There’s no doubt that virtualization has made server administration easier, and some of the core tools of the DevOps movement, like Puppet and Chef, depend heavily on virtualization. Now VMware is hoping to make life easier for system admins again with three new suites of IT management tools, and these new tools smell of DevOps.
Here’s a quick look at the new suites:
The VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite
The VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite is a collection of infrastructure management tools. It inlcludes a predictive analytics system for automating the IT troubleshooting process by helping admins find the source of problems, or by detecting issues before they become real problems. VMware expects it to ship in early 2012. It will compete with products with similar concepts from companies like Netuitive, Prelert and Nodeable. Pricing will start at $50 per virtual machine.
The vFabric Application Management Suite
The vFabric Application Management Suite consists of vFabric AppDirector and vFabric Application Performance Manager. AppDirector is a deployment automation tool that integrates with Puppet and Chef. Application Performance Manager is a tool for, well, managing application performance. AppDirector is expected to launch in early 2012, and Application Performance Manager is expected in Q4 2011. Pricing will start at $360 per VM.
The VMware IT Business Management Suite
One thing I keep hearing is that software-as-a-service and other cloud services will reduce the amount of actual server administration and application development that IT has to do. In this scenario, the IT department will spend more time brokering cloud services for various business units, advising business staff on what services to use. Other trends suggest that IT will remain very much in the game in terms of administration and development, but one thing is true – IT will probably be managing more SaaS accounts in the future.
The VMware IT Business Management Suite is based on VMware’s Digital Fuel acquisition earlier this year, and addresses the issue of cloud services management along with more traditional IT asset management. It consists of three modules: IT Finance Manager, IT Service Level Manager and IT Vendor Manager. VMware expects the suite to ship in Q4 2011. It will be priced on a per user basis, but VMware didn’t give me any pricing details.
DevOps means a lot of different things to people, but the elements tend to be: helping operations staff work more like developers through the use of automation tools and cloud services, applying elements of the agile development ideology to operations, helping operations and development work more closely together to speed up application development time and reducing the amount of operational friction developers face. These new products from VMware propose to help with most of these elements.