IBM (Quote, Chart) is donating some of its IT management wisdom to the Apache Software Foundation.
But there’s more to it than just goodwill. You could say that Apache is Big Blue’s open source muse, or at least one of them.
The wisdom, in this case, is actually WSDM (Web Services for Distributed Management, pronounced “wisdom”), which could become a standard for management interfaces of servers, routers, switches and other IT hardware and software.
“Essentially what WSDM does is give you a Web Services mechanism for interfacing with your manageability capabilities of whatever your hardware or software is,” said Ric Telford, VP of autonomic computing at IBM.
The WSDM specification was approved in March of 2005 by e-business standards group OASIS.
The effort behind it has been underway since at least 2003, when the OASIS Web Services Distributed Management (WSDM) Technical Committee was created.
Apache Muse is an open source implementation of the WSDM standard. IBM worked on its own implementation of the WSDM standard and is now contributing code to enhance and augment Apache Muse, Telford said.
Among the contributions that IBM is making to Apache Muse is support for the latest WSDM specification version, Release 1.1.
IBM’s help also includes pre-built code for all the WSDM-defined capabilities called “Helper classes.”
Better code portability that enables the WSDM implementations to run on different Web Services runtimes is also part of IBM’s contribution.
IBM’s WSDM contributions are expected to be integrated into an Apache Muse build soon and available by the end of June. The goal is to have refreshes every 6-8 weeks after that.
Telford sees the march toward Web Services based IT management as being a logical progression.
“As enterprises move to SOA implementations for exposing all of their business services as Web services, they will move their IT management base as well,” Telford said.