When you collect a system, NIM queries that system and retrieves its current dataset. During the process of collection, NIM transforms the system's data according to the data model that you've configured for the system. See Data models. NIM then loads the transformed data into the Vault for use in Filters and other features.

To get started, Collect and load a system.

In addition to performing manual collections, you can configure NIM to perform automated collections. For example, as part of Sync tasks. Automated collections are an important part of The NIM workflow.

Note that there is an important distinction between collecting and loading data. They are not identical operations. Collecting data necessarily loads the collected data into the vault, but loading data does not necessarily collect new data. It is possible to Load a past system collection without performing a new collection. To view all past system collections that are available to be loaded, View past system collections. This is a relatively uncommon procedure. Most of the time, you will not need to load previous collections back into the vault.


You should collect data often, especially after altering a system's configuration or data model. There is little to no downside involved in collecting data, and it ensures that the vault is up to date.

Every time a collection occurs, a new folder is created for it in C:\ProgramData\Tools4ever\NIM\sysdata\systems\<system>\<YYYYMMDDHHMMSS>. These folders and all collected data are retained indefinitely. If necessary, you can reload them at any time.