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IDC: Backup, Replication Lifts Storage

The pulse of the storage software market is beating strong and steady, thanks to the pickup in replication and backup software used to satisfy compliance regulations and avert data loss from national disasters.

The market grew 10 percent year over year to $2.1 billion in the third quarter of 2005, according to research firm IDC.

The back-up and archiving space, which IDC said consists of roughly one-third of the storage software market, rose 12.7 percent.

IDC analyst Laura DuBois said backup software sales were again spurred by regulatory compliance rules, such as HIPAA and Sarbanes-Oxley, which require corporations to save data and make sure it is unaltered.

Customers also purchased backup and replication software, which grew 16.8 percent, as fail-safe options in the event of natural disasters, she said.

"The market's drawn by compliance, by IT governance and increased focus in solutions to address natural and human disasters and to counter threats against any kind of attack," DuBois said.

Thanks to all of its software acquisitions over the years, as well as a rock-solid technology reputation and improving services offerings, EMC led the market with 29.1 percent revenue in Q3 2005.

The Hopkinton, Mass., information systems vendor grew sales 6.2 percent to $621 million in Q3 from a year ago. DuBois said EMC's purchase of Legato helped EMC significantly in the backup and archiving segment, where it is No. 2 to Symantec.

Symantec came in at No. 2 with 20 percent, thanks to its purchase of backup software leader Veritas Software. Symantec reaped $427 million in sales for Q3, but it is unclear how much growth, if any, it had in the quarter: Veritas was just integrated.

DuBois said she could see EMC gain on Symantec due to its archiving strategy and successful information lifecycle management plans for corralling data and managing it from its creation until its destruction.

IBM finished third with a 9.4 percent share, growing 12.5 percent year-over-year, to $201 million. Network Appliance grew a whopping 42.5 percent to $148 million and 6.9 percent of the market.

DuBois attributed NetApp's growth to the advanced replication functionality in its Ontap operating system.

HP rounded out the top five storage software sellers, with 6.7 percent of the market on $143 million in sales.