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Active updates integration suite

Middleware developer Active Software rolls out the next version of its systems integration package.

Middleware developer Active Software has rolled out the next version of its systems integration package.

Due to ship next month, ActiveWorks 3.0 allows a company to tie together their packaged, custom, Internet, database, and legacy applications that reside inside or outside their business into a single communicating system.

Active Software is a longtime player in the application integration market, which analysts consider the fastest growing part of the middleware market.

"Driving this is the accelerated popularity of packaged applications in corporations," said Mike Gilpen, an analyst with Giga Information Group. "What has happened is no one vendor is the majority supplier within most companies. Some companies do have one. But most do not."

Integration products like ActiveWare provide a way to tie all of these various products together.

Active Software is one of a handful of players in the booming market for providing software that links a company's existing hodge-podge of packaged applications, custom-written software, and database applications into working business applications.

Active makes tools for developing links between different systems. Using information brokers, agents, and other middleware tools, Active's software routes and queues data between systems along the same network.

"ActiveWare is different than many of the others because it offers real-time processing," said Gilpen. This doesn't mean this is the only way to do it. "It depends on what the companies' needs are."

ActiveWorks is comprised of many different components that include information brokers, adapters, agents, and integration and management tools.

Platform support for ActiveWorks has now been expanded to include Hewlett-Packard servers running HP-UX. In addition, ActiveWorks language, database, and application adapters for C, Java, Oracle, Informix, Sybase, and Clarify for HP-UX 10.20 are also available now. The ActiveWorks information broker for HP-UX 11.0 will be available in the fourth quarter of this year, the company said.

Pricing for ActiveWare 3.0 starts at $50,000 and will vary with the size and complexity of each customer project, the company said.

Last summer, Active made news when it and Aspect Telecommunications announced that they are partnering to integrate Aspect's front-office call center products into back-office systems like SAP's R/3 using Active's linking software.