RealTime IT News

Compuware Buys Up Software Quality Tool

Software management tool vendor Compuware announced a $36 million all-cash purchase of Adlex to shore up its Vantage product.

The Detroit-based company expects the deal to close by the end of the month. Adlex will retain its facility in Malborough, Mass., where most of its employees are expected to remain on board.

The Adlex assets are expected to shore up Compuware's Vantage tool, software that manages application performance from an end-user's point of view.

Vantage uses response-time metrics and other performance analytics to determine if performance problems can be attributed to an application.

Adlex complements that software tool through a hardware and software product set that sits behind the firewall and monitors service level information at remote locations. The information is collected through passive listening devices and passed to an analytics tool called FaultVision. It then determines whether the performance drag is coming from the network or application itself.

Lloyd Bloom, Vantage lead product manager, said the key to effective service management is knowing how a Web application is performing. Vantage's monitoring was limited to agents installed at the end user's desktop or from a point-of-presence (POP) within the network.

"What we needed was something that had the ability to reach outside of the corporate firewalls to remote customers or remote agents who were connecting principally via the Web," Bloom said. "We wanted to see those users, and be able to see those users all the time, and all the applications that are executed. That's what this agent-less technology enables us to do."

As a result, Compuware officials say Vantage will be the only product to leverage agentless, desktop and active monitoring capabilities to manage applications.

Bloom said the company decided to buy the agent-less expertise, rather than develop a product in-house, because of the number of already-existing projects underway at the company. Plus, it needed to go to market fast.

There's some pressure at Compuware to deliver new software capabilities after a dip in revenue fees in fiscal 2005, which ended March 31. Total revenues dropped from $1.26 billion in fiscal 2004 to $1.23 billion from lowered demand for software licenses and professional services.

Compuware has cash to spend after a recent $400 million settlement reached with IBM in March. For years, the company has maintained Big Blue had stolen Compuware source code to its mainframe software and used it to create their own mainframe software management products, File Manager and Fault Analyzer.