In version 1909 of Configuration Manager, Microsoft implemented Orchestration Groups as a Pre-Release feature.
Orchestration Groups enable a few basic patching automation features, such as setting the patch installation order and specifying scripts to run before or after the patch is installed. These are very basic options that our Beekeeper Patching Automation software for System Center has been doing for years.
How does Beekeeper stack up in comparison to the pre-release features introduced in the newer versions of SCCM? Let's compare apples to apples.
The latest version of our Beekeeper patching automation software for System Center brings great new features like parallel patching, SQL Availability Group compatibility, daily scheduling, and more.
Beekeeper, our proprietary patching automation tool, can be integrated with Powershell scripts for customized patching validation and recovery options. Read on to learn how to insert mneuomics into your script to accomplish this as well as how to recover from failed patching when detected.
Whether you use Microsoft Hyper-V or VMware vSphere as your hypervisor, Beekeeper patching automation can help manage the VMs before and after patching. VM validations include:
You can add these validations to your patching process so you are automatically covered when it comes to compliance and VM configuration even after applying patches. Automating these processes is Beekeeper's specialty.
We have received requests to see more detail around what is happening while Beekeeper applies patches for devices. We have built a PowerShell script to query Beekeeper and the patched devices to display what is going on within Beekeeper and show the progress on individual patches.
To execute the script, you can run it on the Beekeeper server. Learn how below.
Before using Beekeeper for your patching cycle for Exchange DAGs, you should make sure the servers are healthy and ready to be patched. We have developed a script to assist you.
We return to our ongoing series on Beekeeper patching automation software penned by Beekeeper Product Manager John Hann. This entry describes how to link validation tasks to your various Application Groups, Failover Clusters, and Exchange DAGs.
This blog series shows you how to quickly import vital components for configuring and scheduling your patches using Beekeeper automation. Last week we looked at how to import data, this week we will demonstrate how to import a schedule for your patches.
When you enter data into Beekeeper Patching Automation, you use the UI to add servers groups, Windows Failover Clusters, and Exchange DAGs. Then, you assign validation tasks to these server groups or clusters. To create the execution job, you assign the server groups or clusters to a schedule. This can be time consuming.
I have created PowerShell scripts to do these tasks. In a series of blog posts, I will share these PowerShell scripts and go over their usage.
The first PowerShell script will export servers from an SCCM collection into a CSV. Then another script will import that CSV to create the appropriate Application groups, Windows Failover Clusters, or Exchange DAGs.
Using a PowerShell validation during any of the Beekeeper Execution Job phases, you can write information to the Windows Application Log. This helps enable discovery for SCOM. The Event Log Validation Pack is a collection of PowerShell validations that you can customize in your environment.
Learn how to implement this, including downloadable Validation Pack and code snippets, in this blog post. For more information about Beekeeper patching automation software, view the product page.