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Customize a pattern

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Customize a pattern

Customize an existing pattern to reflect any changes or peculiarities in the configuration item (CI) implementation or setup.

Before you begin

If your ServiceNow instance uses domain separation and you have access to the global domain, select the domain to which the business service belongs from the domain picker (). It must be a domain without any child domains.

Role required: admin or sm_admin

About this task

Patterns can be of infrastructure and application type. Infrastructure patterns are used only by Discovery for creating lists of devices. Application patterns serve both Service Mapping and Discovery that use the same application patterns for their purposes. For example, Discovery runs the horizontal discovery with the Apache Web Server pattern to find and list all Apache Web Servers in your organization. Service Mapping runs the top-down discovery using the same pattern to discover a specific Apache Web Server and place it on a business service map.

Typically you must modify a pattern in the following cases:
  • If there is a pre-configured pattern for a CI whose setup is not standard. For example, if the CI uses different reference folders than in a standard setup.
  • If there are changes to the CI that the pattern serves. For example, if a CI supports a new version that was released after you implemented Service Mapping or Discovery.

When you customize a pattern, you actually create a copy of the original pre-configured pattern. While Service Mapping or Discovery use the customized version, the original version is not deleted. When you upgrade your ServiceNow platform, it updates the original pattern, not the customized copy of it.

If at some point you want to abandon the customized pattern and start using the updated original pattern, you can revert to the original pattern as described in Choose the pattern version.


  1. Navigate to the appropriate module Pattern Designer > Discovery Patterns.
  2. Click the pattern you want to modify.
  3. To modify the pattern to perform horizontal discovery using Discovery, click Edit for Discovery.
  4. To modify the pattern to perform top-down discovery using Service Mapping, click Edit for Mapping.
  5. In the Pattern Designer window, modify the relevant sections of the pattern.

What to do next