Hewlett-Packard Co. is broadening the scope of its OpenView IT/Operations enterprise management tool, readying a new version that supports Windows NT.
The new software, which HP will announce early next year, will provide all the features and functions of the company's current Unix-based version. It also includes correlation and a Windows 2000-based event consolidation console, said sources close to the Palo Alto, Calif., company.
For companies with mixed platforms, the new version of the tool should prove to be a significant improvement over HP's current Unix version of IT/Operations. Furthermore, according to sources, the new IT/Operations for Windows NT performs better and faster than the Unix version. HP officials declined to comment.
IT/Operations, which runs on a variety of Unix platforms, monitors system parameters such as CPU utilization and disk and memory usage and provides network monitoring through the integrated OpenView Network Node Manager. A series of Smart Plug-ins provides application monitoring.
IT/Operations for NT is designed to monitor system, application and network availability in mixed NT and Unix server environments.
Although the Unix version does provide an agent for monitoring NT servers, it does not offer NT as a console option. That shortcoming has left users of the current tool critical of what they consider limited NT support.
"We'd like to see better NT capabilities in the agent," said Roland Smith, director of IT global operations at LSI Logic Corp., in Colorado Springs, Colo. "Right now, it is doing the minimum it can do. We know [NT servers are] alive, what memory and disk utilization is. We'd like to see more capabilities to make it as functional as the agent that runs on the Unix box."
While IT/Operations for NT bolsters support for the Microsoft platform, it could introduce some confusion for customers who may be also considering HP's ManageX, a purely NT-based server management tool.
"What are they going to do with ManageX?" asked Ray Paquet, an analyst at Gartner Group Inc., in Burlington, Mass. "[The products] do the same thing—unless they say that ManageX is for workgroups, and it doesn't scale."
LSI Logic, which uses the Unix version of IT/Operations to manage its primarily Unix-based data center, had evaluated ManageX as an option to manage new Microsoft Exchange servers that were added after a recent acquisition.
"ManageX is a very good piece of software,'' LSI's Smith said. "We had a lot of debate about what direction we wanted to go. In the end, we know [IT/Operations]—we have staff certified on it, and putting more variety in this mix isn't going to give us more information."
In addition, when compared with other enterprise management competitors, HP has been late in the game with NT support, observers said.
IT/Operations for NT is due in the first quarter of next year. Pricing was not available at press time.
IT/Operations for NT
Offers more efficient monitoring of system parameters such as CPU utilization and disk and memory use
Includes monitoring of Windows applications use and availability
Features a Windows 2000-based event consolidation console