IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Operations Center Frequently Asked Questions

Technote (FAQ)


Question

How do I find out more about the Tivoli Storage Manager Operations Center?

Cause

Tivoli Storage Manager delivered a new administrative interface called the Operations Center. This interface is available with the 6.4.1 fix pack, version 7.1, and the 7.1.1 fix pack.

Answer

The Operations Center is IBM’s next-generation graphical user interface for Tivoli Storage Manager. It provides advanced end-to-end visibility of the entire backup environment. Over time, IBM plans to add more control and automation capabilities, which will dramatically simplify daily management and operational tasks for a wide range of users.

The following are frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the Operations Center that will help you plan for, deploy, and use this new interface.

How much does the Operations Center cost?
What versions of the TSM server does the Operations Center work with?
Does the V7.1 Operations Center work with V6.3.4 servers?
Does the V7.1.1 Operations Center work with V7.1.0 and V6.3.4 servers?
What new capabilities are introduced in the V7.1 Operations Center?
What new capabilities are introduced in the V7.1.1 Operations Center?
Is the TSM Administration Center being shipped with 7.1?
Where can I obtain the Operations Center?
How long does it take to install the Operations Center?
Does the Operations Center work on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones?
Do I still need a separate server for TSM reporting (Cognos)?
What will I need Cognos for after I have the Operations Center?
Will the Operations Center replace the Administration Center?
Can I install the Operations Center on the same system as my TSM Server?
Do I need to install the Operations Center on each of my TSM servers if I have more than one server?
What resources does a TSM server require to be managed by the Operations Center as a hub or spoke server?
Is there a tool to help me estimate the resource requirements for a hub or spoke server?
Can I configure an existing TSM server that is used as a library manager as an Operations Center hub server?
How many TSM servers (hub plus spokes) can a single instance of the Operations Center support?
Can a TSM server be both a hub and a spoke?
What login credentials (ID and password) do I need to use the Operations Center?
If I know the command or action I want to perform, is there a quick way to do it within the Operations Center?
Are there changes in the TSM server to support the Operations Center?
How do I navigate the Operations Center?
What does “At Risk” mean in the Operations Center?
Are there other enhancements or capabilities planned for the Operations Center?
What is the default URL to access the Operations Center?
Are there known issues for the Operations Center?



How much does the Operations Center cost?
The Operations Center is free of charge for any customers with entitlement to the following products: Tivoli Storage Manager, Tivoli Storage Manager Extended Edition, Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery, Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery Entry, and IBM System Storage Archive Manager.
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What versions of the TSM server does the Operations Center work with?
The Operations Center works with servers that report the following version and release values:

Version Release Fix-Pack
6 3 4 or later
7 1 All

The Operations Center combines a web server, java code, and support from the TSM server itself. Because of this interdependency between the Operations Center and the TSM server, the Operations Center does not work with previous server versions.
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Does the V7.1 Operations Center work with V6.3.4 servers?
Yes. The V7.1 Operations Center can manage a mix of servers that run Tivoli Storage Manager V7.1 and V6.3.4 or later. The only requirement is that the hub server needs to be updated to V7.1. Once the hub server is at V7.1, the spoke servers can be a mix of other V7.1 servers or V6.3.4 or later servers.
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Does the V7.1.1 Operations Center work with V7.1.0 and V6.3.4 servers?
Yes. The V7.1.1 Operations Center can manage a mix of servers that run Tivoli Storage Manager V7.1.1, V7.1.0 and V6.3.4 or later. The only requirement is that the hub server needs to be updated to V7.1.1. Once the hub server is at V7.1.1, the spoke servers can be a mix of other V7.1.1, V7.1.0, and V6.3.4 or later servers.
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What new capabilities are introduced in the V7.1 Operations Center?
The following list summarizes the new capabilities:
  • Server details pages provide an in-depth view of individual Tivoli Storage Manager servers. Details include capacity utilization over two weeks, customizable settings and properties, alerts for the server, and active and completed tasks (sessions and processes).
  • Details pages for individual clients have been updated to include customizable client settings and properties.
  • A client registration wizard, which simplifies the process of adding a new client and assigning the client to a server, policy domain, and optionally a schedule or option set.
  • An activity log viewer, which displays related messages for alerts and for active and completed tasks. For alerts, the viewer shows messages that occurred before and after the alert. For active and completed tasks, specific task-related messages are shown.
  • You can manage "at risk" settings for individual clients.
  • You can manually back up clients, storage pools, and the Tivoli Storage Manager server database.

