Prognosis for Cisco UC has been around for over 18 years, lots and lots of little features have been added over the years. All of these are based on real customer requests for real situations where administrators need to handle and resolve. Here are three recent enhancements made in Prognosis 11.3 - 11.5 which might make your life easier in case you are not aware.
Cisco Server Certificates Expiry Monitoring
Certificates are absolutely critical to manage correctly in the UC space. Knowing status of your certificates a quarter, or even more, out is important as 3rd party certs can take time to acquire and find a window to apply. Although syslog for cert expiring in 7 days does come across as a ciritical message of severity 2 from Cisco, the CertValidLessThanMonth which triggers when a cert is to be expired in less than 30 days is only a warning message of severity 4. This is a problem as enabling Call Manager to send severity 4 messages means the level of syslog data could be intense, as even call errors via syslogs will be sent, making that stream of syslog extremely verbose.
In Prognosis 11.5, new records CallManagerApplianceCertificates(CMACERTS) has been added, covering Cisco Unified Communications Manager, Cisco Unity Connections, Cisco Unified Presence and Cisco Emergency Responder, plus and CMSCertificates (CMSCERTS) has been added to cover Cisco Meeting Server.
With Prognosis thresholds, the set up of alerts for certificates expiry can be more flexible. Out-of-the-box, the default alert is set to be send when any certificate is to expire within 60 days. Giving people plenty of time to organise creation of a new certificate, as well as finding a change window to put it in place.
Just like the rest of threshold in Prognsois, if 60 days is not want you want and in fact 30 days is enough time, but you just don't want the hassle of getting all the severity 4 alerts from CUCM, then it can easily be changed.
In addition, there are bugs with CertValidLessThanMonth on Cisco Emergency Responder as described in
which is yet to have a known fixed release for now.
Note: While command line access to Cisco Unity connections and Cisco Emergency Responder already existed prior to Prognosis 11.5, the same is not true for Cisco Unified Communications Manager and Cisco Unified Presence Servers. Hence, please note that credentials will need to be set up after upgrading to Prognosis 11.5 before data will start populating.
New Phone model and Firmware counting plus Usage Report
Cisco published a list of deprecated phones in June 2016 (http://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/voice_ip_comm/cucm/rel_notes/11_5_1/fieldNotice/cucm_b_fn-depre... that will not work, as registration will be blocked if the CUCM is upgraded to 11.5. As such, it is very important for administrator to check the phone deployed and its usage before performing the CUCM upgrade.
Two small enhancements that were done as part of our Prognosis 11.3 and 11.4 are "New Phone model and firmware counting" as well as "Cisco Phone Model Usage Report" which can be used to help an administrator to easily pull up information to show all potentially impacted phones and/or users in an environment.
While the CallManagerAppliancePhone (CMAPhone) record in Prognosis has always contained information regarding the product/model and load for an individual phone, a new record CallManagerAppliancePhoneProductLoadSummary (CMAPPSUM) and a new Display, Cisco Phones by Model, have been added which are used to count the number of phones by model and phone load within a cluster.
From this, adminsitrators can immediately see there are 7912 phones actively registered in the environment and the end user associated with the actual phone. However, it is not 100% how heavily those phones are in use or whether all of these phones are in fact heavily used and needed to be replaced immediately.
In Prognosis 11.4, extra Cisco product and firmware information that indicates the phone model has been added to the CallManagerCall (CMCALL) record. Users can look up the details of the phone model of both the origin and destination devices. This information can then be used to analyze the usage pattern of particular phone models like the deprecated ones above.
In addition, it can also be used to see for example the different usage of Jabber on various platforms like:
Note: The extra fields in the CallManagerCall (CMCALL) record have been added to the new Cluster Call Database. The extra CallManagerApplianceDeviceUsage (CMADEVUS) record has been added to the new Cluster database.
Please note that users will need to stop and restart their Cluster and Cluster Call databases after the upgrade to 11.4. This will allow Prognosis to pick up new data to be used in the new reports. Consideration should also be given to adjusting the wrapping size of these databases according to the needs of the environment.
There are interesting items like this in every new release of Prognosis. To ensure you never miss any enhancement that might be of interest, you can at least go through the headings in the New and Changed Features section in each of the release notes to search for little gold nuggests like these to help you with your day-to-day Cisco UC management via Prognosis.
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