If you ever were in the case that you would need to export your machines i.e. for your test environment or because you want to run a test which archives your machines or simply reinstall SLM and only want to import your machines - then you might want to follow this guide. Of course you can use this method as backup for your machines (although you might want to backup the database as well).
Doing so is pretty easy:
Connect to your Inventory Server and run snowserverconfig.exe which is located under C:\Program Files\Snow Software\Snow Inventory\Server\
Click on the bottom "Click here for additional options..."
Now continue by clicking on Export devices:
In the next step, the tool will ask you the credentials to connect to the SnowInventory database. Usually this is already filled up with the correct information - if not, make sure you enter a user, which does have enough permissions to access the SnowInventory database:
In the next step, you can choose the destination of the exported inventory files. You can also limit the historical data. Note that the higher the amount of days, the bigger the files will be and the longer the export will take.
Click on Export and that's it! You will have your inventory files exported.
The size of the files will vary between 2 - 500KB (depending of the historical date set). The snowpacks will all be crypted but can be decrypted by Support or any technical staff at Snow.
If you want to check or fetch the snowpack of a specified machine, the easiest way would be to run the scan command directly on the machine via elevated CMD:
The command "sc control SnowInventoryAgent5 128" will run the scan directly via service - don't be bugged by the 5 in the service name, this command is also valid for Inventory Agents 6 on Windows.
An alternative would be to start the CMD, browse to C:\Program Files\Snow Software\Inventory\Agent and run the command "snowagent scan". Note that in this case, the Scan will be executed as the user who runs the CMD.
To scan Linux/AIX or Unix Machines, browse to /opt/snow/ and run "sudo snowagent -scan".
To scan on MAC OS machines run "sudo /opt/snow/snowagent scan"
If you want to import your exported inventory files i.e. in your test system, you want to copy all the snowpack files to the incoming folder of the Snow Inventory which is typically located under C:\Program Files\Snow Software\Snow Inventory\Server\Incoming\data\processing.
Inventory Reports are reflecting the raw data we gather in the first database Snow Inventory. The data is untouched directly from the inventory files either by Snow Agents or other Inventory sources.
In it, we can i.e. see all executables and registry keys which have been scanned on the machines.
The use of Snow Inventory Reports
With an Inventory Report, especially the Data Intelligence Service (DIS) Team can compare the global recognition with the data provided. This helps to confirm whether or not it is enough to trigger the recognition of an application or if the rules need to be updated.
There are several different situations where an Inventory Report can come in hand for the DIS Team, for example:
Whenever an application is being misidentified
When Snow is not picking up metering data
When software has been re-packed or run virtually resulting in not being recognized properly
When documentation in terms of bundle components is not available
How to create an Inventory Report using Snow Inventory 5.x and upper versions
Connect to your Snow Inventory Server and start the Snow Management and Configuration Center.
Expand Snow Inventory and click on Devices in the left menu.
Now you want to click on Add view in the top toolbar:
In the first step you can name your view i.e. InventoryReport_Applicationname and click on next
In the next window, we want to add the columns the DIS Team requires (also known as "the big five" of SRS). Expand the appropriate columns, select the ones you need and add them to the right window by clicking on the arrow. The columns to be added are:
Device \ Computer name
Software \ Software name
Software \ Sw Manufacturer
Software \ Software version
Software \ SW path name
After you've added the columns, you can click on Next.
6. Now that we want to see the result of a certain machine we need to filter the results to a computer name, else the report will take a long time to load. In the next step, you can click on the dropdown menu and select Device \ Computer name and add the name of the machine in the field below:
In my example i want to run the report against the machine called SALESDEMO. Now Save your view and you should now see the report filled with the raw data of your machine:
You can retrieve your view by clicking on the dropdown menu right beneath Devices.
7. To export your results, you can click on Export on the toolbar and save it as .xls or .xlsx format
General Availability: 09 October 2019 Distribution: SUS package
Current status: Released
Features in Snow Inventory Server 6.2.0:
It is now possible to store processed inventory and discovery data files. This allows to easily replicate the data to a test environment and to facilitate troubleshooting.
