Sonic Mobility Extends NetIQ

Now NetIQ users can monitor, troubleshoot and fix server performance problems from remote PDAs.

Sonic Mobility Tuesday announced the ability for NetIQ Corp.s AppManager Suite users to be able to monitor, troubleshoot and fix server performance problems from remote PDAs.

The Calgary, Alberta, company launched its new NetIQ AppManager plug-in for its Sonicadmin tool at NetIQs user conference, in Orlando, Fla. The plug-in allows system administrators to securely access the functions they need to perform to resolve Windows NT, Windows 2000, Unix and Linux server problems from Blackberry or PocketPC wireless handheld devices.

Using the new AppManager plug-in for Sonicadmin, system administrators can receive event notifications remotely, connect securely to the Windows-based AppManager to fix the problem, and use the handheld devices e-mail to notify other staff members that the problem is being handled.

The tool uses triple DES 128K encryption, and the handheld devices do not store sensitive information such as passwords. It also prevents radio scanners from being used to intercept communications, according to Derek Ball, Sonic Mobilitys CEO.

Nestle USA, which is evaluating Sonicadmin along with other competing offerings, saw in the Sonic Mobility offering a sophisticated tool that promises to give administrators most of what they need to do break/fix work on a daily basis, according to Byron Pearce, project manager at Nestle USA, in Glendale, Calif.

"Administrators are blown away by the fact that if theyre at lunch two blocks away, they can solve a server problem pretty much right away. And the PDA can take and send e-mail, take and send a phone call, so it becomes the Swiss army knife of support administration," said Pearce.

The core Sonicadmin tool provides remote network management of routers and switches. "You can connect to routers and switches on the fly, have control over external power supplies. The monitoring product sends you the alert and you can fix it from the handheld," described Ball. Sonic Mobility intends to develop specific interfaces for other management tools, including Hewlett-Packard Co.s OpenView Network Node Manager, the Microsoft Operations Manager, HPs OpenView Operations for Windows "and a few others," Ball added.

NetIQ, which had considered building its own wireless interface using the Wireless Access Protocol in response to customer requests, found the tools security and efficient communications over the slow speed links to be "synergistic" with AppManager, according to Kevin Connor, product manager for the systems management business unit of NetIQ, in Bellevue, Wash. WAP and other WAP-based competitors are less secure, he added.

The new plug-in, available March 24, is $249 for a single NetIQ server. For managing multiple application servers, a 500-server pack is $35,000.

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