This past summer, Computer Associates International Inc. quietly acquired Adjoin Solutions Inc., a Boston-based maker of Web services management software. By the end of the year, Islandia, N.Y.-based CA says, it will ship a Web services component to its Unicenter systems management platform that includes technology developed by Adjoin. In an interview, former Adjoin executive Marc Camm, now director of business development for CA's Web services unit, talked about the new Web Services Distributed Management (WSDM) product, the proposed WSDM standard and where this all fits in CA's on-demand computing strategy.
When was Adjoin officially acquired by CA, and why was it done so quietly?
Camm: Marc Camm: It was acquired in early July. CA normally focuses on products and technologies to customers, rather than acquisitions they make. CA just chose not to announce it.
How will Adjoin's service-oriented management and monitoring architecture (SOMMA) technology be integrated in CA's Unicenter platform?
Camm: The SOMMA technology, along with some associated CA technology, has been put together and formed in a product called Unicenter Web Services Distributed Management [WSDM].
When you were with Adjoin, you said platform-based systems management products don't fit well in loosely coupled environments. Do you still feel that way?
Camm: Well, I don't know if I said they don't fit well. I may have said that they don't give you any visibility in the Web services environment, and certainly that's still the case. That's why CA has launched Unicenter WSDM.
What are some of the product's capabilities?
Camm: First of all, we do auto-discovery. We discover Web services transacting in your enterprise, automatically provision them and then through something called adaptive threshold analysis, we analyze the base level of acceptable performance and then can automatically set that for the system operator.
We also do all of the performance, usage, events, volume and size metrics that you would expect in a systems management product.
The last thing that I would highlight is the catalog inside of WSDM. Once you auto detect all of your services and operations, the catalog stores all of that information. So now you have a centralized repository -- a complete list of all the Web services that you're running in your enterprise.
What are CA customers doing with Web services?
Camm: I can't really speak to all of the CA customers that are using Web services because CA has thousands of customers, but most companies are using Web services to do lightweight EAI [enterprise application integration] or [they are] doing behind-the-firewall integration, or maybe some B2B stuff across the firewall.
Are any customers using WSDM yet?
Camm: We have a number of beta customers that can give you a flavor, by industry, of what sort of things they are doing. In the insurance industry they are using Web services to expose interfaces for different agents to interact with their back-end systems.
In the travel industry, they are using Web services to communicate information among different partners, like airlines, car rentals and hotels.
In the transportation industry, they are using Web services to provide interfaces to track shipments.
Where are companies focusing their attention -- on internal or external Web services?
Camm: A year ago or so, people were clearly doing things behind the firewall for integration. Now, more and more, I see people go across the firewall with trusted third parties. It really has moved to the next level of evolution.
Where do Web services fit in CA's plans for on-demand computing?
Camm: One of the things that CA has done is co-author the specification for Web Services Distributed Management with IBM and submitted that to the OASIS committee for review. That specification, once blessed, will be the building block to provide the management of Web services supporting an on-demand infrastructure.
[CA's new] product was named WSDM to support the Web Services Distributed Management standard.
Where does the WSDM spec stand?
Camm: We submitted the specification about three or four weeks ago, and it's being reviewed by the [OASIS WSDM] subcommittee. I don't know the time frame for the next action.
The thing to know here is that whatever is finalized by OASIS will be the standard that we will support in the application.
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