Provisioning

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For other uses, see Provisioning (disambiguation).

In telecommunication, provisioning is the act of acquiring telecommunications service (from the client side) or configuring it for use (from the provider side), from the submission of the requirement through the activation of service.

Note 1: Provisioning includes all associated transmission, wiring, and equipment.

Note 2: In NS/EP telecommunication services, "provisioning" equates to "initiation" and includes altering the state of an existing priority service or capability.

Source: From Federal Standard 1037C

The concept of provisioning has spread to more general information technology tasks, not just those associated with telecommunications services and infrastructure:

  • Server provisioning refers to selecting a server from a pool of available servers; loading the appropriate software (operating system, device drivers, middleware, and applications); appropriately customizing and configuring the system, software, and associated network and storage resources; then finally starting the server and its newly-loaded software. This makes the system ready for operation.
  • User provisioning refers to the creation, maintenance and deactivation of user objects and user attributes, as they exist in one or more systems, directories or applications, in response to automated or interactive business processes. User provisioning software may include one or more of the following processes: change propagation, self service workflow, consolidated user administration, delegated user administration, and federated change control. User objects may represent employees, contractors, vendors, partners, customers or or other recipients of a service. Services may include electronic mail, inclusion in a published user directory, access to a database, access to a network or mainframe, etc. User provisioning is a type of identity management software, particularly useful within organizations, where users may be represented by multiple objects on multiple systems.
  • "Provisioning" often appears in the context of virtualization, orchestration, and other dynamic datacenter concepts.
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