Apparent Automates Test Platform

Startup launches an upgrade that automates network testing tasks

May 5, 2004

2 Min Read
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Software startup Apparent Networks today unveiled shiny new versions of its flagship AppareNet product.

First launched in 2002, AppareNet is network performance monitoring software that enables technology vendors, enterprises, and even telcos to identify problems across both their own and their customers IP networks.

With the new Enterprise, Support, and Professional upgrades, the Vancouver-based firm is looking to improve on this story. The new Enterprise product offers a greater degree of sophistication, according to Apparent Networks’ CEO Irfhan Rajani. He says, “Our first release was reactive -- you needed human intervention. Enterprise 2.0 is proactive.”

AppareNet works by sending packets across a network from API (application program interface) to API, and then analyzing the returned data. As well as searching out network bottlenecks and congestion points, AppareNet can also identify problems such as poorly performing routers and latency-bound applications.

The upgrade means that tests can be automatically scheduled and queued. The new version also integrates with management frameworks such as Hewlett-Packard Co.’s (NYSE: HPQ) OpenView and IBM Corp.'s (NYSE: IBM) Tivoli platform.Support, as its name suggests, is aimed at technical support organizations. Rajani says, “For example, a storage vendor’s help desk could run the diagnostic on one of their customers' networks.” The third element of the upgrade, Professional, is a laptop version.

Rajani describes this as a "radical" step in enabling vendors to diagnose their customers’ third-party networks.

Michael Peterson, president of Strategic Research Corporation, agrees. He says, “I have looked at a lot of these [products] over the years, and I have seen nothing like this before.

“What stands out is the ability to remotely monitor and provision the network -- this is a very unique product."

A number of organizations, including Texas A&M University, Aurora DataTel, and Providence Health System, have already been won over to the original version of AppareNet.It appears that the Apparent message is getting through. In February, Canadian telco Telus Corp. (NYSE: TU; Toronto: T) pumped $2 million into Apparent Networks, bringing the company’s funding from all sources to $10.6 million.

— James Rogers, Site Editor, Next-gen Data Center Forum

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