Abstracts

Day 1: 10.00 - 10.45

Shirley Lacy & Ivor Macfarlane - Where did my CMDB go? What has Configuration Management become in the 21st Century?

In ITIL V3, Configuration Management is expanded and now includes several new updated components, as well as the CMDB. This session explains what has changed and where to find the CMDB now. The updated practices will benefit service provider organisations, vendors and the IT industry as a whole in the 21st Century. The new CMS includes all the assets and configurations we need to deliver superior services across the service lifecycle. This includes services, service assets, IT assets and configurations such as application, information/documentation, infrastructure, software and hardware.

Day 1: 11.15 - 12.30

John Dixon - The Configuration Management Value Proposition

Configuration management (in an IT service management context) is a practically and technically informed domain, with little theoretical/academic backing. Implementation is localized but guided through best practice guides like ITIL and standards like ISO/IEC 20000/BS 15000 and ISO 10007. Do we as an industry practice Configuration Management in the same way? Do we see the value that the best practice guides tell us we should see?

This session looks at a study conducted across IT Service Organisations to see how implementation varied and what the benefits of Configuration Management really are.

Kevin Holland - How Service Transition supports the need for effective Configuration Management - an ITIL V3 perspective

Configuration management is a key element for the successful operation of service management, and particularly so for the transition of services into operation, yet its take-up is still low compared to re-active processes such as incident management.

This session will focus on how the processes, tools and techniques of configuration management can support effective service transition under ITIL V3, and suggest a new approach for justifying and implementing configuration management.

Shirley Lacy and Ivor Macfarlane - What is the CMDB/CMS all for?

Interactive

Objective: Successful positioning of CMDB/CMS requires clear explanation of the value to stakeholders. We will examine how to create a clear ROI and discuss what needs to be overcome to implement a CMS successfully.

Outcome: Documented collective understanding of the VOI/ROI proposition for CMS across a range of organisations and stakeholders. A validated set of key barriers and associated strategies to mitigate these. The document created will be available to participants immediately following the conference.

John Boyce - Practical challenges of implementing an effective CMDB and global Configuration Management platforms and processes

This presentation discusses the technical, procedural and organizational lessons learned while implementing effective configuration management processes and tools (including open source tools), and automation of the same across a global IT organization. This includes integration with and sensible implementation of ITIL Frameworks & Process Disciplines. The presentation also covers Barclays Global Investor's CMDB and the issues around ensuring that it is maintained by appropriate change & release management processes and toolsets.

Day 1: 12.05 - 12.50

Majid Iqbal - CMS and the untapped potential: Knowledge management for the ITIL Service Lifecycle

Service management is the business context in which Configuration Management captures and maintains knowledge associated with Service Management functions and processes. The knowledge represents the collective experience and insight of the organization with respect to customers, contracts, services, configurations and assets. Activities, events and interactions between various functions, processes (and associated roles) create knowledge in four dominant patterns (internalization, externalization, combination and socialization). These are applied to the CMDB/CMS and SKMS. The suitability and potential of each process to support an integrated lifecycle-based approach to service management is highlighted. Control objectives and use cases are defined for capability areas such as Demand Management, Service Catalogue, Product Management, Financial Management and Risk Management.

Ryan Lloyd - Building an Application CMDB

Many businesses maintain a variety of stand alone repositories that are not process- bound, and which exist to serve the purposes of individual service support and delivery groups. This isolated approach eventually leads to a lack of confidence in the information gathered and a lack of communication. This presentation aims to outline a strategy for building an application CMDB containing rich metadata regarding application assets and will discuss how that application CMDB integrates with your existing repositories.

John Dixon - How can we judge the value of a CMDB/CMS

In this presentation John will summaries his findings from a study conducted across IT Service Organisations to see how implementation varied and what the benefits of CM really are. The session will seek direct input into the study from the audience and stimulate discussion on the benefits of implementing Configuration Management.

