Yet More Monitoring Topics in SBS 2003! [Windows Small Buisness Server 2003 Best Practices]

Yo ho ho! I am harrybbbb, the author of the Windows Small Business Server 2003 Best Practices book. Each day I host a virtual reading and post up a passage from da’ purple book. Today it is yet even MORE monitor chatter.


Harry Brelsford, CEO at smb nation

Microsoft Small Business Specialist SBSC, MBA, MCSE, MCT, MCP, CNE, CLSE, CNP

PS – did u know I host an annual conference in Seattle each october for SBSers and SMB consultants? This year we help launch SBS 2008 and Essential Business Server (EBS) between October 4-6!


More Monitoring Topics

Forward we move. Here are some considerations in the SBS 2003 monitoring area.


There are many good network performance monitoring white papers on the concept of baselining. This is the idea. You visit a client site and conduct a site survey (create an as-built drawing of the network layout, take initial baseline performance readings using a variety of tools, etc.). You then have a comprehensive baseline of the SBS 2003 network. At future dates, say quarterly, you revisit the SBS 2003 network and simply repeat the same performance measurements. Over time, you build up a hell of a data base, can track declines in performance with precision, and can lucidly plan for network enhancements based on solid performance data. If you’re an SBS consultant, you can bill some great hours providing this valuable service for your customers.

More Monitoring Tools

There are more monitoring tools than you might imagine in SBS 2003 and the underlying Windows Server 2003 operating system. By order of popularity, these are:

Health Monitor

Clearly this is one advanced tool I’m going to do an injustice to in the introductory text. But I can point you to the best darn tome on Health Monitor you’ll ever read: the online Health Monitor help system. Print it, read it, and use it. Configuring Health Monitor is very easy in SBS 2003 (you don’t need to use the native Health Monitor snap-in which can be overwhelming). To configure Health Monitor alerts, simply select the Change Alert Notifications link on the Monitoring Small Business Server page (Monitoring and Report in the Server Management console) as shown in Figure 12-10.


 Visit for the latest updates for any Microsoft product.

Figure 12-10

The most common monitor concerns are “pre-configured” for you in SBS 2003 and available when you use the performance monitoring function.


The idea behind the easy user interface to configure alerts was to encourage SBS customers to leverage the Health Monitor database and take advantage of the information being gathered. At the end of the day, it contributes to a smooth running SBS 2003 server machine!

By the way, the traditional view of the full Health Monitor application is no longer a part of the management console in SBS 2003. It’s accessed from the Administrative Tools program group. You’ll need to know that as you complete the following double-dare.

BEST PRACTICE: Consider this a challenge or a double-dare now that you’re nearing the end of this book and probably have developed some budding SBS skills. Using the online help system for Health Monitor, create an alert that fires to you when your SBS 2003 server

Chapter 12 Monitoring SBS 2003

machine disk storage falls below 40 percent free space, 20 percent free space, and 10 percent free space. The idea behind these successive alerts is that the first alert gets you thinking about purchasing more storage. The second alert reminds you again to purchase more storage. And by the time you receive the third alert (10 percent free disk space), you are running out to the local electronics store to purchase hard disks! Good luck in your quest.


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