Veritas Software announced it will put its virtualisation software and storage resource management (SRM) software onto network storage switches from Cisco Systems and Brocade Communications Systems.
Veritas also announced a road map for its flagship NetBackup and Backup Exec software, which it plans to expand to desktops and laptops across enterprise networks using existing file servers.
The technology, which Veritas is calling Project Shadow, will be available in the second half of the year.
Porting the software to Cisco's MDS 9000 director and Brocade's Silkworm switches will give the software a more integrated and consolidated view for managing storage area networks (San), according to Bob Maness, worldwide director of marketing at Veritas.
Veritas' virtualisation or disc-pooling software, Volume Manager, and its SRM software for monitoring and reporting on Sans, resides on the server, where it can still work across multivendor storage arrays.
Analysts have criticised putting virtualisation software on the server because it eats up CPU cycles. But Maness said Veritas' software takes up only 2% to 4% of a CPU's cycles.
John Webster, an analyst at Data Mobility Group, said putting the software on the switch will, ultimately, remove barriers to data movement between servers and arrays.
Some users prefer to manage applications specific to certain storage arrays.
Tim Rabbit, a specialist infrastructure systems analyst for the South Florida Water Management District, said virtualisation in the network would help him manage his 17TByte San more centrally, and give him freedom to choose the disc behind it based on price and not brand.