This documentation supports the 21.3 version of BMC Helix CMDB.

To view an earlier version, select the version from the Product version menu.

Quick start

This section describes the tasks necessary to implement your BMC Helix CMDB solution end-to-end, including configuring permissions, bringing data into to BMC Helix CMDB, and reconciling that data into the production dataset for consuming applications.

To implement BMC Helix CMDB, complete this ordered series of procedures. Each procedure is explained in its own section, which also describes recommendations. However, the purpose of this section is not to provide the detailed steps for each procedure, which are given in the referenced documents. Instead, this section lays out the order of the procedures and reveals important points for the overall process. In doing so, it uses the following diagram to focus attention on the particular point in the context of the whole process.


For a video demonstration of the core pieces of this process, see

Some of these steps might not be relevant to your situation, and you can perform some in a different order from that shown in this process.

Configure permissions and multitenancy

To start the end-to-end process, set up permissions for users who need access to BMC Helix CMDB applications. After completing the configuration tasks, verify that the roles and permissions have access to the data as planned. You can configure class and attribute permissions and row-level access and instance permissions.

For more information about configuring permissions, see Roles and permissions.

Configuring multitenancy in BMC Helix CMDB

You can apply the following high-level steps to configure multitenancy:

  • Using BMC Helix ITSM, as described in the  Configuring the mid tier Open link .
  • Using the Product Catalog, as described in Managing the Product Catalog.

To configure multitenancy, complete the following high-level steps. For detailed information about configuring multitenancy, see .

  1. Select the tenancy mode.
  2. Configure companies to represent the business units of your organization.
  3. Configure access for people.

Selecting the tenancy mode

The value that you select in the  Tenancy Mode field on the System Settings form determines whether the Company field on various forms defaults to a single company or whether users must always select the appropriate company for the field. BMC Helix ITSM is installed with the Tenancy Mode field set to Multitenancy. If you have changed this field to single-tenancy mode, you must change the value back to Multitenancy. For information about changing this setting, see  Setting up the Tenancy mode Open link .


In BMC Configuration Management Database (BMC Helix CMDB), the multitenancy feature is always available. Regardless of the Tenancy Mode setting, data is segregated by company and access to data is controlled by a user's access to a company.

Configuring companies to represent business units

To segregate products by business unit, create  companies to represent the business units. For example, in the Company form, Calbro Services enters Finance in the Company field for the finance department. Similarly, separate "companies" are created for HR and IT.

Configuring access for people

Use the People form to grant people access to business units. Calbro Services uses the People form to grant access as follows:

  • Patrick Paycheck is granted access to Finance.
  • Betty Benefits is granted access to HR.
  • Steve Server is granted access to all applications, including those used by Finance and HR.

Configure the Product Catalog

To set up the Product Catalog, complete the following procedures. For more information about Product Catalog concepts, see Managing the Product Catalog.

You may have to perform some of the following high-level steps to configure the Product Catalog: 

  1. Create Product Catalog entries.
    To normalize CIs, you must have product entries in the Product Catalog. Import or create these products as needed.
  2. (Optional ) Configure the categorizations to meet your needs.
  3. Approve products, versions, and patches for your organization. 
    By default, the Normalization Engine does not update or allow the creation of unapproved CIs, and all products in the Product Catalog are unapproved by default. If you allow normalization of unapproved CIs, the Normalization Engine sets the NormalizationStatus attribute for such CIs to Normalized Not Approved.

Configure the data model

The BMC Helix CMDB  data model unifies the representation of configuration data. It is designed to store data about the most common CIs such as hardware, software, and services, to provide a complete view of all elements of an IT environment and how they affect each other. The Common Data Model includes classes that describe a wide variety of IT configuration items and their relationships, and some BMC Software products install extensions that add more classes and attributes to the data model. But there are still some IT infrastructures that do not completely map to this model.

If the classes and attributes that you require are not defined by the BMC Helix CMDB data model or the extensions, modify the data model.

For detailed information about what to consider before modifying the data model, see Planning to extend the data model.

Create datasets for data providers and production

Creating  datasets in BMC Helix CMDB to store data provided by different data providers is the first step when importing data. A dataset is a logical grouping of data. It can represent data from a particular source, a snapshot from a particular date, or other purpose.

Make sure that each data provider has its own import dataset.

Also, note which dataset is your production, or golden, dataset so that you can plan your normalization and reconciliation jobs. By default, the BMC.ASSET dataset is the production dataset. In reconciliation, the production dataset is used first to identify duplicate CIs, matching attributes for the configuration item (CI) in the production dataset with the CIs in the imported datasets. Second, it can be the target dataset in a Merge activity so that the CIs are updated to keep the production dataset current and accurate. Also, do not normalize the production dataset because you should normalize CIs before identifying and merging them.

