GroundWork Looking For Partners For MSP Solution

Open Source

The San Francisco-based startup this month at Interop Las Vegas 2006 unveiled an expanded GroundWork Monitor Professional solution that positions the company as new competition for MSP platform vendors such as LPI Level Platforms, Silverback Technologies and N-able Technologies, said Tony Barbagallo, GroundWork’s vice president of marketing.

“We’re looking for solution providers right now to help us take this to the next level,” Barbagallo said.

GroundWork Monitor Professional bundles free, open-source software into one management console to perform the remote monitoring, reporting and remediation required in providing managed IT services, Barbagallo said. GroundWork Open Source provides support for its product and the individual open-source software components for a flat fee of $16,000 a year.

That price is a steal when one considers the cost an MSP would have to shoulder for supporting an array of open-source applications, said Chuck Edwards, president of Blue Gecko, a Seattle MSP that uses the solution to offer network hosting, remote management and support for Oracle software.

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“You see ROI immediately with GroundWork,” Edwards said. “[GroundWork] provides such a degree of support for the open-source tools you use that if you add up all the contract support fees from the different open-source tools, it will be much more than the cost of GroundWork per year,” he said.

GroundWork has about 133 customers using the platform internally to remotely monitor their networks, Barbagallo said. Though only three customers are MSPs, GroundWork aims to change that. It is launching an initiative to recruit solution providers and MSPs to use its solution as their managed services platform, he said.

“When you consider that open-source licensing is 20 cents to the dollar compared to closed [licensing], you definitely have a value proposition,” Barbagallo said.