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Symantec promises unified storage for managers

Soccer balls and tears for journalists

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Vision 2007 Symantec continues to rally 'round its Network United banner with Data Center software Prez Kris Hagerman's keynote at the Symantec Vision conference at Las Vegas.

If one can measure a company's enthusiasm for a project by velocity and gusto in which it lobs soccer balls into the audience — it's clear this is serious business. On a sliding scale of one (being a *hhhghfft* kind of throw) to ten (mere inches from making a journalist's unsuspecting crotch and laptop meet with unfortunate force), I'd give it an 11.

My poor crotch.

Hagerman gave a showy presentation on Symantec's push to consolidate storage technologies through data protection, storage management and archiving. At least to the extent a presentation on enterprise storage can be. It's amazing what you can do with a captive audience and a box of jerseys and soccer balls.

Symantec is rolling out updates for its Veritas software, starting with BackupPro 6.5, to manage data regardless of vendor or platform. The company promises disk backup, VTL, replication, snapshots, and tape will be unified under the Veritas line.

"We are the only player that has host-based service management software that runs on every operating system," said Hagerman. He believes Symantec is in a unique position to offer this, being the only software vendor in the field with source code access from the storage market's big players such as Sun, EMC and Microsoft.

Hagerman argues that storage managers are drowning in complexity. Most often, hardware is supplied by multiple vendors causing independent islands of storage that can't fully interact with each other. The people outside the IT department who are calling the shots demand more storage without knowing the demands and implications of adding new hardware. By giving a system-wide solution to a data center, a company can better implement resources they already have and save money, Hagerman says.

This message was advanced in his keynote by video presentations of the "Complexity Master". The short skits involve a sassy, soul-patch adorning IT manager who pitches Symantec products to his company with the enthusiasm of a pothead tearing through a bag of Funions.

When the lights went up, Hagerman ushered a Silicone Valley girls' soccer team donning Data United jerseys onto the stage and confirmed the importance of data center consultation via gushing about the teams athletic prowess. Then the ball throwing — oh, the humanity.

You can read more about the nitty-gritty of Symantec's latest offering here. I don't mention my crotch at all. I promise. ®

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