Shahin Nassiri - Deploying Subversion in a distributed environment

A case study by JPMorgan Chase on the business and technical drivers for choosing Subversion to replace their previous source code control solutions. It will cover how it was introduced into the organization as a global centralized service making it the standard for the Investment Bank, and the organizational challenges that were overcome.

Day 1: Lunchtime 13.30 - 14.15

Steve Straker - Configuration Management and the federated CMDB

This presentation is about CMDBs and how they can be utilized to enhance the Configuration Management process. We look at the industry view and try and decide which is the best fit for each organisation. By asking the right questions and targeting the right audience for your configured data set, the shape of a CMDB can be ascertained. Linking this theme to the Service Design and Operational elements of ITIL helps us focus on the key metrics of delivering “world class” service. Without the CMDB where would we be?

Kevin Holland - CMS - Barriers and Critical Success Factors

Interactive Session

Using practical experiences from a range of implementations, Kevin will introduce the session by providing typical barriers to the traditional methods of implementing configuration management, and will suggest some critical success factors.

Delegates will brainstorm the pre-requisites that need to be in place before embarking on a CMS implementation for the key stakeholders.

Groups will work on the barriers and strategies to mitigate them, using theming and voting techniques. Each group will be assigned one stakeholder to discuss and provide input. Each group will form statements: “BARRIER: X This can be overcome by… - Each group will then prioritise the top three critical success factors for their stakeholder

The output of this session will provide input into the last session of the day in Powerhouse 1.

David Richards - Replicating Subversion: The Active-Active Way

Developing software over a wide area network has several reliability deficiencies resulting in availability and serviceability issues. This presentation will explain how an active-active replication approach synchronizes globally distributed Subversion repositories and overcomes these reliability deficiencies.

Every repository is writeable, and all of the repositories are treated as peers. This represents a significant departure from master-slave replication, where only the master repository is writeable, and changes are periodically replicated from the master to read-only slave repositories.

Day 1: 14.20 - 15.05

Kevin Parker - Innovation Without Permission

Businesses are changing faster than ever before and there is a tremendous unsatisfied demand for application solutions. Business users are not waiting for IT to get around to these projects. They are solving their problems themselves, today, with “shadow IT” and that comes with nightmare scenarios for compliance and control. We need to change the conversation between the business and IT: we need to stop focusing on the “how” until we understand the” why”. If we can empower the business user through direct access to their data and enable them to “mashup” that data as they see fit we tackle the backlog and bring control. They can even begin to build value chains of that data with customers, suppliers and partners by themselves.

Krzysztof Baczkiewicz - Tailor your Configuration Management technology to your needs

Configuration management supporting tools should not be more complicated than needed. This need is determined by a size of the controlled environment and maturity of the supporting organization’s processes. This presentation contains descriptions of different technology solutions types supporting Configuration Management, ranging from a spreadsheet, to an asset registry, a CMDB, a CMS and finally an integrated Knowledge Management System.

It also provides information about how to choose between them, and where expensive tools can sometimes be replaced with better process. How do you get real value from your chosen tools.

Andrew Pieri and Mark Smith - Case Study - CMDB/CMS Pilot implementation

Interactive Session

Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL) will present their Case Study on their pilot implementation of a CMDB/CMS. It will cover the business drivers and implementation approach for proving a CA toolset to support the population and up keep of their CMDB, to enhance their reporting and monitoring capability.

After each part of the presentation the delegates use the table laptops to respond from different perspectives

  • Plus, "What I liked about what I heard"
  • Minus, "My issues and concerns"
  • Interesting and Questions.

Feedback and questions will be captured and displayed.

Delegates will also discuss and brainstorm "What is the VOI/ROI proposition for a CMDB/CMS?"

Day 1: 15.30 - 16.15

Martin McEvoy - CMDB - a Journey, Not a Destination: Best Practices from the Field

The CMDB is ultimately about storing and presenting data from a service perspective, which provides the information needed to deliver effective IT infrastructures and enable CIOs to make safe changes to make the infrastructure a strategic business driver. Without sound processes to capture and maintain this data, however, organizations will never fully realize the ROI from their CMDB initiatives.

