Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for SRM and SAN Management software is one of the leading industry publications that provides competitive benchmarking across storage management capabilities and helps support decision making for investments in storage management software. In its latest edition, Gartner positions IBM in the ‘Leader’ quadrant.
IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TPC) is a clear leader in the SRM market; many enterprises are using TPC today to manage their ever-growing, complex and highly critical storage environments.
TPC is designed to provide comprehensive device management capabilities that include automated system discovery, provisioning, configuration, performance monitoring and replication for storage systems and storage networks. TPC provides storage administrators a simple yet effective way to conduct storage management for multiple storage arrays and SAN fabric components from a single integrated management console.
TPC edges out all other vendors in terms of comprehensively achieving the vision for SRM. TPC provides storage management capabilities that allow administrators to efficiently simplify, centralize, optimize and automate storage management tasks. View the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Storage Resource Management and SAN Management Software, compliments of IBM, here. _________________
If you haven’t unleashed the potential of TPC, watch out for the upcoming version 5.1 release – slated to be announced on June 4, 2012 at the IBM Edge2012. _______________
To learn more, please register for IBM's premier storage conference: IBM Edge2012 being held June 4-8 in Orlando, Florida. This is a 4.5 day conference, 100% focused on IBM storage solutions - with many TPC 5.1 and IBM SmartCloud Virtual Storage Center sessions and customer speakers. Tivoli speakers will be featured throughout the conference and more than 30 sessions will be focused exclusively on Tivoli’s entire suite of products, taught by IBM Distinguished Engineers, leading product experts, clients and partners. Special registration discount applies to all Pulse 2012 attendees! Register here.
Note: This graphic was published by Gartner, Inc. as part of a larger research document and should be evaluated in the context of the entire document. The Gartner document is available here http://www.gartner.com/technology/reprints.do?id=1-1A16V0B&ct=120405&st=sb __________________ Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner's research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose
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.
The new dashboard view of TPC…
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.
Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TPC) now enables enterprise-wide management of IBM Storwize V7000, a new and innovative midrange storage system that is ideal for customers who seek to virtualize and integrate storage systems, both IBM and non-IBM.
In addition to device-level management software that comes packaged with Storwize V7000, TPC offers incremental benefits that are included its latest version 4.2.1. TPC for Disk Midrange Edition (MRE), announced earlier this year, is ideally suited and recommended for use with Storwize V7000.
Simplified deployment and visibility TPC for DISK MRE supports Storwize V7000 during discovery as a new device type with different types of managed disks. TPC’s quick discovery and configuration capabilities enables you to attach the storage device with ease and helps you to configure efficiently – i.e. plan for replication while provisioning the device. Disk MRE also enables Launch in Context and Single Sign-on, significantly reducing the burden on storage administrators.
TPC’s topology viewer offers a collective view that includes Storwize V7000, helps differentiate between external array-based disk and local disk, and displays tiering information. TPC for Disk MRE also extends thin provisioning support for Storwize V7000, enabling increased utilization and lowered costs.
Performance management Storwize V7000 offers unmatched performance and availability among midrange disk systems. Adding TPC for Disk MRE enhances performance monitoring by capturing metrics such as input and output (I/O) and data rates, and cache utilization from a single console. TPC helps establish threshold levels based on business priorities and alerts when these levels are breached. This helps administrators to avoid the ‘knee curves’, while proactively managing performance and service levels by tracking historical information.
Replication management Tivoli Storage Productivity Center for Replication enables Storwize V7000 with superior disaster recovery (DR) management providing central control of the replication environment, and helps establish Flash Copy, Metro and Global Mirror relationships.
Comprehensive reporting TPC for Disk MRE offers detailed metrics that include performance data for storage subsystem, controller, cache, I/O, array, disk group and port. These performance statistics can be stored in database tables for later use, so that storage administrators can track and measure service levels.
TPC for Disk MRE also provides information on Easy TierTM, a function that significantly enhances performance with automatic migration of data assets to high-performing solid state drives (SSD).
Advanced management TPC Standard Edition offers performance metrics-based recommendations for provisioning, including SAN planning (and DR planning with TPC for Replication). TPC’s new ‘Disk Magic’ model helps identify ‘hot spots’, improving storage optimization for Storwize V7000.
To learn more about Tivoli Storage Productivity Center for Disk Midrange Edition, click here.
Gartner in its 2010 Magic Quadrant for SRM and SAN Management Software rates TPC in the ‘leaders’ quadrant with an enhanced rating, highlighting IBM’s continued investment in product engineering and innovation. In case you have not viewed the report, click here.
Note: The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions.
In many organizations today, storage replication is riddled with manual errors and/or poorly written in-house scripts that often provide no view of overall copy environment status. Additionally, setup and ongoing management of large-scale copy services is increasingly becoming cumbersome. Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TPC) enables simplified yet comprehensive control over replication process. With the release of TPC v5.1 in June 2012, the replication management capabilities are now well integrated into the TPC core license.
