ServerWatch News Briefs for December 5, 2003
IBM, SUSE Linux Establish Software Integration Center
IBM and SUSE join forces to bring optimized middleware to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server; SWsoft beefs up its partner program and makes it more user friendly; and GFI unveils GFI Network Server Monitor, a tool that monitors network and servers for failures and allows administrators to identify and fix issues before users report them.
The partnership seeks to fine-tune interaction between SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and IBM Middleware offerings. The collaboration will initially focus on IBM DB2 Universal Database offerings. Plans for extension to other IBM software products are already under way.
In the Software Integration Center, IBM and SUSE will collaborate on porting, migration, certification, and support for future IBM DB2 software offerings on the SUSE Linux Enterprise Server platform. The goal is to optimize the functionality of database applications and underlying enterprise operating system technology.
The companies believe the combination of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and IBM DB2 database software will equal a highly available, scalable combination for mission-critical deployments in data centers as well as specifically tuned middleware and certified updates that are available more quickly.
"The SUSE-IBM Software Integration Center at the IBM Toronto Lab will intensify the work already under way to optimize DB2 and other IBM software products with SUSE Linux offerings," said Bob Picciano, Director of Database Technology, IBM Toronto Software Lab. "The result will be solutions that can help provide customers with a rapid return on investment, particularly for IBM's integrated Linux database cluster."
Alerts of unexpected conditions can be sent by e-mail, pager or SMS, and GFI Network Server Monitor can automatically correct the problem by restarting a service (or multiple services) upon failure; rebooting a server; or launching an executable, batch job or VBScript.
GFI believes its offering stands out because of its $695 price point and ease of use. It claims administrators can be up and running with network monitoring within an hour of installation.
Among the things the monitoring tool checks out-of-the-box are:
- Exchange Server 2000/2003 -- Checks the status of an Exchange Server by monitoring critical Exchange services and performance counters
- All popular database servers (SQL/ORACLE/ODBC) -- Natively checks the availability of all leading database applications, including Microsoft SQL Server, and Oracle via OBDC
- HTTP, FTP, SMTP, POP3, and IMAP servers -- Checks for availability and ensures that the servers are responding correctly
- Windows servers and workstations, UNIX/Linux and Novell -- Monitors Windows, Unix/Linux and Novell platforms
- Processes, services and CPU usage -- Checks critical processes, services, and CPU usage on local and remote computers
- Users, groups, and other Active Directory information -- Monitors Active Directory information, such as group membership of the domain admins group, and the addition of new members; also checks user and computer accounts
GFI Network Server Monitor also checks remote event logs, SNMP devices, and disks and files. Custom checks can be added by writing a VBscript (Windows) or a RSH shell script (Unix).
GFI Network Server Monitor is priced at $695 for unlimited monitoring of all workstations and servers (independent of the number of processors) in a network; a five-server monitoring license is priced at $375.
SWsoft this week launched a new more-expanded partner program designed to improve partner and customer benefits while increasing business opportunities for more than 100 SWsoft partners worldwide.
For SWsoft's channel partners, the revamped program includes an extensive online interactive portal for ease of management. The online portal provides 24/7 availability for partners to manage listings, update contact information, add new offerings, and identify new promotional activities. In addition, the self-administrating portal identifies what each partner believes is unique about its offerings, thus granting the partners greater control over the market they wish to reach.
SWsoft believes the new program enhances the value proposition for both the partner and the end user by matching needs of the end user with the provider that best meets those needs. The user can search based on products and services, office location, and channel partner type for hosting providers, value-added resellers, SWsoft Certified Support Providers, and other industry providers and resources. Vendors can elect to be listed in multiple categories and show certifications.
The interactive portal, which has a built-in mailer for communication with partners, offers secure passport for partner self-administration, and extensive back-office capability. The portal allows for growth and expansion as SWsoft increases its strength in the hosting automation and enterprise server software space.
"A strong channel management system, to match our strong channel partners, is a vital part of SWsoft's Channel Sales Program," said Tim O'Rourke, Vice President of Business Development and Sales for SWsoft. "We expect it to make it easier for our partners to sell, what we consider to be, the finest server management product line in the world."
Aside from the interactive portal, SWsoft's new program lets channel partners earn market development funds and receive extensive product discounting to add to SWsoft's leading software and technical support. SWsoft has also opened its online store so channel partners can become affiliates and earn commissions on the sale of SWsoft products and services with no need for the partner to be involved in the sales process.