Computer Associates rolls out SAN plan

A late entrant in the storage-area network (SAN) game, Computer Associates is beginning a phased rollout of product improvements aimed at helping organisations manage and monitor their SANs.

Phase one will let network managers using CA's Unicenter TNG Framework and ARCserveIT products perform LAN-free, snapshot and open file backups. Managers will also be able to monitor switched-fabric and Fibre Channel Arbitrated Loop switches, routers and host bus adapters from Brocade, Vixel, Gadzoox, Ancor, Crossroads Systems, Emulex and Qlogic. The enhancements are due later this month.

"One of the biggest challenges of implementing SANs is that there is presently no way to monitor and manage them," says Yogesh Gupta, CA's senior vice president of product strategy. A number of companies are adopting SANs to reduce network traffic by off-loading the transfer of storage to a separate network.

Phase two of the rollout will give net managers the ability to perform physical discovery and location mapping of SAN devices on IP and NetWare-based IPX networks using Unicenter TNG Framework and ARCserveIT. The products will also gain the ability to detect configuration changes, alert network managers to unusual SAN events, perform inventories of SAN devices and characteristics, and support SNMP. In addition, these SAN features will be integrated with third-party software products, such as Legato Networker.

Network managers will also be able to control access to storage devices and add, update or delete components as necessary. Phase two components will be available at the end of the third quarter.

Slated for next year, the third part of CA's SAN plan will allow Unicenter TNG Framework to monitor devices on Unix networks and add support for network-attached storage devices. It also will enable policy-based management of SANs.

"[CA's Unicenter TNG] agents have a good basis to do a lot of very sophisticated management," says Patrick Dryden, an analyst with Giga Information.

Hewlett-Packard is presently working to incorporate storage management features into its OpenView and SureStore E Storage Node Manager. In May, Tivoli announced that SAN devices would be managed and monitored by Tivoli Storage Management.

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