Application rationalization is a crucial step in the six-step Application Readiness process. Through reducing the number of applications that IT teams actively support, enterprises can simplify migrations, reduce operational costs and improve the efficiency of day-to-day application service delivery. This helps to narrow the scope of IT projects, including the move to Windows 10, and continuous updates.
Many organizations use Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) to collect inventory, but the amount of data SCCM collects can be overwhelming. The raw inventory contains, divers, executable files, components, and many other pieces of application evidence that make it almost impossible to identify the software titles and versions hidden in all that data. Microsoft does have an Asset Intelligence tool that is supposed to help clean up the applications, but it covers mostly Microsoft products and some organizations have had issues with duplicates and inconsistent results (see Configuration Manager and Asset Intelligence). It takes a lot of manual manipulation to create a “human readable” report of installed software titles, versions, and manufactures.
To help customers transform that raw data into an actionable inventory of software titles, AdminStudio Inventory and Rationalization connects to SCCM and collects the inventory data. Then uses the Flexera Software Application Recognition Service to identify the software titles hidden in all that data. Through this constantly updated cloud-based service of over 181,000 known software products, the Flexera Software Application Recognition Service automatically standardizes the naming conventions of discovered applications (both Microsoft and non-Microsoft) while classifying and categorizing each software title.
The normalized, standardized, and categorized list of software titles found are then enriched in the Rationalization Manger with usage information, Windows 10 compatibility, and virtualization suitability information.
Some customers report a 10:1 reduction between the raw applications evidence collected by SCCM and the number of normalized software titles identified by the Application Recognition Service. So if your SCCM inventory file contains 10,000 items, the normalized list could be reduced to just 1,000 software titles in a very short time. Now you have a “human readable” list of all the applications found in your environment that you can share with application owners to make decisions, then launching workflows to replace, consolidate, upgrade, or retire applications.
Timothy Davis is a Senior Product Marketing Manager at Flexera Software, and has worked in global marketing at high-tech firms such as BMC Software, VeriSign, McAfee, and Lotus. With over 25 years of experience in enterprise software, he has gained a deep understanding of the business challenges faced by IT organizations in enterprises of all sizes. Specializing in IT Service Management and Operations, Tim develops content that translates product features into real business benefits that help IT leaders learn about new and developing technologies that drive IT efficiency and improve customer satisfaction.
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