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What new capabilities are introduced in the V7.1.1 Operations Center?
The following list summarizes the new capabilities:
  • The ability to create client schedules, manage which clients are assigned to which schedules, and to view and change existing client schedules.
  • Detailed information for storage pools.
  • Detailed information for policies (services).
  • A daily email report about the status and health of the TSM data protection environment. This report is a rollup across whichever servers are managed by the Operations Center. And the report can be emailed to TSM administrators and to non-administrators, it just requires an email address.
  • The ability to view server maintenance activities including whether or not they are scheduled by TSM (administrative schedules), or if they are run automatically by TSM such as Expiration or Datbase Backup, or if it was initiated by command.
  • Optionally, administrators can deploy a new product software package to their TSM clients which allows the Operations Center to reach out to the client and read the client log files. This only supports the TSM Backup/Archive client. And this requires additional setup in order to install the log viewer on to the individual client machines.

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Is the TSM Administration Center being shipped with 7.1?
No, the Administration Center is not shipped with 7.1. The Administration Center was updated by a patch to allow it to support up-level servers, such as working with a 7.1 server. To obtain the compatibility support that allows the Administration Center to work with the 7.1 server, download and apply the 6.3.4.300 Administration Center package. The latest maintenance package can be downloaded from: Administration Center Package. The Administration Center will not be shipped in 7.1 or future versions or releases of TSM and will not receive additional enhancements to support new functions or features of the product. The Operations Center is the user-interface delivered with 7.1 and is the interface that will deliver updates for currency such as browser levels, support for new Java versions, and such. And the Operations Center is also the user-interface where support for new functions and features of the product will be delivered.

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Where can I obtain the Operations Center?
You can obtain the Operations Center through the normal fulfillment channel for licensed products. With your existing TSM entitlement, you can download the Operations Center code (without a separate license) directly from Fix Central or the TSM support FTP site.
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How long does it take to install the Operations Center?
The Operations Center can usually be installed in just a few minutes. For most platforms, we have observed that the installation takes 3-5 minutes. This time can vary, depending on the hardware, operating system, and the time to read and respond to the installation prompts.
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Does the Operations Center work on mobile devices such as tablets or smartphones?
Yes, the Operations Center can be used from a tablet or smartphone. The Operations Center is a web-based application and requires appropriate Java and HTML support. Web browsers such as Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome are supported. The mobile interface is limited to read-only viewing.
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Do I still need a separate server for TSM reporting (Cognos)?
Yes, to perform TSM historical reporting with the included IBM Cognos Business Intelligence reporting engine, you will need a separate server for Cognos.
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What will I need Cognos for after I have the Operations Center?
The Operations Center dashboard is targeted at near-term monitoring and reporting for operational decision making. The Cognos custom reporting functionality that is included with your TSM license provides long-term reporting for trend analysis and supports strategic planning activities.
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Will the Operations Center replace the Administration Center?
Yes, the Operations Center is the central management interface going forward. Key capabilities of the Administration Center are already available in the Operations Center, and others are planned for future releases. Although the Administration Center is no longer shipped with the TSM server, it is still available for use.

The Administration Center and Operations Center have different resource requirements and browser support. Consider installing the Operations Center on the same system as one of your TSM servers.
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Can I install the Operations Center on the same system as my TSM Server?
Yes, for AIX, Windows, and Linux, the system requirements (memory, CPU, and disk space) for the Operations Center are quite small and should allow you to install the Operations Center on the same system as your existing TSM server.

You cannot install the Operations Center on an HP-UX or Solaris system, but the Operations Center can manage TSM servers running on these platforms. When you install the Operations Center on a supported platform (AIX, Windows, or Linux) and open it for the first time, a configuration wizard guides you through the process of connecting it to any server that has TSM V6.3.4 or later installed.
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Do I need to install the Operations Center on each of my TSM servers if I have more than one server?
No. The Operations Center only needs to be installed (on the same system as a TSM server or on a separate system) and configured to manage one of your TSM servers. After this is done, the other servers can be managed by this single instance of the Operations Center, using a "hub and spoke" architecture.

The Operations Center uses the hub server as the primary management point for all the servers being monitored and managed. The Operations Center only has to be associated with that single hub server. The other servers report their status and monitoring information to the hub server, which in turn coordinates with the Operations Center to display this information.

In an environment with multiple TSM servers, the following steps are required to set up the Operations Center:

1. Select an appropriate system and install the Operations Center on that system.
2. Configure the hub server connection for the Operations Center.
3. From within the Operations Center, navigate to the “Servers” page and run the “Connect Spoke” wizard for another TSM server that you want to manage from this instance of the Operations Center.

