Business Objects Aims BI At Data Warehouse Appliances - InformationWeek

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Software // Enterprise Applications

Business Objects Aims BI At Data Warehouse Appliances

IBM and Netezza are the first appliance vendors to ship products with the company's Open Appliance Initiative software.

Business Objects on Wednesday unveiled partnerships with major data warehouse vendors that have agreed to pre-install the company's business intelligence tools, an offering that targets mid-sized companies.

The company launched its Open Appliance Initiative at the Gartner Business Intelligence Summit in Chicago. IBM and Netezza are the first appliance vendors to ship products with Business Objects software. Others that have agreed to do the same include DatAllegro, Greenplum, Hewlett-Packard, RPath, Teradata, which is a division of NCR; and VMware.

Business Objects also has partnered with consulting companies that could assist customers in deploying the hardware-software packages. Those partners include Andrews Consulting Group, Brightlight Consulting, Data Management Group, and Headstrong.

Business Objects is partnering with vendors that can deliver a BI appliance "tailor made" for the mid-market, said Todd Rowe, VP and general manager of mid-market business at Business Objects. Because mid-sized companies usually have limited IT departments, they're more receptive to packaged products that cost less than buying the individual parts separately, and are less expensive to deploy.

The tradeoff, however, is the appliance can only be used for its pre-configured purpose, Rowe said. A company can't run other business applications in the same box. "You're committed to an appliance strategy," Rowe said.

IBM on Tuesday said it's offering Business Objects' Crystal Reports Server with its low-end Balanced Warehouse C1000 appliance, one of a number of new offerings IBM unveiled as part of a major data warehouse initiative. The Business Objects' reporting tools are boxed in an xSeries server with the IBM DB2 Warehouse Starter Edition and the Novell Suse Linux Enterprise Server.

Similarly, Netezza is packaging Business Objects' Crystal Decision BI platform for mid-sized companies with its Performance Server. The bundle is available in 1 terabyte and 3 terabyte configurations.

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