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Microsoft 365 Insight (Add-on)

Description

Microsoft 365 Insight is an add-on to Netreo that provides availability and performance monitoring for Microsoft 365 services, including Exchange, OneDrive, SharePoint, Skype, Teams and Yammer.

In addition to the monitoring performed by the Netreo appliance, additional Netreo agents may be deployed in the workstations of your organization to monitor performance for individual users.

Microsoft 365 availability and performance from all sources is aggregated and displayed in the Microsoft 365 Insight dashboard.

How Microsoft 365 Insight Works

Once the Microsoft 365 Insight add-on is activated and configured, Netreo then connects to the Microsoft 365 API on a regular schedule to retrieve all available data (much of which is not available from the 365 dashboard that Microsoft provides). Availability, performance and user information for each service is then displayed on Netreo’s Microsoft 365 Insight Dashboard (see below).

This add-on monitors the following metrics for Microsoft 365.

  • Availability status for each service.
  • Response times for each service.
  • Total storage volume per service over the last 24 hours.
  • Number of active/inactive users for each service over the last 24 hours.

To monitor the availability of a service, Netreo automatically creates a passive service check for each service. These service checks are updated with each call to the API for performance data (at 5-minute intervals). Failure to retrieve performance data from a Microsoft service causes its service check to go critical and send an alert notification.

Microsoft API Response Codes

The definitions for the service response codes provided by Microsoft’s 365 API can be found its official documentation here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/enterprise/view-service-health?view=o365-worldwide#status-definitions. (Within Netreo, the actual response code returned by a failed API call can usually be seen in the incident associated with the failure, as well as on the Service Status page.)

To monitor the performance of a service, synthetic checks executed by Netreo record login response times for each service. This performance data is stored for the standard period of time for statistics (see Data Retention in Netreo for more information about data storage).

For all services the following performance metrics are recorded:

  • Average round-trip response time.

For Microsoft Exchange, OneDrive and SharePoint the following additional performance metrics are recorded:

  • Data storage used per service.
  • Number of active/inactive users per service.

For Microsoft Exchange the following additional performance metrics are recorded:

  • Total Send Time
  • Total Receive Time
  • Send Handshake Time
  • Receive Handshake Time
  • Total Transaction Time

All of the availability service checks and performance measurements are based on a connection from your network (where Netreo is deployed) to Microsoft’s cloud services network. Values for availability and response times are updated approximately every 5 minutes, while storage and user data is updated once per day.

As with any monitored statistic in Netreo, threshold checks may be configured to actively monitor the values and alert on unacceptable performance or unusual activity levels.

The Microsoft 365 Insight Dashboard

The Microsoft 365 Insight dashboard is where Netreo displays availability and performance data for your Microsoft 365 product.

To view the dashboard go to the Netreo main menu and select Quick Views > Microsoft 365 Insight.

Navigation Tip

At the top right of the Microsoft 365 Insight dashboard there is a gear icon. If you are a user with the access level of admin or above, select this icon to jump straight to the Microsoft 365 Insight administration page. Select the icon again to return to the Microsoft 365 Insight dashboard,

Service Summaries

Across the top of the dashboard are service summaries for the six Microsoft 365 services.

Service summary

For each service, the following information is displayed.

Status Icons

  • Status
    The status of the service as seen from the local network. A problem here indicates a problem within the local network. If this icon is not green, select it to go to the Service Status page where you can view all service availability problems in more detail.
  • API
    The status of the service as reported by Microsoft’s management API. A problem here indicates a problem with the service on Microsoft’s side. (See here for Microsoft’s API status definitions.) If this icon is not green, select it to go to the Service Status page where you can view all service availability problems in more detail.
  • Threshold
    The status of the latency threshold check for every Netreo agent monitoring this service. A problem here indicates an exceeded threshold check on at least one agent. If this icon is not green, select it to go to the Exceeded Thresholds page where you can view all service threshold problems in more detail.

The color of a status icon indicates the status for that aspect of the service. The colors reflect the following states:

  • Green = OK
  • Blue = ACKNOWLEDGED
  • Yellow = WARNING
  • Red = CRITICAL

Latency Value Scale
Below the status icons is a latency value scale. All values displayed are based on 15-minute averages calculated for each agent connected to that service. (Raw latency values for each agent are retrieved every 5 minutes.)

The following values are displayed on the scale.

  • The min value on the left indicates the lowest average latency value of all the Netreo agents connected to that service.
  • The max value on the right indicates the highest average latency value of all the Netreo agents connected to that service.
  • The vertical line on the scale indicates the average of all the Netreo agent average latencies.
  • The triangle icon on the scale indicates the average latency to the service from the Netreo server.

Threshold Status Icons
Below the latency scale is a row of colored icons reflecting the status of the latency threshold check for every Netreo agent monitoring that Microsoft service. The number in the icon indicates the total number of agents with their latency threshold check in that state.

The icon colors represent the following statuses:

  • Green = OK
  • Blue = ACKNOWLEDGED
  • Yellow = WARNING
  • Red = CRITICAL
  • Gray = no latency threshold check configured for that agent

Performance/Usage

Below the service summaries is the Performance/Usage section of the dashboard. Select either Performance or Usage to display the relevant information.

