News, Reviews and Resources for ITAM, SAM and Software Licensing Professionals.

iQuate

iQuate iQSonar Review

iQuate iQSonar Review

Inventory Review Index

Introduction

iQSonar from iQuate is a discovery and inventory solution for complex server environments.

iQuate have a sole focus of agentless inventory of servers and position themselves as a tactical enhancement to other tools being used by an organization. iQuate clients feed data generated by iQSonar into downstream license management or configuration systems.

SAM in the Data Center

iQuate argue that historically the majority of Software Asset Management (SAM) efforts have been focused on the desktop, whereby the majority of cost is in the datacenter.

Organizations may have change control programs in place for the data center compared to the comparative unknown of desktops. However the primary concern of those responsible for change control in the datacenter is keeping the lights and maintaining service. Contemplating the licensing implications of any changes made to systems is not always a top priority.

If successful SAM in the datacenter is where licensing savvy meets change control – then iQuate’s mission is to provide accurate data to underpin that savvy.

Desktop SAM tools count installs to measure compliance (e.g. Microsoft and Adobe desktop products). For the datacenter configurations are paramount (e.g. User profiles for SAP, hardware configurations for IBM, database settings for Oracle). iQuate goes beyond average inventory and discovery tools and delves into these configuration settings.

At the high end, making slight changes to server settings, say 16 to 32 cores, has huge impact on costs that can overshadow desktop spend and iQuate have focused their efforts in this niche.

The Virtual System Admin

IQuate use Product Adaptors to collect configuration details for applications. The Product Adaptors allow commands and algorithms to be run in order to collect the information required for licensing. These adaptors operate much like a virtual systems administrator, running commands and performing algorithms on an automated basis to collect the desired information about an application.

For example; Oracle audits have traditionally been completed by running scripts and queries – iQSonar enables this process on a grander scale in an automated fashion.

Strengths

It is great to see iQuate focusing on a high value niche and doing it well rather than trying to ne all things to all men. They have gone after valuable configuration data for the largest software companies in the world; organizations harnessing this information will make significant bottom line savings.

I like the way that iQSonar users can build upon the platform and ‘slot in’ their own product adaptors. Finally, a key strength is time to value; organizations can make use of this agentless technology in their datacenter and start returning cost cutting configuration details in a matter of weeks.

Weaknesses

This technology is great if you know what you are looking for e.g. ‘I want to collect accurate data to populate my Oracle Server Worksheet so I can return an audit’. However I believe the tool set would benefit from a layer of business intelligence to help organizations understand and make use of their data. Users can organize and filter discovered assets, but some of iQuate’s competitors do a better job of providing different perspectives on discovered data and creating actionable information.

iQuate might argue that this is the role of the downstream tools that they integrate with, but I believe they are sat on a great data set and could provide even more value with the information they collect.

ProductiQSonar
VersionV2.11 (June 2011)
MethodologyAgentless Discovery, Central Repository and Web User Interface
In a nutshellCollects complex server configuration details to support licensing decisions in the datacenter.
Customers
  • ~ 20
Strengths
  • Configurable Product Adaptors
  • Datacenter Focus
  • Time to Value – Quick Agentless Visibility
Weaknesses
  • Lack of Business Intelligence – great if you know what you are looking for but more could be done with the collected data out of the box.
References
  • Barclays Bank
  • Babcock Marine
Primary Market Focus
  • Size: Large Enterprises
  • Use: Collecting Complex Server data for Datacenter Licensing
  • Environment: Datacenter
Pricing ModelLicensing dependent on what is being scanned – number of Oracle Cores, number of servers, number of operating system instances (physical or virtual). Available as perpetual licenses, term licenses or one off project based scan license.

From the brochure:

“iQSonar is a powerful discovery platform built to handle highly complex environments. Deployed agentlessly across the largest and most challenging network topologies iQSonar’s automated inventory eliminates manual errors that are common in discovery of complex multi-location, virtual, physical and cloud based environments. iQSonar supports multiple platforms, network infrastructures and enterprise applications.

iQSonar focuses on complex enterprise server technologies from Oracle, Microsoft, IBM and VMware (among many other vendors). iQSonar delivers unrivaled visibility of physical, virtual and cloud-based hardware and software assets thanks to its extensive technical breadth and depth.

Designed for use in the largest networks in the world, multithreaded architecture and innovative database design enables scalability supporting 200,000+ devices. iQSonar’s agentless technology  is exceptionally quick to deploy. With expert support from iQuate’s team of network specialists, clients and partners are guaranteed rapid implementation and return on investment.

Through extensible Product Adapters, iQSonar is configurable to meet site and user-specific requirements and easily calibrated to run in almost any environment.

Deployed entirely within the client network, iQSonar retains all data centrally and securely. iQSonar increases security by using intelligent credential management, seamlessly integrating with user access control products, proxies and administration gateways. iQSonar is highly encrypted with AES Standard algorithms using multiple, variable length keys.

Unrivalled flexibility is key to iQSonar’s power. As an enhancement technology, iQSonar works with your existing processes and tools to improve visibility and inventory accuracy, unlocking and sharing the value of information held within the network, maximizing the ROI from your existing tools and processes.”

Links:

Video: