BMC Extends Monitoring and Automation Suite with I/O Concepts Acquisition

BMC Software introduced an enhanced solution intended to help users more efficiently manage complex and geographically dispersed operations from a consolidated and secure point of control, based on I/O Concepts' ioEnterprise line of mainframe console security, automation and consolidation solutions. BMC closed on the acquisition of I/O Concepts on Dec. 15, 2011.

BMC MainView Console Management for zEnterprise provides secure, password-controlled access to System z consoles using standard repositories, such as RACF, Active Directory, and LDAP; a browser-based operations workbench that helps organizations consolidate, distribute, search, and scroll through console messages, including NIP/IPL; an easy-to-use rule language that highlights or suppresses messages and alerts staff to critical situations; and built-in support for BMC solutions, such as BMC ProactiveNet Performance Management.

According to BMC, the MainView Console Management for zEnterprise is designed to address the growing need for tools that consolidate and manage increasingly complex IBM mainframe systems for customers ranging from global outsourcers dealing with multiple tenants to IT data centers dealing with complex logistics such as off-shore staff, mergers or acquisitions. BMC MainView Console Management for zEnterprise meets critical security and compliance requirements, enabling remote console security, role-based command suppression and link encryption. 

The ioEnterprise line is "aimed at the traditional data center operators and system programmers that manage the mainframe complex, and it fits very nicely in our MainView product strategy," Mike Moser, product manager for MSM at BMC, tells 5 Minute Briefing. "It addresses some functionality that we didn't have which was in the area of offboard console automation - so it brings some complementary capabilities to our product line. It is a best-of-breed set of products in this area that has been built from the ground up to be secure and help with compliance initiatives. It is very efficient and modern in the sense that it is a web-based single point of access, internet-enabled platform."

The solution enables users to manage consoles whether or not operating systems are running so they can manage IPLs with the system start up and shutdown from end to end regardless of the state of the operating system. It also provides functionality for allowing customers to deal with remote data centers, mergers and acquisitions, dealing with follow-the-sun management strategies in which there are multiple operation centers around the world. In total, says Moser, "You just have tremendous flexibility and visibility from an operational point of view, and the ability to manage dozens if not hundreds of different consoles in an efficient way."

In addition, the console management solution can help companies to attain a strong ROI in the form of increased productivity and reduced staffing requirements, according to BMC. "When you get into these scenarios where you have a lot of different changes and events that have occurred due to mergers, acquisitions or consolidation projects you often can end up with redundant staff, or people who are located in the wrong locations, or a need to have people in areas where perhaps you didn't have them before," explains Moser. "This product allows you to essentially manage your enterprise from wherever these people are, so you can really streamline and consolidate."

Moreover, the product has "a tremendous set of productivity features" for allowing the user to deal with groups of consoles or logical sets of consoles as a single entity, says Moser. "So if you have for example 10 systems that are part of a group, you can take all of that traffic and merge it together and deal with it from one point of control."

For information on BMC MainView solutions, go to