There are a number of usual-suspect announcements being made today at HP Discover Barcelona, and while the server, storage and convergence items offer the expected more-for-less hardware benefits, it’s the software additions that stood out for me. We’ll have to see how these two announcements — the combination of converged systems with HP OneView enhancements, and IT Operations Management solutions built around big data analytics — play out with customers, but at least they offer the possibility of something more than the latest Moore’s Law lineup.
“The main headline is we’re reinventing the IT operations tool set around big data,” said Roy Ritthaler, VP Product Marketing, IT Operations Management, HP Software. That’s not because we’re enamoured around big data, but because it is needed by customers to solve big problems, he said.
HP’s epic European e-venture announcements included:
-faster and more flexible converged storage with a new portfolio of multi-protocol flash-optimized 3PAR StoreServ systems featuring flat backup to StoreOnce Backup;
-new software-defined converged infrastructure portfolio powered by OneView — the HP Helion CloudSystem CS200-Hyper-Converged StoreVirtual, and HP ConvergedSystem 700; and,
-expanded consulting and support services including HP Datacenter Care and HP Consulting for Software-defined Infrastructure.
Today’s announcement expands HP’s focus on ITOM. Using big data and analytics to improve IT operations is a major focus, said Ritthaler, at the North American edition of Discover, in May. We are the leaders, he said, the “farthest, biggest and first” in driving this segment. “I think we’re one of the most aggressive consumers of the big data platform.”
“IT ops generates lots of – and generally valuable – data that tends to be ignored by business,” said Ritthaler. “Only 10% of data IT has access to is used.”
Customers have been coming to HP increasingly over the last 10 year as IT operations has gone from very controlled — “NO was the first answer you usually got… to KNOW… its all about making the business go faster,” he said.
According to Gartner, the different architectures and the huge scale of the Web-scale IT organizations make traditional, highly focused tools of limited utility, said Ian Head, research director at Gartner. “Demand shaping requires more and different functionality than current off-the-shelf tools provide.”
It was back in August that HP announced it was aligning its software business for the big data opportunity. As I’ve shared many times recently, “big data changes everything” and today we are organizing HP’s Software business around this principle, to help people and organizations thrive in a world in which the explosion of data is disrupting how we live and work, blogged HP’s Robert Youngjohns.
In February Paul Miller, VP Marketing, HP ConvergedSystem, told IT Trends & Analysis that customer acceptance of OneView has been overwhelming. Customers see it as an automation engine, allowing virtualization administrators to automate control of compute, storage, and networking resources without detailed knowledge of each device. “We call it software-defined infrastructure.”
While software is critical, let’s not forget that somewhere, somehow, it does run on hardware. Providing the speaking points for the hardware announcements were HP’s: Jeff Kyle, director, Product Management, Mission Critical Systems; Craig Nunes, vice president, Worldwide Marketing, Storage; and Brad Kirby, Group Manager, Converged Systems.
“This [Superdome and NonStop X] changes things because unlike any other vendor in the industry HP is delivering the highest performance and scalability… on industry-standard platforms”, said Kyle. They provide dramatic improvements in total cost of ownership compared to mainframes, drive performance of targeted workloads like SAP HANA and Oracle to “new heights”.
HP has been pushing the converged flash array experience for some time, and the HP 3PAR StoreServ 7440c Converged Flash Array delivers that, said Nunes. It’s a net-new model that “stays true to the all-flash model” while providing the flexibility of lower-cost disk drives.
Converged systems may only account for a small portion of the overall server and storage hardware segments, but their growth has been huge, and HP’s growth has been the hugest, said Kirby. “HP over the last quarter has grown at over 215% [and is the] fastest growing converged vendor, according to IDC.”
Customers are looking for a simpler experience, he said. “Delivering on that… I think is going to be a bigger and bigger differentiator going forward.”
Looking ahead, expect more — and faster — changes with ITOM, said Ritthaler. “Big data lends itself to continuous innovation. The thing about big data is you can’t look at it all at once,” so there will be a growing need “I think this is the beginning. At the end of the day, the technology is fascinating… our lens is all about giving the customer a competitive advantage.”
The Fiddly Bits & Bytes
HP Integrity Superdome X delivers 4X faster e-commerce transactions than leading x86 platforms, 20X more reliability with 60% less downtime and 32% lower total cost of ownership compared to competitive UNIX environments.
HP Integrity NonStop X fault-tolerant system offers up to 25X increase in system interconnect capacity, and 2X the NonStop CPU density in a single enclosure.
HP 3PAR File Persona delivers Network File System, Common Internet File System and object access on new HP 3PAR StoreServ platforms, boosting utilization and lowering costs by moving storage-affinity related workloads such as data access, protection and analytics directly into the storage operating system and controller. All block, file, and object-access is now managed via a new 3PAR StoreServ Management Console which enables simple provisioning and features a search-enabled interface aligned with HP OneView.
HP 3PAR StoreServ 7440c Converged Flash Array with block, file, and object-access, 3.5 petabytes total capacity, all-flash optimized performance, enterprise-class resiliency, and high speed connectivity, this midrange-priced system increases agility, efficiency and cuts data center space requirements.
HP StoreOnce Recovery Manager Central (RMC) software, a new application-managed backup feature for 3PAR StoreServ, manages snapshots and controls movement of changed data to a HP StoreOnce Backup target in a single-click, delivering greater protection and 17X faster performance.
HP StoreOnce Backup systems now include a new 50 Terabyte StoreOnce VSA and expanded Kernel-based Virtual Machine hypervisor support to enable Backup-as-a-Service consolidation. The high-end StoreOnce 6500 now provides system-wide deduplication over 8 nodes via Federated Catalyst enhancements; enabling easier management compared to traditional single-node limited architectures.
The latest release of HP OneView has built-in HP Operations Analytics, slashing problem resolution, from three days to 30 minutes.
The HP Integrity Superdome X is available now, and the HP Integrity NonStop X is expected to be available in March 2015.
HP 3PAR StoreServ 7440c Converged Flash Array is available immediately; HP StoreServ Management Console is available Dec. 15 at no additional charge as a part of the 3PAR Operating System version 3.2.1 MU2. HP 3PAR File Persona Software Suite will be available for production deployments starting January 2015 at $129 per usable TB. HP StoreOnce Recovery Manager Central for VMware will be available January 2015 with prices starting at $2500.
HP ConvergedSystem 700 with HP OneView will be available to select US customers in January 2015 with worldwide availability in March 2015. HP ConvergedSystem 200-HC will be available in January 2015.