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Altiris Buys Tonic for App-Level Monitoring

UPDATED: Lifecycle management vendor Altiris will round out its server management portfolio with the acquisition of Tonic Software, officials said Wednesday.

The deal, which is now closed, will not result in any job losses for employees at Tonic, though the company's CEO, Don Pate, and its CFO, Carol Ray, will not join Altiris' management ranks. Altiris will retain Tonic's engineering, sales and operations staff and retain the headquarters facility in Austin, Texas. Officials at Tonic were not available for comment at press time.

Altiris' Server Management Suite is a software package that manages a corporate network's server performance and its software on a variety of operating systems. Tonic, on the other hand, develops an application-aware software suite for .NET and J2EE environments that tracks the performance of individual transactions.

Dwain Kinghorn, Altiris CTO, said engineers from the two companies have been exchanging ideas for some time on the best way to integrate Altiris' server management software with Tonic's application. Since many of the common functions in both are Web-based and based on SQL Server, he said the company expects to roll out integrated, re-branded software, such as in the very near term.

"There are certainly areas we have identified leveraging the existing system monitor functions with the application management that Tonic provides," Kinghorn said. "You'll see that coming out later this year, as well."

Altiris intends to roll the Tonic product line into its server management suite, but standalone versions of Tonic's WebLens, WebCommand and WebInsight will still be available, targeting midsize and enterprise customers.

Butterfield said the acquisition improves its competitive advantage in the field of dynamic server provisioning, where the company has long competed with companies like Veritas . Security firm Symantec recently announced it would acquire Veritas for $13.5 billion, a deal which is expected to create one of the largest security and back-up software brands on the market.

"Dynamic server provisioning is key to organizations as they move toward a real-time infrastructure," Butterfield said. "Server monitoring is the enabling technology and the foundation to the dynamic server provisioning model."