These additional TSM servers are spoke servers. Repeat this step for each additional server you want to manage as a spoke from this hub.
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What resources does a TSM server require to be managed by the Operations Center as either a hub or spoke server?
Operations Center management represents an additional workload on a given TSM server. This workload requires processor resources (CPU), memory, database space, archive log space, and I/O throughput capabilities to the server database.

· Processor resource (CPU): Plan for the Operations Center to require (consume) at least a single CPU processor core. This considers the base data collection and management operations for a server having up to 1000 clients registered. Incrementally, more CPU processor core resources are required as the client workload on a given server increases. The incremental increase is approximately 1/10 th of a processor core for each additional 1000 clients.

As an example, a server with 11000 clients registered would require approximately two dedicated CPU processor cores to support the status monitoring operations required by the Operations Center. It is likely that the hub server will incur the need for additional processor core resources because as each spoke server is added for management, the total number of clients managed by the hub grows by the number of clients managed by that spoke.

To illustrate, a hub server with 1000 clients will increase to an aggregate client workload of 11000 clients if it has 10 spoke servers, each with 1000 clients of their own. This configuration of a hub with 10 spokes is a case where two dedicated processor cores would be recommended.

· Memory (RAM): The Operations Center uses approximately 1 GB of memory to support its operations and use.

· Database Space: The Operations Center uses approximately 1.2 GB of database space for each 1000 clients monitored on a server. For example, consider a hub server that has 2000 clients registered to it and manages three spoke servers, each with 1500 clients. This is a total of 6500 clients across those four TSM servers and requires approximately 8.4 GB of database space. This value is calculated by rounding the 6500 clients up to the next closest 1000, which is 7000. (7 x 1.2 GB=8.4 GB.)

· Archive Log Space: The Operations Center uses approximately 8 GB of archive log space every 24 hours for every 1000 clients. Using the database space example above of 6,500 clients across the hub server and three spokes, this would result in 56 GB of archive log space used over a 24-hour period for the hub server.

For a given spoke server in this example, the archive log space used over 24 hours would be 16 GB. These estimates are based on the default status collection interval of five minutes. If you lower the collection interval from once every five minutes to once every three minutes, the space needs would increase from 56 GB to approximately 94 GB on the hub and from 16 GB to 28 GB on each spoke.

It is recommended that the archive log space be increased to have sufficient space available to support the Operations Center without causing impact to existing server operations.

Note: The archive log space usage assumes a database backup (Type=Full) running once per day. If a full database backup is occurring more frequently than once per day, this would reduce the amount of archive log space needed depending on the actual frequency of that operation.

· Database I/O: The Operations Center performs I/O to the server database to record status data during a status collection cycle, delete old records from the database, and to stage data in a ‘cache’ that is used by the Operations Center. These uses of the server database require that the database have reasonable performance capabilities.

To support the Operations Center, it is recommended that the server database have IOPS (I/O operations per second) of approximately 1500. An example configuration using SAS disk rated at 300 IOPS would require the TSM server database to use five disks to achieve a throughput capability of 1500 IOPS.

It is important to consider your existing server environment and its existing I/O throughput capabilities. If your server is not currently configured for at least 1500 IOPS, or if the existing server workload is pushing the available throughput to its limits, then adding the Operations Center is not recommended.

If a TSM server satisfies the resource requirements for the various items discussed, than it might be a suitable candidate as either a hub or spoke server and for management by the Operations Center.
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Is there a tool to help me estimate the resource requirements for a hub or spoke server?
Yes, the following technote provides a sizing estimation tool. This tool gathers some basic information about your environment and provides recommendations about the memory, CPU, and space requirements for running Operations Center. Sizing Tool for Operations Center
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Can I configure an existing TSM server that is used as a library manager as an Operations Center hub server?
In most cases, library manager servers do not have adequate resources to support the Operations Center. A TSM server should only be used as a hub or spoke server if it is configured to satisfy the minimum stated resource requirements for the Operations Center.
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How many TSM servers (hub plus spokes) can a single instance of the Operations Center support?
The primary consumer of hub and spoke server resources is the collection of status information for the TSM clients that are registered to each server. With the default status collection interval of five minutes, this requires approximately 1.2 GB of database space and 8 GB of archive log space for each 1000 clients that are managed by a given server. Consider a few examples:

Clients On Hub
Spoke Servers
Clients On Spoke
Total # of Clients
Hub Database Space (GB)
Hub Archive Log Space (GB)
2000
2
5000
12000
14.4
96
500
23
500
12000
14.4
96
1000
11
1000
12000
14.4
96

In this example, the impact to the hub server is the same in each case. However, the number of spoke servers varies quite a bit, based on the storage and resource requirements for supporting the sample environments.

