Introduction

This document describes how to install and run the latest version of Snow Inventory Agent for Unix. Some functionality described in this document may work differently or not at all in previous versions.

The Snow Inventory Agent for Unix is used for inventory of Unix computers. It is a Java application that is locally installed on the computers that are to be inventoried. The benefit of having a locally installed agent on each computer is that inventory can be scheduled to occur on a regular basis always giving up-to-date information on hardware and software changes.

Once the agent is installed on the computer it is recommended to schedule it to run at a given interval. This can be achieved by using the built-in scheduling service in Unix or similar.

The Snow Inventory Agent for Unix gathers information about computer hardware and installed software packages from the built-in package manager in Solaris, AIX, and HP-UX. Inventory of Oracle database products using the Snow Inventory Oracle Scanner can be enabled as an option.

There is also a possibility to perform software inventory using scanning of running processes and file scanning of specified directories. This can be used as a complement since the package managers do not always have information on all installed software. Information returned from this scan is less descriptive than the information from the package managers. Software inventory using running processes is performed by default. For more information, see Scanning of running processes.

The agent scans the computer and saves the collected data to a compressed and encrypted file, which is sent to a Snow Inventory server (Master Server or Service Gateway).

Prerequisites

Dependency on other Snow products

Snow Inventory Agent for Unix can only be used with Snow Inventory Server 5 or 6.

Supported operating systems

For information on supported operating systems, see Snow System Requirements.

Java Runtime Environment

To run the Snow Inventory Agent for Unix, the target computer is required to have Java Runtime Environment 6 (1.6), 7 or 8 installed. For enhanced scan performance, the recommendation is to use Java Runtime Environment 8.0.

Note

Due to an internal defect in Java, Java Runtime Environment 1.7.0_7 must not be used. See Known issues for more information.

Requirements depending on the privilege option used

There are two privilege options for running the agent, and each option is described in the sections below.

Running the agent with full privileges

For full privileges, either a user with root privileges or a user with privileges to run the Java runtime with the sudo program is required.

Running the agent according to the principle of least privileges

A user that has sudo rights to specific operating system commands depending on operating system, see table below. The sudoers file also need to have the NOPASSWD option set.

Example 56. Example from sudoers file

User snow has the rights to execute the commands with sudo and no password:

##
## User privilege specification
##
root ALL=(ALL) ALL
snow ALL=NOPASSWD: /usr/bin/ls -l /proc/*
snow ALL=NOPASSWD: /usr/bin/file

Operating system command

Description

file

sudo rights needed to get additional file information when performing software inventory

ls

Solaris needs this command to read the /proc file system when performing inventory on running processes.

For information on what commands the Snow Inventory Agent for Unix uses, see Commands used by the agent .

When Oracle scan is enabled, additional permissions need to be granted. An Oracle database user is required for each database that is to be inventoried, and needs to be defined in the configuration file. Either the user is same for all databases and configured using the <DefaultInstanceCredentials> element, or the user can be unique and configured using the <InstancesWithConfiguration> element.



Example 57. Example from sudoers file for Solaris

User snow has the rights to execute the commands with sudo and no password:

##
## User privilege specification
##
root ALL=(ALL) ALL
snow ALL=NOPASSWD: /usr/bin/pwdx