AppClarity Management Groups

Management Groups are used to partition installations and licenses within AppClarity to enable granular management of reporting, licensing and software reclaim. A management group defines a group of installations so that each department can view and manage their own Installations and it can also be defined as a license container, which enables licenses to be allocated to the individual groups rather than being applied centrally. Each installation must be included in a management group.

Installations and licenses for a large organization are typically not managed by one group of people – asset management is typically divided into multiple groups and delegated across different teams and the AppClarity Management Groups reflect how this is done. The exact term used to refer to this method of grouping assets into manageable groups may differ within organizations – common terms, such as business units and cost centers are essentially different names that apply to the same concept. For this reason, you can customize the AppClarity Management Group label to align with the terminology used in your organization.

AppClarity users can only view information for management groups if they are assigned a role for the groupFor example, if a user has been assigned the Product Editor role in one Management Group but not assigned a role in any other group, then they will only see that one group listed in the Management Group selector in the Products screen, and they will only see products for that one group.  For more information, please refer to Managing users.

AppClarity has two in-built management groups that perform specific functions and cannot be renamed or deleted. These are:

  • The [Global View] Management Group – provides a global view that lets you view all the installations and licenses currently defined in AppClarity.
  • The [Central] Management Group – enables the licenses to be managed centrally and provides a catch-all for product installations not assigned to any other management group (see Administering rules for management groups). In circumstances where no user-defined management group exists, all licenses and product installations are linked to this group. This group lets you define global policies for products, so exercise caution when you assign permissions for this group.

You add new or modify existing management groups in the Configuration screen.

Customize the AppClarity Management Group label

Installations and licenses for a large organization are typically not managed by one group of people. Organizations usually divide asset management into multiple groups and delegate management of each group to different teams. AppClarity uses the term Management Group to describe the way assets are managed. The term to describe this functional group may differ from organization to organization – terms such as business units and cost centers are essentially different names that apply to the same concept. For this reason, the Management Group label can be customized to align with the terminology used in your organization.

It may be useful in some organizations to use a term such as 'Cost Center' or 'Business Unit' instead of 'Management Group'. AppClarity allows an administrator to define their own term for Management Group as it appears in the console by modifying values in the SiteSettings table in the AppClarity database. The following example SQL query could be used to change the label for Management Group to Business Unit. The AppClarity console will need to be closed and reopened for the changes to reflect.

UPDATE [SiteSettings] SET uss_ManagementGroup_ManagementGroupLabel='Business Unit'
UPDATE [SiteSettings] SET uss_ManagementGroup_AllManagementGroupsLabel='All Business Units'

Categorizing applications

AppClarity uses the containers to categorize discovered software running on devices on the network. The raw data is collected by ActiveEfficiency from its data sources and stored in the AppClarity database. The four categorizing containers are:

AppClarity Containers

  • Applications – in AppClarity, a product is a distinct or partial combination of publisher, product and full version details derived from the registry or metadata in a software's executable file header installed on a device. Where a publisher, product and full version is matched against a corresponding entry in the Catalog, it is added to the product list for the AppClarity Console. Applications are organized into releases. Available for linking are those that are retrieved from a data source but is incomplete with regards to the publisher, product and release. In this case, the application appears in the Available for linking list in the AppClarity Console, enabling you to link them to an application in the catalog. You can select up to 10 applications to link to a matching application in the catalog but the selection can be depending on your circumstances.
  • Releases – these are an identifiable released version of a product, typically associated with a major version number such as Adobe Reader 8 or Microsoft Office 2010. It may also be associated with a point release such as Symantec Backup Exec 12.5. A release can use the license metrics defined for the product as a whole or have custom metrics defined for it. Releases are the constituent parts of Products.
  • Products  – these are a combination of publisher, product and releases. AppClarity processes the applications making an exact match with catalog. At the very least, it needs to be able to determine the application's publisher and product properties to match it to a catalog product. If an exact match is found, the application is associated with that specific publisher, product, release and edition. However, if the release cannot be identified, the application is associated with the product with an unidentified release. Products (with or without an identified release) are managed in the Products page in the AppClarity Console. Products belong to Publishers. The following terms are worth noting:
    • Linked applications – applications that are discovered through a data source as having been installed and associated with a particular product in the catalog
    • Linked installations – shows the location (machine and user) of the installed products
    • License managed products – one where license metrics have been defined for it. Licenses may be applied either by importing a license CSV file that matches with one or more of the product's linked applications or by defining a new entitlement in the AppClarity Console. These metrics must be defined for all product releases before entitlements can be associated with it.
  • Publishers – refer to software houses that produce software. AppClarity uses the catalog and its extensive data of software releases to ensure that a publisher is identified. This means that applications having slightly different publisher, product and versions details can be correctly associated with a single publisher, product and release through Available for Linking. The Product screen in the AppClarity Console is ordered by Publisher to make it easier to audit license compliance. License compliance is achieved when all the products for that publisher are compliant.