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Compuware's Vantage upgrade takes integrated approach

Compuware is taking a more integrated approach to network management with the latest release of its Vantage software.

Compuware Corp. this week announced an update to it network management software, Vantage, that marks a shift toward a more integrated approach to network management for the company.

The Farmington Hills, Mich., software vendor's Vantage Release 8.5 is the first step toward integrating the three products in the suite, which monitor network performance, application performance and server performance, into a single Web-based graphical interface. With the new view, network managers will be able to get a more holistic picture of how their networks are performing, said Steve Dykstra, Compuware's Vantage product manager.

This move is in line with where others in the industry are heading, said Judith Hurwitz, principal with the Newton, Mass.-based research firm Judith Hurwitz and Associates. Vendors such as IBM Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co. are starting to integrate tools that monitor different aspects of network performance, Hurwitz said. These changes represent an important step toward improving a network manager's ability to manage an organization's infrastructure.

"These vendors are all getting at the same problem. Nothing is in isolation; everything is interrelated," Hurwitz said. "You have to manage across applications and environments."

Frank Petersmark, vice president of information technology for Amerisure Insurance Co. in Farmington Hills, Mich., is looking forward to using the new integrated system. He has been using the Vantage suite for a year now and said that integrating information about the performance of different network elements would improve his department's ability to keep the network trouble-free.

Petersmark said that it is very important for him to learn as much as he can from every perspective about the performance of new applications. He uses the Vantage product both to simulate application performance before it is deployed and to monitor performance once the application goes live on his 700-node network.

With network administrators able to see more information about server and application performance as well as network-related issues, Petersmark said that they will be able to better understand the company's network and head off problems before users begin to complain about them.

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