The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has approved Dell Software‘s proposed $2.4 billion acquisition of IT provider, Quest Software.

Dell beat out an alliance of private investment firm, Insight Venture Partners, and Vector Capital, in a two-month bidding war. The acquisition is core to Dell’s vision to reduce its dependence on the personal computer market, as Reuters reported today.

The deal is still pending but is expected to close this September. This would be the second largest acquisition in Dell’s history, only exceeded by the purchase of Perot Systems for $3.4 billion.

“With this transaction, Quest’s products and employees become the foundation for Dell’s critical software business,” said Vinny Smith, Quest’s CEO, in a recent statement.

Quest Software offers a full suite of IT for the enterprise, including desktop virtualization, data storage and recovery, database management, and application performance management.

This news follows Michael Dell’s announcement at Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech Conference last week that the hardware supplier would be making strides to foster innovation in the software business. Read the full story on Dell’s $60 million fund for storage startups here.

[Disclosure: At my former agency, Eastwick, Quest Software was a client.]

Dell photo: Flickr/Dell

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