Hosting Third Party Servers

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paulfixter
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Thu Apr 29, 2010 9:39 am

Our organisation will shortly be hosting servers for other similar third party organisations in our data centres.

Should I record them as CIs on our CMDB?

The servers do not belong to us, we do not use them in any way, shape or form, but they are located in data centres that we own.

I can see both sides of the argument. We should record them in order to know what kit we have on our premises, but others say that the "owners" of the servers will already have them in their CMDB so we do not need to duplicate the records.

Any thoughts?

Many thanks
Paul


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swansong
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Thu Apr 29, 2010 12:26 pm

Your CMDB is there to support processes to manage your IT infrastructure.

If you do not need any processes to manage these servers then they don't need to be in your CMDB.

However i cannot believe the above is realistic. Now these have been implemented, surely you are going to have to do some work on these servers at some stage in the future.

I think you probably haven't defined the processes for managing these servers, and therefore not defined what needs to be in the CMDB. These are probably going to be different from the information you store for your own servers, but I really cannot believe that you need to store nothing.
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paulfixter
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Fri Apr 30, 2010 4:36 am

Thank you for your reply.

We will never do any work opn these servers ourselves as they are not ours and do not hold any data or services used by us.
The only time they might be affected by work we are doing or coordinating is if we take the power down.

Even then, it will be the server owners responsibility to tell their users of any outages, but we will need to give the owners a "heads up" of any planned or unplanned outages.

However you are quite right, the processes for managing the servers need to be finalised. For example, when the third party comes to our data centres to work on thier servers, they cannot just turn up, they need to make an appointment and be accompanied by one of our staff. Things like this need formally documenting.

We will therefore have a list of owners, but I'm still not clear whether we necessarily need a seperate CI for someone elses individual servers in our CMDB.
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Diarmid
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Fri Apr 30, 2010 4:42 am

Paul,

your CMDB supports your service delivery. What services do you deliver via these third party servers?

I was in a similar situation once and our techies started rubbing their hands at the prospect of having a different OS to get their hands on. But the arrangement was more of a "dark room" situation and they were kept well back. Our responsibility was to maintain the environment (largely air-conditioning, electricity and physical security) and allow access for the owners engineers and techies.

Of course you need to have a formal management arrangement, but if you put such servers in your CMDB you may have to identify them there as non-assets associated with no services and subject only to environmental processes. It will be more complicated if they share any of your comms services.
"Method goes far to prevent trouble in business: for it makes the task easy, hinders confusion, saves abundance of time, and instructs those that have business depending, both what to do and what to hope."
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UKVIKING
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Fri Apr 30, 2010 8:28 am

To add

If you are providing hosting services to them - ie Datacentre space, then you need to have them added to what every service tool manage that service because they are YOUR customers
John Hardesty
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Change Management is POWER & CONTROL. /....evil laughter
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paulfixter
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Fri Apr 30, 2010 9:34 am

Thank you for all your replies. They confirm pretty much what I wanted to do but I was getting "resistance" from elsewhere. I'll tell 'em.

Many thanks
Paul
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