- ease of management
- complete overview of the infrastructure
- unique and centralized console
- differentiated licenses depending on whether you have VMs or physical servers
- license prices too different between VMs and physical servers
- initial configuration not very fast
- you are the systems engineer for a company and you have a complex data center in a Microsoft environment,
- you need to centralize the management of your data center in a single point
- you want to check its performance, make detailed analysis after a downed service
- you want to analyze what happened
- Image deployment.
- Patch management.
- Remote management.
- Sometimes it seems to take several times to get things added or changed in the system. For instance we have to add the OS that we want to me deployed a couple times.
- Can have some time delay when using it.
- Some management tools may be unavailable at certain times.
- Storing drivers for our different model computers we have.
- Being able to have central server for Windows Patches
- The system analyzer is also a great tool to see what security risks our computers we deploy have.
- Injecting the correct drivers could be a little easier.
- I love being able to image the different machine setups we have with one system.
- I also love being able to manipulate windows settings without having to use group policy.
- Patch management and taking over WSUS is a great feature.
- More detailed information on where installs are at.
- Easier and more granular reporting would be nice.
- Ease of use.
We used Microsoft System Center and Windows Azure Pack to build our Private Cloud. On the backend we are using VMware. We built self service portal with WAP, approval process with System Center Service Manager (through WAP portal or email), automated deployment of the requested vms with Orchestrator and VMM. Everything is monitored with Operations Manager. Right now we are using it only for our DEV environment but next step is to do for our production environment. Developers can request vm (windows, red hat, Linux) in different regions and get the vm in less then 1 hour comparing to days through traditional way.
Our Desktop Support team is managing images and software with Configuration Manager.
- System Center Orchestrator - best tool for automation I have ever used.
- System Center Virtual Machine Manager - nice way to manage your hyper v and VMware infrastructure.
- VMM - currently you can't build vm from Linux template and customize the vm if you are running VMware on backend.
- Service Manager - email notification could be better, for a lot of notifications we need to use Orchestrator.
If you are thinking to build Private Cloud, I think it is a great product. I have experience with few VMware vrealize and I think Microsoft product is much more flexible and it has many more features.
If you are not thinking to build Private Cloud but you are Hyper V shop, the product is a must.
Microsoft System Center Scorecard Summary
About Microsoft System Center
Microsoft System Center Suite is a family of IT management software for network monitoring, updating and patching, endpoint protection with anti-malware, data protection and backup, ITIL- structured IT service management, remote administration and more.
It is available in two editions: standard and datacenter. Datacenter provides unlimited virtualization for high density private clouds, while standard is for lightly or non-virtualized private cloud workloads.
Microsoft System Center Technical Details