IBM Systems Storage Software Blog
Amalore Jude 270003DGKQ firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  ibm-storage tivoli tivoli-storage-productivi... storage-blog ibm-tpc ibm-srm tivoli-storage 5,531 Visits
Today (June 4), IBM announces an enhanced Tivoli Storage Productivity Center v5.1 (TPC) that offers superb usability, unmatched reporting and integrated packaging like no other. Customers, sellers and partners are all excited, quite expectedly.
When we previewed the new user interface in Pulse’12, there were many in the audience who wanted to get access to it right away. The new user interface is in line with IBM’s strategy to offer consistent user experience across its major storage offerings – look and feel is great, navigation is breeze and most importantly, quick access to any information from the main dashboard is simply terrific.
With v5.1, you can access your TPC management console through web. The dashboard not only shows you the capacity and connectivity information, but also details on event alerts, with criticality info, if any.
Entity based views are quite refreshing too. Refer to the sample image below – it shows the overview of a Storwize V7000 system. From this overview screen, you can understand the utilization, activities, data throughput, among many other things.
Click here to watch a short video on ‘TPC’s new user interface’.TPC is now integrated with IBM Cognos - industry-leading business intelligence software capabilities are now brought to you to manage your storage environment more easily and efficiently. Cognos allows you to simply drag and drop metrics for you to assemble meaningful insights – and interestingly, these do not require advanced skills or writing SQL codes.
A sample report created through Cognos…
Well, now the wait is over. To get access to the new user interface and the Cognos-based reporting, talk to your IBM sales representative or IBM business partner today.
Download TPC data sheet. View the 2012 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Storage Resource Management and SAN Management Software, compliments of IBM, here.
Richard Vining 2700019R2A email@example.com Tags:  archive risk-management retention storage-blog tivoli compliance recovery unified-recovery-manageme... disaster-recovery service-management restore business-continuity backup data-protection deduplication data-reduction 1 Comment 4,193 Visits
June 4, 2012 was a big day for the IBM Tivoli Storage team, with the announcement of IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center V5.1 at the IBM EDGE 2012 event in Orlando, FL.
Most compelling in this announcement is the continued adoption of the XIV user experience across the IBM storage family. When IBM acquired XIV in 2008, it brought along arguably the coolest user interface in the storage market. It is simple and intuitive, easy to navigate, and yet provides powerful levels of visibility and control of the storage environment.
Here’s what the new TPC V5.1 main dashboard looks like:
But what was most exciting for me, as the product marketing manager for the IBM Tivoli Storage Manager family (http://www-01.ibm.com/software/tivoli/products/storage-mgr/productline/) was the “Statement of Direction” that was included in the TPC V5.1 Announcement Letter. In it, IBM states that it intends to adapt this advanced administration GUI for use with IBM Tivoli Storage Manager. Woo Hoo!!
The plan will be to roll out functionality in the new UI incrementally. If there are any specific things, beyond the obvious basic functions, that you would like to see in the first release, please drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will forward it to Product Management.
Disclaimer: IBM's statements regarding its plans, directions, and intent are subject to change or withdrawal without notice at IBM's sole discretion. Information regarding potential future products is intended to outline our general product direction and it should not be relied on in making a purchasing decision. The information mentioned regarding potential future products is not a commitment, promise, or legal obligation to deliver any material, code, or functionality. Information about potential future products may not be incorporated into any contract. The development, release, and timing of any future features or functionality described for our products remains at our sole discretion.
"The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions."
Amalore Jude 270003DGKQ email@example.com Tags:  tivoli-storage storage-software ibm-storage tpc ibm-srm storage-blog ibm-tpc tivoli-storage-productivi... tivoli ibmstorage storage-resource-manageme... storage-management 3,390 Visits
Posted on behalf of Martine Wedlake, Ph.D., Storage UI Architect, IBM Software Group
From talking with customers, we know that it's really important that you find what you need quickly and easily. The original navigation structure for IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TPC) was built around a resource explorer model -- very much like a windows file explorer. This unfortunately, means you can have a ton of entries in the navigation that you'll need to hunt through to find anything.
For example, I took a look at one of our TPC deployments in the lab and started counting the number of clickable entries in the navigation -- I stopped counting once I got to 1000. Based on how far I got through, I'd say that there were about 1500 or so. I should point out, that this is not a particularly large deployment -- 25 storage systems, 7 servers, 4 hypervisors, 5 fabrics with 46 switches. You can expect a much larger set of entries on larger deployments.
So, we knew pretty early on that we needed to improve the navigation. To do that we switched from a resource explorer view to a by-category view. This allowed us to dramatically simplify the navigation to only 13 high-level categories and no more than two levels deep. No more hunting and pecking to find what you want!
We also made it possible to directly link to the things you want without having to go through the navigation at all. For example, for an SVC storage system's detail page you can link directly to the set of backend controllers in your environment consuming the storage. You don't need to go back out to the navigation menu and then try to track down the servers all over again. Here’s a picture:
The overall concept is whenever you see something interesting; you should be able to drill-down into it. In addition to the navigation of the product, we've spent considerable effort to make the content of the user interface easier and more intuitive; and to make it consistent with the work we had done previously on the Storwize V7000 and SAN Volume Controller user interfaces – if you've seen one of our GUIs, you'll be able to get up to speed quickly on any of the others.
