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ITIL :: View topic - When do you use each type of relationship for CIs?
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When do you use each type of relationship for CIs?

 
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sseliquini
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Joined: Feb 29, 2008
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2008 8:35 am    Post subject: When do you use each type of relationship for CIs? Reply with quote

There are many different relationship types in the tool we are using for our company's CMDB and I am trying to get a handle on when to use which. There are:

ACCESS
CONTAINS
DEPENDS ON
GOVERNS
LINKS
USES
PEER
RUNS

Seems to me that some of them are redundent. Any help would be appreciated.
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pel
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Joined: Mar 31, 2008
Posts: 34

PostPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2008 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know about you, but I'd look in the documentation Smile
Also, if you have autodiscovery tools I'd look into if it/they have any preferences.

Most importantly though. If you don't need it. Don't use it.
Your CMDB should not express more than you need it to.

As a side note - you are probably going to need more than you thought at first. When your users start to understand what a wonderful tool the CMDB is they are going to have requests. Some of them might even be good/useful.
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Diarmid
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Joined: Mar 04, 2008
Posts: 1884
Location: Newcastle-under-Lyme

PostPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2008 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sseliquini,

it seems to me you are thinking backwards. Do not ask "how do I use this?" but rather "what do I want this to do?".

How did you select and acquire a tool without first defining what it was required to do?

If you analyse the tool before you analyse your requirement, then the probability of using it effectively is infinitesimal.

Obviously you may not require all of its functionality, but how much of your requirement will it meet? That is what lies behind Pel's response.

The "when to use which" conundrum will disappear when you start out with knowing what you want to do. The much more problematic "how can I make it do this?" will loom large in its place.
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sseliquini
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Joined: Feb 29, 2008
Posts: 11

PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your quick responses. I understand what you telling me. Just a little background, I did not select the tool. It was already in place and I have to use what we have. I am trying to understand the differences between the various types of relationships.

It seems to me that what relationship type I use will depend on whether the relationship is describing the flow from the parent to the child or the other way around. Am I way off base here?
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UKVIKING
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Joined: Sep 16, 2006
Posts: 3305
Location: London, UK

PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 1:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Use the documentation provided with the tool and what ever your configuration manageemnt policy documents defines they mean
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Change Management is POWER & CONTROL. /....evil laughter
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sseliquini
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 13, 2008 2:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks. I was guessing that that is what the response would be. I have some work to do in defining the relationships that we want to track in our company. Thanks everyone for your thoughts and help.
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Cotswolddave
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Joined: Mar 23, 2007
Posts: 35
Location: UK

PostPosted: Sat Nov 15, 2008 1:03 pm    Post subject: Relationships Reply with quote

Don't get too hung up on the types of relationship - many just choose one to show there is a relationship between two CIs. Even if you did use lots of relationship types you get into the areas you mention - parent child may be different to child/parent. What do you do where there are 3 valid relationship types between a parent and child - do you enter them all?\and will the CMDB display each of them?. Think about the poor sod who has to validate the CIs and relationships, making sure they're right.

Dave
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sseliquini
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ROFL That poor sod is me!
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UKVIKING
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Joined: Sep 16, 2006
Posts: 3305
Location: London, UK

PostPosted: Tue Nov 18, 2008 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sseliquini

A usefull hint

The types and number of relationships depend on what kind of services that are provided and how the service can be broken down into the areas of ownership / responsibility.

For example

E-Mail - service consists of email client, user PC, network connectivity, mail server, authentication server,

network connectivity consists of internal LAN or VLAN, external WAN (Internet),

Internal LAN or VLAN consists of physical cabling, routers, switches, firewalls, load balancers, dns, WINS, dhcp

External WAN consists of routers (egress routers - connectign to internet), switches, firewalls, telco connectivity, dns (TLDs)

From these you can draw a 'family tree' from the poor sod user to the mail exchange server

Now the config, release and change documentation as well as the service catelogue should make mention of things in the same order
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