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ITIL – The Origins

By Ivy Lennon

ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) is a public framework providing guidelines for businesses in planning, delivering and support IT services, and is the most widely accepted framework used across the world. As the Government began to recognise the increasing dependence on IT, ITIL was developed to give a standardised set of guidelines as private sector and government agencies alike were beginning to use widely varying management practices across the sector.

It was published between 1989 and 1995, a library of thirty-one books that covered every aspect of IT service provision. This version was printed by Her Majesty’s Stationary Office (HMSO) in the UK on behalf of the Central Communications and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA). This version of ITIL was mainly used only in the UK and the Netherlands and was replaced later on by a second version.

ITIL v.2 was this second, revised version issued as a set of eight books that improved on the original ITIL format by being more consistent and connected with each other. This version because much more popular than the original and was accepted universally in thousands of countries.

Each original book originally centred about a specific practice within IT service management, hence the need for over thirty volumes. However, with the issue of the v.2, related processes and their guidelines were grouped together to create the eight issues which was not only logical but also more affordable. However the Service Support and Service Delivery were the most widely read of all the v.2 books, and there was clarification yet again with the third and current version of the ITIL.

In 2007, the ITIL Refresh Project was issued, the third version of ITIL consisting of only five books. These were designed to approach service strategy, design, transition, operation and continued service improvement in a clear and more concise way than their predecessors. As of 2009 the second version was withdrawn and ITIL v.3 is intended to be enhanced by a combination of further publications and web services.

Learn more about ITIL Courses.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Lennon, Ivy "ITIL – The Origins." ITIL – The Origins. 15 Aug. 2010. 25 Dec 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Lennon, I (2010, August 15). ITIL – The Origins. Retrieved December 25, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Lennon, Ivy "ITIL – The Origins"

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