One of the cool new features that VMware has introduced into vRealize Operations 7.5 is the ability to deploy agents to monitor the operating systems and applications inside your virtual machines. With vRealize Operations 8.0, we have added the extra feature to be able to run custom scripts using the Application Monitoring agent, and then collect the script output as a metric. This provides a lot of flexibility and robustness to our in-guest monitoring feature, since now you can monitor any information that can be pulled by running a script inside your operating system.
In this blog, I will show off a simple bash script that checks for security patches in an Ubuntu VM, and then passes that metric to vRealize Operations, where we can create an alert to let us know if there are any patches available for our OS. This lets us centralize our Linux patch management into vRealize Operations, and lets us corollate our patching with other metrics collected by vRealize Operations to do things like patch when the system is the least busy, or when our app is least busy as reported by the application monitoring features in vRealize Operations.