Gartner: Steady growth for storage software

By Ann Silverthorn

—At Gartner's PlanetStorage Summit this month, analyst Carolyn DiCenzo predicted that the storage software market will grow steadily through 2009, while retention and recovery will remain key challenges for IT professionals.

The storage software market grew 7.9% in 2003 and 12.3% in 2004 to almost $6 billion in total revenue. DiCenzo splits the overall market into six segments: backup/recovery (30%), replication (24%), core (17%), device resource management (12%), storage resource management (11%), and hierarchical storage management (HSM) and archiving (6%).

DiCenzo says the lines between backup and replication software are starting to blur, as the two markets merge into a single recovery market. She cites Network Appliance's SnapVault, which is billed as backup software but is really replication software, as an example. According to DiCenzo, the difference between backup and replication is cataloging; backup does cataloging, while replication does not.

The storage resource management (SRM) software segment experienced the most growth last year at 30.8%, and the SRM market is expected to grow from $611 million in 2004 to $1.2 billion in 2009, for a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.8%. "SRM's promise will come when it becomes automated," says DiCenzo. At this time, SRM products are mainly reporting tools, but a variety of vendors are moving toward active management and automation.

The HSM and archiving market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 33.2%, reaching $1.3 billion in 2009, according to Gartner. Until recently, HSM has been used primarily in mainframe environments, and in the distributed systems (non-mainframe) market only the scientific and multimedia industries have shown an interest in HSM due to the huge volumes of data in those industries, according to DiCenzo. However, with compliance and discovery requirements taking center stage, more industries are now paying attention to HSM. "HSM shows an opportunity for savings, but companies may have to make a technology change to take advantage of it," says DiCenzo.

Total revenues for the storage software market topped $5.6 billion last year. The market is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 10.9% from 2004 to 2009, when it is expected to hit $9.4 billion. Leading in new license revenues were EMC (29.5% market share), Veritas (18.5%), IBM (12.2%), and Computer Associates (5.3%).

DiCenzo predicts that the backup and replication segments will experience the largest growth, with compliance and information life-cycle management (ILM) driving new approaches for managing and retaining data. Up-and-coming areas to watch include content indexing and switch-based virtualization, according to Gartner.

This article was originally published on June 27, 2005