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BMC to launch performance management tools

E-business software vendor BMC Software is on track to release four new or upgraded performance management and predictive analysis tools for use in planning installations and upgrades of corporate IT systems.

The new products form part of an Enterprise Performance Assurance initiative at BMC that combines a variety of performance management tools for distributed systems and mainframes under a single business unit.

BMC said it will immediately release Web-based software, called Patrol Perceive, designed for use by business managers and other workers outside IT departments. The software can help users evaluate how a network or part of a system will perform while running under certain conditions or with specific applications, according to BMC.

For example, a corporate executive without specific technical skills could gauge how a network would handle a sudden influx of end users following an acquisition, a BMC official said. Patrol Perceive is being positioned as a low-cost alternative to BMC's more sophisticated assessment tools. Pricing starts at $20 (£13) per Windows user.

BMC also plans to roll out a new version of Patrol Performance Assurance in December that includes support for remote management of Windows systems, without the need to install agents on individual machines. The upgrade will also include an open architecture that lets performance data be moved to other vendors' software.

The two other new products, Mainview Performance Assurance and Patrol for iSeries-Predict, are expected to be available next week. The Mainview upgrade extends BMC's predictive analysis capabilities for IBM's zSeries mainframes to include virtual machine partitions that run under Linux. BMC said Patrol for iSeries-Predict will be able to identify how changes to IBM's iSeries and AS/400 systems will affect their responsiveness.

James Governor, an analyst at Illuminata, said BMC's announcements should help it meet the needs of a wider range of users. IBM's Tivoli Software management software unit began a similar effort last year, he said. BMC also competes in this market with Computer Associates.

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