ServiceNow Workflow Augmentation with SysTrack

Introduction

Lakeside Software SysTrack is a powerful analytics platform for distributed end user compute infrastructure. ServiceNow is a cloud-based, leading edge IT service delivery tool to which many customers large and small are turning to automate and standardize IT across global enterprises. Customers can integrate the detailed data and analytics from SysTrack with ServiceNow in order to augment the workflow deployed.

Overview

The SysTrack/ServiceNow integration focuses on four primary areas, CMDB, SNMP Traps,

Auto Ticket Create, and Incident/Problem resolution. The integration leverages a MID Server (ServiceNow on-premise component) through JDBC, SNMP, SMTP and HTTPS connections into the SysTrack APIs. One of these integrations or a combination of the four can be implemented in the customer environment.

Detailed below is a picture of the integrations available.

CMDB Integration

SysTrack enables IT to know exactly what hardware and software assets exist on each desktop, and to track and record any changes to the configuration.

Benefits:

  • Allows Help Desk personnel to have visibility into users' hardware/software configurations
  • Provides detailed data for asset management initiatives
  • Provides the data necessary to understand asset allocation
  • Provides visibility into system changes even when an asset is not on the network

SysTrack CMDB integration provides this robust data to ServiceNow. The CMDB integration is a one direction import of SysTrack data into ServiceNow's Configuration Management Database (CMDB). Scheduled imports bring relevant data from SysTrack into the CMDB through the ServiceNow Import Set Table and mapped to the ServiceNow instance. The import is achieved using a JDBC connection via the MIDServer. This functionality requires the load of the SysTrack Transform and the SysTrack ServiceNow view. It also requires the implementation of a MIDServer on the customer premise and enabling the JDBC plugin on the ServiceNow cloud instance

The following information is imported into SysTrack:

  • PC Hardware (Model, Manufacturer, memory, clock speed, number of CPUs, etc.)
  • Software packages installed (Office, Photoshop, iTunes, etc.)
  • Software usage information
  • Operating System Information (Name, Service Pack)
  • User and Domain information
  • Disk information (physical, network, and logical)
  • Network (IP Address, Netmask)

Automatic Alarm/Ticket Integration via SMTP

SysTrack provides deep insight into the end user environment, giving IT clear understanding of usage patterns and resource utilization. SysTrack also provides actionable intelligence, giving IT the specific data needed to make implementation decisions to better utilize IT resources and deliver superior user experience.

SysTrack monitors all elements within the vast SysTrack DataMine for dynamic thresholds and performs in depth event correlation. On these events, SysTrack can create incident and problem requests with ServiceNow through formatted SMTP emails. This allows the service desk to be proactively notified on problems in the end user environment such as memory leaks, events, hardware issues, hard disk, network, application crashes, etc.

Implementation is simply done by configuring SysTrack alarms to trigger SMTP mail with the ServiceNow custom email ticket format, entering an available SMTP server, and the inbound email address of the ServiceNow instance. This integration does not require the MIDServer to implement.

SMTP – ServiceNow RunBook Integration

SysTrack publishes all alarm, configuration and inventory data through a published v1 and v2 MIB. Through SMTP, SysTrack feeds ServiceNow its information. The integration works through the ServiceNow on-premise MIDServer. The SysTrack MIB is loaded through the ServiceNow MIDServer configuration console. ServiceNow Runbook automation scripts (RunProbe) are used to take action on SysTrack data to automate common tasks and actions.

SysTrack Resolve Integration with Service Management

SysTrack Resolve empowers first level technicians to diagnose and resolve user service issues themselves. Resolve performs heuristic differential analysis between the problem system and all physical and virtual user systems or any subset to identify and learn where behavior diverges from the norm.

With only the user's name, Resolve immediately identifies the offending system, displaying critical key performance indicators (KPIs) and highlighting KPIs out of normal range. Data is presented tabularly and graphically for easy interpretation and insight.

Resolve can eliminate many service calls and resolve problems before users are aware of them. Resolve continuously monitors literally hundreds of KPIs on every user system with a DataMine™ agent, tracking application behavior, system performance and changes to user system

SysTrack Resolve integrates with ServiceNow through a dynamic HTTP link that is placed in the incident form within the ServiceNow GUI. This requires a minor modification to these forms to include the link and reference the username in the ServiceNow database.

When the service desk agent is viewing a specific incident the link is available, which references the specific end user that is having the incident. When the service desk agent clicks on the link in ServiceNow, a web browser is launched directly to the end user environment within SysTrack Resolve. This makes the service delivery experience integrated for the service desk representative.