HPE: “Nowhere Left To Hide”
Jun08

HPE: “Nowhere Left To Hide”

Hewlett Packard Enterprise is in Sin City this week, holding its annual customer and partner event (HPE Discover 2017), accompanied with the usual flurry of product announcements and preceded by another troubling financial report. HPE’s Meg Whitman, President and Chief Executive Officer, believes the company is heading for an upswing, “accelerating out of the turnaround”, according to a recent interview. “I can feel it,” she said. “It is just smarter, easier, simpler. You cannot underestimate the accountability. There is nowhere left to hide at this company. I see a perfect place. There is nowhere left for partners to hide. There is no place for HPE employees to hide. It just makes things far easier and, frankly, more fun because you can get stuff done faster.” Faster, maybe, but better? HPE’s commodity hardware businesses and primary revenue generators — servers, storage, and to a lesser extent, networking — all took hits in the most recent quarter, with the to-be-expected impacts on revenues and margins. Second quarter FY17, announced on May 31, included a 13% year-over-year drop in GAAP net revenue ($7.4 billion vs $8.5 billion), and a more than 50% drop in GAAP operating margin (2.4% vs 2016’s 5.3%). While Whitman is predicting a speedy upturn, the current performance is not reassuring: -Enterprise Group revenue was $6.2 billion, down 13% year over year, down 7% when adjusted for divestitures and currency, with an 8.8% operating margin; -servers revenue was down 14%; -storage revenue was down 13%; and, -networking revenue was down 30%. Overall IT spending is expected to inch up 1.4% this year, to $3.5 trillion, with the datacenter segment pegged at a very anemic 0.3% growth. “We are seeing a shift in who is buying servers and who they are buying them from” said John-David Lovelock, research vice president at Gartner. “Enterprises are moving away from buying servers from the traditional vendors and instead renting server power in the cloud from companies such as Amazon, Google and Microsoft. This has created a reduction in spending on servers which is impacting the overall data center system segment.” Vendor revenue for the global server market declined 4.6% to $11.8 billion in 1Q17, but HPE took a much bigger hit, with a 15.8% YoY decline in sales. Second-place Dell — 20.1% vs HPE’s 24.2% market share — grew its revenues 4.7%, while Cisco, IBM, and Lenovo were statistically tied for third place, and all saw revenue declines (3%, 34.7% and 16.5%, respectively). Storage was worse. 4Q16 enterprise factory revenue was down 6.7% YoY, to $11.1 billion, with Dell holding down top spot, courtesy of its EMC acquisition, and with HPE tied with...

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ITOM Drives Pending HPE/Micro-Focus Spin-Merge
May04

ITOM Drives Pending HPE/Micro-Focus Spin-Merge

The Hewlett Packard Enterprise IT Operations Management Summit, this week’s three-day event in Dallas, is over, but how the ITOM business will move forward when HPE’s spin-merge with Micro-Focus is completed remains to be seen. The $8.8 billion transaction, which will earn HPE a $2.5 billion cash payment and a 50.1% stake in the combined company, is expected to close August 31, at which time Chris Hsu, COO and Executive Vice President of HPE Software, will become the CEO of the new entity. Recent Securities and Exchange Commission filings included details about HPE’s software business: total revenue in the 12 months through Oct. 31, 2016 were $3.17 billion and ITOM comprised 61% of the revenue. The rest of the portfolio changing hands were: Enterprise Security Products (18% of revenue), Information Management and Governance (16%) and Big Data Analytics (5%). Revenue for all products broke down to: 28% license, 9% software-as-a-service (SaaS), 50% maintenance, and 13% professional services. While a pure-play software company offers ‘promise’, Gartner stated that adding HPE’s ITOM and ADM offerings to Micro Focus’ portfolio creates ‘significant, complex and uncertain overlaps’. Analyst Rob Enderle, who has been unimpressed with the performance of HPE and President and CEO Meg Whitman, called the software business the idea that ‘just hasn’t died a well-deserved death.’ Prior to the spin-merge Forrester Research analyst Glenn O’Donnell predicted that a software deal would play into the direction the company has taken since it separated from HP Inc. “Selling the software business fits in with the strategy of breaking into smaller pieces, which is the company’s plan now,” he said. “There’s a lot of merit in that position, as a lot of those software components are not necessarily at the core for them.” There are no recent number for the ITOM market, but as of last July one survey put it as the largest component of the IT operations and services management market, and it was predicted to grow 7.5% annually between 2016 and 2024. The global ITOSM market was valued at $17.40 billion in 2015 and it is expected to expand at a CAGR of 6.5% through 2024 to reach $30.96 billion. In addition to HPE, key vendors include: IBM, Oracle, Microsoft, BMC Software, ServiceNow, VMware, Compuware, and CA Technology. In March the company announced the release of Docker-certified ITOM monitoring solutions for Docker containers on the new Docker store, which was followed shortly after by the launch of four containerized versions of its ITOM offerings: Hybrid Cloud Management, Data Center Automation, Operations Bridge, and IT Service Management Automation. Incorporating built-in, open source container technology from Docker and Kubernetes, the four suites feature...

