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ITIL: basic terms

The end of the 20th century marked the transition from an industrial society to an information society. Already in the mid-80s of the last century, the IT industry began to develop rapidly: personal computers, the Internet, local networks, client-server technology, etc. appeared. Information, means of its processing and management have become the main strategic resources of any organization, and the achievement of business goals has become directly dependent on the IT area. In the beginning, the informatization process was quite spontaneous: new technologies, services and applications quickly appeared. In other words, the IT area was focused primarily on the "novelty" and "quantity" of IT services, that is, development. After the initial saturation of the market, its participants realized the need to ensure the quality of IT services. Currently, ensuring the quality of IT services is the key to the effective analysis, processing and dissemination of information, that is, to the success of the organization as a whole.

In the 1980s, the British government commissioned the Central Computer and Communications Agency (CCTA) to develop general principles for the efficient use of IT services in the UK. Thus, the first document was born that combines the best practices in IT service management. Its main feature was the development of a unified approach that does not depend on the service provider. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, a series of books appeared on how to manage IT services and how IT interacts with users of these services. This library of books has been called the Information Technology Infrastructure Library or ITIL (the IT Infrastructure Library, see Subsequently, the CCTA was merged with the State Chamber of Commerce or OGC, which currently owns the ITIL library.


ITIL is essentially a set of publications containing recommendations for delivering quality services and the processes and components needed to support them. The main goal of ITIL is the promotion of modern knowledge and the exchange of experience in the field. The main feature of ITIL is the organization of Service Management as a set of processes.

In 1991, after the IT community became interested in ITIL, a forum was created — the IT Information Management Forum (ITIMF). Its goal was to bring together IT specialists, exchange ideas and experience. Later the name changed to IT Service Management Forum (ITSMF). Now this forum unites many IT specialists, and the number of forum users around the world is growing daily.

The next series of books — ITIL v2 — appeared from the mid-1990s to 2004. If the first version contained more than 60 books, then the second — only 9, and the third — 5. The main goal of the second version was to describe the process of efficient transfer of services to the consumer and reduce the gap between the IT field and business.

ITIL books

In 2004, the second update of ITIL was launched due to the fact that many new technologies and fundamental changes in the IT field have appeared. The result was ITILv3, which will be discussed in this course.

Today, ITIL is the most well-known knowledge base in the field of Service Management around the world and reflects the fundamental foundations of the world's leading practices in the IT field. In Europe, there are two certification centers for ITIL — EXIN (Dutch Examination Institute) and ISEB (The Information Systems Examination Board — a division of the British Computer Society). A number of consulting companies are engaged in the implementation of ITIL processes and training