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EMC Wheels Out Ford

Is it really a new deal, or EMC just pushing its software story?

First it was MasterCard, then it was Burger King, and today its Ford (see EMC: 'Priceless' and Ford Goes With EMC). In a little over a month, EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC) has announced that these three corporate giants have soft spots for EMC software. Is it news -- or is EMC trying to make the point that it knows software as well as hardware?

EMC has made clear its interest in keeping ahead of market trends by proclaiming its software expertise (see EMC Goes Soft). “Maybe two years ago they would have been talking about selling Symmetrix storage,” says Dan Tanner, an analyst with Aberdeen Group Inc.. “Now EMC wants to position itself as a software provider. This press release is just about the PR department being active.”

Although Ford itself was unavailable for comment on its use of EMC products, EMC has lots to say about the case. The vendor says that over the last few months, Ford has implemented EMC’s Symmetrix Data Remote Facility (SRDF) software to protect 260 terabytes of storage, supporting marketing, financial, manufacturing, product development, and other applications in Ford’s IBM mainframe environment. EMC claims the move has reduced Ford’s information disaster recovery time from several days to only a couple of hours.

“Our SRDF software eliminates downtime and allows you to instantaneously transfer information from one location to another,” says EMC spokesperson Anne Pace. “It’s a very advanced recovery system.”

EMC replaced Ford's old system of backing up information on tape. SRDF automatically replicates mainframe information on disk, making it immediately available to remote locations.

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