To the surprise of few industry observers, data storage and IT infrastructure giant EMC Nov. 30 announced that its networked storage systems, software, services and solutions will fully support the next generation of Microsoft products, including Exchange Server 2007, the 2007 Office system and Windows Vista. EMC will work closely with customers it shares with Microsoft to integrate the new functionality of these applications into their current systems, a company spokesperson said.
"EMC and Microsoft have done [storage] business together for a long, long time, mostly around the Clariion storage servers, and EMC certainly has the credibility and technology to carry the upgrade [to Vista] off," said Brian Babineau, senior analyst with the Enterprise Strategy Group. Microsoft had been supplying its Windows Storage Server software to Hopkinton, Mass.-based EMC for use in its storage server hardware for several years, although EMC no longer ships that particular product. "But, hey, Microsoft certainly isn't going to come out and say, 'We're going to certify Vista to run on EMC Clariion only' ... we'll be seeing every vendor in the Free World coming out with Vista-support announcements, and it happens every time Microsoft puts out an OS update," Babineau said.