HP is creating an "über-operating system for the data centre", claimed Nora Denzel, senior VP and general manager of the company's software global business unit. She was speaking as HP announced the latest steps in its Adaptive Enterprise strategy at the HP Software Universe conference in Hamburg.

Key parts of this über-OS are HP's new Systems Insight Manager software which allows administrators to run Linux, Windows and HP/UX systems from a single console, and a set of enhancements to HP OpenView, including IT Service Management (ITSM), a scheme to help customers better align their IT and business strategies.

"ITSM is a proven model for running IT as a business," Denzel said. "We have summarised the best practices from 10,000 engagements, and can use those to certify that you know how to run your IT department as a service.

"Management services like ITSM can help create a lean, responsive IT operation, linking business processes and applications down into the raw hardware. Changes to business processes can then dynamically trigger changes to IT."

Denzel also announced that HP has bought Persist Technologies, a developer of software for long term information archival. She denied though that this was a defensive reaction to the purchase by EMC of content management specialist Documentum.

"The acquisition of Persist is all about furthering our strategy," she says. "It's an offensive move to take us to the next level, where we can make sure that the right data is kept for the right period of time."