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Permabit Takes Another Bite

Permabit Inc.,
the startup that challenged EMC Corp.s (NYSE: EMC)
Centera with its content-addressed storage system (CAS) last October, is now introducing software designed to help companies conform to compliance regulations -- like software that EMC also sells.

This time, Permabit isn’t claiming technical superiority to EMC. It positions its Compliance Vault as an alternative to EMC's Centera Compliance: Centera-light, if you will. Its pricetag is also lighter than EMC’s.

“We think Centera’s a visionary product,” says Stephen Ellis, Permabit founder and VP of business development. “The only problem we have with it is it only runs on EMC hardware. People like the idea of Centera but don’t want to put up hundreds of thousands of dollars for compliance.”

Pricing for Compliance Vault starts at $60,000 for a 2-Tbyte configuration. The software is sold through resellers and certified to run on hardware from Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ), Dell Computer Corp. (Nasdaq: DELL), and boxes from smaller vendors.

Compliance Vault is focused on helping organizations comply with regulations such as SEC 17a-4 in financial services, HIPAA in healthcare, 21 CFR Part 11 in life sciences, and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Retention management is the core function: The software allows companies to set retention periods for each individual record. The retention periods can be extended, or records can be deleted when the retention period ends.

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