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Microsoft partnering instead of competing, a GOOD thing

EMC and Microsoft have been long-time partners as most of their wares do complement instead of compete. It is good to hear that Microsoft and EMC have extended their partnership through 2011 and have broadened its scope. This can only be a good thing for customers.

The areas where they are working together make sense, too -- storage, integration of EMC’s Documentum content management software with SharePoint, Outlook and SQL Server. (Though if you have Documentum why do you need SharePoint or vise versa?)

Of course, Microsoft has long-standing ties with EMC’s RSA and in December announced that it would be integrating RSA's data-loss prevention technology, RSA DLP Suite 6.5, into a wider range of products. The DLP suite already has been integrated with Microsoft Active Directory Rights Management Services. (Interestingly, while RSA was partnering with Microsoft to get its DLP products embedded in Microsoft software, RSA was also striking up a similar deal with Cisco for DLP.)

Will a partnership for storage and security technologies somehow mean more interoperability on the server virtualization side of things? There have been glimmers that co-opetition could happen there as well. For instance, in September, VMware signed on to join Microsoft's Server Virtualization Validation Program. Plus Microsoft is pitching its Systems Center management software as the go-to suite for Hyper-V and ESX. (Though jury is still out on that one -- as Microsoft can't quite bring itself not to treat ESX as a second-class citizen in odd little ways.) When it comes to the data center, the folks in Redmond seem to understand that to stay in the glass room (and not be completely yanked out in favor of Linux) they have to play at least a little nicer with others. Here's to more -- a lot more -- of the same.

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