IBM announces new provisioning software

IBM Thursday announced new virtualization software that's designed to help deploy and install software on tens of thousands of servers, laptops, desktops or even wireless devices.

Tivoli Provisioning Manager 5.1 uses technology that IBM acquired from Rembo Technologies in June to help customers reduce the time involved in upgrading systems, in some cases cutting upgrade times by days, said Dave Lindquist, IBM Tivoli chief architect. Lindquist said the software automatically senses when a network can handle a software upgrade and begins the job when sufficient bandwidth is available.

One feature in Provisioning Manager 5.1 allows software distribution over long distances and with many thousands of endpoints through network peering, a grid-computing approach, Lindquist said. Files such as e-mail applications or video clips could be downloaded from a local server or a nearby desktop instead of from a centralized location.

The new version will be available Sept. 30 and will be priced at US$1,100 per managed processor and $65 per managed client, IBM officials said.