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Universal CMDB OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

Universal CMDB is #3 ranked solution in top Configuration Management Databases. IT Central Station users give Universal CMDB an average rating of 8 out of 10. Universal CMDB is most commonly compared to BMC Atrium CMDB: Universal CMDB vs BMC Atrium CMDB. The top industry researching this solution is Computer Software Company, accounting for 34% of all views.
What is Universal CMDB?

The Micro Focus Universal CMDB (UCMDB) automatically collects and manages accurate and current business service definitions, associated infrastructure relationships and detailed information on the assets, and is a central component in many of the key processes in your IT organization, such as change management, asset management, service management, and business service management.

Universal CMDB is also known as Micro Focus Universal CMDB, UCMDB, HPE Universal CMDB.

Universal CMDB Customers

China Merchants Bank, NNIT, Alfa-Bank, Sprint

Universal CMDB Video

Archived Universal CMDB Reviews (more than two years old)

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Rakesh Kanojia
Senior Technical Pre-Sales Consultant / Project Manager (BSM) at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
Top 20
It is built for stability and is the only solution which can support up to 60 million CIs

What is our primary use case?

Central CMDB as a single source of information for processes like Asset & Service Management (incident, problem, change, release, etc.) in keeping total cost of ownership, SLA tracking, and impact analysis.

Business service mapping (application and IT infrastructure) from an event management perspective, giving visibility into the health and performance of the CI supporting a given business.

How has it helped my organization?

Any organization can take advantage of the Automated Service Modelling (ASM) feature to discovery the dynamic changing environment and keep the business service view (dependency mapping) up-to-date, hence missing out the newly added CI for a given business service.

What is most valuable?

Discovery is possible for Workstation connecting over public IP.

Micro Focus UCMDB has an auto learning capability and groups all unidentified software, which the administrator can check and decide if it needs to be added to the repository for future discovery.

One of the unique feature is the Automated Service Modeling (ASM), which allows for modeling a business service starting from any Running Software CI and does not necessarily require having a URL.

It is AI inbuilt into the solution, by which the tools identifies non-standard software with the CI. Enable identified the same can be added in the DB.

It can also detects the software usage & metering then helps organization to comply with licensing removing unused software

What needs improvement?

Mobile/iPad Apps version of the UCMDB Browser would be a step ahead, which should have features, like viewing CI information, ownership, etc.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No. Micro Focus UCMDB is built for stability and is the only solution which can support up to 60 million CIs.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues. Micro Focus UCMDB is highly scalable. It supports horizontal and vertical scaling.

How are customer service and technical support?

Good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Not applicable.

How was the initial setup?

Installation is straightforward. It seamlessly integrates to other vendor solutions to pull the CI into Micro focus UCMDB.

What about the implementation team?

I have implemented the solution with the help of my team members.

What was our ROI?

It can save a lot of effort in capturing unplanned changes.

UCMDB can detect changes and auto open an unplanned change request in Service Manager, hence controlling unauthorized changes. At the same time, it can be complaint from licensing perspective, which can save up to 50% of the cost which arises from non-compliance due to vendor licensing.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Setting up the framework with integration can take from one week to one month and will depend on the requirements and the integration.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Not applicable.

What other advice do I have?

Before implementing, you must finalize the output requirement, i.e., CI grouping/category, attribute, relationship types, etc. This will help in defining the information collection process.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
ITCS user
Sr. Systems Management Engineer at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
It can discover various pieces from hardware, software, custom applications, and tie them together to create a map using ASM

Pros and Cons

  • "It can discover almost everything and creates relationship among discovered CIs, along with creating topology modeling."
  • "It scales easily with future expansion."
  • "It can discover various pieces from hardware, software, custom applications, and tie them together to create a map using ASM."
  • "Improve the GUI and documentation."

What is our primary use case?

UCMDB is one of best discovery softwares available in the market. 

  • It can discover almost everything and creates relationship among discovered CIs, along with creating topology modeling. 
  • You can set up a UCMDB server with multiple probes and it can be distributed across all regions to collect information locally, then be shipped to a central node. 
  • It scales easily with future expansion. 
  • It can discover various pieces from hardware, software, custom applications, and tie them together to create a map using ASM (Automated Service Modelling).
  • It works with agentless and agent solutions. 
  • It can be integrated easily with other Micro Focus tools, like NNMi, OMi, and OBR and third-party products like ServiceNow

How has it helped my organization?