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5G Is Going To Be Huuuuuge… Eventually
Apr13

5G Is Going To Be Huuuuuge… Eventually

With almost 40 years of IT reporting experience under my — sadly expanded — belt I’ve covered a number of profound developments and countless others of less import, but the eventual emergence of 5G is expected to CHANGE EVERYTHING. Yes, 5G is just a bigger, faster pipeline, but to paraphrase POTUS, it’s going to be huuuuuge: speeds of 10 to 100 gigabits per second (1,000 times faster than the current US 4G average); latency of less than a millisecond (compared to 4G’s 40ms to 60ms); and support for a million connected devices per square kilometer [that’s 5/8th of a square mile for the metrically challenged]. 5G use cases include: Internet of Things (IoT); extreme video and gaming applications; explosive data density usage; public safety; Public Switched Telephone Networks (PSTN) sunset; and context-aware services. User-driven requirements include: battery life; per-user data rate and latency; robustness and resiliency; mobility; seamless user experience; and context-aware network. And from the infrastructure perspective, network-driven requirements include: scalability; network capacity; cost efficiency; automated system management & configuration; network flexibility; energy efficiency; coverage; security; diverse spectrum operation; and, unified system framework. However it is very early in the hype cycle, with final standards 12-18 months away, and products and services expected to trickle out over the next couple of years. The market should become relevant by 2021-22, and there will be 1 billion 5G connections by 2025. So what does that mean to IT and CXOs today? “This is going to be a transformative change even though a couple of years away from mainstream adoption,” said Varun Chhabra, unstructured data expert at Dell EMC. He told IT Trends & Analysis it’s going to be a “gamechanger”. It will enable enterprises and businesses to provide their  customers with “a completely different way to engage with their brands.” While still a work in progress, 5G needs to be: a “chameleon” technology that can adapt to differing demands of wireless services — whether to support high bandwidth, low latency, bursty traffic, ultra-reliable services, or a combination of these capabilities, according to a recent report from the Telecommunications Industry Association. The TIA survey found that operators are uncertain how 5G might prove to be transformative, but while ‘history suggests that while it may underachieve relative to expectations in the short term, it will overachieve in the long term.’ As with any significant technology transition, there are billions of dollars being spent to either lead the change, or at least minimize the threat of being roadkill on the faster, broader information highway. Some proof points include: -5G commercial services will launch in 2020 and there will be 24 million 5G subscriptions...

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Compuware Revs Up Mainframe Threat Detection By 30%
Apr06

Compuware Revs Up Mainframe Threat Detection By 30%

It is generally accepted that the mainframe, AKA Big Iron, is the most secure IT platform available, and a significant reason why: 55% of enterprise apps need the mainframe; 70% of enterprise transactions touch a mainframe; and, 70-80% of the world’s corporate data resides on a mainframe. However, the things which are driving today’s dominant IT paradigm, digital transformation — cloud computing, Internet of Things (IoT), big data and analytics (BDA), mobility, social media and security — are also increasing the mainframe threatscape, and Compuware is trying to do something about that. “It is the most secure platform by far,” said Compuware CEO, Chris O’Malley. But breaches happen, he tells IT Trends & Analysis, although most of these things that happen can be prevented. “Most of the breaches are from the inside.” That was the challenge a customer presented to Compuware, identify where and how recurring breach was taking place. The mainframe software vendor’s response led to Compuware Application Audit, a cybersecurity and compliance solution that ‘enhances the ability of enterprises to stop insider threats by fully capturing and analyzing start-to-finish mainframe application session user activity.’ The new standalone solution is a one-stop shop to: -detect, investigate and respond to inappropriate activity by internal users with access; -detect, investigate and respond to hacked or illegally purchased user accounts; -support criminal/legal investigations with complete and credible forensics; and, -fulfill compliance mandates regarding protection of sensitive data. A year ago the company partnered with CorreLog to provide a similar set of capabilities by integrating Compuware’s Hiperstation Application Auditing solution with CorreLog SIEM Agent for z/OS. The new solution brings a number of advantages, including collaborations with CorreLog, Syncsort and Splunk, to enable it to be integrated with popular SIEM solutions such as Splunk, IBM QRadar SIEM and HPE Security ArcSight ESM. While cybersecurity is not and won’t be a core focus of the company, Compuware Application Audit continues the company’s recent practice of making a major product introduction every 90 days. “We’ve put in more innovation in the last 10 quarters than our competitors have done in the last 10 years,” said O’Malley. The mainframe computing environment, with protocols dating back decades, is a new frontier of exploration for both the White Hat (ethical) and the Black Hat (criminal) hackers. “Ultimately we want people to understand that, because of its widespread usage as a core system in many critical infrastructures from finance to air travel; its relative obscurity; and lack of real wide-spread exposure to the hacking public; this system is rife with opportunities to be further secured and hardened.“  Chad Rikansurd (@bigendiansmalls) What he’s saying is that mainframe computing environments...

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HPE Buys its Way Up-Market in Hyperconverged Systems

HPE’s announced plan to acquire SimpliVity for $650M says interesting things about the state of both HPE and the market for software-defined, hyperconverged infrastructure solutions. There are certainly good business reasons to pursue such a deal. As HPE noted in its announcement, the hyperconverged market (estimated to be approximately $2.4 billion in 2016) is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 25 percent, to nearly $6 billion, by 2020. Compare that to the recent single-digit gains in volume sold and flat or declining revenues in overall general purpose server sales, and you can see why HPE believes SimpliVity should help buoy up its bottom line. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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