Archive for: ‘April 2013’

Finally – Exchange Connector 3.0 RTM!

April 27, 2013 Posted by Anders Asp

Everyone has been using it for quite some time, but now the official, supported, version is here!

In order to run this version of the connector, you will need to have the newly released SP1 UR2 installed.

Please note that the SendEmail solution is no longer part of the Exchange Connector package and still remains unsupported. It can now be found at the TechNet gallery for those who still want to use it (which you do 🙂 )!
Service Request:

Now, I haven’t installed and tried this version yet, but I will get to it as soon as possible. Looking at the documentation for the connector it seems like it’s the same old unsupported version that we all know, with some minor exceptions:



Issues when configuring SharePoint 2010

April 22, 2013 Posted by Anders Asp

(Even though this isn’t directly related to Service Manager nor System Center, I still think it is an appropriate post to have here since SharePoint 2010 is a requirement for the SSP in SCSM.)

I’ve heard about this issue a couple of times but haven’t actually bumped into it myself until today. After installing SharePoint 2010 (Foundation i my case), you get an error saying “Configuration Failed. Failed to create the configuration database” when running the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard to complete your installation.


The reason why you are getting this error, is because you are trying to configure SharePoint to run on a SQL server 2012. When SharePoint 2010 was created, there were no 2012 version of SQL so the wizard is a bit confused when trying to run the configuration. To resolve this, you need to download and install Service Pack 1 for SharePoint, then when you re-run the Configuration Wizard, everything should be fine.

Notification to Service Owner when creating a Problem

April 17, 2013 Posted by Alexander Axberg


In this blogpost I describe how to set up a mail notification workflow, that will send mail to the Service Owner when you add that service as an “Affected Service” when creating a new Problem.

In this example you can see that I’ve added the service E-Mail, and that the user “Administrator” is the current Business Service owner, who will recieve the mail.


The trick is to create the relationship to “Service Owner” manually in XML, since you can’t select it from the console. The relation between the problem ticket and the service is stored in “System.WorkItemAboutConfigItem”. The relationship looks like this:

<WorkflowArrayParameter Name="PrimaryUserRelationships" Type="string">
 <Item>$Context/Path[Relationship='CustomSystem_WorkItem_Library!System.WorkItemAboutConfigItem' TypeConstraint='System!System.Service']/Path[Relationship='System!System.ConfigItemOwnedByUser' TypeConstraint='System!System.User']$</Item>


Here is a complete Management Pack containing that workflow:

<ManagementPack ContentReadable="true" SchemaVersion="2.0" OriginalSchemaVersion="1.1" xmlns:xsd="" xmlns:xsl="">
 <Name>Problem Created</Name>
 <Reference Alias="EnterpriseManagement">
 <Reference Alias="CustomSystem_WorkItem_Library">
 <Reference Alias="CustomSystem_Library">
 <Reference Alias="EnterpriseManagement1">
 <Reference Alias="SystemCenter">
 <Reference Alias="SystemCenter1">
 <Category ID="Category.030336f5653f4e028b222b9bbe70bfd0" Value="EnterpriseManagement!Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.ServiceManager.ManagementPack">
 <Category ID="Category.cdf0a383046642f6a47f1755c1e2978d" Target="NotificationSubscription_9fa9d9b3_80fd_4538_a82b_2a181deb61ee" Value="EnterpriseManagement1!Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.ServiceManager.Rules.WorkflowSubscriptions" />
 <Rule ID="NotificationSubscription_9fa9d9b3_80fd_4538_a82b_2a181deb61ee" Enabled="true" Target="SystemCenter!Microsoft.SystemCenter.SubscriptionWorkflowTarget" ConfirmDelivery="true" Remotable="true" Priority="Normal" DiscardLevel="100">
 <DataSource ID="DS" TypeID="SystemCenter1!Microsoft.SystemCenter.CmdbInstanceSubscription.DataSourceModule">
 <InstanceSubscription Type="422afc88-5eff-f4c5-f8f6-e01038cde67f">
 <AddInstance />
 <WriteAction ID="WA" TypeID="SystemCenter1!Microsoft.EnterpriseManagement.SystemCenter.Subscription.WindowsWorkflowTaskWriteAction">
 <WorkflowParameter Name="SubscriptionId" Type="guid">$MPElement$</WorkflowParameter>
 <WorkflowArrayParameter Name="DataItems" Type="string">
 <WorkflowArrayParameter Name="InstanceIds" Type="string">
 <WorkflowArrayParameter Name="TemplateIds" Type="string">
 <WorkflowArrayParameter Name="PrimaryUserRelationships" Type="string">
 <Item>$Context/Path[Relationship='CustomSystem_WorkItem_Library!System.WorkItemAboutConfigItem' TypeConstraint='System!System.Service']/Path[Relationship='System!System.ConfigItemOwnedByUser' TypeConstraint='System!System.User']$</Item>
 <RetryExceptions />
 <LanguagePack ID="ENU" IsDefault="false">
 <DisplayString ElementID="ManagementPack.77a399a63b514841aae0529b06df0070">
 <Name>Problem Created</Name>
 <DisplayString ElementID="NotificationSubscription_9fa9d9b3_80fd_4538_a82b_2a181deb61ee">
 <Name>Problem Created</Name>
 <LanguagePack ID="SVE" IsDefault="false">
 <DisplayString ElementID="NotificationSubscription_9fa9d9b3_80fd_4538_a82b_2a181deb61ee">
 <Name>Problem Created</Name>

MMS 2013

April 16, 2013 Posted by Anders Asp


Times flies when you are having fun – MMS is over for this year!

