EMC Unveils Tool for IT Configuration Visibility

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EMC (NYSE: EMC) has added to its Ionix suite of IT management tools with a new solution for visualizing configurations across the data center.

EMC Ionix Data Center Insight combines dependency mapping and discovery to show relationships between storage, networks, servers and applications. EMC said the new tool “enables customers to evolve their configuration management databases (CMDBs) into fully federated configuration management systems (CMS).”

EMC senior product marketing manager Jeff Abbott called the new offering “a single source of truth for IT operations.”

Ionix Data Center Insight offers a visual overview of dependencies between data center resources, and users can click on an area to view relationships in greater detail. It can help users populate CMDBs and get a “holistic view” of the data center, working with EMC’s change and storage management tools to plan changes, avoid outages and troubleshoot, said Abbott.

EMC is positioning the tool as a way for users to move from virtual data centers to “private clouds.”

Analyst Dennis Drogseth of Enterprise Management Associates said in a statement that “Establishing and populating a federated CMDB system is one of the biggest challenges companies face today when trying to manage their next-generation data centers. With so many tools collecting data from all parts of the IT environment, the ability to get up-to-date, accurate and complete data to a single, monolithic CMDB solution becomes extremely difficult and requires excessive manual labor and guesswork. With EMC Ionix Data Center Insight, EMC is taking a major step forward in helping customers tackle these challenges head-on, while at the same time enabling far more flexibility in capturing real-time insights versus aging information.”

Ionix Data Center Insight automatically populates both EMC and third-party CMDBs with best-practices configuration items (CIs), allowing customization to define customer-specific CIs.

Ionix Data Center Insight pricing starts at $40,000.

EMC’s SSD Plans Revealed

Also today, Barry Burke, chief strategy officer of EMC’s Symmetrix group, discussed the company’s solid state drive (SSD) strategy and upcoming fully automated storage tiering (FAST) launch on a company “Tech Talk” event, according to a research note from analyst Aaron Rakers of Stifel Nicolaus.

Rakers noted that FAST will begin to be deployed across all EMC storage platforms over by the end of the year, with the Symmetrix platform already in beta testing and Clariion and Celerra systems set to follow in the next few weeks. A second generation of FAST set for mid-2010 will offer “enhanced granularity and efficiency,” Rakers wrote.

Rakers also noted that EMC is working with “potential secondary sources” for SSDs, the latest sign of potential competition for enterprise SSD leader STEC (NASDAQ: STEC).

Rakers said enterprise storage could move toward a two-tiered architecture between SSDs and SATAs drives, which could potentially hurt the SASand Fibre Channel drive market, he said.

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Paul Shread
Paul Shread
eSecurity Editor Paul Shread has covered nearly every aspect of enterprise technology in his 20+ years in IT journalism, including an award-winning series on software-defined data centers. He wrote a column on small business technology for Time.com, and covered financial markets for 10 years, from the dot-com boom and bust to the 2007-2009 financial crisis. He holds a market analyst certification.

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