Network vendors eye B2B

Increasing interest in business-to- business exchanges has spurred a need for companies to monitor network and transaction performance across many trading partners' connected systems.

Traditional network management vendors have taken notice and are reworking their core system and network management platforms to operate within emerging trading networks.

BMC Software fired the first shot this week with details of its new B2B company focus and planned B2B product releases. The company will offer customers a vertical enterprise view of front-and back-office applications, supply chains, and Web infrastructure.

The idea of tackling cross-organisational management issues in the B2B exchange realm has not yet been addressed, said Corey Ferengul, program director of service management strategies at Meta Group.

"Even if everyone in the [supply] chain doesn't use the same management tools, BMC still wants to be delivering value - which means a lot of remote management and remote monitoring and a big part of that will be data consolidation," Ferengul said.

In the next six months, BMC will extend its flagship software management product, Patrol, to manage CRM (customer relationship management) apps from Siebel and B2B apps from i2 and Ariba. By early next year, Patrol will manage Commerce One, BroadVision,, IBM WebSphere, BEA WebLogic, Microsoft BizTalk 2000, and Commerce 2000.

Tivoli is also gearing for the B2B exchange realm by working with IBM's Global Services unit, its MQSeries message queuing middleware, and WebSphere application server to create a management system for auditing, user-account management, single-sign-on and provisioning of user rights.

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