What are the different methods of carrying out an IT infrastructure inventory ?
This operation is long and tedious.
It consists of manually inventorying the equipment, querying the system parameters in order to recover information such as, System, Applications, Devices, Network, etc.
It will require the presence of inventory clerks on the workstations.
Manual Inventory is a time-consuming operation that will cost a lot of money and may become obsolete in a few months and involve a significant level of error.
It is therefore to be prescribed.
Semi-Automatic Inventory or Inventory with Agent
This is the case of an inventory with an agent. A computer program called an agent is installed on each computer to be inventoried. Then, this agent inventories the hardware and software components and sends to the server an analysis file containing the recovered data. Many software use this technology because it works well and can retrieve more information from workstations in relation to a network analysis. The constraint is that you have to install this agent which will sometimes slow down the computer and compete with the other agents installed. Also, there must be a way to transmit the file to the destination directory so that it is processed by the server.
Automatic Inventory or network inventory
The automatic inventory consists of installing a service (software) that will ping the network, detect all connected IP devices and analyze them. The principle is great because the process is automatic and there is nothing to do. The principle is based on the use of protocols such as WMI for PC and Windows servers, SNMP for network devices, or SSH for Linux or Apple environments. As we live in a world where profits unfortunately have constraints, it is necessary to have well architected networks because we have to have access rights to machines to be scanned.
Semi-Automatic/Automatic Mixed InventoryFor companies that have mobile PCs (Sellers, teleworkers) that are not remotely connected on the network via VPN, an automatic and semi-automatic mixed system must be used by installing an agent that will retrieve the return information by email, FTP, network connection script.