Product Hits – Laptops take a stand


Laptops take a stand

LapWorks has introduced the Aluminum Desktop Stand, a device designed to elevate Mac or PC laptops when you’re working at a desk. The Aluminum Desktop Stand raises the screen up to 6 3/4 inches and features six adjustable angles and elevations, including a low angle mode if you plan to type on the laptop. It also rotates 360 degrees. The aluminum construction provides for rapid heat dissipation, according to LapWorks, and the stand also folds flat for compact storage. The device also helps manage cable tangles. The stand’s travel bag can work as a mouse pad.

Availability: Available now Pricing: US$59.95 URL:

Security software for businesses

CA has announced upgrades to two security software suites – one for large companies and one for small and midsize businesses. Threat Manager 8.1, typically used for 10,000 nodes and up, is client/server anti-malware software based on products CA previously branded as eTrust Anti-Virus and Pest Patrol anti-spyware. The software suite, which runs on Windows Vista, Unix, Novell or Macintosh machines, has a single console for threat reporting and security software management. For SMBs, CA announced the third version of its Protection Suites, which is Windows-only anti-virus, anti-spyware and desktop-storage software with a Web-based management console. This latest version supports Windows Vista. The package includes a Web-based management console that lets IT staff review users, policies, updates and events.

Availability: Available now Pricing: Threat Manager starts at US$60 per node, Protection Suites is licensed for five users at US$325 and up.

Enhanced WebLogic simplifies development

Enhanced software development capabilities and system availability are key focuses in an improved version of BEA Systems’ WebLogic Server application server. With the release of BEA WebLogic Server 10, BEA plans to accentuate the product’s Java-based features that simplify development of applications and services. To this end, it supports Java EE 5 and EJB 3.0. Accommodations for open-source developer frameworks like Spring help simplify development as well, BEA said. Also featured in version 10 is an update to core Web services technologies as well as improvements in security and interoperability with proprietary and open-source platforms.

Coding required to implement Web services has been reduced.

Availability: Available now URL:

Desktop virtualization tool unveiled

Citrix Systems has introduced Citrix Desktop Server 1.0, which it said will let IT managers deliver Windows applications virtually from the data centre to workers as secure, on-demand services. The new application delivery and virtualization offering can also provide additional CPU capacity, memory or storage to on-site and off-site virtual desktops as needs change, the company said. Citrix estimates that Desktop Server can cut corporate desktop management costs — which it says can reach US$5,000 per user per year — by 40 per cent. Desktop Server can be used with any PC, Mac or thin client, and with any Web browser. Users can keep files on their own hard drive, or the files can be kept in storage in the data centre.

Availability: Q2 2007 Pricing: Starts at US$75/user URL:

HP aims to speed business printing

Hewlett-Packard Co. (HP) has built its Edgeline print head into two new departmental printers designed for print volumes up to 50,000 pages a month. The printers offer the speed of laser printing with the color quality and reliability of ink.

The CM8050 and CM8060 color multifunction printer-copier-scanners print in black at speeds up to 50 or 60 pages per minute, respectively, and in color at 40 or 50 pages per minute. The new print heads deliver pigment-based ink and a bonding agent across the full width of an A4 page in one go, allowing the printers to run faster than inkjet printers that must scan back and forth across the paper. The heads have a life of around 2 million pages, allowing them to run for three years under a typical service contract, the company said. The printers also sport HP’s EasySelect Control Panel, a common user interface it introduced to its multifunction business printer line six months ago. HP’s aim is that users will be able to operate future business printers intuitively, wherever they find them in the enterprise, through a common interface.

Availability: Available now Pricing: From US$23,530 for the CM8060 and US$18,930 for the CM8050, depending on options ordered.

Free ITIL help

IBM has updated a free tool that provides IT managers with access to best practices surrounding IT service management and governance frameworks. IBM Tivoli Unified Process is a Web-based tool that IT managers can tap for information, guidance and detailed how-to steps to help them better understand the processes of the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL). In the new version, ITUP is enhanced to provide information on process integration and now includes documentation of IBM’s Process Reference Model for the Business of IT. At its core, ITUP is built upon IBM’s Process Reference Model for IT (which resembles ITIL process models) and provides a point-and-click interface that helps IT managers better understand each process. The Web-based tool pulls information from ITUP Method Library, a database which includes process knowledge and documentation from IBM’s consulting engagements over the years.

Availability: Available now Pricing: Free URL:

Customer care portal

Toronto’s Clarity Systems, a provider of corporate performance management solutions, has launched Clarity Customer Care. It’s an online customer self service portal designed to help customers maximize the value of their CPM investments. The company says the new portal streamlines the case management process, enabling users to log, update and track their support cases while retrieving information from and contributing information to the Clarity database. The self service portal provides users with a useful reference centre for training documents, product information, installation and administration manuals, and configuration checklists.

Availability: Available now URL:

Apple goes 8-core

Apple has updated its desktop Mac Pro computers adding two new 3.0GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon processors, bringing 8-core processing to the Mac. The new machines can run the 3.0GHz Intel Xeon processors and are available as build-to-order options. Using two “Clovertown” 3.0GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon 5300 series processors, the 8-core Mac Pro comes with 8MB of L2 cache per processor (16MB total), 667MHz DDR2 ECC fully buffered DIMM memory, eight FB-DIMM slots on two memory riser cards (four slots per card) supporting up to 16GB of main memory and 1.33GHz, 64-bit dual independent frontside buses. The new Mac Pros have fou