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EMC is going after the Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 market with business continuity/disaster recovery solutions, networked storage technologies, and consulting services that will create opportunities for the channel with Exchange customers with 500 to more than 80,000 seats.

By utilizing the latest Exchange APIs EMC is the first to market with an integrated set of offerings, says EMC’s Bob Madaio, manager global technology alliance with Microsoft. There are lots of replication-specific tools in Exchange Server 2010 and EMC is the first to leverage them, he says. The company is announcing three replication-oriented products – 2 of which are API-specific, a standalone appliance for the Symmetrix and CLARiiON storage platforms, and a management tool.

In some ways, EMC’s announcements are more evolutionary that revolutionary, says Madaio, but because Microsoft made such drastic changes in Exchange Server 2010, these products are also revolutionary. While he expects the market to be a little slow initially because this is a new Microsoft product, he expects it will see much brisker adoption than the previous (2007) version. “We’re definitely sensing interest in Exchange Server 2010.”

The key is that EMC offers customers a range of options and flexibility, says Madaio. Customers can choose the solution that’s right for them, he says. While EMC stated there were both storage and service-related aspects to the announcement, no details were provided, and Madaio says the main focus is the software integration.

The latest software additions include: EMC Replication Enabler for Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, a software utility that integrates synchronous replication into the Exchange Server 2010 high-availability architecture and supports EMC RecoverPoint Continuous Replication and EMC MirrorView Remote Synch replication; EMC AutoStart provides heterogeneous application infrastructure monitoring and automated restart for Exchange Server 2010 and other environments on platforms including Symmetrix and CLARiiON; and EMC Replication Manager, which includes support for Database Availability Groups for quick backup and recovery.

Madaio says the backup and disaster recovery market is at an inflexion point, with a host of new ideas, including the concept of relying on replication services and no longer backing up data. He says the jury is still out on skipping backups, but the market is changing, especially with the growth in virtualization.

“Customers are trying to figure out what parts are relevant to virtualization. It comes down to how do they see the data center moving forward.”