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You can manage maintenance windows (planned downtime) for PATROL Agents from both an event perspective and a data collection perspective by using one of the blackout features of BMC ProactiveNet.

Event blackouts are defined at the BMC ProactiveNet Server level. Data-collection blackouts can be defined with the PATROL Agent blackout feature (see the PATROL Agent reference manual for details) or at the BMC ProactiveNet Server by using the Scheduled Downtime feature.

For more information about scheduling downtime and creating blackout policies, see the [_BMC ProactiveNet Administrator Guide._|PDFs^ProactiveNet_Administrator_Guide_9.0.pdf]

As a general recommendation, it is safest to manage downtime or maintenance windows by turning off data collection at the source (which is the PATROL Agent). This ensures that there is no interference on the target host, no incorrect data recorded on the server, and no false events or alarms generated.

Following are some examples when blackouts at the PATROL Agent level are recommended:

  • Recovery action feature is being used with the PATROL Agents
  • Monitoring solution is collecting against a remote target (rather than locally on the host)
  • Baseline patterns are used as part of threshold strategy

Data-collection blackout can also be accomplished at the BMC ProactiveNet Server level by using the BMC ProactiveNet Server Scheduled Downtime feature. This method stops collected data from being recorded in the BMC ProactiveNet Server, but it does not disable the data collection at the source (the monitoring solution continues collecting). This method is not recommended for the following reasons:

  • It is often important to turn the collectors off completely during maintenance windows (rather than just stopping the recording of data on the server).
  • If the monitoring solution is generating events, this method does not disable the monitoring solution events from coming into the BMC ProactiveNet Server. Therefore, event blackouts on the server must also be set up separately.

In some cases, the convenience of performing event blackouts at the BMC ProactiveNet Server level might be justified. During this time, data collection can continue on the PATROL Agent and is recorded in the BMC ProactiveNet Server. A few reasons when event blackout might be required (independent of or instead of data collection blackout) include:

  • Data collection and recording of the data is still necessary during the blackout period. For example, some customers want to monitor a host or application during maintenance time, to see when it is up and running.
  • If the BMC ProactiveNet Server has event sources other than monitoring solutions, event blackout policies are needed at the server level. Therefore it might be simpler to manage one set of blackout policies centrally.