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Nimble Hotfix Monitor service for the Windows storage subsystem


Do you keep your Windows hosts and VMs updated on a regular basis? Do you worry about data integrity issues and data loss? If you (Customers who) need to keep your systems up and running then you should know about Nimble Hotfix Monitor service, which will help application uptime and safeguard data.

As a Windows IT administrator you can download hotfixes, and service packs to keep your Windows-based servers up and running. These patches, Windows Service packs, and hotfixes are updates to Windows operating systems to resolve a known issues or workarounds. Moreover, service packs update hosts or VMs to the most current code base. Being on the current code base is important because that's where Microsoft focuses on fixing problems.  Microsoft releases a number of critical hotfixes every month. However, there are countless combinations of hardware and software for given a given Windows host or VM.  Many hotfixes patch issues that are not relevant to your installation, causing needless installs and reboots. There has been no easy way to find the latest hotfixes that apply to given Windows storage components or to get notifications on them. This makes it very hard for storage/ Windows teams to self-diagnose issues and keep your Hosts and VMs running without downtime.

At Nimble, we’ve developed a “hotfix awareness system” to make sure our customers stay informed about hotfixes. Our system balances IT’s need for security and performance with the company’s need for access and reliability.

Windows Nimble toolkit contains the Nimble Hotfix Monitor service, which monitors the presence of storage hotfixes our customers might need.  This is quite a useful tool when you need to check if a particular hotfix is required.

  • Deploying every required must-fix hotfix reduces your downtime.
  • Deploying non-essential hot-fixes as they come up leads to unnecessary installs and reboots.
  • Some admins want to queue up their non-essential hotfixes so they can all be installed at once.

The Nimble Hotfix Monitor service reliably informs the users if their Windows Server systems have applied the Microsoft hotfixes that are known to cause data integrity issues or system outages.  It checks the missing hotfixes during installation as well and provides a report of missing hotfixes. These reports are customized to a user’s particular environment: no more patching problems that you don’t actually have.

It is a non-intrusive service, as it understands that certain hotfixes require a reboot and that customers will need to schedule downtime. It can monitor, collect, and report the required hotfixes for admins to download from Microsoft on their schedule.

We built the Nimble Hotfix Monitor to help our customers keep track of MS and Nimble recommended patches. But we didn’t stop there. We also considered that our customers might like to stay aware of patches from other vendors running on their server. It provides the framework for additional hotfix sources and hotfixes to be added and checked, i.e. vendor FC HBAs and Drivers. If your software vendor supports Nimble, you can spend less time looking for patches or reading update bulletins.

  • The Hotfix monitor service is compatible with Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 onwards (Windows 2008R2, 2012 or 2012R2)
  • The hotfix monitor service is data driven in an XML file that can be pushed independently of the framework that checks for hotfixes.
  • The process checks hotfixes and logs Event log warnings for missing hotfixes (messages that you would pick up on their system management software) so that they can take action.

Hotfix Monitor Service.jpg

Nimble certified latest storage hotfixes are available on the Nimble's InfoSight. The hotfix .xml is updated and kept on Nimble's InfoSight for users to download. Nimble Windows Toolkit installer, which installs hotfix monitor services, also checks for critical System timeout values and tunes it to minimize host application downtime.

If you are a Nimble customer who feels overwhelmed by critical Windows alerts, patches, and update notifications, I highly encourage you to make use of this feature to improve you data availability. For non-Nimble customers please contact info@nimblestorage.com about how to get storage related hotfixes.

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