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Use Discovery and Risk Assessment Server to create or update a master inventory

Published: March 12, 2013

Summary: After you have installed and configured Discovery and Risk Assessment Server, you can use it to create or update a master inventory that is stored in Audit and Control Management Server.

Applies to:  Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 

You can use Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 to create or update a master inventory of end-user computing (EUC) applications, such as Excel workbooks and Access databases that are used in your organization. The master inventory, which is stored in the Microsoft Audit and Control Management Server 2013 database, can be an important part of an organization’s governance and compliance strategy.

In this article

Before you begin

Before you begin this task, review the following information about prerequisites.

  • Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 must be installed and configured. For more information, see Install Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 and Configure Discovery and Risk Assessment Server to identify and assess files.

  • You must have at least write permissions for Microsoft Audit and Control Management Server 2013 databases that are stored in SQL Server.

  • You should have a list of locations that you want to scan for the master inventory, and at least Read permissions to those locations. Ideally, your organization has a policy so that important Excel workbooks and Access databases are stored in a specific location that you can access by using Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013.

Create a master inventory

When you use Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 to create a master inventory, you run a process that is known as a discovery process or a discovery and risk assessment process. You specify the folders that you want to scan, the criteria that you want to use, and then you run the discovery process. The discovery process generates a list of Excel workbooks and Access databases. The list is written to the Microsoft Audit and Control Management Server 2013 database and is known as a master inventory. The following procedure describes how to create a master inventory by using Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013.

To create a master inventory

  1. Open Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013.

  2. On the Tools menu, click the Discover toolbar command.

    A Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 dialog box appears.

  3. By default, in the Folder Path box, C:\ is listed. In the Folder box, specify a path of a folder that you want to include, and then click the down arrow. The folder that you specified is added to the list in the Folder Path box. Repeat this step until you have created the initial list of locations that you want to use.

  4. To remove a folder, select it in the Folder Path box. Then, on the Tools menu, choose Delete Folder.

  5. (This is optional.) To identify files that use specific file name extensions, such as .xls or .mdb, in the File Spec box, specify the file name extensions that you want to include in the discovery process, separated by columns. For example, you might enter xls, .mdb, .xlsx, and so on.

  6. (This is optional.) To specify a date range that will narrow the results to a particular period of time, specify the criteria that you want to use in the Find Files section. For example, you might want to see results for files that were created after a particular date, or files that were last changed within the past month.

  7. In the Results Folder box, specify a folder location. This folder will contain the results of the discovery process.

  8. To specify what kinds of files to scan, specify any of the following settings:

    • To scan folders within the folders that you specified, select the Sub Folders check box.

    • To check files that don’t have file name extensions, select the Check Files without Extension check box.

    • To check all the files and determine whether any of those files Excel files, select the Check All Extensions check box.

    • To scan zipped files, select the Check ZIP Files check box.

    • To identify links to additional files and add those files to the master inventory, select the Add Link Files check box.

      note Note:

      When you select this option, Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 adds the linked files to the list of results, even if those files do not match other search criteria. In addition, if the linked files contain links to even more files, those additional files are added to the list.

  9. (This is optional.) If you are using user-defined keys (UDKs) and you want to pause the discovery and risk assessment process so that you can adjust those UDKs, select the Pause after discovery and risk assessment check box.

  10. To assess files to see their levels of risk, materiality, complexity, and statistics, take the following steps:

    1. Use the Risk Calculation Mode list to select Full or Incremental. If this is the first time that you are using Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013, select Full.

    2. To assess Access databases, select the Calculate Access Risk check box.

    3. To assess Excel workbooks, select the Calculate Spreadsheet Risk check box.

    4. Specify an RSK file to assess files. To locate an RSK file, click the Browse button. By default, an RSK file is available at C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office15\ACM\Discovery\Default.rsk.

  11. In the Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013 dialog box, click the Save toolbar command to save your discovery process settings. A Save As dialog box appears.

  12. Specify a name and location for the discovery process, and then click Save. This information is saved in a file known as a Discovery File (.dis).

  13. Click Discover to start the discovery and risk assessment process.

When the process is complete, the results are displayed in lists on the Spreadsheets, Access Databases, and Other tabs. These lists are also written to the Microsoft Audit and Control Management Server 2013 database.

To view or export a list of all the files that were identified, click the Master Inventory toolbar command. A Master Inventory dialog box appears where you can view or export the results.

Update a master inventory

Once you have created a master inventory, you might want to update it occasionally, according to your organization’s policies and procedures. Each time that you run a discovery and risk assessment process, any new files that are found are added to the master inventory. Any changes to metadata, such as when files were last updated, are also updated in the master inventory.

To update a master inventory

  1. In Microsoft Discovery and Risk Assessment Server 2013, click the Discover toolbar command.

  2. Review the folders that are listed in the Folder Path box. Add or change folders as necessary.

  3. Review the settings that specify what kinds of files to scan. Make changes as necessary.

  4. Click Discover to start the discovery and risk assessment process.

When the process is complete, the results are displayed in lists on the Spreadsheets, Access Databases, and Other tabs. These lists are also updated in the Microsoft Audit and Control Management Server 2013 database.

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