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CA Extends Systems Management To Cloud

Amazon EC2 support was added to four key systems management products, giving customers a view of data center and cloud-based workload operations.

Managing workloads simultaneously in the data center and public cloud took a step closer to reality Wednesday as CA announced that four of its systems management products can now monitor operations in the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud as well as on customer premises.

CA has worked closely with Amazon to give its CA Spectrum Automation Manager, a data center automation product, the ability to automatically provision virtual machines in Amazon EC2 from a customer's CA management console. Changing demand in the data center can automatically lead to the provisioning of virtual machines in EC2 to pick up the extra traffic.

CA Service Desk Manager, which includes the CA Change Management Database, can be used to create policies governing the configuration of virtual servers in EC2 and manage any changes to them.

Also included in the cloud workload management set is CA's Wily Introscope, an application monitoring and performance management system.

CA Insight Database Performance Manager can monitor the performance of database systems that have been virtualized and moved into Amazon's cloud. The performance monitoring can help users answer, "Am I getting what I'm paying for?" said CA's Stephen Elliot, VP of business unit strategy, in an interview.

The goal, said Amazon's Terry Wise, director of business development for Amazon Web Services, is "to help our mutual customers take advantage of Amazon EC2 as a simple extension of their enterprise IT infrastructure."

"We want to be able to go from a granular view of data center operation to a cloud services perspective in an end-to-end view," said Elliot.

To do so, CA's system management products can work with different hypervisors, including VMware's ESX Server, Microsoft's Hyper-V, and Citrix Systems' XenServer. It can also support IBM LPARS or logical partitions, and Sun Microsystems Containers. CA Spectrum Automation Manager knows how to convert a virtualized workload into Amazon Machine Image, Amazon's virtual file format that automatically runs in EC2.

"We think it's a first in the industry, the broad set of support capabilities that our products have," claimed Elliot.

Elliot said CA plans to add additional EC2 support to its product line. For example, the next round of support will apply to CA eHealth Performance Manager, CA Spectrum Infrastructure Manager, and CA NSM.

There's no change in price for each product for the added EC2 capabilities. CA Spectrum Automation Manager starts at $150,000. CA Service Desk Manager is priced at $140,000 in the configuration that allows 25 concurrent analysts to use it. CA Insight DPM starts at $2,620. CA Wily Introscope is part of CA Wily APM, which starts as $9,600.


InformationWeek's Informed CIO series lays out 10 questions to ask before proceeding with data center automation. Download the report here (registration required).

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