microsoft’s System Center you can find some examples on how to configure it here and here.
Pricing model for Office 365 Diagnostics
The Office 365 Diagnostics feature is available for you to use immediately. New Office365Mon customers will have FREE access to it for 90 days so you can fully test it out before deciding whether to purchase it as an ongoing part of your Office365Mon subscription. The Office 365 Diagnostics feature is part of the Enterprise Premium license; pricing and packaging for the license can be found here: https://www.office365mon.com/Products/Pricing.
Feedback, Comments, and Questions?
We had a number of great customers involved during the beta release of the Office 365 Diagnostics feature. As always we want to thank those of you that participated and provided some great feedback. We’re looking forward to continued feedback from all once you put this into production. If you have any issues or feedback please email email@example.com.
From all of us here in sunny Phoenix,