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Posted Oct 11, 2007

GridApp announces the next generation of its database automation software

By Linda Cole

Earlier this week, GridApp Systems, Inc. announced the availability of Clarity 4.0, the next generation of its database automation software. The new version focuses on making automation around databases as simple and easy as possible. Clarity 4.0’s out-of-the-box functionality provides automation capabilities for such tasks as patching, provisioning, configuration and auditing—all of those time-consuming, tedious procedures.

Clarity 4.0’s out-of-the-box automation, with its standardized database environments with no scripting or packaging required, means users no longer have to write scripts or maintain scripts. The software is natively aware of how to do all of the different tasks, such as provisioning, patching and configuring. Matt Zito, Chief Scientist at GridApp says, “When you install our agent on the box, it automatically discovers the fact that it’s part of a cluster, it identifies all of the databases, and the associated resources that are running. Then when it comes time to do the provisioning, patching and configuration management, the software natively understands that setting a database up as part of a cluster is different than setting it up on a regular machine.”

The software uses organization set standards to build models that incorporate database configuration, patches, business logic, metadata and storage configuration. The models leverage the same standards across platforms and versions alike.

The new version sports several new features designed to improve database management. Included among the new features are:

  • Database discovery - native awareness of Veritas, Oracle RAC, and SQL Server cluster environments, which allows database administrators to rapidly discover and bring database servers under management.
  • Patch administrator – provides the ability to have a user whose only purpose is to configure, load and set up the patches for the database but not have the privileges to actually deploy the patches. Adversely, you can have other users that deploy patches but cannot change anything or configure them.
  • Centralized delivery of agent updates – provides one environment that will update all of your agents whenever there is a change to the software.
  • Restart provisioning jobs - Stop and restart provisioning jobs from arbitrary points in the process.

Full support for Solaris, clustered and non-clustered environments alike, 64-bit Microsoft SQL Server support, and Veritas and Windows clustering awareness is provided by the new version.

Another exciting new feature is the built-in server validation based on industry and vendor best practices. A consistent complaint of users was that while the software was great at doing the provisioning, and setting the database and patches up, the problem was there was no way to know whether that cluster had been set up correctly. The provisioning might fail because the server itself was not set up correctly. By way of a solution, GridApp built a library of server validation rules for many different environments that checks that everything has been set up correctly before anything happens in the software. It then presents the user with a list of things that haven’t been done correctly and automatically tells them how to fix it.

GridApp Clarity 4.0 is available immediately. For more information, please visit: http://www.gridapp.com/products/clarity.php.

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