Dell Software

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Dell Software, Inc.
  • Manufacturing
  • Software
  • IT services
FateSold to private equity
SuccessorQuest Software and Sonicwall
DefunctNovember 1, 2016 (2016-11-01)
United States[2]
Area served
Key people
John Swainson, President
  • Michael Dell
  • Silver Lake Partners

Dell Software was a division of Dell and a multinational provider of IT solutions with headquarters in Round Rock, Texas, United States.[3] Dell Software was created merging various acquisitions (mainly Quest Software and Sonicwall) by Dell Inc., the third-largest maker of PCs and now a privately held company, to build out its software offerings to provide end-to-end solutions for data center and cloud management, information management, mobile workforce management, security and data protection for organizations of all sizes.


Dell Inc. formed the Dell Software group in February 2012, after a series of 37 acquisitions strengthened the company’s focus on software and services.[4] The new group helped unify the acquisitions, which included the following companies, among others:

  • KACE Networks, specializing in computer appliances for IT systems management and software for security, application virtualization and systems management products. KACE solutions specialize in software inventory and distribution, operating system deployment, and mobile device management. On February 10, 2010, the company acquired KACE Networks, a leader in systems management appliances.[5] The terms of the deal were not disclosed.[6]
  • Boomi, makers of AtomSphere, on-demand integration technology that uses pure SaaS technology to connect any combination of SaaS, cloud and on-premises applications without needing to install and maintain integration software or appliances.[7] On November 2, 2010, Dell acquired Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) integration leader Boomi. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.[8]
  • AppAssure Software, which developed a series of backup solutions for Windows and Linux servers. The AppAssure solution provides global deduplication, overall reduced recovery time, enhanced scalability, and granular object-level recovery for both files and application-level objects, such as emails. On February 24, 2012 Dell acquired backup and disaster recovery software solution provider AppAssure Software of Reston, VA.[9] AppAssure delivered 194 percent revenue growth in 2011 and over 3500% growth in the prior three years. AppAssure supports physical servers and VMware, Hyper-V and XenServer. The deal represents the first acquisition since Dell formed its software division under former CA CEO John Swainson. Dell added that it will keep AppAssure’s 230 employees and invest in the company.
  • SonicWALL, creators of various internet appliances primarily directed at content control and network security. Solutions include devices and services for managing network firewalls, unified threat management (UTM), virtual private networks (VPN), backup and recovery, and anti spam systems for email. In March 2012, USA Today said that Dell agreed to buy SonicWall, and the acquisition was completed 9 May 2012.[10] A company with 130 patents, SonicWall develops security products, and is a network and data security provider.[11]
  • Quest Software, the makers of Toad (software), a productivity tool used by millions of database professionals. Quest also produced products that help develop, manage, monitor and protect packaged and custom software applications. On July 2, 2012, Dell announced that it was buying Quest Software.[12][13][14] The acquisition was completed on 28 September 2012.[15]
  • Enstratius, providers of a cloud-computing infrastructure-management platform that addresses governance issues associated with deploying systems in public, private and hybrid clouds. More than 20 public and private clouds are supported, as well as configuration management tools such as Chef and Puppet. The Enstratius platform supports both SaaS and on-premises deployment models.
  • StatSoft, a provider of advanced analytics solutions that help organizations better understand their business, predict change, increase agility and control critical systems.[16] With capabilities for data mining, predictive analytics, desktop data modeling, and data visualization, StatSoft enables users to forecast trends, identify sales opportunities, explore “what-if” scenarios, and reduce the occurrence of fraud and other business risks.[17] StatSoft was founded in 1984,[18] and was acquired by Dell in March 2014. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.[19]

On March 5, 2012, John Swainson became president of Dell Software. Previously, Swainson was Senior Advisor to Silver Lake Partners, a global private equity firm. Prior to Silver Lake, he was CEO and director of CA Inc., from early 2005 through 2009.[20] The purpose of forming the new group was to build on Dell’s software capabilities and provide research and organizational support for achieving Michael Dell’s vision of delivering end-to-end IT solutions to customers.

