I’m a big fan of the free Active Directory Replication Status Tool. So much so that I install it in every Active Directory environment I scan and troubleshoot. Together with the Active Directory PowerShell module, the built-in tools, and the Active Directory Topology Diagrammer, it completes my toolbox. It’s a nice gift to leave behind for every Active Directory admin.

Since last week, when starting the free Active Directory Replication Status Tool, I was greeted with a message before it opened it’s functional replication troubleshooting and root cause analysis interface:

ADRSTLicenseExpiringMessage

Apparently, the Active Directory Replication Status Tool is making the move to the Operations Management Suite (OMS).

I feel this is good news, since running the Active Directory Replication Status Tool was always a tool for a moment in time, but not a thorough let’s check things proactively, let’s avoid trouble, proactive tool. It’s perfect for what I do, but for day-to-day Active Directory admins, the tool can be so much more.

 

About the Operations Management Suite

Microsoft’s Operations Management Suite (OMS) offers simplified IT management for any organization. Using OMS, you can gain control over any hybrid cloud. Manage and protect Azure or Amazon Web Services (AWS), Windows Server or Linux, VMware or OpenStack with this cost-effective, all-in-one cloud IT management solution.

Monitor Active Directory replication using OMS

Now you can monitor replication in your Active Directory environment right from the dashboard of the new Operations Management Suite. Quickly identify domain controllers that are experiencing replication errors from anywhere, using any device.

Use OMS’s powerful search functionality to dive into the details. Link to documentation that helps you fix the problems you find. All from an easy-to-use console that you can access from anywhere. Get started in minutes, for free.

Replication Errors, Right On Your Dashboard

See the number of current replication errors in your environment, right from a tile on your OMS dashboard. We’ll even identify errors that are approaching tombstone lifetime (TSL), so you know when you need to take immediate action to avoid problems in your environment.

Classify Your Replication Errors

View your replication errors grouped by destination server, source server, error type, or last successful replication date. Quickly identify your largest clusters of errors, so you can develop a plan for addressing them first.

Get All The Details

Use OMS’s powerful search functionality to zero in on specific errors. Filter the list of errors any way you’d like. View detailed information about each error, including a link to documentation that helps you fix it.

All for free!

The best thing: When you use Operations Management Suite (OMS) to monitor Active Directory, the functionality is free. Typically a Domain Controller would send less than 10MB of data per day to OMS, but you can send as much as 500MB of data per day in the Free Plan of OMS.

 

Steps to get started

To get started with Microsoft’s Operations Management Suite (OMS), simply create an
OMS Workspace for free. following browse manually on your management workstation to the Active Directory Replication Status Tool now in Operations Management Suite page. (this is where the http://aks.ms/oms/support/adreplstatus link in the message points to.)

OMSEmptyDashboard

In the OMS portal, click on the Solutions Gallery tile.

From the Solutions Gallery, select the AD Replication Status solution.

On the AD Replication Status page, click on the Add button. This will add the AD Replication tile to your OMS Dashboard.

Of course, OMS won’t have anything useful to chew on, unless you connect one or more Active Directory Domain Controllers to it. The Settings tile on your dashboard still reports 0 Data sources connected, so let’s do this.

Click on the cog or the 0 in the Settings tile to go to Settings. In the left pane, click on Connect a data source. In the first column, you’ll find the Windows Agents (both x64 and x86) and the Linux Agent (Preview). In the second column you can connect an existing on-premises System Center Operations Manager (OpsMgr) deployment. The third column allows you to attach an Azure storage account or connect to AWS storage (Coming soon).

For 64bit Active Directory Domain Controllers download the 27,3MB-weighing MMASetup-AMD64.exe. After downloading it, run it.

MMASetup1

In the Welcome to the Microsoft Monitoring Agent Setup Wizard, click on Next >.

MMASetup2

On the page with the License Terms click on I Agree.

MMASetup3

On the Destination Folder page, click Next > to accept the default location in C:\Program Files\Microsoft Monitoring Agent\.

MMASetup4

On the Agent Setup Options page, select the Connect the agent to Microsoft Azure Operational Insights. Then, click Next >.

Note:
Microsoft’s Operations Management Suite was previously called Microsoft Azure Operational Insights.

MMASetup5

On the Operational Insights page, enter both the WorkSpace ID and the WorkSpace Key, mentioned on the Settings page of your OMS Dashboard. When you use an authenticated proxy, use the Advanced button to specify it. Press Next > afterwards.

Note:
The Microsoft Management Agent reports to Operations Management Suite using TCP443 to:

  • *.ods.opinsights.azure.com
  • *.oms.opinsights.azure.com
  • ods.systemcenteradvisor.com
  • *.blob.core.windows.net/

Make sure this traffic is allowed.

MMASetup6

On the Microsoft Update page, select Use Microsoft Update when I check for updates (recommended) and click Next >.

MMASetup7

On the Ready to Install page, click Install.

MMASetup8

When installation is done, click Finish.

In the OMS Dashboard, click on the Home icon. After some time, the AD Replication Status tile will show you the information you crave, in near real-time:

OMSSADReplicationStatusDashboard

 

Concluding

Starting next week, the Active Directory Replication Status Tool is living up to the promise of the let’s check things proactively, let’s avoid trouble, proactive tool to keep Active Directory replication in check: As part of the online Operations Management Suite (OMS).

Further reading

Microsoft Operations Management Suite
Download Active Directory Replication Status Tool from Microsoft
Download Active Directory Topology Diagrammer from Microsoft
Troubleshooting Active Directory Replication Problems
Checking replication of raising the Domain Functional Level in a pragmatic and programmatic way
KnowledgeBase: Active Directory replication fails with an RPC issue after you set a static port for NTDS
From the field: The Case of the Domain Controller that would not function after an ASR test failover
From the Field: the Case of the non-replicating Domain Controllers on Cisco UCS Blades