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Managing Content With Microsoft, EMC

Looking to assuage customer concerns for managing the glut of unstructured data to comply with government regulations, Microsoft  and EMC  today announced new services to make it easier for customers to corral their enterprise information.

EMC Documentum Content Services for SharePoint and EMC Documentum Archive Services for SharePoint are designed to help customers access the EMC Documentum content repository vis-à-vis Office SharePoint Server 2007.

This will allow employees to manage unstructured records, such as e-mails and images, as well as business processes, said John McCormick, vice president of product management for EMC content management software.

McCormick said these software services will help customers archive content from SharePoint repositories to a Documentum repository while keeping content accessible and searchable from within SharePoint.

"We're looking to provide tight integration at the products level," McCormick said, noting that the proliferation of unstructured information has forced customers to ask vendors to bake interoperability into software and services.

Rob Bernard, general manager of the global ISV group at Microsoft, echoed those sentiments, adding that the companies share a goal to create an integration between SharePoint and EMC Documentum that was both "seamless and invisible."

Success for this effort could spawn additional integrations in the future between the Microsoft and EMC platforms.

"We think there is a huge opportunity to grow the pie for the ECM [enterprise content management] market," Bernard said.

The move marks the first formal joint ECM partnership between Microsoft and EMC, which have taken several steps to make their storage products work together, including working together on a network-attached storage (NAS)  appliance.

EMC this year also snapped up two services firms specializing in supporting Microsoft software, Interlink Group and Internosis.

Bernard characterized the new move as "moving from a reactive relationship to a proactive relationship" to meet customer demands.

McCormick said EMC expects to launch the new services some time in 2007.

Microsoft and EMC will demonstrate integration of the EMC Documentum platform and Microsoft SharePoint Server 2007 at Gartner's Symposium/ITxpo 2006 in Orlando, Fla., next week.