Tivoli takes aim at storage

www.infoworld.com |  Storage

NETWORK MANAGEMENT vendors have begun staking out some ground in the storage space, with companies such as Tivoli looking to lend their management expertise to a storage market that is quickly outgrowing traditional rules in the era of e-business.

At the Planet Tivoli 2000 user conference in Philadelphia this week, Tivoli introduced Tivoli Storage Manager 4.1 and also revealed a partnership with storage giant EMC to integrate the product with EMC's Symmetrix Enterprise Storage systems and software, including EMC TimeFinder.

Analysts say these and similar storage moves by Tivoli competitors such as Computer Associates and BMC Software signal a key role that network management will play in supporting inflating enterprises and the vast amounts of data being shared and compiled.

"I think the way that e-business uses storage could become a model for storage best-practices in general. The software that helps you manage it is an absolutely critical piece," said John Webster, an analyst at Illuminata, in Nashua, N.H.

Bob Nicastro, a systems engineer at Westchester, Pa.-based QVC, said he would love to find a solution to help him manage all his company's diverse system parts, but has not come close to finding one yet.

"I don't even know if it exists," Nicastro said. "Because of e-business, [many] infrastructures have outgrown current storage management products."

Tivoli Manager 4.1 includes automated network backup, tape resource sharing, and "adaptive differencing" technology to alleviate bandwidth congestion for mobile users during backup and recovery of remote devices. No price was given for the product, which will be available by third quarter.

Network management vendors that wield the clout and scalability of a framework system might have more of an advantage to bring cohesiveness to the SAN (storage area network) environment, said analyst Steve Widen at IDC, in Framingham, Mass.

Bolstered further by its Sterling Software acquisition earlier this year, CA offers its storage product line called ARCserve. The company has built SAN management features into its flagship management product Unicenter TNG and is working to integrate its predictive Neugent technology for SAN, officials said.

BMC will release Patrol San later this year, which incorporates SAN technology into its Patrol product line to oversee SAN at the application level, said Chris Gahagan, vice president of recovery and storage management group at BMC.

Not all storage vendors think a management marriage would work. "It's not a foregone conclusion that network management and storage management can be combined," said Mark Lewis, vice president of enterprise storage software at Compaq, in Houston.

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