Upgrading applications and servers is among a data center technician's dullest tasks, but new software shipping this week from Tripwire Inc. aims to automate the process.
Tripwire, based in Portland, Ore., specializes in what officials call "change monitoring" for servers and networks. In layman's terms: Its software is used to keep track of the many changes that are made in server configurations. Companies tend to underestimate the importance of understanding and automating change, especially in large-scale situations, the Tripwire folk say.
In scenarios where there are a number of configuration changes, Tripwire for Servers 4.5 builds reports based on audit policies set by the user. Users can now approve changes in bunches, and if the report reflects something wrong, policies can be changed on the fly.
In the prior version, Tripwire for Servers 4.1, the process of setting audit policies was manual, explains Rob Warmack, director of product planning. Problems can now be checked by severity levels, he adds.
The checking capability, with 4.5, is now also integrated with BMC Software Inc.'s (NYSE: BMC) Remedy Action Request System. Later this year it will be integrated with Hewlett-Packard Co.'s (NYSE: HPQ) OpenView, Warmack says. The software requires a $7,000 management console and per-server licenses starting at $600. A Remedy-specific version costs $6,995. Next up for the company is a product line convergence. This will involve, in the first quarter of 2005, the merger of Tripwire for Server and Tripwire for Networks into one as-yet unnamed product, according to Warmack. [Ed. note: How'bout calling it "Tripwire for Server and Networks"?]