Bear markets can sneak up on investors. With the Nasdaq down almost 20% since its peak in January, it looks like this has happened once again -- and the brunt of the pain is borne by the tech sector.

The ultracompetitive -- such as Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) and IBM (NYSE:IBM) -- can still find growth, mostly at the expense of its victims, such as Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ), Sun Microsystems (NASDAQ:SUNW), and others.

In this brutal environment, it's hard to find any good tech news. However, last Friday we did see an upbeat view from Brocade (NASDAQ:BRCD), a developer of storage-networking solutions.

Speaking of storage space, Overland Storage (NASDAQ:OVRL) reported its numbers last week. For more than 20 years, the company has developed sophisticated data protection solutions, such as for backup and recovery.

Overland reported its year-end figures, with revenues up 22% to $238.1 million and net income up 59% to $10.6 million. In fact, the company has posted increased revenues every year for the past 24 years.

Last year, the company purchased Okapi, a developer of disk-based backup appliances. It's a market in the early stages of growth, and the acquisition has provided Overland with a significant footprint.

Unfortunately, Overland's fourth-quarter performance was subpar. Revenues were $55 million, which compares with $56.5 million in the same period last year. Net income was $2.1 million, compared with $3.3 million in the same period a year ago.

The company has several large OEM customers, and its largest reduced its purchases in the fourth quarter. This represents a risk with Overland.

Yet management is upbeat for fiscal year 2005; it believes that companies are realizing that they need to take more steps to protect their data. And data appliances appear to be an effective and low-cost way of doing this.

While investors are mostly negative on tech, Overland is certainly confident in its future. Along with its earnings announcement, it also said it will buy back $10 million of its shares. Well, at least there is one buyer of tech in the market.

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Fool contributor Tom Taulli is the author of The EDGAR Online Guide to Decoding Financial Statements . He does not own shares in any of the stocks mentioned.