when does CI get added to cmdb according to ITIL

crbard used Ask the Experts™
hi, for the ITIL expert, question regarding CI creation:
at what point should a CI be added to cmdb following ITIL standards? assuming it's a physical device (ie. network switch), does it get added:
1. as soon as it is unpacked, add CI in not installed state. then Change ticket is created to configure/stack it, then possibly another ticket to put in production (if not done in first ticket)
2. gets added only when it goes into production. how does the configure/stack change get captured prior to becoming prod?

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Exec Consultant
Distinguished Expert 2018
I will say it need to be updated into the CMDB once it is owned by you or your company. The life cycle of the CI starts and the first step will be to see with the other main process owners what their needs are around incident and change management. This will allow you to focus on the key elements required for these processes.

For example, using the information gathered from both processes, you will be able to first identify which CI and attributes are the most subject to information search. You will also be able to locate which sources are required for each CI. So you could start with:

  • a CI application with a couple of attributes such as the version, the editor, the support and the link to the server
  • a CI server/virtual machine with a couple of details such as the the type, the firmware...and the link to the storage system
  • a CI storage with its capacity and manufacturer information ...

Each time a new incident or change (or that event of interest by the process owner) is created for one of these CI, the configuration management process  will have the CMDB be populated, update or analyze on the required attributes involved and then identify if it makes sense to add to them if they don't exist. It is ongoing and therefore it is good practice to start early and update the CI systematically.

For each service, focus first on CIs:

  • that can be clearly identified
  • that can be managed easily
  • that can fall under the change management process

Once you have established this list, analyse how you will populate the CMDB with these CIs. Don’t forget to put in place audit and control tasks (for example – every month, review 5% of the CIs in the system and check their validity).

The key success factors

  • assign someone that is accountable for the data of each CI
  • provide a unique identifier of the CI – be careful with the naming convention to not be to much linked to an attribute that could change, while still allowing easy identification of a CI ( reference staring by App for the application )
  • establish the main relationships
  • audit the quality of the data


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