On June 20, 2016, Dell Software announced an agreement to be purchased by private equity firm Francisco Partners and hedge fund manager Elliott Management.[21]

On November 1, 2016, the sale of Dell Software to Francisco Partners and Elliott Management was completed and the company relaunched as Quest Software. While legally named Quest Software, it is known in the marketplace as Quest. Quest is an IT software solutions provider with a focus on enabling innovation with less administration. Quest products are built from unique IP by in-house engineers, guided by a community of users, and backed by a global support team.[22]


Dell Software offered end-to-end solutions to address challenges in several business and technology areas, including six key ones:[23]

  • Data Protection
  • Endpoint Management
  • Identity and Access Management
  • Information Management
  • Network Security
  • Windows Server Management and Migration

Data protection software and deduplication appliances offer customized backup, replication and recovery systems for physical, virtual, application and cloud environments. The solutions provide management tools for enterprise backup and recovery, virtual protection, application-specific data protection, and disaster recovery for uninterrupted productivity. [24] They also help organizations prevent intrusions, block malware and gather application intelligence.[25]

Endpoint management solutions simplify management of a diverse array of endpoint systems and devices, including desktops, laptops, servers, Chromebooks, mobile devices, virtual workspaces and network-connected non-computing devices. The solutions allow organizations to deploy systems, conduct asset inventory, automate operating system and application patch management, and manage software updates.[26]

Identity and access management solutions allow organizations to govern identities, manage privileged accounts, and control access. They help organizations achieve identity, data, and privileged access governance, simplify secure access management for users and groups, and enable control and audit administrative access through secure, automated, policy-based workflows.[27]

Information management solutions simplify data access, analysis and management. They integrate with most legacy systems and enable organizations to manage complex and big data, ensure data accuracy, integrate applications and data across on-site and cloud environments, streamline business intelligence, and automate development and database management tasks.[28]

Network security solutions provide intrusion prevention, malware protection, application intelligence and control, real-time traffic visualization, and inspection for Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)–encrypted sessions at the gateway. They also enable organizations to manage, visualize, analyze, audit and report across numerous appliances deployed at remote sites through a centralized console.[29]

Windows Server management and migration solutions automate administrative functions for Active Directory, Exchange, Lync, SharePoint, Office 365 and other Microsoft platforms. These solutions enable organizations to migrate, consolidate and restructure mission-critical application environments, customize Windows platforms, and manage IT governance, risk and compliance of Windows environments.[30]


  1. ^ a b De La Merced, Michael J. (2013-10-29). "Sale of Dell Closes, Moving Company Into Private Ownership". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. DealBook. Retrieved 2013-10-29.
  2. ^ Dell Company Profile. Retrieved July 28, 2010.
  3. ^ "Contact Us | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  4. ^ "Dell changes focus from hardware to software, services". Dallas Business Journal. Retrieved February 28, 2014.
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ Shah, Agam (February 11, 2010). "Dell Acquires Systems Management Company KACE". The New York Times.
  7. ^ "Company Overview". Boomi. 2010-11-02. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  8. ^ "Dell Acquires SaaS Company, Boomi". SiliconANGLE. Retrieved November 3, 2010.
  9. ^ "Dell Inc, Form 10-Q, Quarterly Report, Filing Date May 31, 2012" (PDF). Retrieved Mar 8, 2013.
  10. ^ Businesswire: Dell completes acquisition SonicWall, 9 May 2012
  11. ^ USA Today, page B1, published March 14, 2008, "Dell buys security specialist SonicWall"
  12. ^ "Dell Inc, Form 8-K, Current Report, Filing Date Jul 2, 2012". Retrieved Mar 8, 2013.
  13. ^ "Dell buying Quest Software for $2.36 billion". USA Today. July 2, 2012. Retrieved July 2, 2012.
  14. ^ "Dell ponies up $2.4B to buy Quest Software". CBS News. July 2, 2012. Retrieved July 11, 2012.
  15. ^ Dell official pressrelease: Dell completes acquisition of Quest software, 28 September 2012. Visited: 1 November 2012
  16. ^ "". Dell Software, Inc. Retrieved 2014-04-15.
  17. ^ "". Dell, Inc. Retrieved 2014-04-15.
  18. ^ "". StatSoft, Inc. Retrieved 2014-04-15.
  19. ^ "Dell buys predictive analytics firm StatSoft". Computerworld, Inc. Retrieved 2014-04-15.
  20. ^ "Names John Swainson President of New Software Group". Dell. Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  21. ^ "Francisco Partners and Elliott Management to Acquire the Dell Software Group". Retrieved 2016-06-22.
  22. ^ "Quest Launches as an Independent Software Company Backed by Francisco Partners and Elliot Management". Quest Community. Retrieved 2016-11-01.
  23. ^ "Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  24. ^ "Dell Drivers". dell drivers download alternative. Retrieved 2017-05-21.
  25. ^ "Data Protection Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  26. ^ "Endpoint Systems Management Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  27. ^ "Identity and Access Management Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  28. ^ "Information Management Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  29. ^ "Network Security Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.
  30. ^ "Windows Server Management and Migration Solutions | Dell Software". Retrieved 2014-03-05.