HP OpenView Application Management Suite Gets Apps Ready For Business

This simple formula is at the heart of Hewlett-Packard's new OpenView Application Management portfolio, which was introduced late last month by the Palo Alto, Calif., company.

The suite of new and updated products gives HP's application development partners—and VARs that provide application support—a set of tools that better prepare an application to run in the production environment. Grooming an application using the OpenView Application Management portfolio improves application performance, lowers the cost of application maintenance and provides a better end-user experience for customers accessing the application, said Jon Atkins, solution marketing manager for application management at HP.

"What we want to do with OpenView Application Management is complete the handshake between [application] development and production," Atkins said. "By performance tuning and optimizing the applications before they go into production, we have the equivalent of taking a car, putting it on a test track, testing the steering, testing the brakes, and making sure it behaves predictably before it gets on the road."

HP's OpenView Application Management portfolio isn't meant to compete against broad software development tools such as those from Borland International or Microsoft's Visual Studio .Net, Atkins said. Instead, HP is providing development tools that plug into popular integrated development environments, he said. The portfolio includes a variety of tools such as HP OpenView JMX Metric Builder, which can plug into BEA Systems' WebLogic Workshop to tune applications for Java Management Extensions (JMX), improving application manageability. An assortment of new or updated plug-ins for applications such as BEA Tuxedo, Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Virtual Server, Microsoft Enterprise Server, SAP NetWeaver, BMC Remedy and others are also part of the suite. Third-party load scripts can also be run for multiple application testing.

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The concentration of BEA-related tools is significant as approximately 34 percent of all new BEA sales are delivered on HP platforms, according to HP.

Using HP OpenView Select Identity application connectors, which were added to the portfolio as a result of HP's March 2004 acquisition of TrueLogica, many facets of application provisioning and user provisioning can be automated, improving security and compliance at the application level, Atkins said.

The portfolio also includes version 6.0 of HP OpenView Internet Services, which taps an enhanced user interface to help users "drill down to find problems with applications without having to parse through lines and lines of code," he said.

Keith Wilson, director of business development at Melillo Consulting, a systems integrator in Somerset, N.J., said that because Melillo has both an enterprise management practice and an application development practice, the refreshed OpenView Application Management portfolio "fits well with the engagements we are involved in."

"This latest release is pretty key," Wilson said. "There are a number of other products on the market that do a decent job with J2EE, but HP has a real lead with .Net." HP has also made changes to its licensing to make it both less expensive and less binding to take advantage of the OpenView Application Management portfolio, Atkins said. "We have created these short-term, limited licensing agreements so a reseller can go into an account for the specific task of application performance tuning. It's not like a perpetual test license; it's for a specific test," he said.