back to article Extreme makeover: HP storage edition

Watch out EMC, HDS, IBM and NetApp, there's a new storage kid in town. Pale, undernourished HP is on a regimen of 3PAR vitamins and steroids and has spoken about its plans to bulk up and kick ass. HP StorageWorks revealed itself in its new colours this morning in an event at Barcelona to which they flew sundry journalists and …

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Dead Vulture

A title? Yeah, that's required

First of all, how can one compare "being a leader" or "the number one spot" to "11% market share"?

Second of all, why is 11% not the top spot? There are 10 storage vendors, so each could have a market share of 10%, 11% is then leading. OTOH, there 1000 server vendors / manufacturers, each having a 0.1% market share, HP being leading means: 0.15% market share. Is this better or worse than 11%?

Third of all, Dear Reporter, who are HP's competitors? First they include EMC, then later they do not?

Lastly, but this is simply HP, HP has never had storage technology. It always bought / resold other peoples' storage. HDS, EMC, IBM to name a few. HP is simply not capable of building and henceforth *understanding* storage technology. Henceforth they are on the same level as any outsourcing organization reseller certain pieces of tin, with the one difference that HP can stick their badge on, and others cannot.

How much chance does that give HP for mission critical systems? What would be the one reason for me to buy an HDS frame from HP? Is the HP branded frame more integrated with the HP-UX server, or does it not matter? Why would I want to buy 3PAR technology from HP, if I don't want to buy it from the manufacturer in the first place?

Those are the real questions HP should be asking itself. Not: Which storage system is so good that we can actually make a profit off of it?

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As Guus said

I'm with Guus on this one (Hi Guus, by the way, long time no see :-).

HP has only been capable of meta-integration in the storage area, so far. Look at all their tapes libs: all of the market manufacturers (Overland, Quantum, STK etc ...) with an HP sticker and some HP-stamped software to give a marketing point that it's "integrated", where it is not.

The XP has never been any different: one layer of HDS SW, one of HP, the goal being to be able to get rid of HDS at any time to buy from another shop.

You simply can't build storage nowadays with the assumption you can change HW vendor at any time.

That's the difference between EMC/Netapp/IBM and HP: the focus.

Now, maybe it will change, but as far as I'm concerned, I'll come back to assess this in 5 years time. After they've bought a dozen new storage companies and will still struggle to put all of the pieces in place.

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WTF?

please read and delete

As it is not possible to comment on Orlowski's posts, I felt I should point out to El Reg that his story on the Council of Europe is completely factually wrong. It was the Council of Europe (47 Member States - human rights focussed) that adopted the net neutrality recommendation. It was not the EU, it was not the EU's Council of Ministers (27 Member states, economy focussed). The whole article is sheer 'nads. I've tried to explain this to him before - his responses was "they're all the same".

Please buy some real journalists - and not idiots whose heads are so far up their own backsides they could lick their own tonsils.

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Times are changing

Some of the criticisms above are fair, some are most definitely not. HP EVA was, even until fairly recently, ground breaking technology. And hugely successful. Yes, HP have been rebadging a few OEM arrays over the years but so have IBM, Dell, SUN, etc. It's been common practice in the storage industry. But things are changing. With the 3PAR acquisition, HP legitimately have their own IP at every level of the stack. And by stack I mean servers and networking as well as storage. Noone else has this technology, integration, and market performance at all levels. Cisco have networking, are trying with servers and don't have storage. IBM have tried and failed to crack the X86 market fully and have a hugely complex and random portfolio of storage products. HP have servers nailed and with P4000 (3 digit % growth!!) and now 3PAR they could have the pieces that have been missing from the storage portfolio. If they throw their full weight behind 3PAR, and it looks like they intend to, then expect to see that market share increasing quickly.

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Badgers

errmm, no

The EVA was indeed groundbreaking when Compaq invented it. Check your calendar; that was over a decade ago.

The current generation EVA is way behind competitors in speeds & feeds, and last I checked it still doesn't have truly online firmware updates. (Asking customers to increase timeouts to the moon doesn't count. iSCSI implementation is horrid, and NFS and CIFS are non-existent. It is a thoroughly unimpression midrange array and only fools are buying them. Even bigger fools are those who buy the XP.

1. Dump the XP line ASAP-- abdicate those who are locked-in to HDS and sell everyone else 3PAR.

2. Get everyone in the highend and midrange on 3PAR-based arrays. They can't scale like an XP, but there are fewer customers for 'platinum' arrays every year. 3PAR will serve the market fine.

3. Lefthand is working fine. Don't screw it up. :-P

4. Buy DotHill. HP is selling a boatload of MSA 2000 arrays OEMed from DotHill, and it is a compelling low-cost SAN and DAS. So quit screwing around and just buy DotHill already.

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Unhappy

David Scott?

My main concern is that David Scott may not have the experience to run an enterprise and value storage division. Sure, he managed a company that made a good cloud product, but now he's head of a division that makes kit to cover not just cloud but also ties in neatly with a number of other hp products (backup, management, servers - especially hp-ux - and other vendor's storage devices). I'm just not convinced at this point that David Scott is the man for the job.

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FAIL

Re: errmm, no

You really dont know much do you!

First off Compaq didnt invent it, it was actually a DEC product. I suspect you have never even played with one which is why your comments are so ill informed (if you had you would recognise the WWN set from the DEC pool for example).

Secondly it isnt behind in speeds and feeds its still more performant than most midrange arrays (and all the major ones at least) and more importantly its still as easy to use (unlike most other arrays) the only area it lacks in are features like thin prov and auto tiering (soon to be corrected from a roadmap I have seen).

Thirdly there are very few arrays that can ACTUALLY do true online firmware upgrades. If you really understood arrays you would understand why (clue, its bloody complicated to engineer, which is why most cant do it!).

Yes iSCSI is poor for the same reason that the EMC implementation and the NetApp implementations are so poor (infact most implementations except P4000/Equalogic). Yes it doesnt do NFS and CIFS so what its an FC block based array, whats your point?

Even bigger fools than those who buy the XP eh? (sorry did you mean XP only or are you lumping the HDS resell of the same tech (Hitachi is the developer not HDS!) USP-V in there as well?) Well this definately suggests you dont know what you are talking about! Those that buy the XP will continue to do so for good reason, 3par whilst a good buy isnt half the array that the XP is! (think mainframe/UNIX environments and their requirements compared to x86 and you will see why).

As for the rest of your comments Im not going to bother as you are entitled to your opinion.

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