The challenge of managing mixed virtualized Linux, Windows networks

Windows and virtualization are driving need for new management standards, tools

"We are starting to see IT put more mission-critical applications on Linux and from there you only start to see the stronger growth [of Linux]," says Ute Albert, marketing manager of HP's Insight management platform. In January, she says, HP will boost its Linux support with features HP already supports for Windows platforms, such as capacity planning.

Analyst firm the Enterprise Management Group reports that use of Linux on mainframes has grown 72 percent in the past two years while x86 Linux growth hit 57 percent.

In the trenches, users are moving to suck the complexity out of their environments and make sense not only of individual network and systems components but of composite services and how to aggregate data from multiple systems and feed results back to administrators and notification systems.

Console reduction

At Johns Hopkins University, managers are trying to reduce "console sprawl" in a management environment that stretches across 200 projects -- many with their own IT support in some nine research and teaching divisions, as well as healthcare centers institutes and affiliated entities.

Project leader pick their own applications and platforms with about 90 percent to 95 percent running Windows and 5 percent to 10 percent on Linux. There are also storage-area networks, network devices, Oracle software, Red Hat, VMware, EMC, IronPort e-mail relays, and hardware from Dell, HP and IBM.

John Taylor, manager of the management and monitoring team, and Jamie Bakert, systems architect in the management and monitoring group, are responsible for 15,000 desktops and 1,500 servers, nearly 50 percent of the university's total environment.

"Our challenge is we do not want to create another support structure," says Taylor, who has standardized on Microsoft's System Center management tools anchored by Operations Manager 2007 and Configuration Manager 2007.

Because Taylor doesn't control what systems get rolled out, he is using Quest Software's Management Xtensions for System Center to support non-Windows infrastructure.

"Quest allows us to bring in anything with a heart beat," Bakert says.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Windows VistanovellLinuxRed Hatvirtualisation

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Fontana

Network World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Crucial Ballistix Elite 32GB Kit (4 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 UDIMM

Learn more >

Gadgets & Things

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Plox Star Wars Death Star Levitating Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?