Update Azure Network Watcher extension to the latest version

Azure Network Watcher is a network performance monitoring, diagnostic, and analytics service that monitors Azure networks. The Network Watcher Agent virtual machine (VM) extension is a requirement for capturing network traffic on demand and using other advanced functionality on Azure VMs. It's used by connection monitor, connection troubleshoot, and packet capture.


  • An Azure account with an active subscription. If you don't have one, create a free account.
  • An Azure virtual machine (VM) that has the Network Watcher extension installed.

Latest version

The latest version of the Network Watcher extension is 1.4.3206.1.

Identify latest version

Use az vm extension image list command to identify the latest version of the Network Watcher extension for your VM's operating system.

# Identify latest version of Network Watcher extension for Linux.
az vm extension image list --name 'NetworkWatcherAgentLinux' --publisher 'Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher' --latest --location 'eastus'

Update your extension using a PowerShell script

If you have large deployments, use a PowerShell script to update multiple VMs at once. The following PowerShell script updates Network Watcher extension of all Windows VMs in a subscription:

    This script will scan all VMs in the provided subscription and upgrade any out of date AzureNetworkWatcherExtensions  
    This script should be no-op if AzureNetworkWatcherExtensions are up to date 
    Requires Azure PowerShell 4.2 or higher to be installed (e.g. Install-Module AzureRM). 
    .\UpdateVMAgentsInSub.ps1 -SubID F4BC4873-5DAB-491E-B713-1358EF4992F2 -NoUpdate 
    [string] $SubID, 
    [Switch] $NoUpdate = $false, 
    [string] $MinVersion = "1.4.2573.1" 
function NeedsUpdate($version) 
    if ([Version]$version -lt [Version]$MinVersion)
        $lessThan = $true 
        $lessThan = $false 
    return $lessThan 
Write-Host "Scanning all VMs in the subscription: $($SubID)" 
Set-AzContext -SubscriptionId $SubID
$vms = Get-AzVM 
$foundVMs = $false 
Write-Host "Starting VM search, this may take a while" 
foreach ($vmName in $vms) 
    # Get Detailed VM info 
    $vm = Get-AzVM -ResourceGroupName $vmName.ResourceGroupName -Name $vmName.name -Status 
    $isitWindows = $vm.OsName -like "*Windows*"
    foreach ($extension in $vm.Extensions) 
        if ($extension.Name -eq "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension") 
            if (NeedsUpdate($extension.TypeHandlerVersion)) 
                $foundVMs = $true 
                if (-not ($NoUpdate)) 
                    Write-Host "Found VM that needs to be updated: subscriptions/$($SubID)/resourceGroups/$($vm.ResourceGroupName)/providers/Microsoft.Compute/virtualMachines/$($vm.Name) -> Updating " -NoNewline 
                    Remove-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName $vm.ResourceGroupName -VMName $vm.Name -Name "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" -Force 
                    Write-Host "... " -NoNewline 
                    $type = if ($isitWindows) { "NetworkWatcherAgentWindows" } else { "NetworkWatcherAgentLinux" } 
                    Set-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName $vm.ResourceGroupName -Location $vmName.Location -VMName $vm.Name -Name "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" -Publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" -Type $type -typeHandlerVersion $MinVersion
                    Write-Host "Done" 
                    Write-Host "Found $(if ($isitWindows) {"Windows"} else {"Linux"}) VM that needs to be updated: subscriptions/$($SubID)/resourceGroups/$($vm.ResourceGroupName)/providers/Microsoft.Compute/virtualMachines/$($vm.Name)" 
if ($foundVMs) 
    Write-Host "Finished $(if ($NoUpdate) {"searching"} else {"updating"}) out of date AzureNetworkWatcherExtension on VMs" 
    Write-Host "All AzureNetworkWatcherExtensions up to date" 

Update your extension manually

To update your extension, you need to know your extension version.

Check your extension version

You can check your extension version by using the Azure portal, the Azure CLI, or PowerShell.

Use the Azure portal

  1. Go to the Extensions pane of your VM in the Azure portal.
  2. Select the AzureNetworkWatcher extension to see the details pane.
  3. Locate the version number in the Version field.  

Use the Azure CLI

Run the following command from an Azure CLI prompt:

az vm get-instance-view --resource-group  "SampleRG" --name "Sample-VM"

Locate "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" in the output and identify the version number from the “TypeHandlerVersion” field in the output. 

Information about the extension appears multiple times in the JSON output. The full version number of the extension is available under the Extensions block.

You should see something like the below: Azure CLI Screenshot

Use PowerShell

Run the following commands from a PowerShell prompt:

Get-AzVM -ResourceGroupName "SampleRG" -Name "Sample-VM" -Status

Locate the Azure Network Watcher extension in the output and identify the version number from the “TypeHandlerVersion” field in the output.  

You should see something like the below: PowerShell Screenshot

Update your extension

If your version is below the latest version mentioned above, update your extension by using any of the following options.

Option 1: Use PowerShell

Run the following commands:

#Linux command
Set-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName "myResourceGroup1" -Location "WestUS" -VMName "myVM1" -Name "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" -Publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" -Type "NetworkWatcherAgentLinux"

#Windows command
Set-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName "myResourceGroup1" -Location "WestUS" -VMName "myVM1" -Name " AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" -Publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" -Type "NetworkWatcherAgentWindows" -ForceRerun "True"

If that doesn't work. Remove and install the extension again, using the steps below, to install latest version.

Removing the extension

#Same command for Linux and Windows
Remove-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName "SampleRG" -VMName "Sample-VM" -Name "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension"

Installing the extension again

#Linux command
Set-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName "SampleRG" -Location "centralus" -VMName "Sample-VM" -Name "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" -Publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" -Type "NetworkWatcherAgentLinux" -typeHandlerVersion "1.4"

#Windows command
Set-AzVMExtension -ResourceGroupName "SampleRG" -Location "centralus" -VMName "Sample-VM" -Name "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension" -Publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" -Type "NetworkWatcherAgentWindows" -typeHandlerVersion "1.4"

Option 2: Use the Azure CLI

Force an upgrade.

#Linux command
az vm extension set --resource-group "myResourceGroup1" --vm-name "myVM1" --name "NetworkWatcherAgentLinux" --publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" --force-update

#Windows command
az vm extension set --resource-group "myResourceGroup1" --vm-name "myVM1" --name "NetworkWatcherAgentWindows" --publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher" --force-update

If that doesn't work, remove and install the extension again, and follow these steps to automatically add the latest version.

Remove the extension.

#Same for Linux and Windows
az vm extension delete --resource-group "myResourceGroup1" --vm-name "myVM1" -n "AzureNetworkWatcherExtension"

Install the extension again.

#Linux command
az vm extension set --resource-group "DALANDEMO" --vm-name "Linux-01" --name "NetworkWatcherAgentLinux" --publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher"

#Windows command
az vm extension set --resource-group "DALANDEMO" --vm-name "Linux-01" --name "NetworkWatcherAgentWindows" --publisher "Microsoft.Azure.NetworkWatcher"

Option 3: Reboot your VMs

If you have auto-upgrade set to true for the Network Watcher extension, reboot your VM installation to the latest extension.


If you need more help at any point in this article, see the Network Watcher extension documentation for Linux or Windows. You can also contact the Azure experts on the MSDN Azure and Stack Overflow forums. Alternatively, file an Azure support incident. Go to the Azure support site, and select Get support. For information about using Azure Support, read the Microsoft Azure support FAQ.