The Provance Blog will provide you with expert advice, insights and opinions in regard to IT Service Management, Microsoft, Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft System Center.
With the release of Microsoft System Center 2012, many Provance customers have told us they are considering migrating their Service Manager deployments rather than performing an in place upgrade. By doing so, they are hoping to take advantage of the redeployment of Service Manager to tweak their configuration, as well as to groom, update and cleanse the data maintained in the Configuration Management Database (CMDB). The Provance Data Management Pack is a convenient mechanism that can be used to connect to your currently deployed Service Manager 2010 CMDB, apply data selection and transformation criteria, and import the data into your new deployment of System Center 2012. All the Configuration Items and Work Items maintained in the Service Manager 2010 CMDB are stored in Service Manager database tables.
The Provance Data Management Pack supplements the Microsoft System Center 2012 Service Manager connectors with the ability to access data directly from Microsoft SQL Server. This means you can choose tables in your Service Manager 2010 SQL Server database as a source for import into System Center 2012 using the Provance Data Management Pack. To determine the destination for the data in System Center 2012, you simply use forms and wizards to browse the CI classes and properties in the Service Manager CMDB and select the target destinations for each column from your source file or database. Furthermore, you see every data element in your CMDB, including customizations you’ve made using the Service Manager Authoring Tool or extensions by third party management packs.
The Provance Data Management Pack eliminates guesswork and the need for accurate reference documentation to fully understand the schema and structure of your CMDB. The SQL Server query definition you provide when you create an import template using the Provance Data Management Pack allows you to not only specify the source tables and columns that you want to import, but also filter and manipulate the data. For example, you could limit the import of incidents to a certain date range, or insert string functions to normalize different name variants to a single, standard reference (think “HP,” “Hewlett Packard” and “Hewlett-Packard” all being standardized to “HP”). Similarly, the Provance Data Management Pack lets you specify criteria for update and/or create, and additional data manipulation at the time of import. For example: You can choose not to create new objects in the CMDB when the source data has certain values; You can split, concatenate or extract substrings from the source data; You can add constant values, and; You can either copy or lookup values from Service Manager enum lists.