IT Jargon Explained

Configuration Management

Configuration management is a fundamental process that helps organizations maintain secure and reliable IT systems, applications and services.

Configuration management is an essential part of IT service management; it's the process of organizing, managing and tracking changes to an organization’s IT systems, applications and processes. It helps organizations maintain a high level of security, reliability and availability. 

In this article, we'll discuss what configuration management is, the importance of configuration management in relation to ITIL frameworks and change management processes, the difference between configuration management and orchestration tools, as well as key features of configuration management tools.  

What is configuration management? 

Configuration management is a fundamental process that helps organizations maintain secure and reliable IT systems, applications and services. It involves creating a detailed record of each system component and how it's configured, as well as tracking changes to the configurations. This way an organization can ensure that their configurations are up-to-date and compliant with organizational policies. 

Configuration management and ITIL 

Configuration management is a key pillar of ITIL, the most widely adopted methodology for IT service management. This framework provides organizations with best practices for improving the quality of services that they provide. As part of this core process, configuration management helps organizations keep track of changes made to services or their components while ensuring that they remain configured correctly over time.  

Why is configuration management important? 

When coupled with ITIL frameworks or change management processes, configuration management helps organizations identify trends in their systems while ensuring that they remain secure and reliable at all times. It also provides insights into where agents might be struggling or which areas may need improvement to meet internal customer expectations. By understanding how to effectively manage their IT infrastructure through configuration management processes, organizations can reduce costs associated with managing IT operations while maintaining high standards of security and availability. 

Configuration management also makes it easier for organizations to ensure that all regulatory requirements are met by applying uniform policies across all platforms consistently so that they remain compliant with industry standards such as HIPAA. 

Configuration management and change management 

Configuration management and change management go hand in hand when it comes to IT service management. By using these two disciplines together, organizations can ensure that they properly track and manage all changes while also validating and approving any changes before they are implemented. 

Change management techniques help ensure that only authorized personnel make modifications on behalf of the organization while preventing unauthorized access from malicious actors outside the network perimeter. Change control boards monitor proposed changes so that only those deemed beneficial will be implemented while rejecting those deemed detrimental. This provides another layer of security as it ensures no unauthorized modifications take place without proper authorization from authorized personnel first.  

By utilizing both configuration management techniques and change management processes together, organizations can better secure their networks from internal threats posed by careless employees as well as external threats posed by hackers looking to exploit vulnerable systems within an infrastructure environment. 

Configuration management vs. configuration orchestration 

Organizations that are looking to improve their IT service management processes need to consider both configuration management and configuration orchestration. 

Configuration management is a process of organizing, managing and tracking changes to an organization's IT systems, applications and processes. It requires manual input and offers accuracy but can be time consuming.  

On the other hand, configuration orchestration is the automation of this process; it offers faster deployment times while also providing improved accuracy compared with manual methods. 

Combining both can provide organizations with improved visibility into their IT environment while reducing the risk associated with misconfigurations. Ultimately, having a combination of both in an organization’s IT service strategy will help them stay competitive in today’s markets by ensuring high levels of security, reliability and availability. 

Key features of configuration management software 

Configuration management software is designed to provide organizations with the ability to track, version control, audit, report on and automate their IT systems, applications and processes. They can be used to track any type of configuration item (CI), including hardware components as well as software services. By leveraging version control features of configuration management tools, organizations can ensure that they appropriately track and log changes made over time. Auditing and reporting features enable organizations to quickly identify changes made in their infrastructure and review them for security or compliance issues. 

Configuration management software automates these processes, improving accuracy, visibility and security. Additionally, integration with application deployment technology allows for rapid deployment of applications across an organization's infrastructure while maintaining compliance. This helps simplify the process of getting new applications up and running quickly without having to worry about manual configurations or deployments.