Automation

Azure Automation allows you to automate the creation, monitoring, deployment, and maintenance of resources in your Azure environment using a highly-available workflow execution engine. Orchestrate time-consuming, error-prone, and frequently repeated tasks against Azure and third party systems to decrease time to value for your cloud operations.

Visit the Automation page to learn more about Automation and how to get started.

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  1. Create an IP to report on DSC drifts / compliance

    PowerShell DSC is currently poor in reporting on configuration drifts and compliance levels. Collect this data in Ops Insight to answer questions like:
    - which systems are experiencing a configuration drifts and for which DSC policies?
    - which is the compliance level for this specific DSC policy / setting?

    71 votes
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    8 comments  ·  Desired State Configuration  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  2. Please allow for versioned configurations in Azure Automation

    It would be great to have multiple versions of DSC configurations compiled into Azure Automation, simultaneously.

    Currently, a server, or other resource, could be provisioned with one version of a configuration, but if an updated version is compiled during pipeline transitions, they could receive a different configuration than tested in a lower environment, invalidating their tests.

    This would allow someone to target a v1.1.0 configuration, even though the latest is v1.1.3 in Azure Automation, for example.

    It would be doubly nice if this could be derived from Git tags or other versioning mechanism in TFS/VSTS, as well.

    45 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Desired State Configuration  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  3. Allow DSC Reports to include ResourcesNotInDesiredState that were corrected during a consistency check

    Currently if a node is set to ApplyAndAutoCorrect, when the report is sent back to the report server, there is no reference to any resources that were non-compliant at the time of the consistency check. DSC will auto correct without reporting what it did. For compliance reasons, we would like to be able to query the report server to see if any resources had to be put back into desired state. We would like DSC to report non-compliance like it does when using ApplyandMonitor mode prior to auto correct.

    Here is the link to the same request on the PowerShell…

    37 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Desired State Configuration  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  4. Allow VMs to communicate with DSC without public Internet connection

    Can we allow Azure VMs to somehow communicate with Automation Accounts in the same subscription in order to implement DSC without requiring the VM to have an Internet connection? Since the IP address of the automation account changes so readily, I cannot create a specific NSG rule for automation accounts, though I would love to be able to use Azure DSC for our VMs. Today, I cannot due to the inabaility for me to lock down generic Internet traffic on internal-only VMs.

    28 votes
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    2 comments  ·  Desired State Configuration  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  5. Save output streams to OMS

    Save all streams to a connected OMS work space, this would allow the use of the OMS search to view/search logs and the ability to create OMS alerts when errors or warnings occur in a runbook instance.

    11 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Debugging and troubleshooting  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    planned  ·  Beth Cooper responded

    Automation is now looking at sending job streams to Log Analytics.

  6. Make tutorials that work

    Have you tutorials and documentation accurately describe how your system works.

    eg. how the **** do i pass in an object to the input params on test? your webhook tutorial implies you can do it just with JSON encoding.... NOPE

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/automation/automation-webhooks

    And then your docs on automation runbook input paramaters says you should encode it in the hashmap format. Nope again!

    https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/automation/automation-runbook-input-parameters

    8 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Bug  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    Thanks for bringing up this issue. The webhook automatically converts the input from json when called whereas when manually run, it is required to do this yourself. You can follow the below approach in your runbook where you take in an optional parameter that indicates if it is a manual input or if it is coming through the webhook. If set to true, it will convert the input from Json, otherwise by default it will just take the passed in object from the webhook.

    You should be able to pass in {"WebhookName":“MyWebhook”, “RequestHeader”:{"From":“Test User”}, “RequestBody”:“[\”VM1\“,\”VM2\“]”} and set the ManualTesting to true.

    Param
    (
    [Parameter(Mandatory=$false)]
    [Object]
    $WebhookData,

    [Parameter(Mandatory=$false)] [Boolean] $ManualTesting = $false

    )

    if ($ManualTesting)
    {
    $WebhookData = ConvertFrom-Json $WebhookData
    }

    Write-Output ($WebhookData.WebhookName)
    Write-Output ($WebhookData.RequestBody)
    Write-Output ($WebhookData.RequestHeader)

    We will work to update the documentation to clarify this and give the example. Sorry it caused this issue for you and thanks again…

  7. Tester: Verbose/Progress stream should be available

    would be great if there was buttons in the tester to enable the progress/Verbose streams.
    Both in Text tester and graphical.

    6 votes
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    planned  ·  4 comments  ·  Debugging and troubleshooting  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  8. Allow arbitrary naming of DSC nodes

    If I have multiple VM's in multiple regions and the VM name is duplicated, there's no easy way to know which is which. Can we have some control of the name used when registering the VM? Or can we have some mechanism to apply and view tags?

    6 votes
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    2 comments  ·  Desired State Configuration  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  9. During DSC compilation failure, show full error and line number within the DSC script

    During DSC compilation failure, show full error and line number within the DSC script.

    Currently, you get the line number in the script that is calling and parsing the output of Start-AzureRmAutomationDscCompilationJob. This isn't useful.

    Checking the portal, it gives you the same (not truncated) error message, but no line number. Not useful either.

    Show the full error and line number both in portal and on the exception passed back to the API.

    2 votes
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    0 comments  ·  Desired State Configuration  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
  10. UI is Bad.

    I'm trying to essentially clone an existing runbook. Seems like the only way to do is save it out. Save is greyed out and I have no freaking idea how to activate it.

    1 vote
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    0 comments  ·  User Experience  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    planned  ·  Beth Cooper responded

    Thank you for posting this and sorry to hear that you are having difficulties with the UX.

    A feature that we are planning to work on in the next couple of months is a “Save As” feature which would allow you to create a copy of the runbook with a different name. This should allow you to clone a runbook without exporting and re-importing with a new name.

    You should expect to see save greyed out until there is a change in the runbook content. If this is not the case, its possible that you are hitting a bug. Can you try the following:
    1. Confirm save remains greyed out even after there are modifications to the runbook
    2. If save does remain greyed out, then publish the runbook or copy the text if it is textual (so you don’t lose your changes) and then start a clean browser session. …

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