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Storage software market looking up

The worldwide market for storage software is on track for overall growth this year, according to data compiled by market research firm IDC.

The global market for storage software is set to end the year on a positive note of growth, according to new data released by IDC on Monday.

The revenue in the first nine months of 2003 was up 11.4 percent from the same period last year. In the third quarter, the industry netted revenue of $1.65 billion, up 4.2 percent from the previous quarter. All this, the research firm said, means that there will be an overall better showing in 2003.

Software in the storage market appears to be doing better than hardware. The software segment grew throughout the year, while storage hardware started showing signs of turnaround only recently.

For the second quarter in a row, all segments of the storage market grew. Storage replication software recorded the largest gain, growing 7.9 percent in the third quarter. IDC said the growth was driven by data protection and disaster recovery applications. But back-up and archive software, which make up the bulk of the market, had sequential growth of only 2.7 percent. The storage resource management market grew 3.6 percent sequentially in the third quarter.

EMC, the market leader in storage software, remained on top in the software market and cornered 26.1 percent of total revenue. This was a gain of nearly 1 point of market share from the second quarter. Veritas continued in the second slot, while Computer Associates and IBM vied for the third and fourth position, with 8.8 and 8.1 percent of revenue share, respectively. Hewlett-Packard was in fifth place.

"The overall strength of the storage software market is particularly impressive in light of the typical seasonal trend of slowing business in the third quarter. These encouraging results reinforce our expectation that storage software will post strong year-over-year growth in 2003," Bill North, research director for Storage Software at IDC said in a statement.