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  • Brock Peterson

vRealize True Visibility Suite Management Pack for ServiceNow

Founded in 2003 by Frank Luddy and originally intended to fill the gap Peregrine Systems vacated, ServiceNow has become the industry leader in IT Service Management (ITSM). Its Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering focuses on Incident and Problem & Change management, but has several other pillars.

  • IT Service Management: Incident Management and Change & ReleaseManagement

  • IT Operations Management: Discovery, Service Mapping, Event Management, Cloud Management, and Orchestration

  • IT Business Management: Project Management, Agile Development, Demand Management, Application Portfolio Management, and Resource Management

  • IT Asset Management: Asset Management and Software Asset Management, DevOps, Security Operations, and Governance, Risk, & Compliance

Enterprises running VMware vSphere and its data analytics platform, vRealize Operations Manager (vROps), frequently want to integrate vROps with ServiceNow, specifically to convert vROps Alerts to ServiceNow Incidents. To that end, VMware introduced the ServiceNow Outbound Plugin in vROps 7.5. Matt Bradford (VMware Senior Technical Marketing Manager) wrote a great blog on the topic:

The vRealize True Visibility Suite (TVS) Management Pack for ServiceNow management pack for vROps adds even more functionality.

First, it provides two-way Alert/Incident updating. Incident configurations are used for the alert-sync feature and define what types of alerts will be synced between vROps and ServiceNow. This feature only works on vROps 7.5+ using the built in ServiceNow Outbound Plugin, it depends on this plugin to send initial alerts from vROps to ServiceNow. Once the vROps alert is present in ServiceNow (as an Incident), the TVS ServiceNow Management Pack performs the following alert-sync actions:

  • If an alert is cancelled in vROps, the corresponding incident in ServiceNow is closed.

  • If an incident is closed in ServiceNow, the corresponding alert in vROps is suspended.

  • When a ServiceNow Incident is updated, the vROps Alert is updated (via Notes section of the vROps Alert).

For the third bullet item, the TVS ServiceNow Management Pack can be configured to watch a predefined set of incident columns and display the current/updated values in the corresponding vROps alert as a series of Notes. The block of code in the configuration file (json), will look something like this:

The fields in the "incidentElementsToRetrieve" array are those retrieved by the TVS adapter and used to update the vROps Alert. For more details, see the documentation:

Additionally, the TVS ServiceNow adapter captures Configuration Items (CIs) from specified CI Classes then groups matching vROps resources by indicated ServiceNow column. It does this based on the configuration file (json), which will look like this:

The configuration file consists of an array of Resource Types:

vROps: defines the type of vROps resource that will be assigned properties based on CMDB columns.

serviceNow: defines the type of ServiceNow CI that should be matched to the vROps resource.

groupTypes: array contains a list of mappings from serviceNow columns to vROps groups.

hierarchies: organize the groups. Objects at the top of the hierarchy are considered parents of objects lower on the hierarchy.

Once captured, the TVS Management Pack builds corresponding Dashboards. For example, if you've defined the Application Group Type in your configuration file, Application owners now have visibility into their Applications:

Our next revision of the TVS Management Pack for ServiceNow will have even more features, stay tuned!

Thanks to VMware TVS developers Katherine Klinefelter and Kyle Rokos for technical validation. An updated version of this blog can be found here.



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