VMware Service-Level Monitoring Tool Targets MSPs


The company's software, called NimBUS, is used by MSPs as a way to offer higher-end, higher-margin services that extend beyond just basic systems monitoring. These higher-end services, such as application performance management, also give MSPs a way to differentiate themselves in a crowded market. So far, Nimsoft has signed on about 100 MSPs to offer its software as a service to medium-to-large enterprises. The company has about 450 customers in total, including its own enterprise clients.

The NimBUS software now enables MSPs to centrally manage multiple VMware VirtualCenters through one console. It monitors multiple layers of VMware environments, including the business applications hosted on virtual machines. It also provides alarms and reports for such metrics as end user response time, performance and service-level agreements.

Genesis Multimedia Solutions, an MSP in Lake Zurich, Ill., was excited about the new support for VMware, as all of the MSP's customers run within VMware Infrastructure 3.

"We've been beta testing it for some time now, and it's working very well. It gives you more insight, similar to what you would expect to get from a hardware monitoring tool like HP's Insight Manager, but with this it is for VMware virtual machines," says Eric Miller, president, Genesis Multimedia.

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The MSP had originally signed on to sell the SLA monitoring tool because it provided more granularity into system performance than other competitive tools and becuase it also provided customizable dashboards, Miller added.

"We found a lot of the other products were just checking to see if something was up and doing alerting, and we were looking for more than that. For example, we use Nimbus for ground trip measurements of e-mail passing through all systems, including antivirus, spam filtering, [etc.], and we're actually measuring how long it is taking for e-mail to go through all those stages, so we can say we'll guarantee when messages will be delivered from this point to that point," Miller says.