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EMC: "We're open." HP and IBM reply: "No, you're not."

Yes, it's a storage spat
Written by Tony Hallett, Contributor

Yes, it's a storage spat

EMC has announced a slew of software products - and in the process has triggered more arguments with its main rivals. The storage giant has built on its AutoIS initiative, introduced in October last year, by rolling out products which its says allow users to make EMC technology and that of companies such as HDS, HP, IBM, Network Appliance and Sun work together easily. However, HP and IBM were quick to disagree. IBM Storage Systems Group CTO Brian Truskowski responded in a statement: "EMC is still just taking baby steps where IBM is in full gallop. The bottom line is that customers will only get a closed, EMC-controlled, proprietary system with only limited support for non-EMC hardware." Similarly, Olaf Swantee, HP Storage Business Unit Director EMEA, said: "The latest EMC announcement is not practical. It is only applicable to a limited number of systems. Since 1998 HP has promoted a protocol agnostic approach - something EMC has yet to realise." EMC director of worldwide storage marketing George Mele told silicon.com: "If they'd like to test [what we're announcing] they can. I need [the products] to be open to hit my targets." EMC, long known for its high-end storage hardware, the technology which enabled the company to become a major force during the 1990s, currently makes 24 per cent of its revenue from software sales. Mele said that figure must hit 30 per cent by the end of 2004 for EMC to achieve its overall sales growth forecast. The move towards software - and services, estimated to account for a fifth of sales by the end of 2004 - is unsurprising. EMC's margins on high- and mid-range storage systems have been eroded during the downturn. EMC's Mele added: "The hardware good old days are gone forever but the software good old days are here. Software has become the compelling [storage] story." EMC's new products cover a wide range of activities and include EMC Automated Resource Manager for automated storage provisioning, EMC SAN Manager, EMC StorageScope storage reporting software, EMC Common Array Manager, EMC Link for application-to-storage monitoring, EMC Replication Manager and EMC Data Manager for back-up and recovery.
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