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Using the launch method of federation

The following scenario demonstrates how to leverage federation links within Federation Manager by selectively launching a URL that accesses the attribute values of a Configuration Item (CI) and uses them in the URL (in this case, the URL to launch BMC Service Desk Express).

  • In BMC Atrium Configuration Management Database (BMC Atrium CMDB), Computer System CIs contain specific attribute data for each of the configuration item records inside the CMDB (for example, Name, Type, Item, and so on).

Note

To integrate BMC Atrium CMDB with BMC Service Desk Express for this use case, the Computer System class was extended and new attributes were added (for example, Sequence )

  • In BMC Service Desk Express, configuration item records are stored within BMC Service Desk Express itself. You can reference them by a unique sequence number. A formatted URL string contains all the necessary information to launch the correct record. For example:
    * http://<computerName>/SDE/default.asp?ModSeq=15&Sequence=1002&FormSeq=15*
    When formatting the URL, BMC Service Desk Express lets you open any record by identifying its:
    • Related module (represented by the ModSeq value)
    • Records sequence (represented by the Sequence value)
    • Form sequence number (represented by the FormSeq value)
      Including these values in the URL launches the correct record within BMC Service Desk Express and automatically opens it in a browser.

Before you begin

To use the launch method of federation

  1. In Federation Manager, select the federated data store.
  2. Click the Launch Definitions tab.
  3. Define the federated launch interface.
    You start by modifying the URL string that launches your application. For example, you would modify the following URL used to access CI records in BMC Service Desk Express:
    * http://<computerName>/SDE/default.asp?ModSeq=15&Sequence=1002&FormSeq=15*
    When you modify the formatted URL access string for use with the launch method, you can substitute any value in the URL with an attribute from the CI in BMC Atrium CMDB.

    Note

    In a localized environment, using the attribute ID works with all languages.

    For example, the $Sequence$ keyword is substituted for the sequence ID number (1002) in the URL. The launch interface now contains the following formatted URL access string:

    *http://<serverName>/sde/default.aspx?ModSeq=158&Sequence=$Sequence$&FormSeq=11*
    When you launch the URL, $Sequence$ is replaced with the actual value of the Sequence attribute.
    This string is added to all CI records, represented as an attribute of the CI. In this example, the hardcoded value for the sequence number (1002) is replaced with the appropriate attribute name that references the CI record in BMC Service Desk Express. This attribute must be available within BMC Atrium CMDB to replace the $Sequence$ variable with the correct CI record sequence number when the Federated Launch Link is used.

    Defining the federated launch interface
  4. Define the federated launch link.
    You use launch links to filter or create specific qualifications for the CI records that the launch link applies to. In the following example, the business requirement is to limit the federated launch link to another web-based application for those CIs that are specified.
    You must create a qualification that controls which records the federated launch links can access by class (BMC.CORE:BMC_ComputerSystem):
    'Manufacturer' = "DELL" AND 'Type' = "LAPTOP"
    With this qualification, you specify that you want only Dell laptop Computer System CIs to have launch links.

    Defining the federated launch link
  5. Search in your dataset for the Computer System CI.
    The Federated Launch Link is accessible within BMC Atrium Explorer. If the CI meets the link qualifications, you can open the Launch-method federated links for the selected instance. For example, you can now launch the BMC Service Desk Express application URL defined in the federated launch interface, as shown in the following figure.

    Launching BMC Service Desk URL from the instance

    The Launch Link Interface uses the Sequence attribute value in the BMC Atrium CMDB CI record and substitutes it in the URL string to launch the correct CI record in the web-based BMC Service Desk Express application.

    Launching federated CI in web-based application

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