Enhancements in Snow Inventory Server 6.2.0:
Support for Web Application usage metering in Snow License Manager 9 has been implemented. To enable this functionality, Snow Licensed Manager 9.4.0 is required (PRB0042086).
PVU values for computers and application installations reported using Integration Manager connectors are now stored independently from the data reported via different sources like the Snow Inventory Agent.
Corrections in Snow Inventory Server 6.2.0:
Software lacking the Name field in their metadata can now be recognized correctly (PRB0042523).
In some scenarios, the Data Update Job would fail with an error like "The maximum system-generated unique value for a duplicate group was exceeded...". This has been corrected (PRB0042546).
Invalid BIOS release dates are now handled and will not cause errors in the execution of the Data Update Job (PRB0042550).
Oracle Database version 18c is now recognized correctly. To allow for the correct handling of Oracle Database 18c, Snow License Manager 9.4.0 is required (PRB0042520).
Invalid data regarding registry keys are now handled and will not cause errors in the execution of the Data Update Job (PRB0042538).
Release date: 29th August 2019 Distribution: SUS package
Current status: QA Approved
Feature in Snow Inventory Server 6.1.0
The following features have been implemented in Snow Inventory Server 6.1.0:
Hostname normalization It is now possible to configure Snow Inventory Server to alter the incoming data and use short hostnames (i.e. the hostnames cut at the first dot) for all purposes. It is also possible to use regular expressions to process the hostname. This feature can be applied to a partition of the computer estate, or to the entire environment. This feature is not enabled by the default configuration and requires explicit configuration to activate.
Refer to the Snow Inventory Server User Guide, section 8.8, to configure this feature (PRB0042321).
Enhancements in Snow Inventory Server 6.1.0
The following enhancements have been implemented in Snow Inventory Server 6.1.0:
Hostname-only applies to all data sources
The Hostname-only identity mode will now apply to data coming from the Snow Integration Manager as well as from Clients and Agents according to the configuration.
Support for operating-system name in the agent manifest
Snow Inventory Server now supports the operating-system name included in the manifest sent by the agent to correctly generate identity when Hostname-only mode is configured; this requires Snow Inventory Agent for Windows 6.2.0, for Linux 6.1.0, for Mac 6.1.0, for Unix 6.1.0 or later.
Extended support for SWID Tag XML schemas
Snow Inventory Server can now successfully parse and recognize a wider range of SWID Tag files structured according to different schemas (notably, many SWID Tags for IBM products).
Corrections in Snow Inventory Server 6.1.0
The following corrections have been implemented in Snow Inventory Server 6.1.0:
Snow Inventory Server now processes incoming data correctly when the FileExtensionWhiteList or the FileExtensionBlackList settings are used in the FileProcessorModule configuration (PRB0042209).
The IP ranges for network discovery are now validated for consistency during configuration and before running the discovery task (PRB0042498).
Sort order for dates in Inventory Admin Console has been corrected (PRB0042369).
The Inventory Admin Console now correctly displays UTC dates and times for tasks and events (PRB0042369).
The Inventory Admin Console now correctly prevents defining more than one weekly task in the agent configuration, to ensure that the resulting configuration file is valid (PRB0042048).
As our R&D department always keeps Snow software up to date, our Technical Writers team works to always keep the related documentation up to date too, to reflect the most recent changes. That's why I suggest to bookmark the KB articles to be sure to get the most recent version of a User Guide, rather than just downloading the version 1.0. Also, in each KB Article page, you can click on the "Subscribe" button (on the top right), to get a notification every time the User Guide is updated.
We've released the User Guides for our Snow Agents version 6. You can find the permalinks below:
This blog post describes how to update Snow Inventory Agents. It contains useful information and a clear how-to guide.
Why should I update?
Updates contain both security fixes and new functionalities. Please consider, if you would like to update, by reading through the Release Notes. If you would like to update one of your agent, follow the steps described below.
