Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Active Endpoints' new ActiveVOS 6.2 offers ‘MultiSite’ BPM capabilities

Run business process management (BPM) applications in data centers anywhere on the planet, scale up, scale down as your business needs change, and never worry about losing a process if a server or an entire location goes down.

This is the market Active Endpoints is aiming at with ActiveVOS 6.2, a new release of its visual orchestration systems (VOS) tools. [Disclosure: Active Endpoints is a charter sponsor of BriefingsDirect podcasts.]

The business process management suite (BPMS) featuring ActiveVOS MultiSite allows users to extend the processing of BPM applications across multiple, geographically separated data centers, according to the Active Endpoints announcement.

At first this might seem like ActiveVOS is trying to ride the cloud hype cycle. But Alex Neihaus, vice president marketing for Active Endpoints, is skeptical of the cloud and even Platform as a Service (PaaS), especially when it comes to BPM.

He notes that similar concepts in the past have had their share of failures, such as Network Storage, as well as the successes, such as Salesforce.com. And he has doubts whether enterprises “will outsource the core business processes inherent in BPM applications.”

IBM will be testing the hypothesis with some new offerings on the modeling side, though it's clear they like the idea of management of processes -- and even governance -- having a place in the cloud, on-premises, and probably both.

ActiveVOS MultiSite is designed to protect “crucial, long-running business processes from interruption or termination due to a major hardware or site failure,” but Neihaus believes its users will want to know exactly where their applications are running, even if the data center is on the other side of the globe.

"With our new release, customers can create a reliable environment to run these core apps," Neihaus told BriefingsDirect. "I wouldn’t link the ActiveVOS 6.2 failover and load-balancing capabilities to PaaS as much as I would to the fact that it’s the first BPMS to deliver geographic independence for BPM applications."

If you follow this market and think this release sounds like “deja vu all over again,” as Yogi used to say, you are partially right.

This week’s ActiveVOS 6.2 comes just 60 days after ActiveVOS 6.1, which was announced in mid-March, Neihaus acknowledges. But he positions this quick succession of point releases as an example of the speed of innovation at Active Endpoints.

Users can download a free, 30-day, fully-supported trial of ActiveVOS 6.2. During the trial, users can take advantage of email-based support as well as training, education and samples available on Active Endpoints’ websites.

Rich Seeley provided research and editorial assistance to BriefingsDirect on this blog. He can be reached richseeley@aol.com.

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