Dell touts intelligent IT

Simple automated management: that sums up Dell Computer Corp.’s new cross-platform initiative for its servers, storage and switches.

Lance Osbourne, senior product manager for Dell in Round Rock, Tex., said Thursday in a Toronto briefing that Dell Smart IT is an “over-arching” initiative to maximize the value of IT infrastructure through automation. This initiative includes the release of several new products and services for the year 2002, Osbourne said.

Dell has already begun to shed its Rodney Dangerfield image – no respect – within the enterprise systems space, Osbourne said.

Osbourne detailed Dell’s new Intelligent Support Model (ISM) remote monitoring services. The first ISM offering will be available through Dell Premier Enterprise Support agreements for remote monitoring capabilities.

Through ISM, tools such as OpenManage for servers, clients or storage are installed on Dell systems to monitor the customer’s environment. Alerts and logs will be transmitted directly to Dell support services, or the customer’s or service provider’s helpdesk, for diagnostics and resolution planning.

Customers can choose the level of automation for a service event or repair that they are comfortable with, from fully Dell-automated, no-touch repair to proactive Dell-to-client notifications and a joint resolution process, Osbourne said.

Dell has already rolled out solutions such as OpenManage Server Administrator, Active ID and LCD on sixth generation PowerEdge Servers, and OpenManage Client Administrator – all offerings that feature similar layers of automation.

The key is to shift from a “break/fix” culture to a more proactive level of automation, Osbourne explained.

Osbourne said that Smart IT provides a future vision and direction for Dell systems management, adding that the new offerings allow IT environments of any size and budget the ability to increase the value of their infrastructure at any level of technical sophistication.

In the future, automated management will mean a continual increase in options for rapid resource-free deployment and health management from locally at the system to a network level of access from anywhere in the world, he explained, adding that a company’s CIO should be considered the CEO of IT.

Dell Canada in Toronto is at