The Data Center Markup Language (DCML) is an XML-based specification for representing the contents of data centers and information used in managing those contents. The overall goal of the OASIS DCML TCs is to support the development of a holistic set of standards related to the automated management of data center infrastructure. This TC is part of the OASIS DCML Member Section.
The purpose of the OASIS DCML Framework TC is to create a data model and format for exchanging information about the contents of data centers and other IT resources, and the information used in managing those contents. The OASIS DCML Framework TC will continue work on the DCML Framework specification produced by the DCML organization. The Framework specification will be used as the foundation by other OASIS DCML TCs in creating DCML sub-specifications aimed at representing specific types of information. The DCML Framework specification will define the overall approach, concepts and structures fundamental to DCML's description and manipulation of data center elements and the policies governing their management. The Framework TC will define the process by which other working groups extend DCML definitions to support specific classes of applications, for example, the servers, software, applications, networking and storage components, management policies and best practices in a data center.
The goal of the OASIS DCML Framework TC is to enable the systems and people managing data center and other IT environments to exchange configuration, policy and operating information in a reliable, standardized manner that works across a wide variety of products, methods and topologies. An abstract, unified set of descriptions will allow data center managers to
enable communication among the many data center management systems;
swap out and replace components;
upgrade or augment functions, such as by adding servers or services;
plan for and execute the configuration and reconfiguration of newly installed hardware and software;
all using re-usable referents and methods across a data center as it grows and changes. Among other things, by cooperating in a common set of definitions and methods, vendors and users will facilitate improved management and visibility, and enable increased automation of data center management by describing environments in a format highly accessible to automated processing.
Scope of the TC
The scope of DCML Framework TC is limited to defining a data format for describing components and information used to manage those components, use cases driving the format, and the process by which the data format can be extended. The framework specification will define rules and conventions for naming, extensibility, representation in XML, security, processing of DCML documents, referencing and incorporating outside information, versioning, and other fundamental concepts. However, DCML will be designed to interoperate with a variety of other models and methods potentially useful to a described network or system.
To fully realize the goals described above, much more is needed. For example, data in DCML format must be transferred between systems using some kind of protocol; the data must be accessed using some kind of application program interface; and all this must happen within one or more implementation frameworks. In addition, successful implementation and adoption of the DCML standard may require the development of ancillary materials such as implementation guidelines and certification frameworks. Such things are important work areas for future TCs, but they are explicitly outside the scope of the OASIS DCML Framework TC.
List of Deliverables, with Completion Dates
The DCML Framework TC will produce the following deliverables:
DCML Framework Use Case document to be completed by January 2005
DCML Framework Specification v1.0 to be completed by March 2005
DCML Framework Specification Users Guide to be completed by March 2005
We anticipate the work of the OASIS DCML Framework TC will be used by a number of groups:
Other TCs defining DCML sub-specifications for particular DCML applications (e.g., applications and services, networking, servers)
Future TCs tackling the out-of-scope work items mentioned above
End users and vendors seeking to create bilaterally agreed upon DCML extensions for particular DCML applications
The general public with an interest in learning more about DCML