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Symantec Worldwide Study Indicates Data Centers Face Severe and Growing Challenges

IT professionals seek best practices for controlling data center complexity

CUPERTINO, Calif. – May 23, 2007 – Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) today announced the findings of a study indicating IT professionals worldwide struggle with the increasing complexity of data center management while at the same time facing severe budget and personnel constraints. Respondents revealed that to ease management challenges, they are relying on several different technologies and initiatives including storage capacity management, virtualization and Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) frameworks.

Volume of Hardware, Software and the Human Factor Cause Challenges

Survey responses indicate that the growing volume of servers, applications and operating systems in today’s data centers is contributing substantially to data center complexity. Of the respondents surveyed, 85 percent cite an increase in the number of servers and applications as factors contributing to complexity in the data center. In addition, 80 percent of respondents cite an increase in the number of management tools employed and 72 percent pointed to an increase in the number of operating systems in their environment as causes for complexity in the data center.

According to 74 percent of respondents, decreasing headcount is one of the biggest challenges in managing complex environments. In addition, 50 percent of respondents cite human error as contributing significantly to the cause of unplanned downtime in the data center. According to survey respondents, the leading causes of downtime in the data center include application error, human error and hardware failure, signaling a need for more centralized and automated tools to enhance application availability.

IT Professionals Seek Consolidation and Streamlined Processes

According to 80 percent of respondents, an increase in the number of management tools is somewhat or significantly challenging, signifying a need for consolidation and standardization. With respondents using an average of nine server and application management tools, more than half (56 percent) of IT professionals indicated plans to consolidate the number of tools they are using. Key considerations for consolidation cited by respondents were leading functionality or performance, cost, and an integrated platform.

Seeking to standardize processes to reduce complexity, 99 percent of respondents worldwide are implementing ITIL/ITSM frameworks to manage IT services. Of the respondents polled, 18 percent have already implemented ITIL and 52 percent indicate that it is an ongoing process, 20 percent will implement ITIL over the next year and 9 percent will implement ITIL over the next three years.

IT Professionals Employ Multiple Approaches to Tackle Data Center Complexity

In addition to ITIL, the IT professionals polled cited that they are also planning to implement or have implemented the following initiatives:

  • storage allocation and resource management (according to 87 percent of respondents)
  • virtual server management (according to 80 percent of respondents)
  • storage capacity management (according to 68 percent of respondents)
  • business continuity and disaster recovery (according to 68 percent of respondents)
  • application availability (according to 64 percent of respondents)

Findings Highlight Growing Need for Standardization

To master data center complexity, Symantec recommends that companies standardize on a single layer of infrastructure software that supports all major storage and server hardware platforms, to protect their information and applications, enhance data center service levels, improve storage and server utilization, and drive down operational cost.

“Today’s data centers are under intense pressure that is only getting worse,” said Kris Hagerman, group president, Data Center Management, Symantec. “If data centers are to meet the growing expectations placed on them for comprehensive protection and availability of their key applications, while dealing with the unfortunate reality of shrinking budgets, they need to regain control of their data centers and stem the growing tide of disparate systems and tools that don’t work together. Veritas data center software is the industry’s only software offering that is truly cross-platform, so our industry-leading data protection, storage management and high availability solutions support every major operating system, every major storage platform, and every major database. It is a powerful weapon to help enterprises master data center complexity.”

About the State of the Data Center Report

The State of the Data Center study is a two-part research series highlighting top trends and challenges for data center managers. Conducted in April 2007, the first part of this study included more than 500 respondents from enterprise-class companies in the North American, European and Asia Pacific markets.

About Symantec

Symantec is a global leader in infrastructure software, enabling businesses and consumers to have confidence in a connected world. The company helps customers protect their infrastructure, information and interactions by delivering software and services that address risks to security, availability, compliance and performance. Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Symantec has operations in 40 countries. More information is available at www.symantec.com.

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