EMC Corp. is realigning itself into three operating units in a move to support its recent move toward more open systems that interoperate with the storage products of multiple vendors.

EMC has been working to make its products interoperate with those of other vendors, including Compaq Corp., which agreed earlier this month to cross- license its storage systems with EMC. Analysts say EMC’s strategy has been giving it an edge among rivals, including IBM Corp., in what is a broad industry move toward more interoperability among storage software and hardware from multiple vendors. The multi-vendor strategy is seen as a way for storage providers to satisfy the demand of customers, many of them with shrinking IT staffs, to make it easier to put together storage systems regardless of make. In turn, vendors see this market as way to recoup revenue lost from shrinking hardware prices.

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