UCMDB data is helpful with correlating events, which helps to reduce the number of events to the end user. It also help with business-level mapping to provide high level visibility related to the health of business applications. 

In a large heterogeneous environment, you can have multiple distributed probe servers which can collect data into each region and send it over the central nodes to avoid firewall and DMZ issues. This make the discovery process more dynamic and real-time.

The latest version of UCMDB 10.33 has an autodiscovering capability. 

What is most valuable?

The Automated Service Modeling (ASM) is the new feature in 10.33, which allows out-of-the-box automatic modeling that can be used for business service level mapping. 

What needs improvement?

Improve the GUI and documentation.  

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

No.

What was our ROI?

Not applicable.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

It is competitive.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Yes, ServiceNow.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
ITCS user
Service Management Consultant with 10,001+ employees
Consultant
It can feed in from multiple sources and upload into various Service Management toolsets

What is our primary use case?

Mainly, it is used as a central repository to store our CMS data from various sources. We use it to store data from collection points as well as upload them into tools, such as Service Manager.

What is most valuable?

The ability to use it as our single source of truth. It can feed in from multiple sources and upload into various Service Management toolsets, not just Micro Focus ones.

How has it helped my organization?

It has allowed us to centralise the feeds and sources. Previously, like many companies, we stored CMS data in various places and various systems, and they did not always match.

What needs improvement?

Some of the UI could always be improved, but that is personal taste. I am a big fan of removing thick clients and thick servers and making everything Web UI.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Perhaps, we used various Service Management toolsets to store data.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
it_user567681
Itsm Manager at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Consultant
It has a good data model and supports all ITIL processes.

What is most valuable?

It's a governance oriented tool with a very good data model. It supports all the governance, ticketing, service desk, change management, and all the ITIL processes. It supports what we need. In terms of IT governance and IT operation management, it's as good as any centralized management database.

How has it helped my organization?

In terms of data quality and process ticketing, it is helpful. For instance, if you have a number of service desk tickets coming in and you have to refer to a system, a product, or an application interface, it is backed up by information from this database for reference. Everyone references the same thing. It terms of financial management, you can pile up the costs and the value because you have “service trees”. All these configuration items (CIs) are in there and that's the advantage. Everyone is looking at the same platform.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see better reporting and better support of integrations with the other systems. There is an additional tool that they give to you for the end users so that it's easier. It’s called the UCMDB browser, which is like an internet browser so you can browse the data easier. This should be in each and every tool in the suite so that you are referencing the same database. They are doing this step by step, and they are quite far right in the process.

In the reporting, it should be more flexible in terms of data drill downs and dimensional data excerpts, enrichment of data so that you can really use it as a data mart into your service trees.

I would like to see a centralized configuration and administration tool because right now the administration for the tool and the sub-tool, UCMDB browser, is done through different interfaces. For example, on the GUI, you do it on the JMX management interface, and you can sometimes add it from the database directly.

There's always room for improvement in this area. If you want to run a company based on a good referential and integrity, then you want your data to improve all the time.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is quite good. It has some deficiencies in lower level functionality. In terms of what it should deliver, such as reporting and performance, it's the main feature and it is fine. Where it's a little bit lagging is integration. If you have big masses of data going back and forth, it's going to perform better. They promised this with the next version. We are not on the latest version right now. We are expecting additional improvements to be made.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I think the scalability is okay. As we are running in a cluster environment and having lots of different "probes" that are collecting data from systems. We have between 50-100 probes.

How is customer service and technical support?

They have three levels of support. The third level is close to R&D. You are lucky to get over the first level, then you are happy with the support. At the first level, they sometimes ask you the same things that you have told them before. It could also be because of the high level way that they are now deploying. They should brush up the skills of the first level.

How was the initial setup?

Years ago, it was very complex setup because there was close to no knowledge in this area. Even professional services were learning by doing. But today, setup is easier. Just this year, they announced that they have a containerized version of all these tools that we're using and you can configure it from the start. This should be easier moving forward.

What other advice do I have?

They have an ear for the customer; they listen to you. I'm personally very active with them, they have conference calls where you can give feedback or ask them for advice, in addition to the normal support. They have lots of knowledgeable guys now moving to Micro Focus which I hope continues. I'm looking forward to that as they are more of a software company. The problem with support is they have a process, or an organizational structure, that is not leaning to software support.

There is a very steep learning curve. Once you are at the summit, you have a very good oversight and the tool is leaning toward workflows you should be adopting. It's hard to learn all of this, in the beginning.

