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HP Expands SMB Storage, Virtualization Portfolio

New unified storage systems and virtualization software aim to make it easier for small and mid-sized companies to cut costs and manage IT infrastructure.

Hewlett-Packard on Thursday rolled out a batch of storage, server virtualization, remote access and consolidation products and services that are designed to help small and mid-sized businesses cut costs and simplify their IT infrastructures.

The HP StorageWorks X1000 storage systems and X3000 gateways use Microsoft's new Windows Storage Server 2008 and can handle file and application storage. The NAS appliances are based on the HP ProLiant G6 platform and include all of the management capabilities from that system, such as remote and fault management, according to Lee Johns, director of marketing for HP's enterprise storage group. They leverage the data de-duplication capabilities of the Windows Storage Server to reduce the amount data that needs to be stored and boost available capacity by up to 35 percent and increase file serving performance by up to 30 percent, he said.

The company also added support for smaller 2.5-inch drives to the HP StorageWorks 2000i and 2000sa G2 Modular Smart Arrays, which can boost storage capacity per rack by up to 33 percent and cut power consumption by up to 50 percent.

"The next-generation MSA 2000 can hold twice the number of drives and provide twice the performance, and we make it easy to swap out controllers so you can move from SAS to iSCSI if you want," Johns said. The company has increased the maximum number of drives the system can hold from 48 to 60 large drives or 99 of the smaller drives. It also now supports additional operating systems like HP UX and Solaris, he said. Other changes include an increase in the number of snapshots from 64 to 255 and a boost in the maximum LUN size.

"We've also made it easier for customers to configure and manage the system and have upgraded the internal controller with faster processors. And you can put the X3000 in front of the MSA to create unified storage," John said.

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