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April 26, 1994

“TIRED OF WAITING FOR HEWLETT,” IBM AND DEC STRIKE OUT THEIR OWN NETWORK MANAGEMENT COURSE

By CBR Staff Writer

IBM Corp says it’s tired of having to wait for Hewlett-Packard Co to play technology catch-up and won’t license OpenView 4.0, the latest version of Hewlett-Packard’s network management system on which its own NetView/6000 environment is partly based. Sanjiv Ahuja, director of IBM’s enterprise management operating environments, claims NetView/6000 is now 12 to 18 months ahead of OpenView in terms of the functionality it offers. He says OpenView lacks half a dozen or more advanced distributed network management technologies already offered in NetView/6000. Although NetView/6000 – and Digital Equipment Corp’s PolyCenter NetView implementation of it – are set to diverge from OpenView, Ahuja says IBM and DEC will continue to offer Application Programming Interfaces to OpenView in their NetView products that will maintain compatibility at existing levels. IBM licensed Network Node Manager and Network Management Server from OpenView back in 1991, although Ahuja says IBM has enhanced the node manager significantly since then. Ahuja points to functionality that a new version of NetView/6000 currently under development will have, including support for DB2/6000, Oracle, Informix and Sybase databases (it currently supports Ingres and flat-files) a data storage system that can access data from other systems, and enhanced scalability. Hewlett-Packard could do worse than license some of the NetView technology back for OpenView, he quips. A beta test version is due in a matter of weeks, finished product is a few months off. Although NetView/6000 and PolyCenter NetView don’t yet share the same source base as envisaged in the IBM-DEC agreement, the firms are working on drivers that will bring the versions more closely in line, and should be regarded as essentially the same technology, Ahuja says. The two have already agreed to offer personal computer management in NetView, Microsoft Corp-style, via Hermes, plus Windows NT implementations – NetView/6000 will be up on PowerPC and under OS/2 too. It is already available under AIX, OSF/1 and Solaris, and IBM has recently added a Systems Monitor module for managing AT&T Corp Global Information Solutions and Sun environments. 1993 International Data Corp figures show SunNet Manager with 33% of the Unix-based network systems management market, OpenView with 21%, OverLord (Dimons) at 14%, Ungermann-Bass Inc NetDirector with 9%, Synoptics Communications Inc Lattisnet Manager having 7%, Cabletron Spectrum at 6%, DEC DECmcc 6%, NetView/6000 with 3% and Lexcell Inc Lance with 1%.

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