When you need to merge more than one dataset at time, you might want to create an intermediate dataset for merging. For better performance and to minimize the impact on users of the production dataset, BMC recommends that you merge one import or discovered dataset at a time with the production dataset. You might want to merge multiple source datasets in separate jobs to an intermediate dataset and then merge the intermediate dataset with the production dataset.

For more information about planning your datasets, see Managing data sources and datasets in BMC Helix CMDB.

Configure Atrium Integrator for data import

Using Atrium Integrator to import data into BMC Helix CMDB from a third-party source consists of the following tasks:

  1. Configure source and target connection.
  2. Create a job or transformation.
  3. Edit your transformation or job.
  4. Verify and run your job.

To quickly understand Atrium Integrator jobs and data integration, watch the following video:

For more detailed information about importing data with Atrium Integrator, see Overview of the data transfer process.


To create an integration job, use the Integration Job Builder wizard which automatically populates data and includes templates for typical integrations.

Configuring source and target connections

You must define connection parameters (such as host name, port number, user name, and password) to your external data store and BMC Helix CMDB. After you create a connection, you can reuse it for multiple transformations or jobs.

For instructions about creating datastore connections, see the Working with Atrium Integrator data store connections.

Creating jobs in Atrium Integrator

Use the Integration Builder wizard to create a job or transformation.After you specify the source and the CIs that you want to import, the wizard makes recommendations on the relationships for the selected CIs.

For detailed instructions about creating jobs, see Creating a job in Atrium Integrator.

Editing transformations in Atrium Integrator

You can add intermediate steps for cleaning up or manipulating your data before adding it to BMC Helix CMDB. Spoon provides support for JavaScript and a wide variety of out-of-the-box functions.

For detailed instructions about editing transformations, see Editing Atrium Integrator jobs and transformations.

Configure normalization in BMC Helix CMDB

To configure  normalization, complete the following procedures. For more information about normalization, see Setting up normalization

  1. Configure the normalization settings for datasets, including disabling any Normalization Features (enabled by default) that should not run. 
    Define custom rules where needed, such as for Suite Rollup or permissions. You might need to configure other dataset parameters according to recommendations. See Best practices for specific implementation scenarios.
  2. If you have created custom classes, you must add and configure them for normalization.
    Normalization is not supported for classes that are not derived from BMC_BaseElement.
  3. If you know that the product or manufacturer names for CIs in your dataset do not match those in the Product Catalog, map the incorrect names to the correct ones with the Product Name Alias form.
  4. Create categorization aliases with Catalog Mapping for the following conditions:
    • If the combination of the values of the NameManufacturerNameModelCategoryType, and Item attributes is not in the Product Catalog data.
    • If the combination of values is in the Product Catalog but is not related to the company for whom the CI is being submitted.
  5. Create a job, and specify when the job runs (continuous or batch).


Do not run more than one Atrium Integrator, Normalization Engine, or Reconciliation Engine job at the same time. This could cause problems such as multiple jobs querying or updating the same data.

Configure reconciliation in BMC Helix CMDB

You must perform the following high-level steps to configure reconciliation:

  1. Verify standard Identify rules.
    • Check that the attributes used for identification have unique and consistent values in the dataset to be reconciled.
    • If you created custom classes, add them to the standard Identify rules.
  2. Verify standard Merge rules.
    • Check that the dataset has the needed precedence value. By default, new datasets have a precedence of 100.
    • If you created custom classes and attributes, add them to standard Merge rules.
  3. Create a standard identification and merge job. 
    If needed, you can customize a Standard Identification & Merge job:
    • Include a qualification.
    • Change Continue on Error and Sequence for the activity.
    • Change identification settings for Production Dataset, Generate IDs, and Exclude Subclasses.
    • Change merge settings for the Source Dataset, Target Dataset, Precedence Association Set, Include Unchanged CIs, and Merge Order. 
      To customize the Identify and Merge rules, see if you can modify the standard rules. If modifying the standard rules is not possible, you can create a custom reconciliation job with custom rules as needed.
  4. Specify when the job runs, either with a schedule or by using continuous mode. 


    Do not run more than one Atrium Integrator, Normalization Engine, or Reconciliation Engine job at the same time. This could cause problems such as multiple jobs querying or updating the same data.

    For more information about reconciliation, see Merging duplicate CIs by reconciling data from multiple sources.


Create a Service Model

Creating your service model enables you to view your business services in the context of all your business processes, the service model is more useful if you use it to manage the impacts of events on your business services. For example, you can use the Impact Simulator to determine how business services would be impacted by taking a server offline to upgrade software. For more information, see Building a service model.

Import data into BMC Helix CMDB

After performing all the steps required to configure and validate the implementation of the CMDB you can perform the step of importing data into BMC Helix CMDB. For more information on this use case, see Importing data into BMC Helix CMDB using discovery tools and Atrium Integrator.

Related topics

Best practices for specific implementation scenarios

BMC Helix CMDB overview

Key concepts

CMDB Use cases

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