If only 15 GB of space can be allocated for the database, or less than 100 GB for the archive logs, then the number of spokes that the hub server can support is determined by the total number of clients across the hub and spoke servers. This example assumes that network connectivity between the hub and spoke servers is not constrained or limited.
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Can a TSM server be both a hub and a spoke?
No. The supported topology is a hub and spoke model as illustrated below.


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What login credentials (ID and password) do I need to use the Operations Center?
To log in to the Operations Center, you must enter a TSM administrator ID that is registered on the hub server with System-level authority. This administrator ID should also be registered with the same password and authority level on each of the spoke servers that will be managed and monitored by this instance of the Operations Center.
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If I know the command or action I want to perform, is there a quick way to do it within the Operations Center?
Yes. The Operations Center provides a command-line window that can be opened and used from anywhere in the interface. The command line provides the same capabilities as the TSM administrative command-line client (dsmadmc).

To access the command line, hover your mouse pointer over the “globe” icon in the upper-right corner of the Operations Center and select Command Line. The command-line interface can recall previously issued commands, scroll through prior command results, route commands to multiple servers, and supports additional capabilities.
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Are there changes in the TSM server to support the Operations Center?
Yes. The TSM V6.3.4.0 and later server includes a number of changes to support the Operations Center. The following items summarize those changes:

· Status Collection and Monitoring: When the Operations Center is configured to monitor and manage a TSM server as either a hub or spoke, a new server capability for collecting and providing status data is enabled on the server.
· Alerts: TSM messages can be configured as alerts. Messages that are designated as alerts are managed through a lifecycle of active to inactive to closed. Alerts can be assigned to specific administrators for follow-up and resolution, and can be automatically emailed to specific administrators. Alerts are sent to the Operations Center as they occur, to help administrators manage the storage environment.

When you add a hub or spoke server to the Operations Center, a default set of alert messages is enabled on the server. You can add, remove, or modify alerts by using the TSM command line.
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How do I navigate the Operations Center?
The Operations Center is a web-based application. It is best to explore the interface with your mouse pointer to determine which areas are active, where hover help is shown, and where to find more information from the help system through “Learn more" links.

The active regions of a page are generally identified by a visual indication, such as a color change, when you mouse over them. These active regions can be clicked to open another page in the interface. To traverse back, you can use the browser back button or the menu bar. The following is a simplified navigation map for the 6.4.1.0 Operations Center:



A few tips:
· You can navigate to all primary elements through the top-level navigation or through the in-page navigation. For example, you can navigate to the All Servers view by clicking Servers in the menu bar or by clicking within the TSM Servers section in the Overview dashboard.
· You can bookmark pages in the interface using standard bookmark capabilities of web browsers. This allows you to navigate directly to a specific page by using saved bookmarks.
· Not all navigation is shown in this diagram. Only the primary navigation and general structure is illustrated.
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What does “At Risk” mean in the Operations Center?
The Operations Center considers recent activity for a client and determines whether the client is at risk of being unprotected. The "at risk" designation primarily indicates that an administrator should investigate a client issue to determine whether or not it creates a significant risk (based on the business goals, data protection strategy, and such).

The “at risk” processing considers clients that are automated using TSM scheduling. You can also monitor the risk status of clients that use external schedulers such as Tivoli Workload Scheduler (TWS) or other tools that are available from an application or operating system.

Refer to the hover help in the interface and the “Learn more” links for additional explanation about the “at risk” categories.
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What is the default URL to access the Operations Center?
The default URL to access the Operations Center is: https://<hostname>:11090/oc/. Note that "<hostname>" is just a place holder in this example and that this value should be the host name of the machine where the Operations Center is installed and running.
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Are there other enhancements or capabilities planned for the Operations Center?
Yes. The Operations Center emphasizes ease of use, simplification, and efficiency.
It provides the following benefits:
  • An exceptional level of visibility into the TSM server and client environments.
  • The ability to manage key elements of your TSM configuration.
  • Overviews and detailed information for almost all aspects of the storage environment, from availability of systems, to status of operations, storage capacity and provisioning.
  • A built-in command-line interface that provides complete access to the full power of the TSM command line.

The Tivoli Storage Manager team intends to deliver frequent updates to the Operations Center, which will extend visibility and add more control and automation capability. See the Service Management Connect for Operations Center website for news about the Operations Center.
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Are there known issues for the Operations Center?
For current information about known issues, see the following technotes: Return to list

Product Alias/Synonym

Tivoli Storage Manager TSM Operations Center OC

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Document information


More support for:

Tivoli Storage Manager
Server

Software version:

6.4, 6.4.1, 7.1, 7.1.1

Operating system(s):

All Platforms

Software edition:

Edition Independent

Reference #:

1641857

Modified date:

2014-09-12

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