Monday, February 5, 2007

HP Acquires Bristol

Another acquisition, this time HP (HPQ) buys Bristol Technologies.

Bristol's Transaction Vision, is defined as follows.
TransactionVision® provides Business Process Monitoring that dramatically increases visibility into your customer facing transactions. Just as you would track overnight packages from origination to delivery, TransactionVision tracks customer transactions throughout their entire lifecycle. [source]

One of the interesting points in their literature, which I found useful, is ability to track transaction information through MQ and J2EE. Having been responsible for a large scale middleware environment using both J2EE and MQ we faced this very problem. We were able to build significant monitoring capabilities around our J2EE platform using some of our stuff and Wily's Introscope. However, as soon as the message left and went to the bus we lost a lot of visibility and information about how much time it spent where. The tools around MQ only provided for us general information. If Bristol's Transaction Vision helps look deeper, than that is good. However, not sure I could have justified more tooling around monitoring MQ as we already had incurred the expense of monitoring our middleware environment. In this case, IBM should have better out-of-box tools for deeper monitoring within MQ. Maybe they do today, it has been a couple of years since I last touched that environment.

So while Transaction Vision seems to have bridged visibility across some environments, I am still confused as to HP's acquisition. They seem to have quite a bit technology in this space 'Transaction Analyzer' and 'Business Process Insight' being two of them. Does Bristol complete, complement, or replace for them?


Bob Bickel said...

Bristol's Transaction Vision has similarities with Wily and HP's OVTA when it comes to the Java stuff, but the really cool thing about TV is the ability to bridge across different environments like MQ and Mainframes. TV collects the info on all the messages running around a distributed network and then figures out where everything is going. It draws a map and shows you what messages are going where, what the thruput and response times are and so forth. Bristol had done a lot of collaborative work with Mercury (who was an OEM customer). It became so useful to Mercury and their clients, that after the Mercury acquisition settled with HP, they immediately turned to acquiring Bristol. I think it is a good marriage - HP is getting a great technical team, and with the breadth of the HP/Mercury market presence, Bristol will finally get the wide distribution it deserves. It will be a hot product.

One note of disclosure - I am on the Bristol Board.

Bob Bickel

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Business Transaction Management said...

Richard, get a spam filter.
Anyway, great article, have you looked into the two players that are actually doing what Transaction Vision is meant to do; Optier and Correlsense?
Here is the latest article from Correlsense:
Service Level Management