Users of BMC's Patrol Storage Manager software have until the end of next year to migrate to an EMC product at no extra cost, EMC has warned.
The storage giant acquired the rights to BMC's PSM product as part of a new partnership between the two companies announced earlier this month.
Users are now being urged to take advantage of EMC's offer of a free migration before January 2005, when PSM will no longer be supported.
"Existing PSM customers have the ability to convert their PSM licences to the corresponding EMC ControlCenter product at any time up until 2005 at no extra cost, " said Nigel Ghent, northern European marketing director of EMC.
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Ghent was unable to provide a figure for the average cost of migration after 2004.
But he said, "It's difficult to foresee a situation where a customer would wait until after 2005 to make a decision. It makes sense to take advantage of the free crossover.”
Analysts said users now at least have a number of options after BMC's decision to end development work on PSM earlier this year.
"I think this provides users with some reassurance - at least it gives them a migration path and EMC will make it worth their while if they transfer before 2005,” said Sue Clarke, senior research analyst at Butler Group.
However, Clarke added that customers could also shop around to see what other suppliers of storage management software are offering. "They are under no obligation to go with EMC," she said.
Meanwhile, EMC announced a major refresh of its Symmetrix range of storage systems employing Direct Matrix (DMX) architecture - a more efficient method of connecting the machine's internal components.
Less than six months after launching DMX, EMC unveiled the new DMX 3000, a high-end triple-bay system and also a new entry-level configuration of the rack-mounted DMX800.
EMC also announced native Gigabit Ethernet connectivity for Symmetrix DMX systems and the latest version of its Enginuity operating environment, which offers non-disruptive upgrades.