What can Blueprints do?

How you use Blueprints depends on your organization and its needs. Blueprints can tackle as much or as little as you want.

  Asset tracking

Dump that spreadsheet you hate into Blueprints with an import module. Be honest, it was getting out of hand.

Generate an indexed and cross-referenced PDF with visual diagrams for every configuration item in the spreadsheet. Hand those out at the meeting.

Make some changes in Blueprints, maybe add some new items and relations. If you want the spreadsheet back, just export the items as .XLSX.

  • Integrate with external CMDB
  • Use Blueprints as your CMDB with the Blueprints REST API
  • Import and export CSV, XML, and JSON data
  • Create indexed reports to support auditing or provisioning tasks
  • Leverage history features to track assets over time

  Monitoring

Look at all the servers in your Blueprints model. So peaceful. Too peaceful. You're paid to be paranoid.

Place a Blueprints Beacon, or write a script on the servers of interest, and let them talk to the Blueprints API. They can send any telemetry you like and update the corresponding object in the model.

If you use Nagios or Zabbix, pipe some of that monitoring data to your Blueprints model, giving you heartbeat and other information.

  • REST API makes it easy to update Blueprints from a remote host
  • Integrate with Nagios and Zabbix monitoring software
  • The Blueprints real-time engine ensures that your diagrams are updated automatically as changes occur
  • Set attributes that trigger highlights and other rendering options to draw attention to problems

  Change management

Create a session to scope out the area of interest, and discuss changes in Blueprints or with a report. Examine prior modifications using our history features. Propose changes and wait for approval from the change manager.

Assess impact and grade severity of interruption potential. Notify impacted users. Examine dependencies to set resource targets and quantify budgetary impact.

  • Granular access and scope controls let you portion out editing privleges to support your workflow
  • Universal history lets administrators inspect, review, and revert changes to the model
  • Quickly generate consensus using collaborative sessions, diagrams, and reports

  Incident management

Use CML search to instantly identify the area of concern, and explode it into an impact analysis on-the-fly.

Alert the affected users, and contact the appropriate domain expert. Use Blueprints to remotely assess the situation together.

Simulate the accumulated cost of downtime, and generate a proper boot order or migration baseline to get the affected item restored.

Ensure restoration with a Blueprints Beacon hook in the appropriate configuration.

  • Blueprints is fast and fluid to help you get a picture quickly
  • Impact analysis and other tasks can be carried out in seconds
  • Simulations can be used to assess metrics like Cost-of-downtime or startup order
  • Affected users can be notified via e-mail using a topological expression

  Documentation

Just being an object in Blueprints is enough to ensure beautiful documentation for every configuration item.

Visual diagrams, tables, pie charts, revision history, reports, all can be generated at any time for any set of objects and relations.

Include a diagram or report in your Wiki or Sharepoint site using the Blueprints API. They update automatically. Every time the page loads, the resources are generated on-the-fly.

  • Many different kinds of rendering
  • Algorithmic layout engine
  • Seamless integration with any web-based documentation platform e.g. Microsoft Sharepoint, Atlassian Confluence
  • High-quality reports and data products in many formats
  • Automatic updates and universal history tracking

  (Just) getting a picture

The simplest thing, the most common thing, the thing nobody bothers to think about.

Sometimes all you need is a quick picture of the situation to inform a meeting or conversation.

Really, this is the most common task for most IT workers, and Blueprints makes it a simple and quick operation.

It shouldn't be prohibitively difficult to have a glance at your infrastructure.

  • Improve all aspects of information management
  • Build a routine, upgrade your business processes
  • Provide higher visibility for IT and technology tasks
  • Promote understanding and cultivate a shared knowledge base