CMDB federation - making a dead elephant dance

The analysts can beat the drums all they like - they won't make the CMDB dead elephant dance [I'm in training for the World Mixed-Metaphor Championship]. I've talked before about how the analysts are in a symbiotic relationship with the vendor industry: they have to talk new ideas up so as to have some change to write about. Never has this been more clearly illustrated than around CMDB. For one wonderful moment I thought an analyst was going to be skeptical about CMDB but then he beat the drum, or perhaps flogged the dead elephant [there I got another one in!]

CA CMDBf paper oversells the CMDB Federation standard, as predicted

Apparently CA are working to an entirely different standard for CMDB Federation than the rest of us are. This is the only rational conclusion to be drawn from a recent white paper from them. Either that or they are shovelling the bull excrement at a remarkable rate. The paper is called "The Value of Standards-based CMDB Federation". CA are certainly extracting more value out of the standard than most of us.

CMDBf ...um...explained

One of the most authorative blogs on CMDBf has provided a comprehensive explanation of the emerging CMDBf standard, if you speak geek.

The CMDB Federation is a brilliant piece of vendor marketing smokescreen

[Updated May 2009] The CMDB Federation standards initiative must be the most over-hyped vendor marketing smokescreen ever. Whenever anyone raises the bogeyman of proprietary CMDBs, the vendors wheel this one out as the future promise of interoperability. It is pure vendor double-talk. It solves little and is taking forever to appear anyway. It solves little because the standard defines only how management tools can pass data between them- nothiong about what they pass. I bet the much-trumpeted demos seen so far involved data massaging and informal backroom agreements beyond that dictated by the standard in order to get it all to work. I am highly skeptical (surpise!) about the likelihood that this standard would enable or even faciltiate anything useful in a real-world implementation.

The CMDB Federation proceeeds at its usual glacial pace

The CMDB Federation was formed in April 2006 by CMDB vendors so they could tell people they were moving towards a common standard of interoperability, known in the CMDB world as "federation", so the group is called the Federation. Two years later what have we got to show? Glacial advance. That's the way the vendors want it.

The CMDB Federation releases its federation specification for public review

The CMDB Federation has released "version 0.95" draft specification of the standard for federation (read: interoperability) between CMDBs and similar operational software. This specification will make quite an impact on the IT operations software market once it is finished... but it isn't yet, not by a long way.

The CMDB Federation lumbers on

For those of you who have been losing sleep over it, latests news on the CMDB Federation has it inching towards a standard for CMDB federation. [Go on, click the Federation link: kinda says it all really]. According to one HP developer's blog, the group has moved beyond UML to XML and are now coding in preparation for an "interop" when they will test their tools together. They should sell tickets. I for one would pay to see BMC, CA, Fujitsu, HP, IBM and Microsoft all discussing who is out of synch if it doesn't work.

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