Monitoring Azure virtual machines - Azure Virtual Machines (2023)

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When you have critical applications and business processes that rely on Azure resources, it's important to monitor those resources for their availability, performance, and operation. This article describes the monitoring data that's generated by Azure virtual machines (VMs), and it discusses how to use the features of Azure Monitor to analyze and alert you about this data.


This article provides basic information to help you get started with monitoring your VMs. For a complete guide to monitoring your entire environment of Azure and hybrid virtual machines, see Monitor virtual machines with Azure Monitor.

What is Azure Monitor?

Azure Monitor is a full stack monitoring service that provides a complete set of features to monitor your Azure resources. You don't need to directly interact with Azure Monitor, though, to perform a variety of monitoring tasks, because its features are integrated with the Azure portal for the Azure services that it monitors. For a tutorial with an overview of how Azure Monitor works with Azure resources, see Monitor Azure resources by using Azure Monitor.

(Video) How to Monitor an Azure virtual machine with Azure Monitor

Monitoring virtual machine data

Azure virtual machines collect the same kinds of monitoring data as other Azure resources, which are described in Monitoring data from Azure resources. For detailed information about the metrics and logs that are created by Azure virtual machines, see Reference: Monitoring Azure virtual machine data.

Overview page

To begin exploring Azure Monitor, go to the Overview page for your virtual machine, and then select the Monitoring tab. You can see the number of active alerts on the tab.

The Alerts pane shows you the alerts fired in the last 24 hours, along with important statistics about those alerts. If there are no alerts configured for your VM, there is a link to help you quickly create new alerts for your VM.

Monitoring Azure virtual machines - Azure Virtual Machines (1)

The Key Metrics pane includes charts that show key health metrics, such as average CPU and network utilization. At the top of the pane, you can select a duration to change the time range for the charts, or select a chart to open the Metrics pane to drill down further or to create an alert rule.

Monitoring Azure virtual machines - Azure Virtual Machines (2)

Activity log

The Activity log displays recent activity by the virtual machine, including any configuration changes and when it was stopped and started. View the Activity log in the Azure portal, or create a diagnostic setting to send it to a Log Analytics workspace, where you can view events over time or analyze them with other collected data.

(Video) Az 104 Microsoft Azure Administrator - Azure VM Monitoring

Azure Monitor agent

Azure Monitor starts automatically collecting metric data for your virtual machine host when you create the VM. To collect logs and performance data from the guest operating system of the virtual machine, though, you must install the Azure Monitor agent. You can install the agent and configure collection using either VM insights or by creating a data collection rule as described below.

VM insights

Some services in Azure display customized monitoring experiences in Azure Monitor. These experiences are called insights, and they include pre-built workbooks and other specialized features for that particular service.

VM insights is designed to monitor your Azure and hybrid virtual machines in a single interface. VM insights provides the following benefits beyond other features for monitoring VMs in Azure Monitor:

  • Simplified onboarding of the Azure Monitor agent and the Dependency agent, so that you can monitor a virtual machine guest operating system and workloads.
  • Pre-defined data collection rules that collect the most common set of performance data.
  • Pre-defined trending performance charts and workbooks, so that you can analyze core performance metrics from the virtual machine's guest operating system.
  • The Dependency map, which displays processes that run on each virtual machine and the interconnected components with other machines and external sources.

For a tutorial on enabling VM insights for a virtual machine, see Enable monitoring with VM insights for Azure virtual machine. For general information about enabling insights and a variety of methods for onboarding virtual machines, see Enable VM insights overview.

(Video) Learn Live - Monitor the health of your Azure Virtual Machine with Azure Metrics Explorer

Create data collection rule

If you enable VM insights, the Azure Monitor agent is installed and starts sending a predefined set of performance data to Azure Monitor Logs. You can create additional data collection rules to collect events and other performance data. To learn how to install the Azure Monitor agent and create a data collection rule that defines the data to collect, see Tutorial: Collect guest logs and metrics from an Azure virtual machine.

Analyze metrics

Metrics are numerical values that describe some aspect of a system at a particular point in time. Although platform metrics for the virtual machine host are collected automatically, you must install the Azure Monitor agent and create a data collection rule to collect guest metrics.

The Overview pane includes the most common host metrics, and you can access others by using the Metrics pane. With this tool, you can create charts from metric values and visually correlate trends. You can also create a metric alert rule or pin a chart to an Azure dashboard. For a tutorial on using this tool, see Analyze metrics for an Azure resource.

