The new TME 10 LAN Access tool includes use of a new specification, called the MPM API (or Multi-Platform Manager application programming interface), that allows popular desktop management utilities and functions to be linked together into an overall enterprise systems management strategy.
The new protocol is the result of a joint effort between Tivoli and Intel that was announced last fall. The new Tivoli tool will initially tie in to Intel's LANDesk Management Suite, Microsoft's Systems Management Server, and IBM's NetFinity desktop configuration and management utility.
Tivoli, a subsidiary of IBM (IBM), and Intel have promoted the specification as a method to tie desktop management software suites to enterprise management platforms in a way that has previously been difficult. The specification also allows network managers to retain their existing management software investments.
The MPM and software developer's kit are available immediately on Tivoli's and Intel's Web sites. The TME 10 LAN Access is also available now for $4,500 per server and $175 per managed PC.
Tivoli officials said MPM is the final version of the Management Services Broker (MSB) specification that was discussed last fall. They said 20 to 30 percent of Tivoli customers also use a desktop management platform.
The company feels the API is unique because it communicates on a manager-to-manager level, rather than on a manager-to-device level. Officials said the new protocol augments previous attempts to unify the sharing of management information, like the Desktop Management Interface that currently enjoys broad support among most hardware companies.
With MPM, management data can be integrated into typical desktop management software functions such as software distribution, inventory, and discovery capabilities.
"Everybody we talk to says they want a single point of administration and management," noted John Schroeder, director of the ManageWise group at Novell.