To ensure CMDB delivers on its promise firms must focus on data accuracy and understanding from the outset. Too often the data for a CMDB is gathered manually - an incredibly time consuming process that is often out-of-date and inaccurate by the time it’s ready for analysis.

Kate Robinson - Configuration Management: The Powerhouse of Service Management...or is it?

This session explores the concept of not implementing configuration management and the risks that this poses to the effectiveness of Service Management in an organisation. Is configuration management essential for all organisations? At what point does it become a real inhibitor of progress? Do the benefits realised by implementing configuration management always outweigh the cost?

The session is expected to be highly interactive and a short presentation will use real-life examples to introduce the theme. A key topic is how benefits and costs are perceived and measured.

Alan Morbey and Chris Beighton - Continuous Integration without Branching

Conventional wisdom leads most software configuration management scenarios along the well trodden path of develop, chill, branch, test, fix, merge, release, close. However merging is often the cause of development and CM issues. By combining a well defined labelling system with a continuous integration and build system the CM Team at the Met Office has established a development lifecycle that is capable of delivering 8 different services, developed by as many different projects working on different timescales, all of which use the same codebase without any branching.

Benefits include:

  • Defect fixes are immediately part of the next cycle of development.
  • The overhead of the mass merge is removed
  • Nothing ever gets missed from the merge (because it does not happen)

WorkingParty - How to improve an existing Configuration Management process

The session will look at real-life experiences of those who are already implementing Configuration Management and who have advice to give on some of the problems they have encountered.

The itSMF CCRM working party and BCS CMSG will introduce the session from findings gathered from previous events. Delegates will identify and prioritise their input through table discussion and brainstorm. The input will be sorted into themes and delegates will vote on the highest priority/impact of the summarised output from the brainstorm. The results are displayed immediately.

John Martin - Reusable Component Management Through the use of Subversion Externals

A federated architecture with a hybrid of re-usable and purpose-built components poses interesting challenges for version control and configuration management of a system. This session presents a technique for using the externals feature of the open source version control tool Subversion to support configuration management of the parallel development of federated and service-oriented architectures.

Day 1: 16.25 - 17.10

Gaurav Dutt Uniyal - Ignite your Configuration Engines - Real world experiences for CMDB Success

Over the years, Organizations have constantly struggled to establish configuration management capabilities and implement CMDB. Extended time/effort/cost, inability to demonstrate “quick wins”, data quality management issues, confusion over asset v/s configuration management, multiplicity of data repositories/sources etc. are some of the common roadblocks to CMDB implementation projects. Today, organizations are getting skeptical about the success of their CMDB implementation projects. This raises a question, “What is the best implementation approach available which can minimize risk and guarantee success?"

A systematic approach can be designed for CMDB planning, design and implementation using some of the ITIL v3 concepts. Configuration Management System (CMS), service assets, knowledge management, integration of asset Management with configuration Management etc. are some of the newer concepts which can help organizations in building robust, scalable CMDB solutions.

In this paper, the author shares his experience on the important practices followed by organizations which have done successful implementation of configuration management and CMDB. The author uses his experience in CMDB implementations and ITIL v3 assessment to provide startling insights on what works, what doesn’t work for Configuration Management in the real world and how ITIL V3 can change the way organizations today manage their Configuration Management implementation projects.

Neal R Firth - Consolidating your SCM Infrastructure - migrating between Tools

The decision to change SCM tools is frequently made in response to financial pressures, mergers and acquisitions, or to better support desired changes to internal methodologies. Often overlooked are myriad organizational and technological challenges that result.

This presentation looks at the many aspects of changing an SCM infrastructure. The presentation discusses objectives, considerations and challenges. Mini-case studies are used to examine difficulties, successes, and optimisations for converting from products such as ClearCase or Visual Source Safe to SubVersion or Perforce.