To that end, we borrowed significantly from the Storwize V7000 GUI, for example: configurable tables, visual theme, embedded help system, charting and general icons. Here’s a screenshot of Storwize V7000 GUI to help show the similarities:
Beyond these cosmetic enhancements, we spent a lot of time working with our stakeholders to deliver the content in an intuitive and simplified way. Knowing what to put on the pages and how to simplify the pages involved a dramatic shift in our development process. But, before I move on to that, I really need to highlight the improvements made with reporting.
In this release, we've embraced the Tivoli Common Reporting which includes IBM Cognos. This is a huge step forward for improving your ability to view and create reports for TPC.
To start with, you will not need to know SQL or database schema to create reports -- the drag and drop interface allows you to simply incorporate the data columns you wish to show and Cognos already understands the relationships between the entities. For example, let's say you want to show the volumes connected to a given server. In Cognos, you simply add columns for the Server Name and the Storage Volume into the canvas. The tool already understands the relationships between these entities and will automatically join the data appropriately to show which volumes are mapped to which servers.
Of course, we also provide upwards of 45 or so reports out of the box for those who don't wish to create reports themselves. Another neat feature is that the reports included with TPC can be copied and edited by the built-in editor tool within Cognos, so you can take one of our reports and modify it to your liking. Here are some of the reports that are included with TPC:
Working with our customers is part of the most rewarding aspects of my work here at IBM. For this release of TPC, we employed a radically different development model from what we have done in the past. We like many in the industry used to develop in a methodology called waterfall where requirements are captured and approved at the beginning of the project which leads to a phase of high-level and low-level designs, leading eventually to development, test and delivery to customer. For this release of TPC, we wanted to include customer input throughout the development cycle -- not just at the beginning when collecting requirements.
As such, we hosted 17 sessions with 34 customers, 7 business partners and 4 internal customers spread throughout the development cycle (held monthly). We also sent developers and GUI designers out into the field to talk directly with 7 customers. From these combined sessions, we captured 261 distinct requirements and were able to contain 188 of them within the first phase of development, with 47 being deferred into the second phase. That means that 72% of the requirements are already implemented in the first phase alone, and 90% of the requirements are expected to be implemented by the second phase. This is very impressive, as compared against traditional waterfall development.
The best part of an iterative, agile approach is that we are constantly evaluating the effectiveness of the solutions. We learn right away if something isn't quite hitting the mark, and have plenty of time to make changes to improve it.
As a quick plug, it is not too late to participate in our Early Adopter Program for the next phase of TPC. Please feel free to contact me directly (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like to participate. We would love to work with you to make TPC even better.
To learn more about TPC, visit: ibm.com/storage/software/center
Kalyan Pola 2700040VYM email@example.com Tags:  tsm blog ibm data idc software system storage file protection recovery archiving rank 3,050 Visits
IDC has recently released its Worldwide Storage Software QView for the first quarter of 2012. In it, IDC estimates that the total Storage Software market for 1Q12 grew about 3.3% over 1Q11. IBM had a solid quarter while Symantec faltered, allowing IBM to take the overall #2 share rank position for 1Q12.
§ In Data Protection and Recovery, IBM held its #2 share rank position, gaining 1.8 points of share over 1Q11.
§ IBM retained its #1 position for Archiving Software growing faster than the market. HP holds #2 spot with its 2011 acquisition of Autonomy.
IBM offers a comprehensive, flexible storage management software portfolio that helps organizations address storage management challenges across the enterprise, including data centers, remote/branch offices and desktop/laptop computers. Learn more about the specific components within the IBM storage software family that can help you create a more responsive and resilient storage infrastructure for your on demand business.
Amalore Jude 270003DGKQ firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  ibmstorage ibmsoftware storage-blog ibm-storage ibm-tpc storage-management tpc ibm-srm tivoli-storage-productivi... storage-resource-manageme... 2,754 Visits
Mike Griese, TPC Product Manager, presented Tivoli Storage Productivity Center v5.1 to a huge gathering at IBM Edge on the opening day. The video is now available on Youtube.
To view more videos from IBM Edge, visit: http://www.youtube.com/user/IBMEDGE2012
Richard Vining 2700019R2A email@example.com Tags:  deduplication tivoli archive backup restore retention data-reduction service-management risk-management compliance business-continuity unified-recovery-manageme... disaster-recovery storage-blog data-protection recovery 2,486 Visits
As a solution marketing professional, I seem to focus on communicating the key features and benefits of my products. In the case of IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM), those things include its scalability, functionality, reliability performance and ability to reduce your costs. However, what we don’t focus on enough, it seems, is the importance of the vendor itself, and its stability, ability to execute, and commitment to provide exceptional customer support.
