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Navigating the Cloud with Novell Business Service Management

Navigating the Cloud with Novell Business Service Management

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The Novell BSM architecture includes three layers (See Figure 5.):

  • An integration layer designed to consolidate virtually any IT management, asset or configuration data source, along with business metrics and other data sources.
  • An intelligence layer that provides normalization, aggregation and correlation of data to support relationship mapping, root cause and impact analysis, and automated services for problem determination, notification and remediation.
  • A visualization layer that shows in real time when there's trouble with key business applications or infrastructure. For most customers, the primary visualization mechanism is through the intuitive, role-based myMO Dashboard interface.

Integration with Management Systems and Help Desk Tools Using Adapters

The bottom layer collects data from all your disparate management and monitoring systems to enable logical analysis in the middle layer and single-pane-of-glass visualization in the top layer. This data-gathering is made possible by a collection of specially designed software adapters that provide an integration point between the BSM server and management systems such as HP OpenView, NetCool, Nagios, WhatsUp Gold and many others. (See Figure 6.)

There are more than 70 out-of-the-box adapters in all, each written to the specific API that integrates bi-directionally with each third-party management system. In some cases, the adapter communicates directly to the management system, in other cases, the communication is brokered through a Novell supplied object request broker (ORB).

You can also use adapters to connect your process-oriented tools, such as Remedy, Service Center and other tools that allow your help desk to receive alerts, issue trouble tickets, assign responsibility and track progress to a solution.

Integration with CMDB

You can also connect Novell Business Service Management to your configuration management database, whether you're using the next-generation Novell CMDB360 or a third-party CMDB. For example, by configuring an integration with Atrium, you can visualize physical and virtual IT assets in the context of their technical and ownership relationships. This provides you with an application service-level view of the enterprise—spanning both the internal and external clouds—so you can build and adapt your service model on the fly.


In addition to external data sources, you can also create algorithms that define thresholds or provide a way to override how particular states are propagated. These algorithms are XML configuration files that define propagation rules related to the state of any given service. (See Figure 7.)

Because of the relationships captured in BSM, you can use algorithms to define rules that go far beyond what you could do with multiple, separate monitoring systems. And in addition to finding and fixing problems, the results can support all kinds of technical and business needs.

The Logic and Visualization Layers

With data sources and custom algorithms in place, the automated Business Service Configuration Management tool builds the middle-layer logic that links all this information into an intelligent service model. The myMO-based BSM Dashboard visualizes this

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intelligence to provide a "top-down" view of the entire enterprise including all service offerings, how they're deployed and how they're related.

You can build as many views as you need to suit different job functions—such as business manager, IT service manager and operations manager. Any change in the state of a service flows up through the various views to alert the appropriate users.

Beyond IT: A Business Use Case

Novell Business Service Management is more than an IT tool. It also provides invaluable business support—for example, documenting compliance with service level agreements. In this example, you can build a dashboard view for internal or external customers that lets them see for themselves that you're meeting your SLA commitments using both real-time and historical data. (See Figure 8.)

Flying High on Cloud 9

When flying in zero-visibility conditions, pilots rely on a centralized instrument panel that consolidates information from airspeed, attitude, hydraulics, electronics and other monitors distributed throughout the aircraft. Novell Business Service Management provides the same capabilities when you're navigating the cloud. Consolidating information collected throughout your environment, BSM is designed to do the following:

  • Map technology to applications to the business
  • Create a trusted source for IT and the business
  • Turn data into powerful intelligence
  • Visualize intelligence in ways that are relevant to diverse management roles

In other words, Novell Business Service Management provides the reliable instrumentation you need to keep cloud-based services and applications in control and on course.


  • Figure 1

    BSM Dashboard displays a top-level view of the order fulfillment application running at’s distributed data center. The green color-coding indicates normal operations. Orange shows a data center that’s beginning to experience problems.

  • Figure 2

    This view shows that the billing service is experiencing an availability problem. On the left side, you can see the specific server at the source of the problem.

  • Figure 3

    From the first alert of an availability problem at one of’s data centers, it takes just a few clicks to pinpoint the root cause of the problem.

  • Figure 4

    This view shows the performance problem in relationship with other servers and virtual machines in the service architecture. The box to the left shows details of the downstream elements that are being impacted by the slowdown.

  • Figure 5

    The three-tier architecture of Novell Business Service Management includes layers for data integration, intelligent modeling, and analysis and visualization.

  • Figure 6

    This view shows the configuration of adapters. A few of the available adapters are shown on the left, and the properties available for use with a specific adapter are shown on the right.

  • Figure 7

    Here, we’re creating an algorithm to set the thresholds that trigger an alert.

  • Figure 8

    This Business Service Management Dashboard is designed to let customers monitor SLA compliance.

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