10 tools to manage SOA

Vendors step up to address the governance, quality and management technology triangle that ensures successful implementations

2. BMC Software's AppSight

What does the product do? AppSight performs automated problem resolution in SOA implementations to alleviate and eliminate application problems. Once in production, the software captures data and metrics that are used for problem resolution. The software reduces the manual effort required to recreate the problem and find a resolution.

Who's using the product? Clal Insurance, Community First Bankshares, Cox Communications and Mary Kay, among others.

More on BMC's SOA management play: When BMC, one of the top four management-software makers, acquired Identify Software in May 2006 for US$150 million, it brought the AppSight technology into its broader business-service management portfolio. Combined with BMC's performance-management technologies, AppSight addresses SOA- and Web services-based application performance from development to user desktop.

Quick facts on BMC: BMC began life in the late 1970s as a partnership that did contract programming in the Houston area. The company took its name from the initials of the three partners: Scott Boulett, John Moores and Dan Cloer.

BMC, now headed by CEO Robert Beauchamp, recently acquired RealOps, an IT process automation vendor, and ProactiveNet, an application performance-management vendor, to deliver more products that tie IT performance to business success. The company reported US$1.6 billion in revenue for fiscal 2007, which ended March 31.

3. CA's Wily SOA Solution

What does the product do? SOA Solution, courtesy of CA's 2006 $375 million acquisition of Wily Technology, monitors the performance and availability of Web services, application performance on client machines and other components in the SOA environment. The suite includes three applications that autodiscover SOA components, such as enterprise service buses, portals and Web services; map SOA transactions and dependencies among the various components in the environment, and alert staff to performance issues.

Who's using the product? Amdocs, Bear Stearns, FedEx, Geico, Home Depot, Intel and Pacific Gas & Electric.

More on CA's SOA management play: With the Wily technology, CA addresses application, Web services and now SOA component and performance management, analysts say. In particular, they like its ability to discover SOA elements and monitor performance at the transaction level.

"With its ability to discover and monitor individual transactions across multiple components, Wily SOA Solution is a prime example of a suite enterprise buyers can use to ensure reliable Web service performance," says Julie Craig, an analyst with Enterprise Management Associates.

Quick facts on CA: In the past decade, CA (founded in 1976) has weathered investigations of its accounting methods that led to a management exodus and in some cases, convictions. Now headed by former IBMer John Swainson, CA is working to repair its reputation for poor customer service and retooling its products to address enterprise IT management. CA reported US$3.9 billion in revenue for fiscal 2007, which ended March 31. CA, as well as BMC, could be an acquisition target of software companies like Oracle looking to do more in business management, according to industry speculation.

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