Posted by: Ryan Shopp
Alterpoint, BladeLogic, BMC, CA, DataCenter, EMC, HP Software, IBM Tivoli, InfoVista, Microsoft Windows, NCCM, Network Configuration
Now let me be clear here. I’m very biased on this topic. Full disclosure, I spent almost 4 years of “blood, sweat and tears” at AlterPoint from it’s version 1.0, no revenue days through it’s last leadership transition. Back in Summer of 2006 we had a new leadership team come in with new blood/energy that really invigorated things. This was needed since the company, like Voyence, had been around since early 2000 and in the world of start-up’s you work lots of 80 hour plus weeks that can wear and tear on a person.
What I’m perplexed on is over the past 30 days two other Network Configuration/Change Management vendors have been consolidated by major players; Voyence by EMC and Emprisa by BMC. So why not AlterPoint is what I’m pondering over the last couple days? Time to jump on my soapbox for a minute or two…
With a marquee customer list that includes; Citigroup, HSBC, Microsoft, Yahoo, Hertz, TJX, Walgreen, Cingular (now AT&T Wireless) and numerous others. A list that easily that from my perspective and opinion eclipse what Voyence or Emprisa had captured.
Additionally, AlterPoint is diversified in their offerings. They recently announced specific new applications that leverage the core NCCM technology for Compliance & Analytics. Finally, talk about being a good corporate citizen – they have lead the way for a commercial IT management vendor taking a portion of their revenue producing product and productizing it for open source (called ziptie). So they have a thriving customer list, are not a “one trick pony” and are giving back/building a strong community behind their capabilities. What’s not to love
So if we take a quick look at the landscape, that leaves IBM, Symantec, maybe CA (they had an NCCM type module included in the Aprisma acqusition) and maybe Microsoft (they recently OEM’ed InfoVista which I discussed in my last posting) with a big hole! So in my opinion the best NCCM business/product is still out their on the market so let the bidding begin. The longer any of those players wait the further behind they will get in delivering end-to-end use cases for their customers that require the capabilities of NCCM.
Now my hats off must go to Opsware who was the first to see and execute on the end-to-end configuration vision for data centers. They acquired Rendition back in late 2004 and once they brought things together their valuation continued to increase which likely assisted with the recent acquisition of Opsware by HP.
Bottom line here, if your not currently leveraging an NCCM product either, commerical or open source, let me say they are amazing products that help save time, money and frustration for network engineering and operations. These automation tools are critical to the data center and beyond and compliment similar automation tools on the applications/systems side (those offered by BladeLogic, Opsware, etc). More on those automation players in upcoming posts. I would also recommend taking time to subscribe or at least check out the AlterPoint sponsored blog highlighting key evolutions and perspectives in Network Management.
As noted in my personal about section these are my own opinions and based on personal beliefs and public knowledge. I left AlterPoint back in September 2006 for some new opportunities but continue to be a avid fan and cheerleader of the NCCM space, all the vendors (competition is a good thing) and especially my friends still over at AlterPoint!