Product & Service Directories
Computing Device & Asset Management -
There are three distinctly different issues or requirements in this category
- Systems and and asset (software
distribution) management from a central site
- Remote Management and control of
enterprise systems resources like servers, applications, software
configuration settings, including passwords from a remote handheld
device from a mobile location - this requires
- Cost management of mobile services
that businesses employ - both data and voice. Go here to view
solutions in this category.
Most products address either the first
requirement or the second. A new vendor/product category has started
appearing regarding the third requirement.
Systems and asset management (including
technical support, problem diagnostics, problem resolution,
application version synchronization, software upgrades across the network,
asset management - who has what hardware, etc) of mobile devices is a major issue in the enterprise. Total
cost of ownership (TCO) of these devices can be many times the annual cost
of hardware. Gartner Group and IDC have estimated these costs to be in
$3000 to $4000 range annually for PC-based notebooks. Gartner Group
recently estimated TCO of Palm-based and Windows CE devices to be $2693
and $2791 respectively. Therefore, this cost is MANY TIMES the hardware
cost. Hence the need for selecting appropriate systems management
Core Systems Management
Please note that there are three
fundamental requirements in systems management. Not all products address
all three requirements:
- Problem analysis and diagnostic - through
SNMP or SNMP-like agent functionality - very few products do that
- Configuration management especially in
WAP-supported devices - only a few products do that
- Remote asset management - software inventory
and distribution functions - most products do it because it is relatively
For budgeting purposes, use an average server software cost of around
$2500, with a per user cost of $50 to $200 (low end for PDAs and high end
for laptops) for 1000 user configuration. Since prices vary from time to
time and vendor to vendor, you may do more research for better estimates.
Customer Case Studies
Go to vendor solutions (Afaria,
Extended Systems, and Synchrologic) for customer case studies of
SOFTWARE PRODUCTS for Device/Asset
The following software products are noteworthy
in this area:
Afaria product from XcelleNet is one of the leading solutions that
can manage laptops, PDAs, smart phones, RIM pagers, WinCE devices, and more.
From a central location, you can keep devices running, deploy
applications, check inventory, and provide automatic updates. For more
information click here.
2. XTNDConnect Server
from Extended Systems is a mobile
synchronization and management solution that allows IT professionals to
integrate and manage mobile devices as well as deploy mobile applications.
By allowing mobile devices to synchronize directly to server applications,
mobile workers can access information remotely, using a wired or wireless
iMobile Suite - allows development of applications requiring DBMS
synchronization on handheld devices - Client and Server modules
(Core Functionality - Asset Management) iMobile suite from Synchrologic Inc. (a company based in
Atlanta, Georgia USA) provides a software infrastructure solution for managing
Palm® handhelds, Pocket PCs, and PCs/laptops which connect to enterprise
networks via wired and wireless Internet, dial-up, and LAN. iMobile Suite also supports smartphones ( EPOCTM) and RIM® BlackberryTM
wireless pagers. One of the tools guarantees software distribution even
with a link failure by re-transmitting from where it was lost on the previous attempt. The
synchronization works bi-directionally. Click here
for more info on Synchrologic.
Automation's Asset Management Software - This software
allows IT staff to centrally control software distribution,
application management, & system configurations for all mobile systems
Laptops, Windows CE & Palm devices.
5. Aether Systems Mobile Device Management Center
(Aether acquired this functionality from formerly Riverbed
Technologies in 2000 ) This software helps in administration of Palm OS,
Windows CE devices, smart phones, and mobile information appliances in the enterprise.
Managers can automate device configurations, software distribution, software installation
and de-installation, file (application and data) upgrades and synchronization.
Prices range from $1,495 for 10 profile configuration to
$31,495 for 2,000-profile configuration. Click on www.riverbedtech.com
or call at 877-847-3303 for more information.
US Postal Service is reported to be using
6. ON Technology's Command
CCM - A Software Distribution & Configuration Management Tool Remotely updates software and configuration, allows bug
fixes, software updates, configuration changes. Uses an intelligent agent installed on
each managed laptop. The agent figures out how to install based on pre-defined
instructions of the systems administrator. Costs about $100 per user. Contact vendor by clicking here.
