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Showing posts from November, 2006

Housekeeping on other projects (BI, MSSQL)

I am working on implementing a new shared SQL cluster to help improve our Openview tools to run on a better hardware infrastructure. I also hope to leverage that SQL server for Iconclude a workflow tool we are implementing more and more. I am trying to get a proper cleaner server architecture for the tools. I am also adding a high end server for the BI tool to compile the Proclarity cubes going forward.
The server config mgmt race is coming to a close, with Bladelogic seeming to have the win so far. I am working on the final touches of the evaluation.
I am also on the home stretch with the Symantec versus Quest database tools, and hope to wrap that up in the 2 weeks.
That's mostly it on my major projects, I have a lot of other smaller projects including:
Qip Integration
Monitoring work for better consistency on some of our internal apps
Coradiant next gen products
Business Intelligence work with Proclarity
Syslog integration for Coradiant Truesight and Onaro Sanscreen
Trap integration…

Network Configuration Management

The other areas we are looking at around the network tools are the Opnet suite for engineering (which is a serious investment for a tool), and the configuration management areas.
We have gotten several demos, and sent our 4 RFPs. Out of the 4 we sent out, we got 3 back. We are trying to get it down to 2 vendors for a POC. This is slightly different than the server side, because I have a much larger team to work with on the POC and the work needed to get it down to a great tool for us. Here is the criteria extracted from the RFP, there will be more on this as we move forward narrowing down the field of 3 (HP OVNCM, Opsware NAS, Alterpoint DeviceAuthority:
RequirementSub FactsCompany Viability and History

Customers of specific product
Revenue Growth FY 05-06
Total Revenue FY 05Install Base

Financial Customers
Largest InstallTechnologies

Windows
Linux
Java
Perl
Native Eclipse, Visual Studio, or other native IDE
XML

Managed firewall monitoring services

We are looking at a couple of vendors in the Managed Security Services space (MSS) to do some firewall monitoring for us. Essentially they give us an added line of data security and best practices that we don't already have the capabilities to do. We are testing them on 3 pairs of key firewalls. These products do several things:
Absorb all of our firewall logs to a 3rd party, who does correlation, distillation, and has analysts who look at major events across the customer base.
Send back alarms for critical issues and worms they detect.
Log and report on the data, trends, and how our data compares against the collective whole of their customers.
The two vendors we are looking at have different pros and cons about their technology, methodology, and ability to provide these.
Eventually if this goes as planned and there is a major benefit, which will be easy to prove I believe, then we will roll this out to all major firewalls (of which we have about 70). I will also work on implement…

Configuration Management and Datacenter Automation Status

I have been evaluating the following vendor solutions for the past 3 weeks.We have all 4 of them installed in a small test environment consisting of varying windows systems and technologies running on the systems.We are focusing on current pain points in configuration management, and we are also evaluating technology which we will need in the medium term as well.I am going to review how they are stacking up, as I fill out the matrix of which products are supporting the requirements.Requirements:·Monitor and track configuration/policyoCreate policy off Live including patches and settingsoTrack compliance to the policyoEnforce the policyoTrack changes made outside the productoPrevent the execution of a specific exe or file·ArchitectureoAbility to have proxies in datacenters/envsoAbility to have decentralized control over envsoAbility to use a single uni-directional port·CMDBoVisualize relationships between serversoVisualize relationships between server and networkoTrack dependencies of …

.NET 3.0 and Sysinternals release

While the .NET release info was going out. Microsoft purchased Sysinternals a few months ago, the non-commercial side of the business is an excellent set of tools used almost everywhere now. They are incorporated in many commercial software packages for common tasks and debugging. They have finally moved the content over to Microsoft's site and bundled the tools together:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/default.mspx

My favorites:
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/ProcessesAndThreads/ProcessExplorer.mspx
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/ProcessesAndThreads/Filemon.mspx