Ivanti ISM Workshop Part 2 – Design Considerations

Ivanti Service Manager (ISM), powered by HEAT, is the most affordable, flexible, and complete cloud-optimized ITSM solution available today. ISM allows you to automate workflows, eliminating costly manual processes while making your business more efficient, compliant, and secure.

Whether you’re looking for an IT help desk and support ticket solution or need to perform more advanced ITIL service management processes, Ivanti Service Manager (ISM) solution can easily scale and adapt to meet your specific business needs.

Ivanti ISM Workshop Series Index

Part 1 – Analysis and Requirements Gathering
Part 2 – Design Considerations
Part 3 – Build Your On-Premise Production Installation
Part 4 – Application Configuration and Testing
Part 5 – Preparation for Going Live
Part 6 – Updating and Upgrading
Part 7 – Using Xtraction for Enhanced Reporting

Overview

The intent of this article is to outline the necessary design considerations relative to the implementation of Ivanti ISM. The design phase is used for planning the deployment and developing a blueprint to build the environment.

Infrastructure

  • The ISM Application is installed on Microsoft servers configured and scaled to provide the necessary computing resources.
  • The infrastructure may be configured to include security and redundancy features based on specific needs.
  • Microsoft SQL is utilized to host the databases utilized by the ISM application.
  • “Tenants” are provided for staging (STG), user acceptance testing (UAT), and production (PRD).
  • Access to the application is web-based using an access URL.

Integration

  • Ivanti ISM is commonly integrated with external applications such as Active Directory/LDAP and SMTP. These items and their integration will need to be considered during the design phase of the project.

User Interfaces

  • ISM provides user interfaces for several types of users including “Self-Service”, “Support” and “Administration”. The interface that is presented to the user is based on the role of the user. User interfaces and roles will need to be considered during the design phase to ensure maximum efficiency and usability.

Design Considerations

The key design decision is to consider the type of deployment and configuration. There are two types of deployment.

SaaS

This is the option for hosting your ISM infrastructure in the Ivanti Cloud.

  • SaaS is hosted and maintained by Ivanti.
  • Resources are monitored to assure optimum performance.

On-Premise

This is the traditional method of deployment where you host all of the ISM infrastructure on location.

  • Application and database servers are installed and maintained by an ISM administrator.
  • Compute resources need to be determined based on business needs and growth.

Configuration Considerations

  • Prior to beginning the configuration, a workshop is recommended to detail specific business requirements outlined in the design document.
  • Reference data worksheets describing details about Business Objects, for example Incident, will be completed to supplement specific details.
  • The design document will be used as a blueprint to build the configuration and updated as required to reflect the methods or techniques used throughout the project.

On-Premise Installation Considerations

There are a number of options available in regard to on-premise installations. Examples are given below:

Minimum Production Deployment

A minimum production deployment (illustrated on page 9 of the “ISM Installation and Deployment Guide”) shows a single server used for production connected to a database server.

This deployment is satisfactory for a small organization with 10 or fewer users (active analysts, administrators, etc. not including self-service)

Enterprise Deployment

A large -scale enterprise deployment (illustrated on page 11 of the “ISM Installation and Deployment Guide”) may include multiple software load-balanced production application servers for processing and hardware load-balanced web servers that support the user interface.

In some cases, there may be a need for enhanced security due to regulatory compliance requirements.

Typical Deployment

Most customers will fall in between the minimum and large-scale enterprise deployment and will use an arrangement consisting of a production and development servers and a SQL Server.

The typical deployment described will support up to 50 analysts working concurrently with little or no perceptible degradation in “real-time” performance.

Server Hardware/Software Requirements

The table below illustrates the basic Hardware and Software Requirements for each type of Server:

Preparation for Deployment

The following activities will need to be performed based on the installation type. This is important information to consider during the design phase because it helps with understanding the scope and approach of what is required prior to beginning the installation and configuration of the system.

Note: Access to the Ivanti Support Site to download installers and documents that may be needed for installation.

SaaS

  • ISM admin will request the creation of the staging tenant in the Ivanti Cloud with access for consultants and appropriate customer administrators.
  • VPN or SFTP access may be required and will need to be requested.

On-Premise

  • Provision necessary servers and verify connectivity between the application servers, database servers, email, and Active Directory.
  • Acquire MAC Addresses for the production and development servers to the project manager and consultant so that licenses can be provided.
  • Download and store the installation media and licenses on the respective servers.
  • Arrange for remote access to the environment for the consultant.
  • Installs and validate the installation.

Configuration Considerations

Prior to Configuration, a Workshop should be conducted detailing and defining changes or updates to the ISM application that are desired to enhance the users needs. The design specification document will contain the details and will be used as the primary guide.

A few aspects to consider

  • What needs have been specified during the design workshop and how are they prioritized?
  • Are there any open issues or information that we will need defining during the configuration process?
  • Who will be handling the configuration in a pre-production environment in the appropriate tenant?
  • How much time is allotted to update all tenants prior to going live?

If the Customer is Live and we are adding features…

  • Who is configuring the staging environment and changes will need to be coordinated to update production.
  • Has the ISM admin considered and defined testing that may be needed by the other administrators and users?
  • What is the knowledge transfer process for communicating status and scheduling regular working sessions and reviews?

Remember that during configuration, the Design Document will need to be updated to reflect the particulars of the methods or techniques used.

Configuration Examples

Configuration of Ivanti ISM is completed using the administrative or client interface depending on the type.

Structural changes to the configuration are done in the administrative interface.

A few examples below.

  • Business Object Modifications – Fields, Business Rules, Forms, Workflows etc.
  • Pick Lists – Used for field validation in Business Objects
  • Escalations – Incident, Tasks, Service Requests
  • Surveys
  • Integrations – LDAP and Data Imports

Data values for Business Objects can be Configured in the Client Interface:

A few examples below.

  • Incident – Service, Category, Subcategory values
  • Email – Outgoing and Listener
  • Teams – Creation or Modification of Teams and Team Members
  • Employees – Can be created
  • Service Request Offerings

The next article in our Ivanti ISM Workshop Series will cover building an on-premise production installation. Thank you for reading and please contact Critical Design Associates with your ITSm and Ivanti ISM needs.

Sincerely,

Bill Davidson
Senior Consultant
Critical Design Associates

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Ivanti ISM Workshop Series Index

Part 1 – Analysis and Requirements Gathering
Part 2 – Design Considerations
Part 3 – Build Your On-Premise Production Installation
Part 4 – Application Configuration and Testing
Part 5 – Preparation for Going Live
Part 6 – Updating and Upgrading
Part 7 – Using Xtraction for Enhanced Reporting