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Home > Success Center > Server & Application Monitor (SAM) > SAM - Knowledgebase Articles > Microsoft Office 365 template FAQs

Microsoft Office 365 template FAQs

Updated July 31, 2018

 

As described in the Microsoft Office 365 templates overview, SAM includes out-of-the-box application templates for Office 365 that you can use to gather metrics for your Office 365 subscription services. This article answers Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Office 365 templates, including:

 

Want to see how other SAM pros leverage Office 365 templates? See Microsoft Office 365 template tips (SAM) and visit our online IT community, THWACK.

Microsoft Office 365 is Software as a Service (SaaS) that doesn't run on my servers. What type of polling method should I use for Office 365 nodes?

SAM's Office 365 templates use PowerShell scripts to monitor nodes that you assign to Microsoft URLs so it may be easier to create a single node, use External as the polling method, and apply the templates to it. For example, you can configure a node and assign it to outlook.office365.com to gather metrics via the Outlook Mail API.

If you use ICMP as the polling method for an Office 365 template, SAM can ping the node to retrieve a basic Up/Down status. External nodes always display a purple icon without status because the api.admin.microsoftonline.com URL doesn't respond to ping requests — so the Up/Down status is unknown. 

Here are the external node and ICMP node icons, for comparison:nodeiconsnew.png

If you use ICMP as the polling method, use the Dynamic IP Address option so SAM updates nodes automatically if the IP address changes. Otherwise, SAM binds to the first IP address that resolves and won't update automatically if that IP address changes.

DefineNode.png

Should I split Office 365 templates across nodes or point them toward a single node?

The Subscription, Security Statistics, and License Statistics templates all reference the same Microsoft API — api.admin.microsoftonline.com, so your best bet is to point those templates to a single node assigned to that address. Splitting Office 365 templates across nodes can be confusing because you'll have to remember which component monitors reside on each node.

How can I improve the readability of detailed data output from Office 365 templates?

Microsoft APIs return polled data in comma-delimited format which is great for programming but not so readable for humans. To increase readability, you can modify your own copies of the scripts, as described here.

Replace this code:

[string]::Join( ", ", $users) 

With the following code:

[string]::Join( "< br/>", $users)

This modification injects HTML directly into the output from the PowerShell script. Data may display properly in the Orion Web Console but can produce unexpected results in other types of SAM output, such as reports.

 

Why are Office 365 templates so different from the Exchange 2016 templates? 

Office 365 is SaaS so many of the metrics polled in SAM's earlier Exchange templates are either not available or not meaningful. Metrics like disk I/O and disk latency aren't available for a cloud service because the hardware is abstracted away from the user. Similarly, attempting to monitor processes and services on cloud-based hosts is not possible. The Office 365 templates focus primarily on application data because that what is available through the Office 365 API.

 

Can I use the MAPI round-trip template created for Exchange against Office 365?

The Messaging Application Programming Interface (MAPI) round-trip template was designed to check connectivity between multiple Exchange servers. Because Office 365 is SaaS, you don't control the physical servers used for your accounts. With cloud-based applications, you should check connectivity between your network and the Office 365 website. 

You can get a sense of this connectivity by using the ICMP polling option discussed in What type of polling method should I use for Office 365 nodes. You can also use SolarWinds NetPath to show the actual path connections take to access Microsoft APIs, or use SolarWinds Web Performance Monitor (WPM) to record a typical Office 365 mail transaction and get perspective on each part of the session.

Disclaimer: Please note, any content related to third-party products posted herein is provided as a suggestion or recommendation to you for your internal use. Your organization should internally review and assess to what extent, if any, such custom scripts or recommendations will be incorporated into your environment.  You elect to use third party content at your own risk, and you will be solely responsible for the incorporation of the same, if any.

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