For a list of the available metrics, see Reference: Monitoring Azure virtual machine data.

Analyze logs

Event data in Azure Monitor Logs is stored in a Log Analytics workspace, where it's separated into tables, each with its own set of unique properties.

VM insights stores the data it collects in Logs, and the insights provide performance and map views that you can use to interactively analyze the data. You can work directly with this data to drill down further or perform custom analyses. For more information and to get sample queries for this data, see How to query logs from VM insights.

(Video) How to get started with Azure Monitor VM Insights

To analyze other log data that you collect from your virtual machines, use log queries in Log Analytics. Several built-in queries for virtual machines are available to use, or you can create your own. You can interactively work with the results of these queries, include them in a workbook to make them available to other users, or generate alerts based on their results.


Azure Monitor alerts proactively notify you when important conditions are found in your monitoring data. These alerts can help you identify and address issues in your system before your customers notice them. You can set alerts on metrics, logs, and the activity log.

Recommended alerts

Start by enabling recommended alerts. These are a predefined set of alert rules based on host metrics for the VM. You can quickly enable and customize each of these rules with a few clicks in the Azure portal. See Tutorial: Enable recommended alert rules for Azure virtual machine.

Availability alert

Use the VM availability metric to alert when a VM isn't running. This metric is currently in public preview and not yet included in recommended alerts, so you must create the alert rule yourself. See Tutorial: Create availability alert rule for Azure virtual machine (preview).

Multi-resource metric alerts

Using recommended alerts, a separate alert rule is created for each VM. You can choose to instead use a multi-resource alert rule to use a single alert rule that applies to all VMs in a particular resource group or subscription (within the same region). Use the guidance at Create a new alert rule to create a metric alert rule using a subscription or resource group for the scope and the other details from alert rules created by recommended alerts.

Other alert rules

For more information about the various alerts for Azure virtual machines, see the following resources:

(Video) Monitor the health of your Azure virtual machine by using Azure Metrics Explorer and metric alerts

  • See Monitor virtual machines with Azure Monitor: Alerts for common alert rules for virtual machines.
  • See Create a log query alert for an Azure resource for a tutorial on creating a log query alert rule.
  • For common log alert rules, go to the Queries pane in Log Analytics. For Resource type, enter Virtual machines, and for Type, enter Alerts.

Next steps

For documentation about the logs and metrics that are generated by Azure virtual machines, see Reference: Monitoring Azure virtual machine data.


Can virtual machines be monitored? ›

Virtual machine monitoring, or VM monitoring, refers to the process of monitoring virtualized instances across your network. VM monitoring involves using software to monitor and manage these virtual machines, typically by examining the logs they continuously generate.

How do I Monitor my Azure VM performance? ›

View performance directly from an Azure VM
  1. In the Azure portal, select Virtual Machines.
  2. From the list, choose a VM and in the Monitoring section choose Insights.
  3. Select the Performance tab.
Dec 9, 2022

What is the best way to Monitor virtual machine Manager? ›

You can monitor VMM health and status in Operations Manager by installing the VMM management pack, which provides many dashboards in the Operations Manager console. Monitors the health of virtual machines. It shows information about discovered VMs in the VMM fabric.

How do I enable VM Monitoring? ›

  1. In the vSphere Client, browse to the vSphere HA cluster.
  2. Click the Configure tab.
  3. Select vSphere Availability and click Edit.
  4. Click Failures and Responses and expand VM Monitoring.
  5. Select VM Monitoring and Application Monitoring.
May 31, 2019

How do I Monitor Windows services in Azure VM? ›

The requirement is to track a Windows Service running on a Virtual Machine on Azure.
How to monitor Windows Service in Azure VM
  1. Step 1: Enable VM Inventory and Change Tracking. ...
  2. Step 2: Configure Alert. ...
  3. Step 3: Testing the Alert.
Jul 2, 2022

How can you tell if someone is using your virtual machine? ›

For Windows:
  1. Click Start > Run.
  2. Type msinfo32 and press Enter.
  3. In the right pane, look for System Manufacturer for 'VMware, Inc. ' If this is present, you are running within a virtualized platform, and cannot install another virtualization product on top of it.
Sep 8, 2017

Can hackers break out of a VM? ›

Is Your VM Safe From Hackers? It's certainly possible for a virtual machine to become compromised, especially if you access it on a mobile device in a place with public Wi-Fi. Just like all devices going on a public Wi-Fi system, hackers could infiltrate your OS if not taking proper security measures.

