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Requirements

We're looking for a hardware asset management and booking system to replace a spreadsheet that's growing in complexity.

Critical features

We need:

  • Single source database to track all hardware devices
    • Hardware and software versions, IP addresses, serial numbers, and custom fields
  • Web-based, preferably on-premises
  • Multi-user
  • Preferably open-source, but commercial is okay

Editing

Extensive keyboard support:

  • Inline editing of all fields (no need for super-fancy forms)
  • Navigation using cursor keys (similar to a spreadsheet)
  • Specify cell data input formats and range limits (e.g., IP addresses)
  • User-customizable views (add/remove columns, multiple views)

Scheduling

Individual developers will reserve various hardware components many times per day, so the booking process needs to be quick (i.e., no fancy forms, no multi-click UI):

  • Simple data entry of independent fields: name, date, start time, and end time
  • Ability to book a machine "indefinitely"
  • View and edit reserved time slots alongside select details of equipment being booked

Here's a screenshot of the spreadsheet:

spreadsheet

Having the ability to customize the columns would be great.

Data

Hardware device attributes must have dynamic fields.

  • Capture connectivity relationships between hardware devices
  • Highly normalized database, preferably database-agnostic
  • REST API allowing complex queries
    • list IP addresses of all hardware having a maximum width of 60 cm
    • list IP addresses of all transceivers connected to an oscilloscope
    • list all hardware devices running Debian Linux version 9 or greater
    • list all networked devices connected to the .60 subnet

Bonus features

Great to have, but not necessary:

  • Can track software licenses (for HTML EULA generation)

Anti-features

We don't need the following features:

  • Help desk (ticketing)
  • DevOps support
  • Confluence integration

Candidates

Potential solutions include:

Graveyard

Related questions with no suitable answers:

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  • We edit the data a lot. Currently, it takes about 5 seconds to reserve equipment. If that goes to 30 seconds, we'd lose 10 minutes per day in booking time, or nearly an hour a week in developer productivity. That's why inline edits are important. Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 16:01
  • Inline editing is for both the booking and the equipment information. Basically, just like a spreadsheet, but with a database back-end. There doesn't seem to be anything that's keyboard-friendly out there. Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 22:00
  • Thanks Thomas. We're looking into baserow.io. Commented Jun 16, 2022 at 0:25

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