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EMC & IBM in Virtual Skirmish

and IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM)
execs agree on one thing regarding storage virtualization software: The fact that EMCs hyping its storage router is a sign of concern with IBM's presence in the market.

EMC made the storage router a focal point of presentations for its annual Analyst Day in New York Thursday -- months before that product enters beta and perhaps a year before it ships (see New EMC Group Jabs Veritas). EMC's storage router will compete with SAN Volume Controller, which IBM began shipping last year and has been making a lot of noise about lately (see IBM Revs Virtualization Engine and IBM Upgrades Virtualization ).

While IBM claims EMC is worried that Big Blue will gain too much of a competitive advantage, EMC brass say they fear IBM will give storage virtualization a bad name.

“The reason we chose to start talking about this product now is we saw products falsely introduced with the virtualization technology label,” EMC software group EVP Mark Lewis says. “We’re worried that these products will result in a negative impression in the market.”

Lewis labeled IBM’s SAN Volume Controller and the lesser-known Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) CASA (Continuous Access Storage Appliance) “limited functionality array controllers masked as virtualization routers.” Ouch!

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