Azure Arc-Enabled System Center Virtual Machine Manager Adds Management Perks

The preview enables centralized management for cloud and premises VMs.

Microsoft has added Azure management capabilities to Azure Arc-enabled System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM), per a Friday announcement.

Azure Arc-enabled SCVMM is currently at the preview stage. It lets System Center customers "connect their VMM environment to Azure and perform VM self-service operations from Azure portal," Microsoft explained in this "Overview" document. Microsoft touts the consistency of using the Azure Portal for management with this approach. It works across so-called "hybrid environments" (cloud services plus customer premises environments).

Other perks from using Arc-enabled SCVMM include the ability to use Azure role-based access controls for administrator permissions, a "single-pane view" of VMM resources, plus the ability to "onboard existing SCVMM managed VMs to Azure," the document added.

Per the announcement, the added Azure management capabilities available for Arc-enabled SCVMM preview users include:

  • Security for virtual machines via the Microsoft Defender for Cloud service
  • The use of Azure Update Manager for patching, and
  • Monitoring VMs via the Azure Monitor portal.

The announcement further explained that "all the Azure management capabilities that are available for Arc-enabled servers are now available for Arc-enabled SCVMM."

These Azure management benefits can be had by organizations when they start with Arc-enabled SCVMM or start with Azure Arc-enabled servers, the announcement suggested. The announcement included configuration steps to follow in both cases.

Microsoft's "QuickStart guide" for connecting SCVMM management servers to Azure Arc indicated that SCVMM management server version 2016 or later is a requirement. Organizations also need to have a private cloud with a "minimum free capacity of 16 GB of RAM, 4 vCPUs with 100 GB of free disk space."

IT pros download an onboarding script that creates an "Azure Arc resource bridge" to use the service.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for 1105 Media's Converge360 group.


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