What is the biggest risk of using virtual machines? ›

Virtual machines are also susceptible to viruses, malware, and ransomware attacks. These attacks can come from infected VM images or from users without proper security training. Once a VM is infected, it can spread malware across the entire virtual infrastructure without adequate isolation and security controls.

How do I Monitor my Azure VM CPU utilization? ›

View Utilization of an Azure VM
  1. Log in to the Azure portal and select Virtual Machines.
  2. Select a virtual machine from the list of VMs to view its usage.
  3. In the Monitoring section, select Insights.
  4. Select the Performance tab.
Jul 21, 2022

How do I set up Azure monitoring? ›

Start by opening the Log Search portal.
  1. In the Azure portal, click All services. In the list of resources, type Monitor. As you begin typing, the list filters based on your input. Select Monitor.
  2. On the Monitor navigation menu, select Log Analytics and then select a workspace.
Mar 30, 2022

How do I Monitor my Azure VM memory utilization? ›

In the Azure portal, select Virtual Machines. From the list, choose a VM and in the Monitoring section choose Insights. Select the Performance tab.

How do I monitor a VM to VM traffic in a virtual network? ›

You want to be able to monitor and filter VM-to-VM traffic within a virtual network. What should you do? Implement a virtual firewall within the hypervisor. Virtualized hosts are susceptible to the same network exploits as physical network hosts and need to be protected by a firewall.

What are the 5 best practices for virtual machine management? ›

Here are six best practices for virtual server management.
  • Use self-service management to prevent VM sprawl. ...
  • Provide VM templates to ensure right sizing. ...
  • Take advantage of tools to monitor performance. ...
  • Ensure VM security with appropriate permissions. ...
  • Use VPN, multifactor authentication for remote access.
Mar 9, 2021

What can be monitored using Azure monitor? ›

Collect, analyze, and act on telemetry data from your cloud and hybrid environments. Azure Monitor supports your operations at scale by helping you maximize the performance and availability of your resources and proactively identify problems.

How does a virtual machine monitor work? ›

A virtual machine monitor, also known as a hypervisor, is a software, hardware, or firmware-based process that manages the creation and operation of virtualized environments from the host system. Virtual machine monitors provide IT operations managers visibility into the usage and performance of associated VMs.

What does Azure Monitor VM Insights provide? ›

VM insights stores its data in Azure Monitor Logs, which allows it to deliver powerful aggregation and filtering and to analyze data trends over time. You can view this data in a single VM from the virtual machine directly. Or, you can use Azure Monitor to deliver an aggregated view of multiple VMs.

What is a virtual monitoring? ›

What is virtual monitoring? Virtual monitoring, virtual machine monitoring, or virtualization monitoring is the method in which software is used to monitor virtualized occurrences across a network.

What is Azure Monitor in Azure? ›

Azure Monitor helps you maximize the availability and performance of your applications and services. It delivers a comprehensive solution for collecting, analyzing, and acting on telemetry from your cloud and on-premises environments.

Can you use Azure Monitor to Monitor resources across multiple Azure subscriptions? ›

You can use Azure Monitor to monitoring synapse pipelines across multiple subscriptions/workspaces in same tenant. Azure Monitor can consolidate log entries from multiple Azure resources, subscriptions, and tenants into one location for analysis together.

How do I track user activity on Azure? ›

Access the activity logs in the portal

Go to Azure AD and select Audit logs, Sign-in logs, or Provisioning logs. Adjust the filter according to your needs. For more information on the filter options for audit logs, see Azure AD audit log categories and activities.

Can websites detect virtual machines? ›

Web servers can only tell details about the web browsers through their user agent string. Unless you're using a special web browser (unlikely) that detects that it's running in a VM, then the web server shouldn't know.

Do virtual machines hide your IP? ›

Using a virtual machine to browse the Internet doesn't mask your IP address or automatically shield you from threats. And although your VM and host computer are technically separate, some things could still be shared between the two if you're not careful.

Does the software running on a VM know that it's running on a virtual computer? ›

Yes, they can.

