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Everything Old Is New Again!

By John | April 16, 2010

Application Management Specification

The Application Management Specification (AMS) developed by Tivoli Systems in 1995 expanded the original Desktop Management Forum (DMTF) work for managing software on desktops to cover the aspects of managing distributed applications in heterogeneous environments. Like OSD, AMS allows software developers to describe the details required to deploy software by describing the deployable packages of an application (referred to in AMS as “software components”), the bill of materials for these components, by describing the dependencies these components have on other components, and the depedencies components have on the systems they run on. Additionally, AMS can be used to improve the manageability of software in the application life cycle stages that occur after deployment. Specifically, AMS can capture the details required to configure software components by describing the steps required to properly install components, by describing how these components can be connected together, and by describing the tasks or commands used to configure components. For software components actually in use (executing), AMS provides ways to describe the details that can be monitored to understand the health of a component and the tasks/automation routines needed to maintain healthy states. Finally, software developers can describe the access rights security administrators need to establish to effectively control the actual use of the software components. This breadth of information makes it easy to automate the processes associated with deploying, configuring, monitoring and securing applications in full scale environments.

AMS captures information in a standards-based, platform independent way. Additionally, the information captured in AMS can be expressed in a variety of syntax so it is easy to use in a variety of environments. For example, AMS was originally expressed using DMTF’s Management Information Format since this is a standard for describing desktop management information. Today, AMS 2.0 is based on the Common Information Model (CIM) initiative being lead by the DMTF. Thus, it is also expressed using the Management Object Format (MOF) prescribed for CIM. And the relevant pieces (for example, bill of material) can be easily expressed using XML for OSD.

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