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Active Energy Manager Pulls Resources Together

Integration with InfraStruXure Centeral provides single management interface.

Integration with InfraStruXure Centeral provides single management interface.

One significant benefit of IBM Systems Director Active Energy Manager (AEM) is its capability to integrate with other energy-management solutions. In addition to data-storage and processing equipment, data centers frequently contain environmental and energy-management solutions from a variety of vendors. In these cases, managing the myriad of IT equipment can be a challenge. AEM assists with this challenge by consolidating and simplifying energy management across the data center.

This article will discuss the integration of AEM with a data-center solution called InfraStruXure Central (ISXC), developed by American Power Conversion (APC). This integration is supported in AEM versions 4.1.1 and later when used in conjunction with ISXC environments at version 5.1 and later.

What is InfraStruXure Central?

APC InfraStruXure Central is a vendor-neutral data-center solution for monitoring power, cooling, security and environmental infrastructure. The solution consists of three parts: the ISXC server, the ISXC client application and one or more managed devices.

The ISXC server is a network appliance that performs monitoring, management and data storage for the aforementioned managed devices. The server communicates with the devices through dual Ethernet network ports. The ISXC server has the capability to manage any device on the network that communicates via SNMP or any of several APC proprietary protocols.

Users interact with the ISXC server through the ISXC client application (See Figure 1). This Eclipse-based application runs on either Windows or Linux OSs, and is actually packaged on (and downloadable from) the ISXC server itself. Once installed, a user can run the ISXC client application to connect to an ISXC server and monitor or manage energy or environmental devices on the network.

The first step in managing ISXC-monitored devices is device discovery. Once discovered, device data values can be retrieved and shown in graphs and reports. Device alerts appear in the Active Alarms tab. Thresholds can be configured on the devices that, when exceeded, cause device alerts to appear. Device groups can be configured to logically group data-center components. If NetBotz surveillance devices are discovered, images can be viewed and managed from the ISXC client. Such management can be performed from any system that has the ISXC client application installed.

Kevin Kosko is responsible for data center software-product management and marketing. Prior to joining APC in 2007, Kevin spent 20 years at various software start-ups in the Boston area, holding positions from development to senior management.

Nate Rabe has worked as a developer on the IBM Systems Director Active Energy Manager team for the past year, and has more than six years of development experience at IBM. He was responsible for integrating InfraStruXure Central 5.1 capabilities into AEM 4.1.1.

Steve Taschereau has been a staff software engineer at APC for more than 12 years and is currently responsible for leading the InfraStruXure Central / third-party integration efforts.

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