How do I secure my virtual machine? ›

  1. Remove Unnecessary Hardware Devices.
  2. Disable Unused Display Features.
  3. Disable Unexposed Features.
  4. Disable VMware Shared Folders Sharing Host Files to the Virtual Machine.
  5. Disable Copy and Paste Operations Between Guest Operating System and Remote Console.
  6. Limiting Exposure of Sensitive Data Copied to the Clipboard.
Jan 13, 2021

Can malware detect a VM? ›

A capability of malware to detect and identify that the environment it resides on is a virtual machine (VM). Some methods of determining a VM are simple while others are not. Once the malware is aware that it's on a VM, it usually ceases functioning as its supposed to.

How do you protect your virtual machines from VM escape? ›

To minimize vulnerability to VM escape, Skoudis recommends that you:
  1. Keep virtual machine software patched.
  2. Install only the resource-sharing features that you really need.
  3. Keep software installations to a minimum because each program brings its own vulnerabilities.

What should you not do on a virtual machine? ›

Based off these “learning experiences” of my own and those I've observed from others, here are 1- 10 things to NOT do with your virtual machines (VMs).
  • Not having a backup. ...
  • Loving abstraction, not having separation. ...
  • Going too big. ...
  • Skipping drivers. ...
  • Running VMs on an obsolete host.
Feb 7, 2013

What is one of the biggest drawbacks of using virtual machine? ›

Disadvantages. Virtual machines are less efficient than real machines because they access hardware indirectly. Running VM software on top of the host operating system means that it will have to request access to storage and memory from the physical device.

What are three reasons why a virtual machine might fail to power on? ›

The failure of a VM to power on may be caused by any of the following reasons:
  • ESXi OS problems.
  • File corruption.
  • File locks.
  • Guest OS problems.
  • License problems.
  • Network problems.
  • Storage Array/Datastore problems.
  • User permissions.
Jan 11, 2022

How do I check CPU and memory usage in Azure VM? ›

Monitor CPU and memory metrics

Open the device in the Azure portal, and go to Virtual Machines. Select the virtual machine, and select Metrics. By default, the graphs show average CPU and memory usage for the previous hour. To see data for a different time period, select a different option beside Show data for last.

How do I check my CPU cores on a virtual machine? ›

To check the number of cores for a CPU in a virtual machine, you can use one of these utilities:
  1. Coreinfo. Coreinfo is a Microsoft command-line utility, developed by Mark Russinovich. ...
  2. Microsoft System Information (MSINFO32) ...
  3. Microsoft wmic command.
Jun 19, 2020

What is the difference between Azure monitor and Azure insights? ›

Insights provide a customized monitoring experience for particular Azure services. They use the same metrics and logs as other features in Azure Monitor but may collect extra data and provide a unique experience in the Azure portal.

What is the difference between Azure monitor and Azure log analytics? ›

Monitor is the brand, and Log Analytics is one of the solutions. Log Analytics and Application Insights have been consolidated into Azure Monitor to provide a single integrated experience for monitoring Azure resources and hybrid environments.

What are the two main kinds of data Azure monitor works with? ›

Overall, Azure Monitor is using two fundamental types of data to work. Those are metrics and logs the tool is collecting into data stores to perform actions such as analysis, alert generation and streaming to connected external systems.

How do I Monitor my virtual memory? ›

To start Performance Monitor, click Start, click Control Panel, click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Performance Monitor. Here is a summary of some important counters and what they tell you: Memory, Committed Bytes: This counter is a measure of the demand for virtual memory.

How do I Monitor my Azure storage? ›

View from a storage account

To access VM insights directly from a storage account: In the Azure portal, select Storage accounts. From the list, choose a storage account. In the Monitoring section, choose Insights.

How do I check my virtual machine memory usage? ›

Select the vCenter object in the navigation pane of the vSphere Client. Click Configure > Alarm Definitions. In the Alarm Name column header, click the filter icon and search for Virtual machine memory usage.

What is the best way to Monitor virtual machine manager? ›

You can monitor VMM health and status in Operations Manager by installing the VMM management pack, which provides many dashboards in the Operations Manager console. Monitors the health of virtual machines. It shows information about discovered VMs in the VMM fabric.

Can VM traffic be tracked? ›

Short answer: yes, as any regular computer would. A little more detail: VMs are computers like any other. VMs can have one IP address, public or private. VMs can even have more than one IP address.

Can Virtual Desktop be monitored? ›

As virtual desktops are implemented as virtual machines, many IT Operations teams try to use their existing virtual server monitoring tool (e.g., VMware vCenter, Citrix XenCenter, Microsoft SCVMM, etc.) to monitor a virtual desktop infrastructure.


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