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OmniCenter 11 Intro Guide – Part 1: Deployment and Setup

Welcome

OmniCenter using the “Dark” theme.

Thank you for considering OmniCenter – the enterprise-class network monitoring system that allows you to see everything across your enterprise with no clients, agents or probes. This guide will make acquiring, installing and getting started with OmniCenter as easy and painless as possible. We’ll even tell you how to prepare before diving in so you won’t feel lost or overwhelmed by OmniCenter’s enormous range of options.

In OmniCenter, the focus is on exceptions. This methodology is what really makes OmniCenter different from other monitoring systems. Rather than displaying every available piece of information on the screen at once, OmniCenter displays small, easy to digest amounts of high-level information that highlight problem areas quickly. You can then drill down into problems, as needed, for more detail. This keeps the interface less cluttered and more focused on addressing current problems. The difference this makes to ease of management, particularly in large networks with lots of devices to monitor, is dramatic.

If you would like to read some additional information about preparing your environment for OmniCenter (resource requirements, security, etc.), click the link below. Otherwise, you may continue to the deployment section.

Preparing for OmniCenter

Also, why not check out our FAQ page for quick answers to any questions you might have.

Deploying the OmniCenter Virtual Appliance

Currently, OmniCenter is available as a VA that can be deployed in three different virtual environments. Select from the links below for detailed instructions on how to deploy OmniCenter in your virtual environment.

The Setup Wizard

Once the OmniCenter virtual appliance is correctly installed and started, it’s time to run the setup wizard.

The Default OmniCenter IP Address
OmniCenter installs with a default private IP address of 192.168.252.2 assigned to it. In order to connect to this private address, you may need to temporarily change the IP address of the computer you are using to connect to and administrate OmniCenter. You can then change the OmniCenter IP address during the setup wizard.

However, if this is not practical for you, you can assign a new IP address to OmniCenter though the VM console before beginning the setup wizard.

Once you’re ready to start the setup wizard, proceed to the next section.

Running the Setup Wizard
Open a web browser and direct it to either the default OmniCenter IP address of 192.168.252.2 or the IP address you assigned if you changed it during the deployment of the virtual appliance (above). Log in with the following credentials:

  • Username: administrator
  • Password: administrator

When accessing OmniCenter for the first time, the setup wizard will start automatically. If necessary, you can jump to any step in the wizard by clicking on the header bar for that step. The individual steps covered by the wizard are detailed below.

Rerunning the Setup Wizard

If necessary, the setup wizard can be rerun at any time after it has been completed by simply entering your OmniCenter IP address into your browser address bar followed by /admin/startup_auto_discovery.php . OmniCenter’s current IP address can be found on the System Diagnostics page (ADMINISTRATION → System → Diagnostics) or the login screen.

The information collected during each step in the wizard is saved immediately when clicking the button to proceed to the next step. This will overwrite any existing information. So do not click any buttons within the setup wizard unless you are sure of the changes that need to be made.

Now, let’s look at each step of the setup wizard.

Step 1: Network Configuration

If you didn’t change the default OmniCenter IP address before starting the setup wizard, enter a new IP address, default gateway and DNS server address for OmniCenter in the fields provided. Click Save and Continue to apply the new settings and have your browser redirected to the new address and the next step.

If you changed the default IP address before starting the setup wizard, the fields should already contain the correct information and no changes should be necessary. Click Save and Continue to move on to the next step.

Step 2: License Activation

Enter your customer name along with the associated pin you received by email.

If the OmniCenter appliance is able to connected to the internet, click Auto License, and OmniCenter will automatically download and install the proper license for you and send you to the next step.

If the OmniCenter appliance is not able to connect to the internet, click Manual License. OmniCenter will generate and display a unique seed value. Use the link provided to open an online form where you can copy/paste the provided seed to retrieve your product and VPN keys (this can be done from any computer with internet access). Copy/paste the keys into the appropriate fields and click Submit to activate OmniCenter and move on to the next step.

Clicking either the Auto License or Submit buttons will save your information and take you to the next step.

Step 3: Product Updates

OmniCenter will automatically attempt to connect to the internet to download and apply any available software updates. If OmniCenter can’t connect to the internet, you can skip this step by clicking Skip Update.

If updates are available, click Yes to install them and move on to the next step. The wizard will automatically reopen to step 4.

Step 4: Remote Support Activation

This step allows OmniCenter to create a VPN connection to allow for interactive technical support and software upgrades.

Select ON or OFF and click Save VPN Change.

Finish

Once all options have been configured to your liking, click Device Discovery Wizard to move on.

The Device Discovery Wizard

Here you will be able provide default host alert contact information, default network credentials, core subnets for OmniCenter to scan, and virtual environment credentials. OmniCenter will then attempt to learn everything it can about your network. Providing good valid credentials here is very important to ensure that OmniCenter can communicate with your devices and retrieve all available data.

Default Host Alert Contact

The contact provided here will receive an alert about every downed host. If you have a dedicated business unit, such as a command center, that handles all such occurrences, use that. However, if there are multiple personnel in your organization who handle different downed hosts situations, this section can be left blank. You can then configure more specific host alert contacts within OmniCenter using device templates.

System Authentication

This section allows you to provide the credentials necessary for OmniCenter to communicate with the devices on your network. Click the + button to add additional SNMP community strings. Then, click the Test button next to each credential set to make sure that it works. Remember to add both SNMP and Windows credentials if both are present in your network.

Site Creation and Subnet Scanning

This section allows you to add the addresses of core subnets in your network that OmniCenter can use to begin scanning for connected devices.

Technically, only the address of one subnet is required, unless there are parts of your network that are inaccessible from it. However, adding the core subnets from each “section” of your network allows OmniCenter to automatically create sites that will help you to organize your devices, making management, monitoring and reporting much simpler.

It’s recommended that, for each part of your network that you would like to manage discreetly, you add the core subnet for that part.

Virtualization Environment Discovery

This section allows you to specify the address and credentials for a hypervisor so that OmniCenter can manage monitoring of virtual hosts and guests. Currently, only VMware vCenter and Microsoft Hyper-V hypervisors are supported. Virtual cloud resources are handled separately from within OmniCenter.

Finish

When all options are configured to your satisfaction, click the Start Discovery Now button to finalize your OmniCenter basic configuration and begin scanning for devices on your network.

Once the device discovery process has begun, it can take quite a while for OmniCenter to fully populate with all of your network devices (depending on the size of your network). However, OmniCenter is fully functional at this point, and you can still use and explore it completely in the meantime. So, feel free to begin the next section while OmniCenter is busy populating your devices.

Continued in part 2.

Updated on July 8, 2019

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