TPC extends support for FlashCopy, Metro Mirror, Global Mirror, and Metro Global Mirror sessions. While providing central view of the replication environment, TPC provides end-to-end management and tracking of copy services, including both planned and unplanned disaster recovery procedures. In addition, TPC enables practice volume sessions that allow storage managers to test their DR environment without interfering with daily DR operations.
The following new capabilities were added to TPC v5.1:
Failover operations that are managed by other applications Applications such as the IBM Series i Toolkit, VMware Site Recovery Manager, and Veritas Cluster Server manage failover operations for certain session types and storage systems. If an application completes a failover operation for a session, the ‘Severe’ status is displayed for the session. An error message is also generated for the role pairs for which the failover occurred.
Additional support for space-efficient volumes in remote copy sessions You can use extent space-efficient volumes as copy set volumes for the following IBM System Storage® DS8000® session types: • FlashCopy® (System Storage DS8000 6.2 or later) • Metro Mirror (System Storage DS8000 6.3 or later) • Global Mirror or Metro Global Mirror (System Storage DS8000 6.3 or later)
Reflash After Recover option for Global Mirror Failover/Failback with Practice sessions You can use the Reflash After Recover option with System Storage DS8000 version 4.2 or later. Use this option to create a FlashCopy replication between the I2 and J2 volumes after the recovery of a Global Mirror Failover/Failback with Practice session. If you do not use this option, a FlashCopy replication is created only between the I2 and H2 volumes.
No Copy option for Global Mirror with Practice and Metro Global Mirror with Practice sessions You can use the No Copy option with System Storage DS8000 version 4.2 or later. Use this option if you do not want the hardware to write the background copy until the source track is written to. Data is not copied to the I2 volume until the blocks or tracks of the H2 volume are modified.
Recovery Point Objective Alerts option for Global Mirror sessions You can use the Recovery Point Objective Alerts option with IBM TotalStorage Enterprise Storage Server® Model 800, System Storage DS8000, and System Storage DS6000™. Use this option to specify the length of time that you want to set for the recovery point objective (RPO) thresholds. The values determine whether a Warning or Severe alert is generated when the RPO threshold is exceeded for a role pair. The RPO represents the length of time in seconds of data exposure that is acceptable in the event of a disaster.
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 (email@example.com) if you would like to participate. We would love to work with you to make TPC even better.
I have been working in storage and storage management my entire career (which has been more years than I want to admit) and I was recently advised by a wise co-worker to start writing about it. Although blogging has been around for quite some time and has certainly increased in popularity in recent years, this is the first time I have braved this form of communication. I stared at a blank blinking cursor for inspiration and decided to write about one of my favorite storage products, the Tivoli Storage Productivity Center.
Several weeks ago IBM announced the new 4.2 release of Tivoli Storage Productivity Center. This release includes some interesting enhancements that I am excited to see in the product. One feature that has received a lot of buzz is the lightweight storage
resource agents. TPC started down the path of lighter agents when they
introduced a slimmer, but not completely lightweight version of the
agents by moving from Java to C for enhanced performance. These new
agents were limited to Windows, AIX, and Linux. The new 4.2 release
added HP-UX and Solaris support as well as support for file and
database-level management. The new release is backward compatible
meaning that customers who want to continue using agents they set up
previously can do so. New customers are no longer required to use the
Common Agent Manager.
TPC 4.2 has introduced full support for XIV devices. TPC 4.1 did have
toleration support for XIV (basic discovery and capacity information),
but the new release you can provision, get performance information, and
use the data path explorer for your XIV machine.
If you have TPC deployed on a System Storage Productivity Center (SSPC) can upgrade at any time. Customers buying a new SSPC machine after September 3, 2010 will automatically have TPC 4.2 pre-installed on the machine.
I could say a lot more about the new TPC 4.2 release, but instead I am going to point you to a wonderful blog entry that my colleague, Tony Pearson, wrote when the new release was announced. He provides some great insights about the new features in TPC 4.2.
Wow - I made it to the end of my first blog and I am beginning to understand why blogging has become so popular. I am starting to wonder why it took me so long to write my first blog?
Data centers across enterprises are witnessing unprecedented data growth, which translates to increased costs and management complexity. One of the leading analyst groups, the Evaluator Group, has analyzed the storage resource management (SRM) software space and created a detailed insight report to outline how the SRM segment is evolving, and why it is important that storage managers need to have a storage strategy aided with a comprehensive tool such as IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center to better manage future challenges.
What's more? In addition to simplified management of capacity, performance and provisioning of storage infrastructure, Tivoli Storage Productivity Center V5.1 also enables comprehensive storage replication management.
In many enterprises today, storage replication is riddled with manual errors and/or poorly written in-house scripts that often provide no view of overall copy environment status. Additionally, setup and ongoing management of large-scale copy services is increasingly becoming cumbersome.
To learn more about TPC's advanced replication management capabilities, tune into the upcoming webinar "Simplified storage replication for high data availability" through Tivoli User Community on Nov 13, 2012 at 11AM ET. Click here to register for this event.
