I.B.M. announced yesterday that it would pay $865 million for Micromuse Inc., whose software is used to manage Internet-based computing networks that handle voice, video and data.

The acquisition is the latest indication that the many software markets continue to consolidate, including the data center management market, where Micromuse occupies a niche. Earlier this year, for example, Computer Associates bought Concord Communications for $350 million, and EMC completed its $260 million purchase of Smarts.

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