It is good to you have an expert at the site, somebody in the company already, or someone to train you on the job. I don't think that the training courses have much value. We had training for the tools but we learn more from experiencing it on our own, than from the courses themselves.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
ITCS user
IT Administrator at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
Provides visibility into IT infrastructures by automated discovery and dependency mapping

Valuable Features

- extensive GUI with many features allowing:
o broad control over inventory/discovery of standard systems, but also custom built equipment
o easy modeling of systems and applications
o easy addition of integrations with various data sources with various connection protocols
- fast (internal) "time to market" using special applications built "on top" like UCMDB Browser and Configuration Manager
- numerous and knowledgable support staff; fast turnaround on support cases
- extensive online support system, software communities and solutions resources

Room for Improvement

- can be rather expensive to implement (for smaller companies)
- can be support intensive
- requires a lot of project resources to push toward implementation
- requires a number of people to operate
- as game changing technology requires a mature IT service organization, numerous resources for project management, design, implementation, evangelization
- requires serious upper echelon management backing (sponsorship)

Use of Solution

6 years

Stability Issues

HP releases CUPS and Content Packs on a regular basis. Implementing these requires careful planning and analysis, but helps keeping the product in good working shape.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:

HP customer service is usually very personal, reachable and effective.

Technical Support:

HP Software Support is a very large and skilled organization, with experience dating back decades.

Initial Setup

Setup is straightforward, but it does require planning and design.

Implementation Team

In-house.

Other Advice

Large telcos with a history of mergers and acquisitions will benefit from this technology by discovering exactly which components are located where in their data centers, how they're connected and what their status is, facilitating consolidation/transformation of DC infrastructures as well as reducing mean time to resolution in case of incidents. Evaluation is a speedy process because results are visible quickly (imagine a simple scan of a couple hundred Windows servers and presenting the resulting map to a Windows SDM). Usually leads to "oh nice, can we do x or y as well?". Which is what you're doing it for initially.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
ITCS user
IT Administrator at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
My experiences using UCMDB with Configuration Manager
With HP UCMDB we bring clarity and order to the surrounding jungle of IT infrastructure components and the myriad ways in which they're interrelated. HP UCMDB brings us a standardized data model and CMDB, which serves as a single source of truth and as a foundation for integrations with other tools in the ITSM sphere, like Service Manager and BSM. HP UCMDB (Universal Configuration Management Database) usually comes packaged with two other products, the UCMDB Browser and Configuration Manager. The UCMDB Browser enables us to quickly give access to the CMDB contents for large numbers of users, whereas the Java GUI allows UCMDB admins and analysts to develop Views and Reports which serve to satisfy the organization's CI information needs. With Configuration Manager, or CM for short,…

With HP UCMDB we bring clarity and order to the surrounding jungle of IT infrastructure components and the myriad ways in which they're interrelated. HP UCMDB brings us a standardized data model and CMDB, which serves as a single source of truth and as a foundation for integrations with other tools in the ITSM sphere, like Service Manager and BSM.

HP UCMDB (Universal Configuration Management Database) usually comes packaged with two other products, the UCMDB Browser and Configuration Manager.

The UCMDB Browser enables us to quickly give access to the CMDB contents for large numbers of users, whereas the Java GUI allows UCMDB admins and analysts to develop Views and Reports which serve to satisfy the organization's CI information needs.

With Configuration Manager, or CM for short, it becomes possible to quickly use the discovered data in UCMDB for comparative purposes, like policy checking. The idea is that you create model, or views, in UCMDB and then use those as a basis in CM. The TQLs created in UCMDB produce CI’s, which are then used in CM to compare with each other (environment segmentation analysis), or with standards (policy checking, state comparison over time). CM can then produce lists/reports alerting you to changes, which you can then authorize. Or not.

Another approach is to quickly select a number of CI’s, like computers, compare them with one another to produce a view on the segmentation, or fragmentation, of hardware standards in IT. Any which way you use CM, it gives a configuration manager a tool to very quickly turn his new CMDB into hard currency.

If the Configuration Manager is the only one working with CM, it requires him (or her) to have an understanding of modeling in UCMDB, since models form the basis of CI checking in CM. So there’s a little ramping of knowledge, but once done, results are produced very quickly. The whole mess of CI’s suddenly comes alive and kicking.

