Computer Associates, long regarded as one of the most acquisitive IT companies with a massive product portfolio, has quietly undergone a software development overhaul so it can offer customers a better integrated product set.
Instead of acquisitions, for the past two years CA says it has concentrated on in-house development, making sure its products are part of a comprehensive and integrated product portfolio, rather than the disparate product set, of years gone by.
This work has now borne fruit, after CA this week announced eight new and updated products designed to help customers manage, secure and govern their IT infrastructure.
Speaking to Techworld, Colin Bannister, director of strategy for CA in the United Kingdom, said the eight products are split into two broad categories. Five products deal with compliance, whilst the other three deal with cost reduction and improved automation, which is increasingly important nowadays as more and more mainframe skills (i.e. experienced people) are being retired, despite the healthy state of the mainframe market.
The eight products are part of CA's Enterprise IT Management (EITM) vision, which aims to provide customers with an "integrated and modular approach to govern, manage and secure IT environments." The products are as follows:
CA GRC Manager - Offers risk management, compliance and auditing capabilities. Release 1.5 includes the new ability to centrally manage risk and compliance initiatives across the enterprise. Bannister says a company can simply switch on what compliance regulations they need to use. It is priced on a per user basis, with the average deal size roughly $250,000 (£127,463).
CA Security Compliance Manager - A new IT security and compliance product that deals with legal, corporate and government regulations. It is priced on a per user basis and list pricing starts at $25 per user for up to 5,000 users.
CA Access Control - Release 12 provides cross-platform creation, deployment and management of more specific, role-based access controls for servers. The Premium Edition starts at $7,200 per server for 25 servers.
CA Identity Manager - Release 12 allows for the management of identities from creation to modification to removal in both mainframe and distributed environments. Pricing starts at $50 per user for 5,000 enterprise users, and $4 per user for external/web users. "It is focused on making user identities easier to implement, especially if organisation have tens of thousands of IDs to manage," said Bannister.
CA Software Compliance Manager - a new product that enables companies to "dramatically reduce" the risks and costs associated with managing software licenses. When it becomes generally available, the product will be licensed based on number of assets managed.
CA IT Process Manager - a new product that automates IT processes across the datacentre. It is priced by bundle, based on size of deployment. The bundles are basic, medium, large & enterprise. Bundles include management servers and integration packs. The base package starts around $100,000.
CA Advanced Systems Management - Release 11.2 streamlines the management of physical and virtual server environments, including VMware VirtualCenter. It follows a manager/managed resource pricing model. The manager component is a flat price of $1,908, while each resource being managed (e.g. a CPU) is an additional variable cost.
CA OPS/MVS Event Management and Automation - Release 11.6 automates management of z/OS system resources and features a Switch Operations Facility (SOF) that enables mainframe system administrators to quickly visualise, monitor, and manage the health of complex enterprise systems connection and fibre connectivity infrastructures. Pricing starts at $48,495 for the base product.
CA says it has significantly beefed up its governance and portfolio management credentials with the acquisition of IT management provider Niku back in June 2005.
Bannister feels that the UK market will be most interested in CA GRC Manager; CA Access Control; CA Identity Manager; and CA Software Compliance Manager. "These products are of interest for UK CIOs, as nowhere is as highly regulated as the UK and the US, although this is now coming to other markets," he said.