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Dunes manages the heterogeneous virtual machine

Service management

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In the largest server sector of all, namely those operating on Intel and AMD based processors, the virtualisation of computers has become something of a fashion tidal wave with vendors such as VMware, the major server suppliers and even Microsoft all actively promoting the benefits of this approach to computing.

Into this heady world has stepped a small Swiss company, Dunes Technology, with software for the administration of virtual machine environments utilising a "service management" approach. In essence, the S-Ops v2.2 software provides unified management and control capabilities for distributed virtual resources, across the enterprise.

The software enables enterprise IT, service providers and software vendors to supply customers and business users rapidly, efficiently and cost-effectively with personalised services running on virtual machines. The unified control of distributed heterogeneous virtual resources makes it possible for virtual resources to be aggregated into manageable "services". In this way multiple software, virtual and hardware resources to be managed as one pool of assets dedicated to a specific business activity.

The software supplies capabilities to handle the provisioning (create, control, deploy) of virtual services along with strong monitoring functionality to handle service status, performance and alarm reporting. All capabilities require the use of an S-Ops agent to be deployed on the platforms to be managed.

Last month, the company added policy based orchestration for virtual machines with the launch of the Dunes Policy software. This tool enables the definition, validation and implementation of custom scripted policies to automate service and operation level management. Dunes Policy provides an integrated development environment (IDE) and the tools required to allow policies to be articulated, modelled, tested, implemented and re-used. Dunes Policy also allows the policies to be implemented as wizards as well as traditional scripts.

Currently, VMware's ESX and GSX servers along with VMware Workstation virtual machines form the bulk of platforms managed. However, it should be noted that S-Ops also provides support for Microsoft Virtual Server (beta version) and Microsoft Virtual PC, thereby supplying valuable heterogeneous platform management capabilities.

Stephane Broquere, president and CEO of Dunes, said: "With S-Ops, IT professionals can benefit from the ability to compose, deliver and guarantee personalised services on demand. S-Ops management technology takes full advantage of VMware and Microsoft virtualisation software to provide a means by which our customers can align the needs of virtual resources with that of the physical resources capacity in order to meet business objectives."

Both leading virtual machine providers, VMware and Microsoft, deliver their own management tools, S-Ops may appeal to larger organisations and service providers that operate both virtual machine platforms. The addition of policy management capabilities that can operate across both environments and the ability to build virtual services, not just virtual machines, may attract further attention. It is clear that the investment in virtual machine technologies continues apace in vendors large and small, reflecting the potential benefits that this approach can deliver.

© IT-Analysis.com

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