HP OpenView To Link With Applications and Databases

Hewlett-Packard said today that it will integrate its OpenView management platform with SAP, Oracle, and Informix environments, helping IT departments provide service-level management for applications and data.

HP announced a set of tools for SAP R/3, a plug-in for Informix, and a "bridge" between OpenView and Oracle's Enterprise Manager software. Observers say the new products will help HP stay competitive by reaching out to customers' core systems. Other management vendors, such as Tivoli Systems, Computer Associates, Platinum Technology, and BMC Software, have all recently announced products for managing specific third-party applications.

"They've lost a fair amount of mind share as being a complete solution provider," says Chip Gliedman, an analyst with Giga Information Group. "They're trying to make sure they're not relegated to networks only." This news will give HP much-needed visibility, adds analyst Jon Oltsik of Forrester Research. "HP's in danger of becoming an also-ran, when they still have good technology and a good installed base," he says.

Gliedman says service-level management requires vendors to focus on more than the network layer, where OpenView has its biggest following. "The battle has moved from managing a platform, be it network or server, to managing the entire application experience," Gliedman says.

HP OpenView Application Quality of Service for R/3 is intended to help administrators keep their R/3 implementations at a high level of service. The product will allow customers to test their R/3 applications in preproduction and staging to ensure that the deployment will run. When R/3 is running, OpenView can tune server performance, monitor the application and its supporting systems, and provide backup and recovery. The integration with R/3 will help administrators to find the cause of problems and report on performance. OpenView will also manage service-level agreements.

The planned bridge between OpenView and Oracle Enterprise Manager will give administrators a single management point for both the network and Oracle applications and data. Specifically, the companies will link OpenView's Network Node Manager and IT/Operations modules with Enterprise Manager. Enterprise resource maps, problem alerts, and consoles will be shared.

The HP Smart Plug-In for Informix will monitor processes, performance indicators, and log files to catch potential problems. It will combine Informix data with the data OpenView is gathering from other systems, so the database's performance is evaluated in the context of other applications and administrators can pinpoint the source of problems.

The SAP product will be available in the first quarter of 1999, while the Informix product will be available in the first half. HP did not disclose the expected release date of the Oracle product.

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