Performance
(At least one Netreo agent must be deployed for this element to be displayed.)

The Performance view shows a world map that displays Netreo sites to which at least one Netreo agent has been assigned (sites must be configured for geo-coding to appear on the map).

The site icons display status data for any agents assigned to them. Use the + and buttons to zoom the map in and out, respectively. Sites that are too close to each other to be easily distinguished are grouped and display a cluster status icon.

Mouse over an icon on the map to see a summary for that site.

Select a site to navigate to that site’s dashboard. Select a cluster to zoom the map in and display the individual sites within that cluster.

Site status is updated for the map every five minutes.

Usage
The Usage view shows information about how Microsoft 365 is being used within your organization.

These graphs refresh every 24 hours and provide the following information.

  • Storage Use Per Service
    Below the services display, a horizontal bar graph shows storage use per service over the previous 24 hours.
  • Users Per Service
    Next to the storage use per service graph, a vertical bar graph shows users per service over the previous 24 hours. Select items in the legend to hide or show them in the graph.

Service Details

Selecting the name of a Microsoft 365 service or its icon in the a service summary displays a more detailed view of that service’s performance below the Performance/Usage section. Select the name/icon again to hide the view.

Response Time
The Response Time section of this view includes a response time graph, as well as average and peak response time indicators. Click and drag on the graph to zoom in the graph. Select Reset Zoom to zoom the graph back out.

Selecting the icon next to the section name opens a new browser tab showing a larger version of the graph and a table of deployed Netreo agents showing maximum, average and current response time values. The data on this page may be filtered based on time period.

Service Usage
Below response time is the Service Usage section of this view, showing a bar graph of active and inactive users of the service over the previous 24 hour period.

Microsoft 365 Insight Management

Only users with the access level of admin or above may set up and configure options for this add-on.

To configure the Microsoft 365 Insight add-on go to the Netreo main menu and select Administration > Modules > Microsoft 365 Insight.

When operating through a firewall Netreo must be allowed to connect to certain IP addresses and URLs (see Firewall Requirements for Netreo). Additionally, Netreo must be allowed to connect to Microsoft’s Exchange servers (to perform its email synthetic checks) and APIs (to retrieve data about services) as outlined in Microsoft’s documentation found here https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/office365/enterprise/urls-and-ip-address-ranges.

Prepare Microsoft 365 for connection to Netreo

Before Netreo can connect to Microsoft 365 there are a few steps you must take in your Azure portal to prepare. See Microsoft’s official documentation for details on how to perform the necessary steps outlined below. (For unofficial help with these steps see How to Configure Azure for Microsoft 365 Insight Monitoring.)

  1. Create and register a new application in your Azure Active Directory admin center. This application is how Netreo will communicate with Microsoft 365.
  2. Once you’ve created your application, be sure to note the following information about it. You will be required to enter this information into Netreo to configure the add-on.
    • Display name
    • Application (client) ID
    • Directory (tenant) ID
  3. Create a new client secret for your application and note its value. This value is also required to configure the add-on in Netreo.
  4. Assign the following API permissions to your new application.
    • Microsoft Graph:
      • Delegated permissions:
        • User.Read
      • Application permissions:
        • Group.Read.All
        • Directory.Read.All
        • User.Read.All
        • Application.Read.All
        • Reports.Read.All
    • Office 365 Management APIs:
      • Application Permissions:
        • ServiceHealth.Read
  5. You may now connect Netreo to Microsoft 365 using the procedure below.

Connect Netreo to Microsoft 365

Make sure you have completed the steps to Prepare Microsoft 365 for connection to Netreo above before attempting to connect.

  1. Go to the Netreo main menu and select Administration > Modules > Microsoft 365 Insight to open the administration page.
  2. In the Credentials panel:
    1. In the NAME field enter the Display name of the application you created in Azure.
    2. In the APPLICATION ID field enter the Application (client) ID.
    3. In the PASSWORD field enter the value from the application’s client secret.
    4. In the TENANT ID field enter the Directory (tenant) ID.
    5. In the SKYPE ID and SKYPE PASSWORD fields enter your Skype ID and password.
    6. In the MICROSOFT 365 ID and MICROSOFT 365 PASSWORD fields enter your Microsoft 365 ID and password in the appropriate fields.
  3. In the Synthetic Check panel:
    • In the Send section:
      1. In the SMTP SERVER field, enter the domain name of the external mail server that will be used to send the test email and select a port number to use.
      2. In the DESTINATION EMAIL field, enter the email address that will be tested.
      3. In the FROM EMAIL field, enter the email address that will be used to send the test email.
      4. In the ACCOUNT USERNAME and ACCOUNT PASSWORD fields enter the account username and password of the “from” email address and switch SMTP AUTHENTICATION to ON, if necessary.
        • The username and password are optional, but most external mail servers require authentication to send mail.
    • In the Receive section:
      1. In the RECEIVE SERVER field, enter the domain name of the internal mail server where the destination email resides. This is the email server that you want to check.
      2. Select the RECEIVE SERVER TYPE for that server.
      3. In the RECEIVE SERVER PORT field specify the port on the “receive” server that must be used, if necessary.
      4. In the ACCOUNT USERNAME and ACCOUNT PASSWORD fields enter the account username and password from the destination email address.
      5. Switch USE SSL to ON, if SSL required by your email server.
  4. Select Save.

