Server management startup Intoka Software Inc. next week will go after medium-sized enterprises with a cheaper and simpler server management offering.
For companies with between 20 and 2,000 servers, the San Francisco-based companys Cruiser software will offer top-line monitoring of servers running on multiple operating systems, including Windows, Solaris and Linux. And it will do so at a fraction of the cost of more expensive, best-of-breed server management tools from vendors such as NetIQ.
Intokas Cruiser management software is $500 per server box, no matter how many different server software components it is running. Competitors charge for each copy of server software running on the hardware.
Cruiser is made up of thin agents installed on each managed server device, and a centralized management server that pools all gathered management data from each server.
The software allows operators to define the data points that they want to monitor. Agents can pull management information from server log files, available Application Program Interfaces embedded by the application provider, system files, the Windows PerfMon (Performance Monitor) database and from SNMP agents.
It can manage Windows NT/2000 servers, Solaris, Linux, Apache, Microsoft IIS, Oracle, SQL Server and SNMP networks.
Gathering network management data along with server management data makes Intoka unique, asserted Howshinn Fann, founder and CEO.
"For a lot of our competitors their product lacks the network monitoring piece," Fann said.
Intoka will also offer the Carrier Platform customization toolkit. It allows users to add unsupported applications to the monitoring provided by Cruiser. The graphical toolkit requires no scripting to add support for more applications. "As long as you know where the data is being generated, you can grab the data. The GUI is straightforward," Fann said.
The combination of simplified installation—which takes a matter of hours—and the low cost make it an attractive offering for middle market users whove shunned more complex and expensive best of breed point tools or enterprise platforms, believes Zeus Kerravala, research director at The Yankee Group in Boston.
"I think their pricing and the idea is good, but getting the product into the hands of the users will be tough," said Kerravala.
"Marketing is a huge issue for them," echoed Valerie OConnell, analyst at Aberdeen Group in Boston.
The Cruiser software is available now.