7. Orbiter from Callisto Software Inc.
Orbiter is a systems management product that
works while users are offline. It uses existing communications
infrastructure - TCP/IP for mobile users connecting via a Remote access
Server, or VPN , or via e-mail for users who connect only via e-mail. Allows you to manage with following functions:
8. OpenWave (formerly PHONE.COM) Mobile Management
Architecture (MMA) initiative Phone.Com announced, at 1999 Unwired Universe Conference, its
MMA initiative - an open, extensible architecture to set configuration settings of
wireless intelligent telephones using WAP. This effort is aimed more at the wireless
network service providers (NSPs). Bell Atlantic is one of the early collaborators in this
TNG from Computer Associates Computer
Associates, as an important player in systems management, entered into a number
of vendor partnerships (March 2001) that extend its Unicenter TNG management and
eTrust security software to the wireless world. CA is also updating its Jasmine
development platform so customers can add wireless features to E-business
applications. The partnerships include such vendors as Aether Systems, Motorola,
Nokia, Soft Design, and Symbol Technologies as well as IT service providers EDS
As an example, deal with Nokia means that IT
managers will be able to distribute software to Nokia devices from a central
Unicenter TNG console. They can use Nokia devices that support the Wireless
Application Protocol to remotely manage their networks. To extend CA's
software capabilities to partners' products, customers need only reconfigure
their CA products with software patches, according to CA. (Story courtesy of
Information week magazine)
TWIST - a
consortium of 3-COM, PageNet and Computer Associates
This product (introduced in 2000) offers wireless-based
network management capabilities of CA's products on PalmPilot devices through PageNet
network. Please note that this moves management to those on the road - does not address the
problem of managing mobile devices. However, at 1999 CA-World conference, third party
vendors demonstrated control of remote mobile devices through CA-UniCenter TNG Fleet
Management System and monitor their health. Click here for
more info on CA network management products.
10. Wireless Network Management System
(WNMS) from Symbol
Technologies Symbol's Wireless Network Management System
(WNMS) is a
software tool that provides the network manager with wireless performance data and
information in a mouse driven, windowed environment. The actual performance of your
wireless network components is detailed in easily understood graphs and reports. These
graphs and reports can be printed for future reference or comparison to past performance.
With WNMS, you will have the capability of managing the dynamic features that are unique
to wireless networks, particularly handheld wireless environments, including:
- Hierarchical association of mobile units to access points
- Mobile unit roaming between access points
- Random and inconsistent connections to the network by mobile
11. Tivoli's Management of PDAs
(Palm in 2000) For The Enterprise Tivoli has extended its network
device management capability through Tivoli Device Manager. Go
to Tivoli site for more news on this item.
VicRoads - roads maintenance organization in
Victoria, Australia has used an early version of Tivoli to manage palm III
handhelds. The maintenance staff record data about completed road work. The
pplication was custom built. At the end of day, Palm IIs are hit-synced to a
central computer where work is analyzed.
StarAdmin - provides network
administrators to access and manage their enterprise systems from a wireless
handheld devices such as PalmOS, PocketPC, RIM, and WAP-enabled phones.
13. Mercury's Web Monitoring Tools
for Wireless Web Apps
Mercury announced a number of tools in August
LoadRunner®, load testing software, and ActiveTest, a hosted version
of the product, are currently available.
Topaz, a real-time monitoring software, and ActivieWatch, its
performance monitoring service, will be available come September.
WinRunner, a product for monitoring performance across a wide range of
devices, will be released later this year.
For more info, go to www.mercury.com/company/pr/news_releases/080700wap.html
14. Novadigm Enterprise Desktop Manager
- Primarily for desktops, employed by Motorola on 20,000
desktops. Novadigm claims that
Motorola will save $12 million on an annual basis - almost $600 per
Mobile Cost Management
Amtel's Products - Amtel offers three
- Mobile Management
- Mobile Expense Management
- Mobile Cost Audit
here for further information on these products.