CMDB

The madness mounts. When will the CMDB reality check come?

Dennis Deane, head of program management in Europe for Scottsdale, Ariz.-based delivery company DHL...
"In order to really implement a good CMDB, the team has to get granular with the information," Deane says. This translates into working with individual CIs and entering them manually into the database. "Every laptop and registration number has to get into the program somehow."

The key to living without CMDB is process maturity level

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Yes you can do without CMDB, so long as you are aiming at not too high a maturity level, say 3. The trick is to remember that you don't adopt a process, you improve it. If we aspire to a moderate level of maturity, then yes we can do without a CMDB. Plenty of people do.

The software analyst industry needs a code of practice.

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In my country, the broadcast industry and the advertising industry both adhere to a voluntary code of practice to police the more extreme behaviours of their members. I wish the software vendor industry and their parasitic analysts would do the same.

Don't fall for the demo: an asset database with bells and whistles is not a CMDB

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Don't fall for the demo: anyone can set up an asset database with enough relationship bells and whistles on it to fool themselves and others that they have a CMDB.

Get it straight: CMDB can not be auto-discovered

This line in a Butler Group white paper synopsis pressed a button for me:"Service Configuration Management enables quick establishment of Configuration Management Database (CMDB) through auto discovery". I respect the Butler Group more than most analysts, and I am too tight to buy the full text from them, so I hope the synopsis is a bit misleading. Though from the tone of the rest I fear it isn't. This pernicious idea turns up regularly, mostly from software vendors. It must be stamped out.

ITIL's CMDB can't be done, no-how

This discussion of CMDB and its total impracticality has got legs. Let me reinforce two points please: (1) CMDB can't be done because of the data and regardless of the implementation and (2) I'm talking about CMDB as specified by the ITIL books, not any old database. It can't be done.

Living without CMDB

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CMDB is positioned as the key underpinning foundation to ITIL:

Configuration Management provides the foundation for successful IT Service Management and underpins every other process. The fundamental deliverable is the Configuration Management Database (CMDB) [Ref 1]

This is wrong. It is a peripheral nice-to-have. In a previous blog we discussed how it is currently an infeasible nice-to-have. Let's talk about doing without it.

What a load of .... Computerworld: How Much Is 'Just Enough' for a CMDB?

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Antonio gave us an interesting link in a recent comment. Excuse me folks, but what a load of crap it is.

"A just-enough CMDB should provide a full picture of the following:
All technology components related to the specific service.

ITIL’s dead elephant: CMDB can't be done

Note: this is the original "dead elephant" post from back in 2006. My thinking about CMDB has matured since then. Please see the articles (and book) in the sidebar of this article for a more complete picture of how I now see CMDB, and a much wider range of ideas why CMDB or CMS is - for most organisations - a bad idea.

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CMDB can’t be done. Not as ITIL defines it. At least not with a justifiable return on the investment of doing it - it is such an enormous undertaking that any organisation attempting it is going to burn money on an irresponsible scale. The truth about CMDB is no secret. It is a “dead elephant”: a great putrescence in the corner of the room that everyone studiously ignores, stepping around it and ignoring the stench, because life will be so much simpler if they do not acknowledge the obvious.

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