Compaq suite gives proactive Insight

Houston, Tex.-based Compaq Computer Corp. launched the first phase of its strategy to transform Compaq ProLiant server management tools into a comprehensive software-based server management suite in September.

The Compaq Insight Management Suite incorporates the new Compaq Insight Manager 7 software, which acts as the cornerstone to the entire suite. The new suite was designed to simplify planning, deployment, operations and change management for environments using ProLiant servers by bringing together existing Compaq management tools.

“Basically, what we’re looking at is an update to our current Insight Manager,” said Chris Parisi, industry standard server group (ISSG) product manager at Compaq Canada Corp. in Richmond Hill, Ont. “And with the suite, we’re combining services around the software technology to give businesses automated proactive remote support, either from themselves internally or they can use the support structure from our Compaq global services to make those updates for them.”

The Compaq Insight Manager 7 software allows enterprise customers to maximize system availability and performance by proactively notifying IT staff of problems before there are any negative effects on the business, according to a company press release.

“By using the Compaq Insight Manager along with some of the other solutions that we offer, we’re looking at reducing customers’ downtime by proactively querying their systems,” Parisi said. “We can combine this with remote system support so that you don’t actually have to be there in front of the machine to do this, so you could be outsourcing your IT.” She added that because of the remote capabilities, the software also allows network managers to check on the system at any time, not just during peak hours when users are accessing the network.

According to Alan Freedman, research manager for servers, workstations and storage at International Data Corp. (IDC) Canada in Toronto, the Compaq Insight Management Suite is an example of a trend that sees hardware vendors increasing the manageability aspect of their offerings, such as the addition of services.

“The idea is to reduce the amount of administration needed, increase the amount of automation and, therefore, they’re hoping to reduce the total cost of ownership of a solution,” Freedman said. He added this is what all of the major hardware vendors are doing.

Freedman said Compaq is looking to gain a competitive advantage with the launch of Insight Management Suite and it’s trying to intrigue potential customers by the features and functionality of the solution set.

At the same time Compaq announced the Insight Management Suite, it also announced the Compaq Version Control software, which is used to simplify the maintenance of configuration currency and consistency across multiple ProLiant servers. A promotional release of Version Control is being shipped with Insight Manager 7.

Compaq is also extending its Compaq Proactive Remote Services (CPRS), which is already available for Compaq StorageWorks, to include support for ProLiant servers. The CRPS is a tool that provides continuous, non-intrusive monitoring and automated reporting of hardware failure and pre-failure conditions in the hopes of increasing availability and productivity levels.

The Compaq Insight Management Suite and Compaq Insight Manager 7 are both available now. For a limited time, Compaq is offering the software as free downloads. Pricing after the free offer has yet to be set. Compaq is on the Web at