I generally find that clients struggle to get to grips with the Configuration Management Database (CMDB) module in the Enterprise Edition of ServiceDesk Plus, often finding it ‘a bridge to far’ in their estimation. Whilst it’s true you need to have a relatively clear idea of what you want to achieve with the CMDB long term there are some great short-term benefits to using the module.
Take, for example, the issue of recording mobile phone assets. Now there are two potential areas this data can be recorded, either in the Asset module under IT Assets – Smartphones, if you have sufficient node asset licenses to spare in you ServiceDesk Plus, or in a new, custom Product Category in the Non-IT Asset section of the asset module tracked as an IT asset – I’ll stick with IT Asset – Smartphone for the rest of this example.
Whichever you choose you will undoubtedly be wanting to track such custom data as the IMEI number. To do this would normally prompt the creation of a new custom field under Admin – Asset – Additional Fields:
Once created and filled in this custom field appears at the base of the a Smart Phone asset:
The trouble is this custom field has been added to every resource in the asset register whether you want it or not. So if you edit a workstation, for example, you’ll find a custom field for the IMEI number … !
In addition the custom data is only visible at the base of the asset, so can be overlooked easily.
Here’s where the CMDB module comes in. If you go to ‘Admin – Configuration Item Types’ and select ‘Smart Phone’ you are presented with the ability to edit the attributes of the CI Type:
The section we are interested in is the ‘Smart Phone Attributes’. You should notice a ‘drag-and-drop’ field selection tool to the left. Using a ‘Numeric’ Drag and Drop field you can then create an custom field for IMEI data, as shown in the picture above.
Now when you look at the asset details of a Smart Phone asset you will see the IMEI field data is contained in the body of the main asset data not tucked away at the bottom:
What’s more you won’t see anything to do with IMEI in any other asset record. Cool huh?
Just remember to search the IMEI data you just need to add the IMEI data field to the columns in the main viewing panel and use the column search tool.