Written by Mark Farrugia, Senior Microsoft Premier Field Engineer. A service catalog (or catalogue), as defined in Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Service Design, is a list of services that an organization provides, often to its employees or customers. Each service within the catalogue typically includes:
The point of this article is not to go into the full definition of a Service Catalogue, but I do want to focus in on the first bullet defined above – A description of the service. The service description will define in plain language what the service does, what it depends on, which business unit owns it, support details, along with notification details. In addition, the service definition will define the criticality of the service, and its reporting, auditing and security requirements.
When it comes to System Center Operations Manager, the service description will be an Operations Manager administrator’s best friend. As I will post in another article, the true power of Operations Manager is the ability to delegate the console out, and by having all of your services pre-defined in a document, the delegation process will be made considerably easier.
Some major components that should be defined in the service catalogue are:
This above can represented by a service map, and this diagram will vary per organization, but this should give you a basic working framework.
Why bother trying to document your services in your organization? There are many reasons to do so, some of which are:
When defining your services, you can make the definition as verbose or as simple as you would like, as long as it provides meaningful value back to your organization. For the purposes of this posting I am going to build out a simple service definition for my Microsoft SQL Database Service as it applies to my lab environment. (Disclaimer: I have a bunch of randomly generated user names in my lab environment and my lab environment does not represent any real customer data or organization)
SQL Database Service
System Center Operations Manager
Windows Server Update Services
Microsoft Deployment Toolkit
Microsoft Lync 2010
1st Level Support
SQL Admin – LVL 1
2nd Level Support
SQL Admin – LVL 2
TEST\SQL ADMINS – LVL 1
TEST\SQL ADMINS – LVL 2
The complexity of completing the following tasks will be greatly reduced when a service is properly documented and catalogued:
Should you be interested in learning more about Service Definitions with a detailed example, I recommend you go to the following article: Chapter 2 – Service Management. In my next post we will actually apply the concepts discussed in this article to System Center Operations Manager.