Symantec (Nasdaq: SYMC) has unveiled new services that let users know when changes to their data center environment could put them at risk for unwanted downtime.
The new Veritas Operations Services are aimed at helping organizations identify hidden risks in their data centers. Veritas Installation Assessment and Veritas Storage Foundation Health Check, the first services offered, are based on the latest known good configurations, best practices and data center risks.
Veritas Operations Services track best practices, optimal configurations, hardware compatibility lists and software compatibility lists for Veritas Storage Foundation, Veritas Cluster Server, common operating systems and storage area network (SAN) software and firmware. Web-based services use the information to identify data center risks and issue alerts that include remediation steps.
Sean Derrington, Symantec's director of storage management and availability, said the services boost IT operations efficiency by making "a new person as effective as a 10-year veteran," freeing experienced IT employees from "firefighting" so they can focus on strategic initiatives.
The cloud-based service pools the experience of users and eliminates downtime and support calls for problems that have already been solved elsewhere, Derrington said, and gives small businesses access to the expertise and sophistication of larger environments.
The service has been in use since May and has so far proved successful, he said.
Symantec said Veritas Installation Assessment Service validates complex configurations in the server and storage infrastructure and simplifies version upgrades and new installations by validating the complete stack before installation. It also includes a patch notification service.
Storage Foundation Health Check also identifies configuration errors that can result in downtime, performance issues and poor resource utilization.
Bob Laliberte, an analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, said that "very large, complex environments with lots of moves, adds and changes ... will benefit the most by leveraging a service that proactively validates configurations," but he added that the service is of use to any "broad deployment" of Veritas Storage Foundation and Veritas Cluster Server.
Veritas Installation Assessment Service is $500 per server and available at no charge for customers subscribing to maintenance for Veritas Storage Foundation or Veritas Cluster Server. It is available now for Unix and Linux environments, with support for Windows planned at a later date.