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May 20, 2010

NEI's Slattery Explains 'Health, Update and Backup' Importance

By David Sims, TMCnet Contributing Editor


In 2009, NEI announced new enhancements to its Element Manager 3.0, which now includes enhanced smart services for software developers. Mike Slattery, director of software development at NEI, recently sat down for an interview with TMC's (News - Alert) Marisa Torrieri to discuss how these smart services help developers build secure, hardened offerings that deliver on the promise of low-lifecycle maintenance.

Speaking specifically about the HUB, the backup feature, Slattery said they coined the term to refer to "health, update and backup. And these are really the core tasks of an element manager."

Any product, when placed into a data center, he explained, needs to be able to report problems - that's the health aspect. It needs to be kept up to date, with patches and that sort of thing, that's the update capability. And, Slattery said, "they have to have a recovery plan for the backups. These all come integrated with our element manager, so we're able to meet those particular needs."

Their backup capabilities "actually have two unique aspects," Slattery said. "One is that we back up based on partitions, instead of being file-based." What this allows them to do, he explained, is to back up from the disk what's actually written on the disk, "so that we don't have to stop processing, or deal with things like open files, in order to be able to complete a backup.

The other aspect is that they can independently back up the configuration, he said, which are the settings that the particular application or appliance has that make it unique to that environment. "This particular capability allows the replication of appliances in an environment to be much easier."

The end user really wants a seamless experience, and what that requires, Slattery said, is "our element manager to be tightly integrated with the application. We have some customization tools and various interfaces that make it easy for the two applications to function seamlessly, so that they appear to be, to the end user, a tightly-integrated, overall product."


David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David's articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Marisa Torrieri


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