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EMC Buys McData Gear, Expands USPTO Deal

EMC today said it will use switches from its spinout McData to improve the performance of its automated networked storage offerings.

It's the latest move by the Hopkinton, Mass., company to buttress its networked storage product lines as it pursues increasingly important small- to medium-sized enterprise customers.

Other steps include last week's introduction of a new hardware device and software to automate movement of files across dispersed locations. Financial terms of today's deal -- which includes McData's Intrepid 6140 Director and Sphereon 4500 Fabric Switch -- were not disclosed.

"These two products greatly strengthen EMC's ability to meet customers' needs for flexible and cost-effective storage networking solutions," said Paul Ross, EMC's director of networked storage.

The Intrepid 6140 Director is a 140-port, 2 gigabytes per second device while the Sphereon 4500 is marketed as a flexible and cost-effective fibre channel SAN switch.

"McDATA is committed to defining, enabling and accelerating our customers' migration to an intelligent infrastructure," said John Kelley, McData's president and CEO.

EMC is McData's most important customer, accounting for 53 percent of its sales and service revenue for the first nine months of 2002, according to regulatory filings. McData as been operating separately since February 2001.

McData also has a reseller agreement with EMC rival IBM, which accounted for 24 percent of the Broomfield, Colo., company's business from January to September. This fall it also extended a resller pact with another storage heavyweight, Hitachi Data Systems.

In other EMC news, the company expanded a previous contract with the United States Patent and Tradmark Office (USPTO). The agency has implemented an additional 90 terabytes of EMC Automated Networked Storage systems.

The USPTO, based in Arlington, Va., now has 300 terabytes of EMC networked storage and open management software to better manage and protect a database that covers 200 years of intellectual property documents.

Additionally, a large amount of related historical information dating back to 1790 has been converted to EMC networked storage.