BMC Begins Virtual Initiative

By Paula Musich  |  Posted 2005-10-17

BMC Software Inc. this week at VMworld in Las Vegas will finally weigh in as a late entrant in the virtualization race with a full range of automated provisioning and control offerings.

Houston-based BMC will take a vendor-agnostic stance in its Service-Oriented Resource Management initiative for provisioning and managing virtual servers from VMware Inc., Microsoft Corp. and XenSource Inc. The initial virtualization offerings include the new BMC Virtualizer for High Availability and the new BMC Virtualizer for Capacity on Demand. BMC also added predictive modeling capabilities to its BMC Performance Assurance for Virtual Servers and integrated its two new virtualization products with its flagship BMC Performance Manager as well as BMC Performance Assurance, BMC Configuration Management and Discovery products.

BMCs approach differs from most vendors in that users can take incremental steps toward virtualization, see the resulting benefits and then continue down the virtualization path, said Rich Ptak, principal at Ptak, Noel and Associates, in Amherst, N.H.

"Theyve introduced technology and an enterprise user-friendly decision-making process with their routes to value. Others have had solutions out there, but the scale of commitment is bigger and [the] decision-making process has been more complex," Ptak said.

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The new BMC Virtualizer for High Availability is unique in its ability to fail over to a shared pool of servers, rather than requiring a dedicated backup server for each server or cluster. BMC Virtualizer for Capacity on Demand extends the functionality of its counterpart by automating provisioning of applications, servers, networks and storage. It can provision server clusters such as Oracle 10g, Apache and Microsofts IIS (Internet Information Services).

BMC enhanced its BMC Performance Assurance for Virtual Servers with the ability to predict how applications will perform in the transition from physical to virtual server environments. Its integration with the virtualizer tool allows users to create provisioning policies to automatically engage the necessary capacity just before it is needed.

"It models VMware servers, and you can set a policy as to whether resources need to be reallocated. High-end systems do this, but not for low-end commodity servers. That should be really cool," said Tim Hill, a capacity planner at CNF Inc., in Portland, Ore.

The BMC offerings are due by months end.

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