The specification defines a consistent way for networks, applications, servers and other IT resources to be described, or modelled, in XML.
A companion specification was submitted, the SML Interchange Format, which defines how to exchange SML models between applications.
Members of the specification submission group include BEA Systems, BMC Software, Cisco Systems, Dell, EMC, HP, IBM, Intel, Microsoft and Sun Microsystems.
With industry collaboration, SML enables a hierarchy of IT resource models to be created from reusable building blocks rather than requiring custom descriptions of every service, thereby reducing costs and system complexity for customers.
These blocks can be defined at the appropriate level of granularity for desired-state management, and include validation constraints that increase the reliability of integrations, opening the door to increased automation.
If adopted as a standard, SML will address the industry problem of numerous methods of representing the same IT resource.
The use of different formats currently requires a translation process that can lead to the loss or misinterpretation of technical details.
Ric Telford, vice president of Autonomic Computing at IBM, said: "The submission of SML to the World Wide Web Consortium is an important milestone in bringing open frameworks into IT management solutions on behalf of our customers.
"As a leader in open standards-based software, this is an important step in IBM's effort to collaborate with other industry leaders to extend modelling and self- managing capabilities within multi-vendor IT environments."
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