CA partners to enhance data center automation capabilities

* CA partners with Opalis to enhance data center automation capabilities

CA, one of the big four management vendors that hasn't acquired an IT process, run-book or data center automation vendor, last week announced and OEM partnership with Opalis that will enhance those capabilities in CA products.

The move could strengthen the company's position in the data center automation market, in which Forrester Research says "CA is just getting started" as competitors worked to buy technology. HP acquired data center automation vendor Opsware, which had previously picked up run-book automation player iConclude. BMC purchased RealOps last summer and then BladeLogic this year, and IBM continues to development its autonomic computing technologies

CA in December introduced its Data Center Automation Manager, one product that is part of the software maker's larger data center automation initiative which covers capabilities in change and configuration management, discovery and asset management, provisioning, patching and workload automation. By integrating those capabilities together and with CA's CMDB, Forrester Research Senior Analyst Evelyn Hubbert said a recent report that CA is among the key data center automation vendors.

"CA put itself among the roster of key [data center automation] vendors. The solution has just been introduced in December 2007 and will continue to gain functionality in future releases as the vendor receives input from its customers and has to respond to competitive alternatives to stay in the race," Hubbert wrote.

CA says the Opalis OEM deal will further existing integration between CA and Opalis technologies as well as help CA broaden its suite of IT process automation products the company delivers. Opalis makes Integration Server software as well as add-ons such as its Process Catalog for Virtualization. The software works with third-party management applications and doesn't require additional agents to be distributed, which can ease IT managers' adoption of automation capabilities. With Opalis software, IT managers can create tasks and the software would then automatically perform the tasks based on pre-defined triggers.

CA says enhancing the relationship with Opalis will give customers more process and workflow automation capabilities. "Combining our CA workload automation solution with the innovative and customer-proven Opalis technology will consolidate and streamline the process and workflows our customers must coordinate to deliver their production workloads," said Will Bauman, senior vice president of workload automation at CA, in a statement.

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