Tivoli's Destiny for Output Management
Sending a print command is rarely considered an arduous task. There are three easy steps: click file, click print, click OK. The procedure is simple, basic and standard. In fact, to configure a client to use the printers has also become quite simple over the past few years. But this simplicity leads to clients having few options when they arrive at the print screen. There’s also that sometimes annoying mystery of what exactly happens to the print command once it has been sent into the endless limbo of printland. "This whole output management [issue] is heating up because people want to know if their document printed or not," says James Lundy, research director for Gartner Group (Stamford, Conn.).
In an attempt to allay these trials, Tivoli Systems Inc. has developed Tivoli Destiny, a Windows NT-based output manager that enables administrators to centrally automate output distribution across a corporate network.
Before using Destiny, managers must first configure the Destiny Composer, the application used to define users, output resources, and automatic report routing schemes. Users are configured into groups, just as output is configured into lists. Using these groupings, administrators can create and change distribution lists. In automatic routing, administrators can analyze printing output and route it to users who have recorded their interest in output from a particular source or containing particular information.
Once the system is configured, Destiny Conductor monitors and controls the output flowing through the enterprise. With Conductor, administrators can watch the status of output, determine when and where output was routed, and determine whether output was successfully routed. Conductor can also start, stop and reroute output, and make ad hoc changes to route lists.
When an end user prints a document, one of the choices on the print menu will be "Destiny." Once this is clicked, the client is using Destiny Direct, which provides an interface for output management as part of the print dialog on Windows. The data can be distributed to a number of different devices, including printers, fax machines, intranets, e-mail and published directly to Web sites. For instance, if an administrator wants to print a report to be read by several departments, he or she can easily print the report directly to each department’s printer, or automatically e-mail it to all employees whom the administrator wants to receive it.
Once the print command is sent, Destiny Transport takes over and compresses, encrypts and transfers the command to the server, where it is checked for accuracy, recipient, arrival time and targeted output device. Transport features command-line submission, which lists the options on the command line to direct the data and select delivery or notification options, and directory watcher, which periodically monitors directories on a client machine for new files. When a new file is found, the watcher matches the file to a set of predefined distribution rules in Destiny and distributes and prints as directed.
Jim Haney, vice president of operations for Whirlpool Corp. (Benton Harbor, Mich., www.whirlpool.com), manages output with Tivoli Destiny. "This makes us more effective in bundling output for our users," he says. "We ended up eliminating two times the height of the Times Building in paperwork."
Tivoli Systems Inc.