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Senior Editor

Business alignment vs. network optimization

May 18, 20042 mins
Data Center

* Management software vendors clash over best approach

A battle of the buzzwords is on in the management industry.

Companies such as BMC, Concord and Smarts have focused their product strategies on “business service management,” while vendors such as Expand Networks and NetQoS talk more about “optimization.” Which is the top priority on the minds of network executives?

“Our customers want us to automate as much IT work as possible so they can focus their resources on things that are important to the business,” says Carl Koken, director of product marketing at Smarts. The company last week announced InCharge Version 6.2, which includes new “business dashboard” software as well as upgraded business impact and service assurance tools.

With the product launch, Smarts also unveiled a strategy to use its event and fault management software to make business services work better. The company says using root-cause analysis features available in its software will speed problem resolution and increase application performance and uptime for end users and customers.

“We needed to fill a hole between network and application event data collection and presentation,” Koken explains. “The dashboard will show network engineers the technical details, but business managers can get quick statistics and reports on how well their business services are doing with it as well.”

But according to Michael Turner, executive vice president of sales and marketing at NetQoS, customers don’t need business views; they need to know their systems are optimized – and then increased application performance will follow.

“We are focusing on analyzing traffic to determine what people are running and finding ways it can work better and securing the net,” Turner says.

NetQoS at NetWorld+Interop last week launched Version 6.0 of its flagship ReporterAnalyzer software, which can now perform vulnerability scans across a network. The software comes packaged on a Dell or HP box.

“We hear requests to monitor NetFlow. We don’t see customer demand for business services,” Turner says.

What do you think? Is one buzzword better than the other? Or do both have their place in an enterprise network manager’s vocabulary? Let me know at