Dividing the infrastructure into scan groups

To avoid running into performance issues, you should divide the computers in your infrastructure into scan groups and properly set the scan schedule. You should start by creating a benchmark scan group on which you can try different configurations to achieve optimal import time. After the import time is satisfactory for the benchmark group, you can divide the rest of your infrastructure into analogous scan groups.

Procedure

  1. Create a single scan group that will be your benchmark.

    The size of the scan group might vary depending on the size of your infrastructure. However, the recommendation is to avoid creating a group larger than 20 000 endpoints. For more information about creating computer groups, see: Lesson 1 (Optional): Creating computer groups in the BigFix console

  2. Run Initiate Software Scan fixlet and scan the computers in this scan group. For more information, see: Initiating software scans.
  3. When the scan finishes, use Upload Software Scan Results fixlet to upload the results of the scan to the BigFix server. For more information, see: Uploading software scan results.
  4. Run an import of data. For more information about running imports, see: Scheduling imports of data. Check the import time and decide whether its duration is satisfactory.
  5. If you are not satisfied with the import time, go to the following directory and check the import log.
    • Linux icon installation_directory/wlp/usr/servers/server1/logs/imports
    • Windows icon installation_directory\wlp\usr\servers\server1\logs\imports
  6. Undertake one of the following actions:
    • If you see that the duration of the import of raw file system scan data or package data takes longer than one third of the ETL time and the volume of the data is large (a few millions of entries), create a smaller group.
    • If you see that the duration of the import of raw file system scan data or package data takes longer than one third of the ETL time but the volume of the data is low, fine-tune hardware. For information about processor and RAM requirements as well as network latency and storage throughput, see: Hardware requirements.
  7. If you see that processing of usage data takes an excessive amount of time and you are not interested in collecting usage data, disable gathering of usage data. For more information, see: Disabling the collection of software usage.
  8. After you adjust the first scan group, run the software scan again, upload its results to the BigFix server and run an import of data.
  9. When you achieve an import time that is satisfactory, decide whether you want to have a shorter scan cycle.

Example

If you have an environment that consists of 42 000 endpoints and you created seven scan groups of 6000 endpoints each, your scan cycle will last seven days. To shorten the scan cycle, you can try increasing the number of computers in a scan group, for example, to 7000. It will allow you for shortening the scan cycle to six days.
Note: After you increase the scan group size, observe the import time to ensure that its performance remains on an acceptable level.

What to do next

When you are satisfied with the performance of the benchmark scan group, create the remaining groups. Schedule scans so that they fit into your preferred scan cycle. Then, schedule import of data from BigFix server. Observe the import time. If it is not satisfactory, adjust the configuration as you did in the benchmark scan group. When you achieve suitable performance, make room for end-of-scan-cycle activities and plan to have a data export to other integrated solutions (i.e. SmartCloud Control Desk through BigFix Tivoli Integration Composer) at the end of a 1- or 2-week cycle. For more information, see: Integrating with IBM Control Desk.

Use the following diagram to get an overview of actions and decisions that you will have to undertake to achieve optimal performance of BigFix InventoryLicense Metric Tool.