Understanding the Inventory Scanning Cycle

ZfD Workstation Inventory consists of the following components:

The following illustration depicts the scanning components and the inventory scanning cycle, which is explained below:

Inventory scanning components as they perform the steps in the scanning cycle

The Scanners collect the workstation hardware and software information based on the Inventory policy settings for scheduling and collecting the scan data. This scan information is stored as scan data files (.STR) in the scan directories. A minimal subset of the scan data is also stored in the Novell eDirectoryTM Workstation object.

The Selector on the server processes the scan data files to determine whether the new scan data should be merged with the existing data and then places the files in the appropriate directories.

If your inventory deployment requires roll-up of data, the Sender and the Receiver on the servers transfer the compressed scan files from the lower-level servers to the higher-level servers. The Storer on the database server stores the scan data files in the Inventory database. You view the workstation inventory information in ConsoleOne®.

The inventory scanning cycle is as follows:

  1. The inventory policies in eDirectory define the inventory settings, such as scanning time, whether to include software scanning of workstations, and the location of the scan directory. These settings are customizable.
  2. The Scanner reads the inventory policies and collects the workstation inventory information.
  3. The Scanner stores the scan data of each workstation as a .STR file in the scan directory (SCANDIR) at the server.
  4. The Scanner stores the minimal inventory information of the workstation in eDirectory.
  5. The Selector validates the .STR file and places the file in the enterprise merge directory (ENTMERGEDIR). If there is a database attached, the Selector places the files in the Database directory (DBDIR).
  6. The Storer updates the database with the inventory information of the .STR file.
  7. The network administrator views the inventory information, queries the database, and generates inventory reports in ConsoleOne.