SoftLanding Announces Sale on New IBM i Package
November 2, 2010 Alex Woodie
SoftLanding Systems recently unveiled its ITPowerpac for iSeries, a collection of all of the company’s IBM i-based software applications. In addition to the core TurnOver change management software that SoftLanding is known for, the ITPowerpac includes several tools that its parent company, UNICOM Systems, obtained with its 2009 acquisition of Macro4. SoftLanding also announced a discount on the software for anybody who buys a Power Systems server from UNICOM subsidiary CICS.com by the end of the year.
According to SoftLanding’s website, the ITPowerpac contains 13 different IBM i utilities spread across five modules. The modules and their utilities include:
TurnOver is the well-regarded suite of change management tools used by ISVs and development shops to track the lifecycle of IBM i applications, from development through test and production. The Central iAccess and iMenu components provide IBM i shops with menu management and user access control functions. ExpressDesk for iSeries provides help-desk and issue-tracking functionality for IBM i shops. Supermon provides real-time performance monitoring and control for IBM i servers. Automon is a systems automation tool that provides message management, job scheduling, and spool file distribution capabilities to IBM i shops.
The Automon and Supermon products appear to be renamed and repackaged versions of the systems management tools that Unicom acquired last year with its purchase of Macro4 for $37 million. The Macro4 products are marketed and sold under different names by New Hampshire-based SoftLanding. For example, instead of Macro4’s AutoConsole, SoftLanding sells the iConsole component of the Automon suite.
SoftLanding’s announcement of what appears to be a sale on software for customers who buy a new Power7-based Power Systems server from UNICOM subsidiary CICS.com by the end of the year is a bit fuzzy.
Under the heading “ITPowerpac for iSeries Special Offer,” the SoftLanding announcement says: “Purchase any IBM Power7 Servers with a 7-year maintenance term, receive ‘ITPOWERPAC for iSeries’ License for FREE!!!” You can see the offering yourself at www.softlanding.com/download/ITPOWERPAC_Brochure_v100.pdf.
It is unusual for customers buying a Power Systems server to purchase a seven-year maintenance agreement as part of the deal. Typically, the maintenance deal terms are shorter. Also, CICS.com does not currently list any Power7 servers for sale on its website, only older Power6-based servers. SoftLanding/UNICOM did not respond to requests for clarification on the offer.
The SoftLanding announcement included this statement from UNICOM CEO Corry Hong: “ITPowerpac for iSeries is a new groupware designed specifically to ensure that IBM Power Systems and enterprise applications remain highly functional and productively available while eliminate/delay [sic] costly hardware/software upgrades.”
A U.K. court also came back last week with its ruling on a lawsuit involving SoftLanding/UNICOM and a former SoftLanding business partner. We’ll cover that next week in IT Jungle.