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 ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
Storwize Rapid Application Storage solution, launched in Feb 2011, brings together innovative storage technology, comprehensive management software and implementation services that help you manage business applications and storage growth efficiently. In continuation to my earlier post 'Tivoli Storage Productivity Center supports Storwize V7000', my colleague Ian Wright has created a brilliant video showcasing the performance monitoring, alerting and reporting capabilities of Tivoli Storage Productivity Center as part of the Storwize Rapid Application Storage solution.
In specific, Ian walks us through creating performance reports at sub-system level to understand the data surge source; creating batch reports that enable better understanding on the storage capacities, including tiering information; and also, enabling thresholds that will eventually create alerts when these thresholds are breached.
For more information on Storwize Rapid Application Storage, click here. To learn more about Tivoli Storage Productivity for Disk Midrange Edition, click here.
Please reach out to IBM Sales Specialists or IBM Business Partner to understand how Storwize Rapid Application Storage solution can benefit your organizations’ efforts towards efficiently managing the data explosion.
Note: The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions.
In the 2010 Magic Quadrant for Storage Resource Management and SAN Management Software, Gartner positions IBM in the ‘Leader’ quadrant.
The report reflects the enhancements IBM has delivered in the recently announced Tivoli Storage Productivity Center version 4.2. The new version comes packed with enhancements that include superior management control, expanded storage device support, and automated end-to-end storage provisioning.
Tivoli Storage Productivity Center offers open, standards-based, scalable management capability for heterogeneous physical and virtual storage environments, enabling you to achieve the three tenets of effective storage management. Simplify storage deployment and management by reducing implementation time and operational complexities. Optimize storage performance and utilization to significantly improve uptime of mission-critical applications. Centralize end-to-end storage management of IBM, and non-IBM systems that comply with SMI-S standards.
Gartner’s 'Leader' rating of IBM’s TPC validates…
TPC continues to garner market share, with 18% revenue growth (2008-09) - the biggest among the top three vendors. This means that many more customers are experiencing TPC’s simplified storage management, and are able to reduce their capital and operational costs on storage.
IBM is committed to its vision of optimizing IT infrastructure, and has continued to invest in TPC development, pioneering innovation and value in the SRM space.
Tivoli Storage Productivity Center suite includes products to specifically manage Data, Disk and Replication. For more information on TPC, visit ibm.com. To download the 2010 Gartner report, click here.
Note: The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies or opinions.
Often data center managers find it difficult to accommodate data growth, while maintaining high levels of storage service and availability. In addition to these challenges, new IT initiatives such as virtualization and cloud services introduce additional complexity to already stressed out administrative staff.
IBM's Integrated Service Management solutions can help organizations realize the full potential of their business by providing a holistic approach to delivering and managing IT services. Specifically, IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center is designed to equip today’s IT organizations with critical capabilities for visibility, control and automation in the storage
For those of our customers who have upgraded to TPC v5.1 or later, this below post will validate their smart decision to embrace the web-based graphical user interface (GUI). For the rest, go on and read further to understand what you are missing...
Back in June 2012, Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TPC) v5.1 was announced with two user interfaces for managing the storage infrastructure: the stand-alone GUI and the web-based GUI. The web-based GUI provides a quick access to pages that you can use to monitor the condition, capacity, and relationships of the resources within your storage environment.
The web-based GUI is key to access critical storage information without needing to get glued to your administrator console in your data center premises. The web-based GUI helps you to achieve the following: - view and acknowledge the status of resources that are monitored; these resources include storage systems, servers, hypervisors, fabrics, and switches - view summary and detailed information about resources, including properties, usage, capacity, and several key performance metrics - view the relationships and storage mapping among resources - view the connectivity between host connections, servers, hypervisors, virtual machines, storage systems, and the fabrics - identify potential problems and troubleshoot existing problems in a storage environment - pull reporting, along with drag-and-drop approach to design custom reports that contain detailed information about the properties and performance of monitored resources. Note that the reporting interface also includes a set of predefined reports that provides quick access to preformatted data about resources.
The web-based GUI also allows you to start the element managers for various storage systems and switches. To learn more about managing resources in the web-based GUI, click here to access the TPC information center.
In its latest edition TPC v5.1.1., the web-based GUI is enhanced to provide detailed view of the data path. The data path view shows the connectivity between host connections, servers, hypervisors, virtual machines, storage systems, and the fabrics through which they share storage. You can use this view to monitor status and pinpoint problem areas in selected data paths. This view includes both graphical and tabular representations of the top-level resources in a data path.
You can use the data path view to: - view the path of data that is shared between resources - view the fabrics through which resources in a data path are communicating - view the propagated status of the top-level resources that are in a data path - view the status of the internal resources for top-level resources that are in a data path - customize the appearance of the data path view to suit the needs of your environment - export the data paths view as an image or CSV file
For more information about viewing data paths in the web-based GUI, click here.