BMC Software Webs for the DBA
Written By: M. Reed
Published On: May 31 2000
BMC Software Webs for the DBA
BMC Software, Inc., (NASDAQ: BMCS), a provider of what they refer to as
"application service assurance", today introduced Web DBA. Web DBA is
the company's first Web-based interactive database solution that requires
only a standard Internet browser to address the day-to-day database management
tasks faced by today's database administrators (DBA) and developers.
"Web DBA is BMC Software's answer to our customers' database management
issues - they asked us for it, they helped us design it and they continue
to offer support through Web DBA's e-community," said Joyce Durst, vice
president, enterprise data availability for BMC Software. "Our customers
needed one product that could meet their day-to-day database management
needs and one that anyone - from expert to novice - could use. Web DBA
provides that solution."
Developed with the customer in mind, Web DBA speeds and simplifies routine
tasks Oracle database administrators must conduct everyday, and enables
developers and database administrators to manage and control their databases
from anywhere, anytime. Web DBA also marks a new architecture for BMC
Software and is the first of a suite of Web product solutions that will
continue to be introduced throughout 2000. Future introductions to the
product line will include Web DBA for DB2 UDB, Web DBA for SQL Server,
and Web DBA for OS/390.
manage numerous database environments across the country, so our business
relies on our ability to remotely manage and access our clients' databases.
With its Web-based architecture, Web DBA will provide us with a powerful
tool that will help us manage all of our day-to-day DBA tasks, anytime,
anywhere," said Mark Vorholt, chief technology officer for DBAdirect,
a lead player in the remote management of database support services, delivering
database support via dial-up and the internet to perform database administration
tasks for clients using Oracle, Sybase, Informix or MS SQL Server databases.
DBAdirect acts as a company's "virtual DBA staff" to offload the burden
of database management from clients, allowing them to concentrate on systems
to keep the business moving forward. "We tell our customers 'we're there
when you need us,' and, using BMC's Web DBA, we will further ensure that
our clients' databases are accessible, available and up and running 24
may testdrive, download, install and purchase Web DBA via the BMC Software
Web site. Web DBA is priced at $995 per user with fixed quantity discounting.
Currently available in beta, Web DBA is will be generally available in
This product from BMC is designed to compete with products such as DesktopDBA
from Computer Associates and DBArtisan from Embarcadero Technologies.
Although it is designed to be purely web based, which these other products
have not been, it remains to be seen whether BMC will be able to compete
in this space with these other established players. BMC does have a strong
presence in the database space, and is running out of competitors due
to the fact that Computer Associates has acquired both Platinum Technology
and Sterling Software, both traditionally strong in this area. When BMC
chairman Max Watson was asked by TEC how they intend to compete with CA,
he responded "coopetition". It will be interesting to see whether they
can successfully "co-op" with Computer Associates, given their competition
over product lines such as BMC Patrol versus CA Unicenter.
Some of the most useful facets of the product include remote access, browser-based
instance management, an on-line discussion group, and a "V$Navigator",
which is an intelligent navigator into Oracle's V$ tables (dynamic performance
tables used by Oracle DBAs).
BMC Software's new product offering should be included on a long list
of vendors considered for DBA productivity tools, keeping in mind the
fact that the product does not go into general availability until June
of 2000, and only on Oracle. The release date for IBM DB2 UDB support
is stated to be Q3 2000, with Microsoft SQL Server following in Q4. The
release date for IBM OS/390 support has not been announced.
BMC has long been a strong vendor in the database and system maintenance
space, and indicated that they are strongly committed to this area of
the market. The product can be downloaded and testdriven via the web,
so at the least, it can be used for comparison with other products. BMC
does intend to "plug in" other database products from their large stable,
and may eventually design a fully functional suite.