BMC Looks to Optimize Data Center

BMC has integrated several acquired technologies to streamline workflow in the data center.

BMC Software on July 17 turned its attention to data center optimization when it launched updated releases of several acquired tools now integrated with each other.

BMC, which is based in Houston, updated BMC Virtualizer 2.5, BMC Performance Assurance 7.3 and added new workflow integrations in existing BMC Atrium Configuration Management Database, BMC Discovery, BMC Change and Configuration Management and BMC Performance Manager 2.1 to help customers better manage the entire process of consolidating servers and implementing virtualization.

"Were delivering integration between [the former Remedy], our [former Marimba] configuration management, our next generation CMDB 2.0 and its definitive software library," said Dave Wagner, director of solutions marketing at BMC in Bolton, Mass.

At the same time, for provisioning and deployment BMC has "extended our discovery beyond servers to include business processes, mainframes, storage, VMware or other virtual environments. Bare metal provisioning and patch management now span all server environments," said Wagner.

/zimages/1/28571.gifTo read more about BMCs virtual server management efforts, click here.

For patch management, BMC specifically teamed up with Red Hat to offer the only third-party patch management for its implementation of Linux.

While most IT organizations have taken a silo approach to change management, with manual handoffs between different IT disciplines for each task in the process, BMCs data center optimization thrust is designed to embed automated workflows from one IT group to another.

The intent is to streamline the process and insure more pertinent data is used in what BMCs Wagner described as a "closed-loop process."

"We found there is a life-cycle associated with data center resources like servers and applications. You need to know what you have and what its doing now, you need to build change plans, you need to change those environments and then you need to manage those environments ongoing," Wagner said.

In surveying its own larger customers, BMC found a lack of appropriate planning, he added.

But not all BMC customers are in a position to do that, according to BMC Performance Assurance user Michael Gardner, business planner for capacity management at RBC Financial Group in Toronto.

"If we could get a link into our [trouble] ticket process we could have it just as they advertise—an event happens, analysis is triggered, a ticket is generated and pushed into someones queue and they could close the ticket with analysis on the back end," Gardner said.

"That has value from a process perspective, but we cant get there yet because of our tool selection in the past."

Still, Gardner, who beta tested the new release of BMCs Performance Assurance capacity planning tool, found value in its new exception detection capability.

"The upfront analysis in capacity planning plays a huge role in consolidation. If you have weak analysis upfront, you might have weak results. Weve been able to get the results we targeted from using the tool," he said.

Enhancements across that life-cycle for virtualized environments include the ability to discover virtual machines such as those from VMware, the ability to automatically provision VMware virtual machines and the ability to perform capacity analysis and planning for virtual servers across VMware, Sun Microsystems Solaris IBMs AIX and HP/UX.

The enhancements, which automate IT Infrastructure Library workflows, are available now with the new releases.

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