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Plan your successful CMDB deployment

INTRO

Achieve high‑performing business services using a healthy CMDB

Content Guide

Part 2 – Collect your data

You’ve begun by configuring your sources, and now you’re ready to begin collecting data.

Each plugin you activate creates data collection jobs to collect analytics information for the indicators and breakdowns installed. Once the jobs run, you see the data in the widgets and dashboards provided. While the data collector is straight‑forward, to use, it is a pretty special entity inside of Performance Analytics. The data collector runs on a periodic basis (usually daily) to read your operational tables, measures the data for that day against the definitions specified by the different indicators and breakdowns, and stores the data in the Performance Analytics tables inside your instance. The data collector creates the snapshot views of the data for Performance Analytics.

In general, each plugin you activate for out‑of‑the‑box content installs two data collector jobs:

  • Historic Data Collection –  This data collection is usually run when you install and configure Performance Analytics for the first time. By default, the Historic Data Collection job collects the last 60 days of data for the indicators specified in the job. You can configure the job to collect more historic data if you want to go back farther in time. After you have run the Historic Data Collection job for the out‑of‑the‑box content, the only job that should run for those same indicators is the corresponding daily job.
  • Daily Data Collection – This data collection is configured to run every day and needs to be scheduled to do so. After you’ve configured Performance Analytics, the Daily Data Collection job continues to populate data into the Performance Analytics tables going forward. Failure to enable the Daily Data Collection jobs prevents you from seeing any new data from in your dashboards.

Collect the historic data and configure the daily collection schedule

Step 1: Run the Historic Data Collection job(s)

At this point, you’ve set Performance Analytics up to collect data moving forward. But you should also collect historical data since you probably already have records for processes in your ServiceNow instance that you could visualize right away.  Run these historical jobs with the out‑of‑the‑box content when you first configure Performance Analytics.

  1. To run the historic data collector job, perform the following steps:In the left navigation pane, go to Performance Analytics > Data Collector > Jobs. The list of available jobs displays in the main content pane. (See Figure 1.) The out‑of‑the‑box Historic Data Collection jobs contain the word "historic."
  2. For each Historic Data Collection job you want to run, click the job from the list in the main content pane. The details of the job appear in the main content pane as shown in the example in Figure 2.

    Note: When the Historic Data Collection job runs, the data collector actually runs the number of times equal to the number of days specified in the form. For example, the default configuration causes the data collector to run 60 times in succession. The data collector will start at T‑60 days and examine all records as if the date were 60 days ago. After processing all of those records, the data collector will run again at T‑59 days and repeat the process. It then progresses to T‑58 days and so on until it gets to the current date. Each day's collection may take a minute or two to complete depending on the size of your tables. But realize that a historic data collection over multiple months may take some time to complete.
  3. Type the number of historic days you want to collect in the Relative start field under Collection parameters (shown in Figure 3). By default, the historic data collector job collects data for the prior 60 days.
  4. Under Job parameters, make sure the account specified in the Run as box has rights to read the data in the tables specified by the indicators.
  5. Click the Execute Now button to start the job. You are returned to the list of data collector jobs.

Once you click the Execute Now button, the data collector will run and collect data over the specified number of days.

Figure 1: List of available jobs showing historic jobs

Figure 2: Job details for an historic data job

Figure 3: The Relative start field under Collection parameters

Step 2: Verify data collection

The next step is to verify that the data was collected by the data collector. Follow these steps to check the completion of the Historic Data Collection job you ran:

  1. 1. In the left navigation pane, go to Performance Analytics > Data Collector > Job Logs.
  2. 2. Check the State of the historic data collection you started. It will report as Collected when the job has finished. (See Figure 4.)

If the job is still running, its state is Collecting. Once it’s complete, you should see a number in the Inserts column to tell you the statistical data was collected.

Figure 4: An historic data collection job in the Collected state

Step 3: Schedule the Daily Data Collection

Make sure to enable the  Daily Data Collection jobs for your desired content. This ensures Performance Analytics is collecting the data and a snapshot of your KPIs on a daily basis. To enable the jobs, follow these steps:

  1. In the left navigation pane, go to Performance Analytics > Data Collector > Jobs. The list of available jobs displays in the main content pane. The out‑of‑the‑box daily data collector jobs are marked as Daily in the Run column (shown in Figure 5).
  2. For each Daily Data Collection job you want to enable, click the job from the list in the main content pane to view its details. (See Figure 6.)
  3. Under Job parameters, select the Active checkbox to enable the job (shown in Figure 7). A form displays for you to schedule the time of day the job will run. 
  4. Select the time (based on a 24‑hour clock) when the job will run in the Time fields (shown in Figure 8). Run the job shortly after midnight in the time zone of the instance to collect a full day of data from the prior day. In the example below, the job is scheduled to run at 12:10AM in the US Pacific time zone, which is the system time zone for the instance.
  5. Review the Run as box to ensure the data collector job runs as a user with enough rights to read the indicator tables.
  6. Click Update to save your changes. You are returned to the list of data collector jobs.
  7. Review the list of data collector jobs to ensure the Active field is set to true. (See Figure 9.)

The data collector job you enabled will now run daily at the time you scheduled.

 

Figure 5: List of available jobs showing daily jobs

Figure 6: Example of a Daily Data Collection job's details

Figure 7: The Active checkbox under Job parameters

Figure 8: The Time fields under Job parameters

Figure 9: A list of data collector jobs showing one with the Active field set to true

Step 4: Review your results

Once the data collector job has finished, seeing your new data is simple:

  1. In the left‑hand navigation pane, click Performance Analytics > Dashboards. The last selected dashboard displays in the main content pane. (See the example in Figure 10.)
  2. From the drop‑down list on the top left side of the main content pane, select the dashboard that corresponds to the Historic Data Collection job you ran. (See the example in Figure 11.)

Now you’re ready to start analyzing your data.

 

Figure 10: Example of a dashboard for an Incident Management job

Figure 11: Example of a dashboard for an Historic Data Collection job

Tools and resources