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Management standards board stretched thin

A wide-ranging Web-based management standards initiative has left the Desktop Management Task Force with too much to do.

A wide-ranging standards initiative for Web-based management has left the Desktop Management Task Force (DMTF) overloaded with things to do.

The organization's Steering Committee will meet at Networld+Interop next week in Atlanta to adopt measures to increase vendor input into the process.

In July, numerous vendors lined up behind the HyperMedia Management Schema (HMMS) effort, spearheaded by Microsoft, Cisco Systems, Compaq Computer, and others. The effort hopes to introduce a new protocol that communicates between management services, applications, and agents over the Web. An object broker is also in the works, based on Microsoft's OLE (Object Linking and Embedding) technology.

The Interop sessions stem from a recent Technology Committee meeting in which members decided that the evolution of the Deskop Management Interface (DMI) specification took precedence over the HMMS work.

"Currently, with our resources, we just can't handle all this," said Ed Arrington, chairman of the DMTF and Intel executive.

The DMTF Technical Committee wants to focus on the relationship piece of the DMI as it incorporates the HMMS data model. The DMI Management Information Base (MIF) needs to include communication capabilities and service layer enhancements so that it can incorporate Web-based management capabilities.

A logical conclusion from the DMTF resource struggle is that the HMMS--the sole part of the initiative under the direction of the organization--may be put on the backburner, but Arrington insisted that was not the case.

"I think you're just going to see the opposite happen," he said. A progress report announcement is expected at the show.