BMC Calls In Patrol Lineup - InformationWeek

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5/20/2005
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BMC Calls In Patrol Lineup

BMC Software plans to replace its Patrol and Patrol Express network management products with a single new solution, company executives said.

BMC Software plans to replace its Patrol and Patrol Express network management products with a single new solution, BMC executives said.

By December, BMC will discontinue its Patrol product line and begin the era of BMC Performance Manager, a network management solution with elements of Patrol and its lighter-weight, agentless cousin Patrol Express, said Dave Hardy, product manager at BMC, Houston.

BMC Performance Manager will simplify the Patrol solution by performing in both the environments the two previous products served, he said. For example, instead of Patrol customers having to deploy Patrol Express to monitor remote IT environments that are simpler to manage than the main network, Performance Manager will be able to "expand the reach of monitoring without expanding the more complex management of the full Patrol agents and solution," Hardy said.

 
 Come Together
BMC merger of Patrol and Patrol Express will follow three steps:
>> May: One view
>>  June: One license
>>  December: One architecture

 
A reduction in the number of server agents required by Performance Manager is key to the software's enhanced simplicity. BMC's approach with the new product is to enlist fewer, but more coordinated, agents in a manner it calls a "lightweight local presence," Hardy said.

Licensing will also be simplified with Performance Manager. In June, BMC will combine the licensing of Patrol and Patrol Express into one, said Hardy. The combined licensing should have a minimal effect on pricing for customers running both Patrol and Patrol Express, he said.

"The maintenance bill might go up a bit or down a bit, depending on how much of either Patrol or [Patrol] Express you're using," said Hardy, who explained that price increases would be seen mainly on the Patrol Express side of the equation.

Randy Sebastian, operations manager at dbaDirect, a BMC partner in Florence, Ky., said the combined licensing scheme will save him administrative overhead. "This will greatly simplify our life. We have a full-time guy to administer those licenses right now," Sebastian said.

Performance Manager also will have simpler packaging than the Patrol line. Instead of separate Patrol packages for Unix, Windows, Linux and other operating systems, resellers will have just one Performance Manager for servers, Hardy said. The same goes for databases, with a Performance Manager suite that includes disks for Oracle, SAP and others.

This change in packaging will also simplify licensing, Hardy added. "The reseller can now have a conversation about what types of servers the customer has, and it's no longer a licensing issue," he said.

From a technology standpoint, the simplicity of Performance Manager will make it easier to sell, Sebastian said. "Some customers we have haven't wanted Patrol because of the agent load. So [Performance Manager] will open up new customers and increase our market share," he said.

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