Microsoft has expanded its Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) 2000 with a partner program which allows users to integrate it with third-party management products.
Several systems management software companies, including IBM's Tivoli Systems, Computer Associates International, NetIQ and MetiLinx, have signed up for the new initiative, called MOM Connector Framework, Microsoft announced at its Professional Developers Conference (PDC) in Los Angeles yesterday.
The aim is to allow users to manage heterogeneous IT environments more easily, beyond the Microsoft environment that MOM handles.
Microsoft also announced "management packs" from third-party suppliers, which will allow users to monitor more than just Microsoft products using MOM. It offers about 30 management packs, of which the most popular are Exchange Server pack and Active Directory pack, said David Hamilton, director of Microsoft's enterprise management division.
Microsoft has created a catalogue for the new management packs. A number of companies, including AmberPoint, Actional and Service Integrity, announced web services management packs yesterday.
Other companies that offer or will offer packs for MOM are Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Veritas Software and NetIQ.
Microsoft's opening up of MOM is part of its Dynamic Systems Initiative, a project aimed at reducing data centre complexity.
Microsoft is working on MOM 2004, which is due out in the middle of next year. It will target a broader audience, including medium-sized enterprises, and will offer a refresh of all Microsoft's management packs. Around 3,500 people are estimated to use MOM, most of them in large corporations.
Microsoft intends to roll both MOM and its Systems Management Server (SMS) 2003 into a new product called System Center.
SMS 2003 is scheduled to be launched on 11 November at a Microsoft event in Europe.
Joris Evers writes for IDG News Service