Open Snow Management and Configuration Center (SMACC). Login to your Snow Inventory. On the 'Overview' page, you are seeing how many of your agents are on the latest version. The figure should look like this:
We can see, that not all windows agents are on the latest version (5.3.0) and we would like to update.
How can I update?
There are two ways, how a new agent finds its way to the machines in your estate.
1. Request a new agent package via Snow Support
Snow Support will build a new installation package for you, which you can then rollout via your software distribution tool.
Open a ticket and include the following information:
Target Operating System (Windows, Linux, MacOS, Unix)
Architecture (64/32 bit or both?)
Attach a valid configuration. Please read below, how to extract the most recent configuration from your estate.
2. Perform an agent update package via Snow Management and Configuration Center
Go to Snow Management and Configuration Center (SMACC) and select 'Agent update' from the side menu.
Click on 'Create new' in the top menu.
Work through the wizard. Give a name for this update, for example 'Update Windows to 5.3.0'.
Select a target (Win32 in this example)
Make sure to select 'Install agent'.
Select a target group. In my example the site 'Test'. You can also select a subset, for example a certain configuration. This makes sense, if you only want to update a certain number of agents.
Select an update time. By default, this will be the current date with 00:00 UTC. Make changes, if desired.
Complete the wizard. Your created update will be visible in the table under 'Agent updates'. You can view the status of the update there.
The agents will update by themselves, after they have reported their scan results. After some time, the overview panel should show progress.
Congratulations! You have successfully updated your Snow Inventory Agents using the builtin update function.
Additional Information: See your current Configurations
Go to Snow Management and Configuration Center (SMACC). Select the tab 'Configurations' from the side menu. You are seeing all configurations, that are currently reporting in. Select one, then click 'Edit' to view/edit or 'Export' to export and attach the configuration to your agent creation request.
If you have further questions, feel free to comment on this blog post.
This Blog Post describes all required steps to ensure that all components of your estate are scanned properly. After reading this Blog Post you should be able to tell, which system requires which inventory method to deliver data.
This blog post will focus on the latest versions as of August 2018. Later versions will be added in the beginning of 2019.
Knowing your estate is key. The more details you can provide, the better the scanning can take place. At the beginning of your Snow journey you should make detailed plans, how to cover every corner of your estate.
Which platforms do you know of?
Begin by listing all server and client operating system types, that you know of. Every server and client needs to be scanned by a Snow Inventory Agent. It doesn't matter, whether it is a server or a client operating system, as long as it meets the System Requirements.
Please note: Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 are supported by Snow Inventory Agent for Windows v5.2.4 only! Compatibility with later Snow Inventory Servers is given.
Once you have your configuration(s) ready, you can request your Snow Inventory Agent via Snow Support. You will receive installation packages, which you can deploy manually or through your desired software deployment solution.
Configuration of Snow Integration Manager
After you have covered your operating systems, continue by listing your Virtualization Centers (vmWare, Hyper-V). Virtualization Centers can be connected by a Snow Integration Connector. You will need information about the management servers and you will need a read-only service account. Details are described in the user guides.
If you are experiencing difficulties and can't help yourself, the following steps are suggested:
Watch your logs. They often tell you exactly, where a certain process is struggling. This enables you to take first actions by yourself. Please check: How To Find Log Files
Search Snow Globe. For many cases, there have been previous questions from other customers and partners.
Post on Snow Globe. If you are still stuck, please reach out to us via this forum.
Ask Snow Support. Please note, that Snow Support is a technical product support only. If you are experiencing any issue with an application or its configuration, you are very welcome to reach out to us. If your question is not technically related, please stick to this forum.
This is no guideline, but a best practice suggestion. You may of course contact support directly if desired.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask. I will try to keep this post up to date, once new features are being released.
Type 'cd C:\Program Files (x86)\Snow Software\Inventory\Agent'
Type 'snowagent.exe scan'
Copy the latest *.snowpack file from 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Snow Software\Inventory\Agent\data'
You can use this snowpack file for troubleshooting purposes with Snow Support or e.g. inside your own environment for transfer troubleshooting between Service Gateways and Snow Inventory Master Server.