A configuration item (CI) is a physical, logical, or conceptual entity that is part of your IT environment and has configurable attributes.
Some CI types are virtual, while others are physical and include hardware and software. The Service CI type is an example of a virtual CI. In this context, a service can be provided from one business or organization within a business to another. Service CIs can include customer support, employee provisioning, web farms, storage, and so on.
You can use the information in CIs to diagnose user problems and to determine if a change to a CI or the IT infrastructure must be made. For example, if a user calls in with a printing problem, you can check the printer's CI to see whether the printer is down.
To record information against CIs, such as CI unavailability, or to relate an problem investigation to a CI, the CI must be recorded in the BMC Atrium Configuration Management Database (BMC Atrium CMDB). If you do not have BMC Asset Management, then BMC Service Desk provides limited ability to manage CIs and inventory.
You can manage configuration items even if your environment does not run BMC Asset Management. To manage configuration items, including creating and modifying CIs and managing inventory for bulk and non bulk CI's, you do not need a BMC Asset management license. However, if you are running BMC Asset Management, then you have access to additional functionality. See the BMC Asset Management page for more information about BMC Remedy Asset Management functions.