Enterprise Solutions Briefs: Siemens, HP, EMC/HP, IBM

Siemens to invest $US868M in itself

Siemens AG is planning an initial investment of $US868 million to transform the company's business processes - everything from procurement and product development to marketing. The company says its 440,000 employees in more than 190 countries will have Internet access within a year, allowing the pooling of knowledge between its various divisions.

Siemens says 70 per cent of its activities are networked and, with the use of Internet procurement, 10 per cent of its total procurement volume now processed electronically will rise to 50 per cent.

HP still eyeing PwC

Hewlett-Packard is still in talks with PricewaterhouseCoopers about purchasing the accounting firm's consulting division, HP CEO Carly Fiorina confirmed last week. "This potential acquisition is based on a belief that the days of talking to one company about business strategy and another company about technology are over," she said.

EMC/HP backup makes tracks faster

EMC and Hewlett-Packard announced they will deliver software and hardware to simplify backup and recovery for EMC drive arrays in enterprise networks. The company rolled out EMC Fastrax, a data-movement system that lets IT managers back up and recover data between EMC Symmetrix enterprise storage arrays and other vendors' tape libraries. It lets customers using HP OpenView OmniBack II backup/recovery software move data between EMC and non-EMC devices.

Fastrax backups take place while data is being used by production applications. The backup and recovery application determines what data needs to be backed up, then Fastrax and Symmetrix software transparently determine which data needs to move to tape and which needs to go to the active database. Multiple backups can be started and run concurrently.

Fastrax software is priced at $US545,000 and is available immediately.

IBM adds Tivoli support

IBM has added Tivoli Systems network management support to the IBM 4690 point-of-sale product line, which until now could only be managed through a dedicated POS management terminal.

There are about 1.5 million IBM 4690 POS units used by merchandisers in the US at checkouts, for bar-code reading or credit-card processing. The POS equipment can now receive software updates or be configured remotely using Tivoli.

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