Joined: Jan 01, 2006 Posts: 500 Location: New Jersey
Posted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 8:45 am Post subject:
Configuration Management is the process by which you manage "configurations" or how things are put together and related to one another.
Asset Management is the process by which you manage your assets, which includes things like registering your assets, updating information on them, creating relationships between them and other entities in your enterprise, understanding how they're built, etc.
Configuration Management is used to help facilitate proper Asset Management. As a matter of fact, a good portion of Asset Management can be performed right inside a good CMDB, since the CMDB must manage inventories of entities in order to associate them to each other.
I hope this helps.
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Thanks for the reply Frank
How ever, am not too convinced. According to the definition, assep management manages all the assets and SMDB relates the CIs, but you have mentioned that asset management also talks about the status etc. but i think that is the work of CMDB to keep record of the various statuses like ordered, sent for maintenance etc. Kindly throw some light on this.
The interpretation that is my understanding is that configuration management is more concerned with showing the relationships between CI's or parts of your infrastructure and how they link together. Essentially showing the impact upstream and downstream of either a change or a system failure.
Assest management is more concerned with the financial cost of an item through out its lifecycle within your organization. The primary difference is within asset management it does not track the relationships of the items and focuses on the $$.
Now it may be possible to have both in one system but in my experiences and discussions with other companies in this area i have not yet come across an organization that combines both areas and does primarily keep them seperate. It does cause a quandry though when trying to explain to the business side the difference between the two and the need for funding to have both seperated out. I'll check through my collection of white papers and see if i can find one that may help define things out a bit more for you.
Edit - Sach - If you can either post or message me your email address i've found a white paper which details out the differences between the two.
Adam mentioned he has not seen an organization which combined Asset and CMDB databases into one. A little over a year ago I took a pretty comprehensive and robust Asset Database and adapted it to include fields which allowed the asset to be defined as a CI. When an asset was defined as a CI.. there were some automated controls put in place (spcifically... a Tower Owner Group had to be selected, and all updates to the asset REQUIRED a comment describing what was changed).
I won't go into great detail on the two definitions frequently used when describing a Configuration Item.. However, a CI can be the overall entity being referenced (such as a specific UNIX Server).. but also a CI could be a specific "critical" attribute of the entity being referenced (such as the IP Address for the same UNIX Server). My approach to configuration management procedures surrounding changes to the production environment and update to the CMDB was to require an update of the CMDB whenever a CI (the detailed critical attribute CI) was changing.. not every time a CI (the high level entity) such as a server was referenced in a change (such has having to bounce a server to resolve an application issue).
In my case the Asset Database was able to accommodate it's asset management role (tracking equipment, software licenses, etc) and also to accommodate the details and controls needed by a CMDB..
Joined: Sep 12, 2006 Posts: 6 Location: bayville new jersey usa
Posted: Wed Sep 13, 2006 5:01 am Post subject:
Asset Management is quite different from Configuration Management. Auditors are very interested in any Asset information that is used to produce financial reports... auditors are not so interested in the life cycle of CIs. However, in a best practice sense, any Asset that is used in the IT infrastructure is usually treated as a CI. Since, for the majority of its life, it is very valuable to the organization. _________________ Carl Mattocks
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