Tracking Software Deployment Status

A frequent conversation we have with our users is how to monitor and track software deployments, updates, and removals. With Axonius, you can quickly search your environment and understand the real-time status of these initiatives and setup charts to visualize progress, and ultimately share with others.

For our use case, let's pretend we are interested in tracking the progress of a software update to version 14, as well as the removal of all earlier versions from relevant devices. For this example, we will use a generic name for our software, APPLES.

We will create a set of Saved Queries for our APPLES update effort. First, we want to find all our assets that have any version of APPLES installed. Since it is a new initiative, we are also going to add a date variable into the query (this will also exclude stale devices that have not been seen on the network in recent months). We will create a ‘Complex Field’ query to show all assets with any APPLES version installed and have been seen more recent than April 1, 2021.

When the search completes, remember to save the query, for our example we will call this baseline query, ‘AX_APPLES_ALL’.

Next, we want to set up another complex query, this time targeting assets where APPLES version 14 is present on the asset, and once again, seen since April 1, 2021. We will use regex to populate the Software Version row and use ‘^14’, which translates to version ‘starts with 14’.

Remember to save (we will call this AX_APPLES_14).

Our last query will be designed to find any asset seen since April 1, and has an APPLES version installed that is ‘earlier than’ 14. We will save this query as ‘AX_APPLES_pre’14’.

To summarize, we have created three separate queries to help us visualize the current posture of our software deployment with regards to both roll-out and removal.

First, we have a query designed to capture all assets that have APPLES installed.

Second, we have a query for all assets that have APPLES 14 installed.

Third, we have a query for all assets with an APPLES version earlier than 14 installed.

What these queries DO NOT call out specifically are assets that have APPLES 14 installed, AND an earlier version. This is important information and can be harder to find, especially as your project approaches completion. We could keep creating queries to drill down into this data, but often we want to visualize in a way that can be easily understood by other administrators responsible for the deployment.

A great way to achieve this is through a Query Intersection dashboard chart. This will provide a way to visualize the overall software status of our assets.

Go to the Dashboard section, make a new space for the chart, or click into an existing space.

Click the plus symbol and name the chart. Choose ‘Query Intersection’ as the type. For the base query, select your saved query that encompasses all versions. For the intersecting queries, select the queries we made for APPLES version 14, and APPLES version earlier than 14.

Click SAVE.

Once complete, you have a real-time chart overview of your APPLES deployment.

By hovering over each segment of the pie chart, you can get accurate counts of asset deployment status with regards to the APPLES version.

If you hover over the intersecting, or striped portion of the pie chart, you will be able to see the assets that have both APPLES version 14, AND an earlier APPLES version.

Any section of the pie chart you click on will immediately take you back to the device profile page where those assets will be listed. In this case, if we click on the striped intersection, we will pivot to the Device page and see the list of 16 assets that have APPLES version 14 AND an earlier version of APPLES.

You can also click the chart legend in the lower left corner to see the complete numeric breakdown.

This dashboard space can be shared with other Axonius users to provide situational awareness and to better understand current deployment status.

You can also share this data to interested parties through our reporting feature. Go to our ‘Reports’ page, click ‘Add Report’ and choose the Dashboard space and query information you would like to share. You can also configure the report to be emailed to various users and groups.

How do you like them APPLES?

Thanks for reading! Please reach out if you have any questions or additional use case suggestions.

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