Robert Wong, Senior Product Manager with Hummingbird – The Open Text Connectivity Solutions Group discusses how to solve mobility and performance issues caused by UNIX server consolidation projects.

Q: What market trends do you see today that does not exist 10 years ago?

A: Over the years, IT industry was bombarded by waves and waves of market trends: some trends were initiated by end users or driven by executives and some trends had an everlasting impact on the IT landscape. Certain trends were transient and dissipated as fast as they were introduced. One of the deciding factors that determined the fate of a trend was the ability to help organizations lower their total cost of ownership. After all, money talks and everyone listens. Server Consolidation is one of most prominent and successful trends in recent years with thirty years in the making.

Prompted by the growing popularity of the distributed computing strategy and the increasingly affordable servers in the 80s and 90s, organizations were blessed with the flexibility of adding as many servers as demanded. Over the years, it created a phenomenon that was known as server sprawl. Fragmented business operations with over-distributed servers and underutilized resources were the direct result of server sprawl and it ultimately raised the total cost of operation that far outweighed the benefit brought by its convenience and flexibility. To take control of the runaway cost of management, services and security, businesses turned towards different Consolidation Strategies.

Q: How has consolidation affected the average UNIX user?

A: Regardless of the type of consolidation strategy, whether application servers are physically relocated from remote offices to an application center; or multiple applications are being grouped to a fewer physical servers, the impact to end users is just the same: consolidation creates distances between users and applications. Not all business applications react to the growing distances in the same way, and in the UNIX world, X Window application reacts rather unfavorably simply because the underlying X Window protocol is extremely sensitive to the changing network connection speed. In order to maintain an acceptable level of usability of the UNIX applications and guarantee a minimal level of user productivity, a successful UNIX resource consolidation project must also incorporate alternative means of access to X application for users to overcome this productivity, performance and mobility challenges.

Q: How does Hummingbird® react to this market trend?

A: In response to the changing market trends and growing market needs, Hummingbird has introduced a brand new solution: Exceed Freedom. This product is for Windows desktop users and is designed with the mobile business environment in mind. Exceed Freedom helps organizations deliver high speed global access for UNIX applications and facilitates UNIX server consolidation, improves user productivity, reduces user downtime and enhances end-to-end data security. It is the key to the success of every UNIX consolidation project.

Q: How does Exceed Freedom address these challenges?

A: Although users and consolidated server resources are connected over a slower network connection over a much greater distance, Exceed Freedom allows users to access their applications with the same performance as if those application servers are local. It is thanks to the incredibly effective architecture and efficient communication technique employed by Exceed Freedom that can reduce the network traffic by up to 100 times! Not only can Exceed Freedom eliminate the performance penalty normally associated with the growing distances, it also safeguards UNIX application users’ hard work from accidental disconnection due to the unreliable and unpredictable Internet connections by keeping their Exceed Freedom sessions alive in a middle-tier server. As server resources are being streamlined and reorganized by the consolidation project, so is the support infrastructure. In order to keep end users content and productive, Exceed Freedom allows remote IT staff to shadow user sessions, visualize and troubleshoot problems on-the-fly.

In a business world where total cost of ownership and return on investment is the universal language for all decision makers and Consolidation becomes part of the arsenal of business strategies, Exceed Freedom is the only solution that links business strategies to the technical reality while helping your UNIX application users continue to be productivity regardless of the placement of UNIX application servers.

Q: Is Exceed Freedom available now?

A: Yes, Exceed Freedom is currently available. To obtain more information about Exceed Freedom, please visit www.hummingbird.com to download a copy of free evaluation software, whitepaper, and business and technical solution overview.