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Microsoft Boosts Operations Management Suite with BlueStripe Buy

Microsoft on Wednesday announced its acquisition of BlueStripe Software, a provider of infrastructure monitoring tools, for an undisclosed amount.

BlueStripe's technologies aim to monitor infrastructure performance and help systems administrators track down bottlenecks at the transaction layer of applications. While BlueStripe's platform is popular among enterprises that use Microsoft's System Center Operations Manager (SCOM), it also appeals to IT managers for its ability to monitor events throughout the infrastructure and applications stack.

In its announcement of the deal, Microsoft said it will stop offering BlueStripe's products on a standalone basis "in the near term," and will absorb the technology into the new Microsoft Operations Management Suite. OMS, announced at last month's Ignite conference, will be Microsoft's new cloud-based offering that will help manage the components of its new Azure Stack, which the company said will provide Azure-like functionality in the enterprise.

OMS, which will work with System Center but not require it, will also enable management of key components of an enterprise infrastructure, including (presumably) VMware's virtualization and vCloud Air public cloud, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and OpenStack-based clouds. BlueStripe and its team could help Microsoft further achieve that goal. BlueStripe last year developed richer ties to offer a System Center Management Pack for its FactFinder service and later integrated it into the Microsoft Azure Pack.

Despite its ties with Microsoft, BlueStripe also boasted the ability to monitor the impact of transactions in the performance of key applications such as IBM CICS and SAP R3, as well as other transaction-oriented applications running on everything from mainframes to RISC-based Unix systems and Linux-based applications.

"BlueStripe's solution helps map, monitor and troubleshoot distributed applications across heterogeneous operating systems and multiple datacenter and cloud environments. BlueStripe is commonly used today by customers to extend the value of Microsoft System Center by adding application-aware infrastructure performance monitoring," said Mike Neil, Microsoft's general manager of enterprise cloud, in a prepared statement. "Now that we have welcomed BlueStripe employees into the Microsoft family, we will be hard at work making BlueStripe's solution an integral part of Microsoft's management products and services, like System Center and Operations Management Suite (OMS). We will discontinue selling the BlueStripe solutions in the near term while we work on these updates, although we will continue to support existing BlueStripe customers during this time."

BlueStripe's customers may wonder what this means for the future of its performance management software as a standalone offering. While that remains to be seen, Microsoft said at Ignite that so-called "solution packs" will be a key part of OMS.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.