Netreo will immediately connect to Microsoft 365 and begin populating the Insight dashboard.

Netreo recommends using a dedicated email address, that is not shared, as the destination address for monitoring Exchange performance.

Edit a service availability passive service check

  1. Go to the Netreo main menu and select Administration > Modules > Microsoft 365 Insight to open the administration page.
  2. Select the Services tab.
  3. In the Service Checks table locate the service check that you would like to edit.
  4. Select its edit icon in the ACTIONS column.
  5. Edit the service check as desired. See Service Checks for information about each field.
  6. Select Update when finished.

Add a threshold check to a service

A threshold check may be added to any performance statistic that Netreo collects.

  1. Go to the Netreo main menu and select Administration > Modules > Microsoft 365 Insight to open the administration page.
  2. Select the Thresholds tab.
  3. In the Threshold Options panel select the statistic to which you would like to add a threshold check.
  4. In the ACTION GROUP field select the action group(s) to receive alert notifications when the check enters the CRITICAL state, and at each renotification interval.
  5. In the ESCALATION GROUP field select the action group(s) to receive alert notifications at each renotification interval after escalation.
  6. In the RENOTIFICATION INTERVAL field enter the number of minutes for Netreo to wait before sending another alert notification if the problem has not been acknowledged by a user.
    • Alert notifications are sent to the action groups in the ACTION GROUP field.
    • The default value of 1440 minutes (24 hours) is recommended to minimize alert noise.
    • Setting a value of 0 (zero) will disable renotifications.
  7. In the ESCALATE AT field enter the number of alert notifications after the first for Netreo to wait before sending alert notifications to the action groups in the ESCALATION GROUP field, as well as to the groups in the ACTION GROUP field.
    • The default value of 1 means that a total of 2 alerts must be sent before escalation groups start receiving them.
  8. In the STATISTICAL GROUP field select the type that has the greatest relevance to the check. This field determines which statistical calculations this check contributes to for reports.
  9. (Optional) If you would like to configure static threshold monitoring (repeat these steps for each variable if two variables are present):
    1. In the HIGH warning field (yellow) enter the exact value at which the check should enter the WARNING state for high values.
      • Next to the value type, select the multiplier prefix.
    2. In the HIGH critical field (red) enter the exact value at which the check should enter the CRITICAL state for high values.
      • Next to the value type, select the multiplier prefix.
    3. In the LOW warning field (yellow) enter the exact value at which the check should enter the WARNING state for low values.
      • Next to the value type, select the multiplier prefix.
    4. In the LOW critical field (red) enter the exact value at which the check should enter the CRITICAL state for low values.
      • Next to the value type, select the multiplier prefix.
    5. In the TIME PERIOD field select the time period over which data values will be sampled for the calculated average.
      • See Best Practices on the Threshold Checks page.
  10. (Optional) If you would like to configure anomaly detection (repeat these steps for each variable if two variables are present):
    1. In the Boundary field select whether to check for upper boundary anomalies, lower boundary anomalies or both.
    2. In the Sensitivity warning field (yellow) select the desired sensitivity. (This should always be at least one setting higher than the critical sensitivity field, so that the warning state occurs first.)
    3. In the Sensitivity critical field (red) select the desired sensitivity. (This should always be at least one setting lower than the warning sensitivity field, so that the warning state occurs first.)
    4. In the Season field select the desired season for the data samples.
    5. (Optional) In the Min Value field set the minimum value that a polled value must be to qualify for anomaly detection.
      • The value entered in this field should be specified in the same base unit displayed in the static threshold configuration, without the prefix (for example: bytes, not megabytes; seconds, not milliseconds). Note: For bandwidth monitoring (only), the value must be specified in bits per second, and not as a percentage.
  11. Select Create Threshold.

Edit a threshold check for a service

  1. Go to the Netreo main menu and select Administration > Modules > Microsoft 365 Insight to open the administration page.
  2. Select the Thresholds tab.
  3. In the Office 365 Threshold Configuration table locate the threshold check that you would like to edit and select its edit icon.
  4. Edit the threshold check as desired. See Threshold Checks for information about each field.
  5. Select Edit Threshold when finished.

Disable a threshold check for a service

Threshold checks in Netreo may not be removed once added. However, they may be disabled to prevent them from monitoring their given statistic. Disabling a threshold check prevents that specific check from monitoring its given statistic, but the statistic is still polled for values and those values are still recorded.

  1. Go to the Netreo main menu and select Administration > Modules > Microsoft 365 Insight to open the administration page.
  2. Select the Thresholds tab.
  3. In the Office 365 Threshold Configuration table locate the threshold check that you would like to disable.
  4. Select its deactivate switch (select again to re-enable this check).
Updated on January 11, 2021

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