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Managing IT assets where they live

Nimsoft extends monitoring capabilities beyond data center to cloud computing environments, SaaS provided apps.

Network/Systems Management Alert By Denise Dubie, Network World
October 21, 2009 08:28 AM ET
Denise Dubie
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Industry analysis by Beth Schultz, plus the latest news headlines.

Enterprise IT managers are exploring new options when rolling out applications that often place IT assets outside of the corporate data center. Yet implementing software-as-a-service applications or deploying applications in the cloud shouldn’t prevent IT managers from monitoring performance and accessing historical trend data, according to Nimsoft.

Cloud-management wares multiply
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“We are seeing more and more external environments become a critical part of the infrastructure,” says Gary Read, president and CEO at Nimsoft. “Hosted environments, SaaS-based applications and cloud computing are becoming a part of our customer’s overall infrastructure. We are offering customers the ability to combine the performance management of both internal and external resources into a single integrated management platform.”

Nimsoft Monitoring Solution (NMS) now includes cloud and SaaS probes that enable users to gain visibility over availability and performance of Google Apps for Business, Rackspace Cloud, Amazon Web Services and EC2, Salesforce.com and other services. The software understands status and response time, helping users determine if outsourced platforms and applications are meeting their service delivery commitments, Read explains.

This updated version also includes Nimsoft Unified Monitoring APIs that help customers more easily extend the NMS platform to monitor specific elements in their environments. The Nimsoft Unified Reporter also new to this release delivers more than 100 reports out of the box as well as lets customers create their own performance and capacity planning reports. Virtualization probes enable customers to gain visibility into virtual platforms from Citrix, Microsoft HyperV, IBM Power-V, VMware and Sun Solaris Zones. And root-cause analysis and topology features provide discovery capabilities and topology views of both virtual and physical elements in the network, according to Nimsoft.

NMS is offered in two delivery models. The first is as licensed software that customers install on one or multiple servers in their environment and manage themselves. The second choice is via service providers that sell NMS as an IT management software service.

“Customers don’t have the time or money for long software implementation cycles or professional services to get value from their management software,” Read says. “This product is up and running fast and the reporting dashboard is available through any Web browser on any platform.”

Existing customers can acquire the new capabilities, which are available now, as a freely available download for the initial environments supported. For new customers, pricing for NMS could start as low as $20,000 per year and costs can reach closer to $50,000 per year for an average customer implementation with the vendor’s usage-based pricing model, Read says.

Interested in freeware and shareware, open source applications and scaled down versions of commercial software and services? Network World devotes an online forum to the topic of free techie stuff. Let me know what you find, what you want to hear more about and what invaluable tools that didn’t cost you a thing at ddubie@nww.com.

Schultz is a longtime IT journalist. You can email her or find her here.

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