IBM buy bolsters on-demand plan

In a move to bolster its so-called e-business on-demand strategy, IBM today said it has acquired Toronto-based Think Dynamics, a maker of systems management tools that are designed to help companies respond quickly to business requirements and free up IT staffers to better focus on core business needs.

Neither IBM nor privately held Think Dynamics would disclose financial details. The Think Dynamics team will be integrated immediately into the Tivoli systems management unit of the IBM Software Group. IBM reps said the IBM Systems Group, as well as the Total Storage and Global Services organizations, will likely utilize the technology as well.

IBM officials said the Think Dynamics technology, dubbed orchestrated provisioning, can accelerate a critical element of IBM's much-hyped on-demand strategy, which it says can help customers to respond more quickly to changing business conditions -- such as peaks in demand and potential system failures -- by dynamically allocating the right computing resources at the right time to the right processes.

Based on autonomic technology, a cornerstone of the on-demand effort, orchestrated provisioning can be utilized to obtain real-time feedback on the state of the IT environment, check the status against business policies, and make changes by dynamically re-allocating a broad variety of computing resources, such as servers, middleware, applications, storage systems and network interfaces, in an orchestrated and coordinated manner, IBM reps said. The Think Dynamics software supports provisioning of Linux-, Unix- or Windows-based systems, enabling the provisioning of new systems and the re-provisioning of existing IT resources.

Irving Wladawsky-Berger, general manager of IBM's e-business on-demand business, noted that the acquired toolsets are based on IBM-supported standards like Web services and the Open Grid Services Architecture (OGSA), which he said allows organizations to automatically and dynamically provision resources based on the unique policies and processes of their business.

Robert LeBlanc, general manager of IBM's Tivoli Software systems management business, said the ability of the Think Dynamics software to "automatically and dynamically manage IT resources will help customers get more value out of their technology investments.

Duncan Hill, founder and chief strategist of Think Dynamics, said he expects a significant investment by IBM in the technology.


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About the Author

Mike Bucken is former Editor-in-Chief of Application Development Trends magazine.


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