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A sampling of vendors
The following tools provide some level of automation for various storage workflow tasks, such as provisioning, data movement, scheduling and the configuration of the storage environment.

BMC Software Inc. BMC Run Book Automation Platform (formerly RealOps) automates routine, labor-intensive and error-prone tasks by coordinating tasks across IT silos. By integrating with the storage management capabilities of Onaro (owned by NetApp), BMC extends business service automation into the storage domain. Because Onaro is primarily a monitoring and reporting product, the combined solution addresses tasks like configuration change control, service impact monitoring and provisioning request management.

EMC Corp. The first modules of EMC's IT Process Centre (ITPC) optimize the request and delivery of storage provisioning services. ITPC works with ControlCenter to automate specific storage management tasks. Automated Resource Manager is one of the ControlCenter products ITPC uses to automate storage provisioning. Expect EMC to next address automation in the areas of compliance, fault/incident remediation and data mobility.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co. Having acquired Opsware and Mercury Interactive, HP has one of the most comprehensive IT process automation portfolios. Its Operations Orchestration product provides various levels of automation

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to such manual tasks as building workflows, scheduling, notification and approval. Operations Orchestration integrates with HP's domain management tools for client, server, network and storage management. Storage Essentials (formerly AppIQ) is HP's tool for multivendor storage. The firm's process automation strength lies in client, server and network management domains; it's beginning to integrate storage into its IT process automation product.

IBM Corp. IBM's Tivoli Storage Process Manager (SPM) contains out-of-the-box workflows for storage provisioning and space reclamation. SPM leverages IBM's TotalStorage Productivity Center (TPC) to discover, report on and configure a multivendor storage environment. TPC also automates some storage management functions based on user-defined policies.

Incipient Inc. Incipient Automated Data Migration (iADM) software automates the data migration workflow process. It provides a central repository for server, SAN and storage configuration information required in the planning, resource reservation and execution of data migration projects. iADM comes with its own network-resident data mover software, but also supports other host-, network- or array-based data movers.

SANpulse Technologies Inc. SANpulse's SAN Logics 2.0 is an integrated SRM and run book automation tool. It automates storage management processes such as provisioning, data migration, data center consolidation, space reclamation and tier migration.

Symantec Corp. The company's Veritas Process Automation Manager (PAM) coordinates and enforces policies and complex workflows throughout the storage environment. Symantec provides device-specific adapters that work cooperatively with PAM to collect configuration information, and to make active configuration changes for processes such as provisioning, capacity reclamation, data tiering and migration.

This was first published in May 2008

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