In the Part 1 written last July, I began talking about the transition of the TIM and MTP from a hardware/software package including the OS to a software model only.
Along the way, the administration roles and responsibilities changed as well. This time, we discuss the implications of this evolution.
(FYI: Why the gap in writing between the two parts? See https://communities.ca.com/community/ca-apm/blog/2016/12/18/2016-why-i-stopped-writing-apm-blogs-and-then-started-again-part-1.)
New Roles and Responsibilities
Let's begin on what is covered on TIM Administration roles and responsibilities. The essence of the new role model can be found in https://docops.ca.com/ca-apm/10/en/installing/apm-installation-and-upgrade/install-and-configure-tim-for-cem.) It states the following:
TIM installation is now available as software that can be installed on any hardware that complies with the security policies of your organization. You can hence maintain and control the underlying operating system according to your IT policies.
Note that this was something that was requested by many customers.
There does not appear to be similar text in the 10.6 vMTP Release Notes or even in the later 11.0 Installing section of the vMTP documentation:
In part 1, I noted some of the impacts of this change for customers:
- Having the freedom to install the third-party and security updates on their TIMs provided it did not interfere with or slow down TIM performance. This was the main reason customers wanted the change.
- Budgeting for hardware and a Linux license/support. Some also had to find or hire Linux administrators to oversee the TIM operations.
- Spending a little extra time to deal with TIM sizing and meeting operating system and application requirements rather than to "plop in a TIM." But the TIM Planning and Installation documentation, if reviewed should be of great assistance:
- There should be less of a need to open Support cases because customers were responsible for operating system, security, and third-party software/hardware.
Looking at the questions and concerns that arise in support cases and this Community, there are some areas where Customer System Administration overlaps with TIM operations.
These include but are not limited to
- Operating System/Application package issues
- Although the operating system pre-requisites are specified, there is sometimes a package missing or installing recent package release impacts TIM installation:
- vMTP Package Pre-reqs: https://docops.ca.com/ca-virtual-multi-port-monitor/11-0/en/installing/software-specifications),
- TIM Package Pre-reqs: (https://docops.ca.com/ca-apm/10/en/installing/apm-installation-and-upgrade/install-and-configure-tim-for-cem#InstallandConfigureTIMforCEM-VerifyPrerequisites)
- A variation of this is asking if installing release x of package y impacts TIM.
- Security questions and issues
- Security vulnerability impact on TIM software components. (As mentioned above, installing security software is a customer responsibility. )
- Hardening a TIM affects TIM's operations. For more see https://www.ca.com/us/services-support/ca-support/ca-support-online/knowledge-base-articles.tec1292346.html.
- Or installing security software can block TIM port communications. This can also be due to selinux (firewall) or iptables settings.
- Issues with Apache (configuration, SSL certificates) affect the TIM System menu showing up. See https://communities.ca.com/thread/241771221 as a typical example.
If any of these issues occur, feel free to open a case and we will assist you in resolving the issue. Also note that Support and other groups spend a good deal of time adding to our documentation and knowledge base in these areas providing pointers and workarounds/resolutions whenever possible.
Questions of Discussion
1. What changes did your customer site make to successfully administer TIM after the role and responsibilities change?
2. Have I covered the major overlap areas? If not, what else would you add?
3. What are some of the things that you do to keep your TIM OS/applications happy and secure?