With UCMDB version 10, HP has introduced a large number of improvements and changes. One of the main ones is the addition of inventory based discovery. It is now possible to deploy inventory scanners to target hosts, which inventory installed software using a technique called DDMi, previously found in HP Asset Manager. Now application signature based inventory and license information gathering comes into the domain of UCMDB without the need for integration.

A clear Business Case for UCMDB can be the migration of a Data Center, or the need to increase Configuration Management process credibility by improving IT infrastructure data quality.

ROI may take a little bit, because there's an investment, and it depends on the way the solution is introduced in the organization, it needs leverage by proper upper echelons sponsorship and lower echelon product evangelisation (using demos and bootcamps) how long it will take for the solution to "take", but as soon as it does, information requests will roll in from all corners and the product will prove its worth.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
ITCS user
Systems Advisor at a government with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
This product discovers, maps and reports information about our configuration on a daily basis.

What is most valuable?

Discovery of infrastructure and automatic mapping of the infrastructure relationships. The discovery uses multiple protocols both actively and passively to get information about networks, hosts, connections, traffic, services, processes, hardware, software, etc. Configuration Manager (CM) provides a dashboard for Policy and View management UCMDB Browser – this is a relatively new feature but it is evolving rapidly – allows the user to look at his configuration data and all of its aspects (impact analysis, change, monitoring KPIs, automation, environment, relationships, etc)

How has it helped my organization?

The UCMDB has illuminated the organization to the fact that our data is managed too manually and distributed in a myriad of spreadsheets. This product discovers, maps and reports information about our configuration on a daily basis. We use it for datacenter migrations and for audit purposes. The company is starting to realize that we really don’t have a source of truth for audit purposes and this product is capable of being that.

What needs improvement?

I think the product is so large and complex that the learning curve is long if you want to understand all aspects of what it can do. You have to jump from manual to manual to accomplish some of the functions, but this is understandable considering the scope of what it attempts to do.

For how long have I used the solution?

The product was here before I started working at this company but meandering in support – it was version 8.04 in 2010 – today I am at v10.01. This version is the first to be supported properly starting April 2013.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

The installation of the application and database servers was straight forward and error free – the probes are quite easy to install as well and the updates/patches/content packs can be automatically delivered to each probe from the application server .

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

When I reached over 20 million CIs (Configuration Items), I needed to do some tuning to keep the product performing – but after I enabled the aging mechanism, this number went into the 10-11 million CI mark and it’s behaved quite admirably since.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No, you are able to use separate probes to scale out across the enterprise, it is the probe that does the discovery and sends the results back to the application server. We are in the infancy of using this product in product but so far I haven’t seen the need to scale out the application/database servers (the product does support HA but we have disabled it)

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service: We have had no problem with the customer service although we haven’t made too many demands in this area.Technical Support: The initial level of support is OK for problems that are recreatable, but typically I need to escalate to second and third level support. I joined an HP Practitioners forum (held on Tuesdays at 11 am EST) and it is very valuable in keeping up with the current technology and the future roadmap of the product.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We continue to use BMC Remedy (Atrium) for problem and change and configuration management since this has been in place for 10 years – everyone continues to blame it for inaccurate data but it is so entrenched in the day to day processes. What the landscape is changing to is – the UCMDB is being positioned to provide a bidirectional link to Remedy so that the live discovery results are pumped back to Remedy to keep this repository up to date.

How was the initial setup?

The setup is straightforward and becomes a little more complex when you add SSL to the mix.

What about the implementation team?

Basically we installed in-house and got no vendor support (nor did we ask for any)

What was our ROI?

We haven’t quantified anything yet, mostly the advantages are intangible and process-oriented / data quality related.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We purchased 2750 licenses (full discovery for 2700 hosts (network devices do not need a license)) at a cost of $550,000 ($200 per license). I don’t quite know the day to day cost – but we will probably need to reach 10,000 licenses when complete, so the full investment would be around $2 million (hopefully HP can be a little creative when we get to that point!)

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

No other product was evaluated – when I joined the organization, I basically dusted off the v8 of UCMDB and supported it single-handedly to get it to this state.

What other advice do I have?

Start small either horizontally or vertically. For example, horizontally you can implement discovery at the IP address level and complete that before you enable any host discovery . Or vertically, take one organizational unit or datacenter and enable full discovery on that subset of IP addresses . I prefer the latter because you can then demonstrate all of the capabilities of the UCMDB within this subset. The former option allows you to demonstrate what devices are actually out there (sometimes quite an eye opener in itself)
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.