Candle Poised to Accelerate WebSphere Deployments

Candle’s PathWAI facilitates testing, deployment and management of WebSphere in complex application environments

Candle Corp. recently announced PathWAI, a modular suite of products that are said to facilitate the rapid development and deployment—as well as streamline the management—of IBM Corp.’s WebSphere Application Server (WAS) in heterogeneous enterprise environments.

PathWAI comprises several modules, including PathWAI Architecture, an offering that combines best practices along with certified WebSphere solution expertise to help IT organizations architect the application infrastructure, security, and monitoring components of complex applications.

Other PathWAI modules include PathWAI Development for WebSphere, which can validate application infrastructure design and help increase development team productivity; PathWAI Deployment for WebSphere, which provides testing and tuning tools to help organizations ensure that application can be promoted into production with minimal risk of downtime; PathWAI Monitor for WebSphere, which allows managers to test, tune, and monitor WebSphere performance; PathWAI Dashboard for WebSphere Infrastructure, which enables companies to map IT performance and investment with business impact; PathWAI Monitor for WebSphere MQ, a tuning, testing and management tool for WebSphere MQ; and PathWAI Dashboard for WebSphere MQ, which provides a single point of administration for WebSphere MQ management activity.

David Caddis, vice president of Candle’s application infrastructure management group, suggests that many of the organizations that are today deploying WebSphere are only beginning to scratch the surface of its capabilities, in part because of a lack of robust development, deployment, testing and modeling tools. He cites a November report from consultancy Forrester Research which found that most customers are deploying J2EE application servers as little more than glorified Web servers. “If you look at that Forrester report, failure to architect this infrastructure independent of specific applications has led to using WebSphere as kind of a jackhammer.”

In this respect, he suggests, Candle’s new PathWAI tools could go a long way toward reassuring enterprises that WebSphere can be made to integrate nicely with even the most complex of environments. Caddis cites Candle's experience during the early days of IBM’s MQSeries message queuing software for mainframe environments. “We built a monitor for MQSeries, and we were with IBM from day one, and some the early adopters were very quick to buy our software. After selling gangbusters to five or six major accounts, the market disappeared. What happened is that people were struggling to get IBM to make MQSeries easier to use.”

The result, Caddis points out, is that Candle introduced several MQSeries-related tools that made it easier for customers to test, deploy, and manage IBM’s message queuing software in their environments. Caddis expects that much the same thing could happen with PathWAI and WebSphere: “We believe that the promise of [WebSphere] is fantastic, but overcoming these obstacles is really what customers have to do. If all they’re doing is using Web application servers as glorified CGI servers, then there’s a problem there. That’s why we’re introducing [the PathWAI modules].”

About the Author

Stephen Swoyer is a Nashville, TN-based freelance journalist who writes about technology.