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2006 Top 10: On the Hot Seat

No, there's nothing wrong with your thermostat. If you feel a burst of heat, it's because it's time for our annual storage hot seat list.

Half of the hot seaters from last year escaped this year's list, although not all for good reasons. McData is going away in a month or so when Brocade closes its acquisition. Intransa and MaXXan have become so insignificant that they're below the radar - in other words, they've cooled off too much for any hot seat. Congratulations to Brocade and Symantec for fixing most of the problems that had them on the 2005 list.

So who's going to be wishing their butts were made of asbestos in the coming year? Here are our picks:

No. 10: Adaptec

Adaptec appears in much better shape than it did a year ago. Under new CEO Sundi Sundaresh, Adaptec decided to stay in the NAS business with its Snap product line and added management and data protection software in 2006. But the jury is still out as to whether Adaptec can beat LSI on the SAS front and compete effectively against Windows-based NAS with its Snap products.

  • See Adaptec Adds Controllers
  • See Adaptec Launches Software
  • See Adaptec Intros CDP, New NAS

    No. 9: EMC

    EMC needs to integrate the slew of technologies it bought over the past three years and regain investor confidence in 2007. CEO Joe Tucci's reputation took a hit last summer after two soft quarters, and a $2.1 billion acquisition of RSA Security that raised questions about the price tag. The storage giant has more in its arsenal than any of its rivals but large jigsaw puzzles often take a long time to piece together. Don't bet against EMC completing that puzzle in 2007, but a lot of people are waiting to see the results with their own eyes before they believe them.

  • See Tucci: EMC's Problems 'Self-Induced'
  • See EMC Hiccups, Waits for Clariion
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