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BMC Integrates Goods For ID Ease

BMC Software's integration of Calendra and OpenNetwork have borne fruit in the form of an improved identity management suite.

Now stocked with Web access management, federated identity and improved workflow, the suite will allow users to sign on to the Web once and navigate home-baked and third-party applications, said Somesh Singh, vice president and general manager of Identity Management at BMC.

The suite manages identity and user access for internal and external users, allowing them to exchange data according to pre-determined policies. This helps link vendors with customers or supply chains.

ID management provides more than simply managing corporate passwords and provisioning user access. It's also a useful tool to help corporations meet regulatory compliance rules by setting up policy-based user access: No one can reach the information that isn't meant to be accessed.

Specifically, Singh said BMC is focusing on five solution areas with the new suite: directory management to help find applications and services; access management; password management; user administration and provisioning; and compliance management.

Such technology is essential to help companies with disparate infrastructures and communications gear exchange information at a time when info assets are a key element of business processes and commerce.

Singh said BMC has more work to do to fully realize the potential of its Calendra and OpenNetwork acquisitions. While the new solution areas represent the first leg of the company's journey for ID management, phase two will yield more interoperability and integration between the ID management solutions.

"Every six months you will see us bring additional functions, features and products to the market, continuing down this path so customers can build their own applications and drop them into this unified architecture and user interface," Singh said.

Phase two will also include new products scheduled for release this fall.

Products will include a Compliance Manager to ensure easy auditing across user profiles from multiple sources; Federated Identity Manager to centralize management of identities and account information throughout different applications and business domains; and Identity Discovery, which will let users pull information on people, business profiles and system accounts from the identity management suite.

Phase three will feature strong policy delegation, allowing users to easily delegate control to colleagues. The complete ID management suite is expected in 2006.

For BMC, ID management is a pillar of the company's business service management strategy, which is designed to help companies manage IT and services in accordance with their business policies.

ID management is also a multi-billion-dollar market with unlimited potential. Analysts expect ID management to be one of the catalysts for Web services and service-oriented architecture distributed computing models, as well as a cornerstone for compliance.

The lucrative nature of ID management is driving competitors to snatch up ID management software vendors. In fact, the space has consolidated rapidly in the last two years: Computer Associates bought Netegrity, Oracle bought Oblix and HP bought TruLogica.