MMS2013For those of you waiting for an announcement of new versions or new products, I’m sorry to dissapoint you… Nothing new were announced or informed this year. But that doesn’t mean that MMS was bad, no, not at all! To be honest, I had a great time – meeting old and making new friends, attending to great sessions with great speakers, hosted a Birds of a Feather session with my authoring friends, recorded a MVA video together with Brad Bird (thanks for inviting me!) and last but not least, arranging the Friends of SCSM event.

Meeting old and making new friends

This is one of the best thing with MMS. To meet people in person and get a face on that person which name you’ve seen so many times on the forums, blogs, mail list or whatever. The networking oppertunities during MMS is without a doubt the best!

Great sessions with great speakers

As usual, MMS is packed with loads of great sessions! If you weren’t able to attend or if the session you wanted to see collided with each other, you can always take a look at the sessions now from your computer:

I just want to highlight two great sessions which i really encourage you to watch:

“Configuring Service Manager for Performance and Scale” with Nathan Lasnoski

“Best Practices For Runbook Authoring and Managing Orchestrator” with Pete Zerger and Anders Bengtsson

Birds of a Feather

You probably know that I co-authered the book called System Center 2012 Service Manager Cookbook with some System Center ninjas? Well, anyway, Steve Beaumont figured it would be nice to arrange a Birds of a Feather to cover things we weren’t able to cover in the book and answer questions that you might have had. Said and done – here’s all the authors on the stage hosting the BoF called “System Center 2012 Service Manager Cookbook – Desserts Chapter”.


From left to right: Me, Dieter Gasser, Andreas Baumgarten, Sam Erskine, Steve Beaumont

Signing some books

Signing some books

Recorded a video for MVA

This was a really unexpected thing that my friend Brad Bird invited me to do. He had been invited to record a video on Service Manager Architecture and Connectors and asked me to join him – which I gladly did! Thanks for the invite Brad!

I have no idea how the video turned out yet – hopefully it is okey but I wish Brad and I would have gotten the time to rehearse it atleast once before recording it! 😛

Ongoing recording!

Ongoing recording!

Friends of SCSM

This is something that Andreas Baumgarten and I arranged for the first time last year, but since everyone seemed to like the concept of it, we arranged it this year as well. Basically, we invited a big group of Service Manager enthusiast and made sure there was a place where we all could gather to have some food and beer. How could food and beer together with great discussions regarding Service Manager and community projects be anything other than great success? 🙂


Do you recognize any of the people in these pictures? 🙂

So to sum it all up – MMS 2013 was great and I really hope we’ll see MMS in Las Vegas next year as well!

Modify the timeformat in the Self-Service Portal

April 10, 2013 Posted by Alexander Axberg

If you need to update the format of how the timestamp in the portal is displayed (from 12-hour to 24-hour for example), go to the Portal with a Sharepoint-admin account.


Go to the Site Actions-button in the top-left corner, select Site Settings.

Under Site Administration, click Regional settings. Adjust the format to the desired setting and click “Ok”.


Update Rollup 2 for SC 2012 SP1 released

April 9, 2013 Posted by Anders Asp

The Update Rollup 2 for System Center Service Pack 1 has just been released.

Here’s the patch notes for Service Manager.

Service Manager (KB2828618)

Issue 1
If the number of “Manual Activities” that are displayed in the Service Manager Portal exceeds a certain limit, page loads may time out and do not render correctly. This results in a blank page.

Issue 2
Incorrect cleanup of a custom related type causes grooming on the EntityChangeLog table to stall. This causes the table to grow significantly.

Issue 3
Service requests complete unexpectedly because of a race condition between workflows.

Issue 4
The console crashes when you double-click a parent incident link on an extended incident class.

Issue 5
PowerShell tasks that were created by using the authoring tool do not run because of an incorrect reference to certain assemblies.

Issue 6
The Exchange management pack is stuck in a Pending state after management pack synchronization.

So we have fixes for several bugs, where I’d say that Issue 3 is the one that caused me most pain.

I’ve not been able to test it yet and won’t be able to do so until I get back home from the MMS in Vegas, but if I find anything unexpected I’ll update this post.

Note that it doesn’t look like that the Exchange connector is included in the UR itself, so my guess is that we’ll see it as a separate download.

See this link for all details:

MVP renewal

April 1, 2013 Posted by Anders Asp

It’s a real honor to be renewed as a “System Center Cloud and Datacenter Management” MVP for 2013! This will be my second year as an MVP and I’m really looking forward for another year with the “CDM family”. It’s great to have a group of likeminded people to discuss and share your ideas and questions with!

Anders Asp MVP

//Anders Asp