I was reminded of this by a stream of e-mails originating in South Africa. A large bank there, who we unfortunately cannot name, has been a TSM customer for more than a dozen years. They were recently acquired by a global banking company based in the United Kingdom. In doing its due diligence, the acquiring bank determined that it needed to evaluate some documents that were created, and deleted in the early 2000s.
The South African bank has been keeping periodic copies of its backup tapes, and copies of the TSM database, for long term retention, and had a reasonable expectation that the required documents were somewhere in their stack of tapes. However, they were not following the best practice of transferring the metadata from the database when they upgraded TSM from version to version over the years.
They needed TSM version 4.2, which IBM ended support for in 2002 (ten years ago!). And they needed a version that ran on AIX. Yikes!
The problem was that they needed to create a new TSM Server, using a very old version of the software in order to restore the old TSM database, which would then point them to where the documents were.
Of course, the easy thing to do would be to tell the customer they were out of luck, but that’s not what IBMers do. A worldwide search went out, and one of our long-resident software developers was able to dig out the needed code. The result … the bank was able to retrieve the needed files and completed the acquisition with only a minimal delay.
I came to two conclusions after seeing this story play out. One, you really do need to have a long-term data retention / archive strategy, and follow it. Simply sending backup tapes to a vault is not a viable strategy. You need to worry about how you are to going to restore that data in 10, 20, or more years when all of your IT infrastructure has been refreshed, virtualized, clouded, or whatever comes next. Think about using a content management system rather than your backup software when you need to retain certain information for long periods of time, and plan for periodic migrations of the data to new platforms.
Second, when you fail to follow the advice in ‘one’ above, wouldn’t it be good to have a partner that will go to the ends of the earth to help you out of whatever jam you find yourself in? I know that all vendors aspire to this, and many claim it, but all I can say is that I see it every day at IBM, especially among the Tivoli Storage team. You could do a lot worse. I really enjoy being a part of this team.
I was going to close with a joke about needing to find a player for my stash of 8-track tapes – but that would just be giving away how old I am.
"The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions."
Amalore Jude 270003DGKQ firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  srm storage-resource-manageme... ibm-srm storage-software ibm-tpc storage-blog tpc ibm-storage tivoli-storage-productivi... storage-management 1,833 Visits
Branavan Ganesan 110000SGFR email@example.com Tags:  ibm-storage big-data ibm-tpc ibm-edge 1,809 Visits
Day 1 at the IBM Edge Conference
I am at the Edge Conference this week with my trusty colleague Nathan Smith (@nsmith01tx), the Rich Media Lead for the Tivoli Digital Marketing Team. As two veteran event attendees, it was refreshing to go to Edge and see a new conference put together with such style and aplomb. Edge used to be four different events. This is the first year that they all got pulled together into this inaugural Edge event.
If you are thinking about jetting out here to catch the last three days don't bother. The conference is sold out. However, you can catch the general sessions on LiveStream. If you jump on twitter while you're watching, its almost as good as being there. Use the conference hashtag #ibmedge to join in the conversation or to listen to the backchannel as it happens. Some of the folks who are out and about are Jon Toigo (@jontoigo), Chris O'Connor (@ChrisTheAnalyst), Ray Luccesi (@RayLucchesi), Al Hollingsworth (@AlHollingsworth) among others. Mary Hall has an excellent who to watch and follow post on influential bloggers and tweeters in the Storage space.
I saw Jon wondering around today and plan to meet him. Alex, from Emulex can also be found at the SocialEdge area along with @staceytabor and the Baptie group. In fact, go to the SocialEdge area and ask @staceytabor about the #storagebeers tweetup planned for Wed at 5pm. It's invitation only, but tell Stacey that @brenny sent you.
I am not going to write about the general session because Tony Pearson has an excellent writeup of it here.
However I will mention that the real time compression for active data announcement got a lot of attention in the backchannel.
I 'd write about the TPC 5.1 release, but Amalore Jude has done a fine job of it here. In fact, if you are looking for news about the TPC 5.1 announce and features, its well worth reading Jude's other posts on the Storage blog. For those in attendance at Edge, there are some great sessions that lay out the TPC 5.1 features and benefits. Gary Fry has one such session where he shares his experiences as a beta tester of the new version.
For those not in attendance, the Tivoli User Community (TUC) is hosting a webcast on the TPC 5.1 release and details. If you are not yet a TUC member then its definitely worth checking out. Last I heard the membership stands at over 20K strong.
On the Social Media front, its great to see a set of very strong bloggers and analysts in attendance and blogging as well as tweeting the event. It seems many have read about the Social Media plans for Edge and are taking advantage of them.
On the lighter side, it was a nice surprise to see an IBM Conference open up with Led Zeppelin's Kashmir, played by Bella Electric Strings.
Comedian Don McMillan (@DonMcMillan) held court during the general session and was a hoot as always. All of these are available for view on replay on the LiveStream channel
And finally, it is a nice bonus to have the conference at a Waldorf. It's the one place where you'd imagine that even conference food would taste good. Well, they did not disappoint so far. Yesterday, I enjoyed a vegetarian Paella, with a plantain salad served with baby shrimp and mixed vegetable. I'll let you know what lunch is like on Tuesday.