Automate your Azure Documentation

  • Ease your mind and schedule your document generation

  • Configure how you would like to get your documents & diagrams generated

AUTHOR

Pascal Bonheur

READING TIME

10 min

Cloudockit generates documents, reports and diagrams for your Azure environment so that you don’t need to do that manually by yourself.

Once you have started to use the product, one of the natural next step is to schedule the document generation so that you don’t need to go every time on the Cloudockit website and manually trigger the documents generation.

Cloudockit supports two different methods to schedule your generation:

  • ‘Online’ Automation : You trigger the document generation by calling Cloudockit API and we do the generation for you.
  • ‘On-Prem’ Automation : You install a Windows Application that does the document generation localy on your server

Let’s have a look at these two options in details.

1. ‘Online’ Automation

When using Online Automation, Cloudockit will automatically setup a RunBook in your Azure Subscription that will automatically call Cloudockit API to generate the documents for you. We built it this way (this is not Cloudockit that is calling your Azure environment) as we do not persist anything on Cloudockit environments that could allow us to connect to your environment on a scheduled basis. This is really key to us for security reasons of course.

To use this settings, you first need to login to Cloudockit and select a subscription.

Notes :

  • Currently, this automation mode support only one subscription generation. You can select multiple subscriptions to appear in the same word document but you cannot start different process with different settings for different subscription.
  • As the document generation is done on Cloudockit environments, there is a limit on the number of Online Automation Profiles that you can create. If you want more Online Automation Profile, you can use the Windows Application describe in the following section or buy more Online Automation Profile

Once you select the subscription, you need to first set the settings that you want to use to generate the document. Typically you will set the email where the content should be send and set the appropriate filters and options.

Once you have set the settings, you need to click on Automation and you will see the following options :

You are asked to enter the name of what we call an Automation Profile which is basically a Schedule and also the day when you want the document generation to happen.

When you click on Start Automation, you will see the following options:

Azure option to schedule a document generation

  • Use an existing automation account : Cloudockit can re-use one of your existing Automation Account in Azure and just create a new RunBook for Cloudockit schedule
  • Create a new automation account : Cloudockit will create a new Automation Account and create a RunBook inside this newly created account. When you select this option, you will see that there are some pre-requisites like of course having the permissions to create a Resource Group
  • Just give me a Powershell script : this will give you a Powershell script that you will have to trigger yourself. The powershell script is basically the same as the one started in the Automation Account for the 2 previous options.

3. On Prem Automation

With On-Premise Automation Profiles, you leverage a Windows Application on one of your server and schedule the document generation.

The setup is a two steps process:

Step 1 : Create Automation Profiles using the On Prem Automation tab

When you click on the On Prem Automation tab, you will be able to create a new On-Premise Automation Profile :

When you click on Create a new Automation Profile, it will automatically take your current settings and save them as a Profile.

For On-Premise automation, Cloudockit gives you the ability to select multiple subscription and foreach subscription, you will be able to override a few settings like the email where you want to send the documents and the storage that you would like to use :

Automation Profile with mutliple subscriptions

Once you have created your Automation Profiles, you are ready to go to the next step and schedule those profiles.

Step 2 : Install the Windows Application tool and choose the Automation Profile that you want to schedule

First, contact us at support@cloudockit.com to get the Automation Tool.

Once you get it, this is a simple standard MSI that you need to install. Once installed, you will need to enter your product key so that it is associated to your account.

Then, the first step is to click on New Schedule in the tool and select the Automation Profile that you would like to schedule. If you do not see any automation profile, please be sure that the Product Key that you have used for the Windows Application Tool and for the WebSite matches.

Automation Profile

As you can see, when you select an Automation Profile, it will automatically retrieve the settings of the profile. Everything related to Authentication and Security is empty because this is NOT stored at Cloudockit : you will have to manually enter the authentication keys (refer to the Tool Guide for more details about the setup). Those keys will be stored locally on your server and will never be shared.

Once you enter your keys and click Sign In, Cloudockit will test the Authentication and then will ask you to Test or Schedule the document generation.

When you choose to schedule the document generation, it will display the Windows Scheduler as the tool simply creates a Windows Scheduled Task to trigger the process:

Windows Scheduler For Azure Documentation

We hope you enjoyed this article and we strongly encourage you to schedule your document as this is a lot easier to manage.

As always, feedbacks are greatly appreciated.