HP Boosts Enterprise NAS

A series of upgrades focus on enterprise NAS and NAS/SAN combos

February 6, 2007

3 Min Read
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Hewlett-Packard has enhanced its NAS product line to appeal to enterprise IT pros intent on consolidating storage servers.

HP today released a new version of its Enterprise File Services Clustered Gateway, which combines an HP NAS gateway with network file virtualization OEM'd from a longstanding arrangement with PolyServe. (See PolyServe, HP Deal Expands .)

Now dubbed HP StorageWorks EVA File Services, the HP gateway and PolyServe software will be bundled with several HP SAN arrays to create a file- and block-based solution for corporate data centers.

A two-node starter kit will cost $90,000 and ship on March 1.

"It's not about saving money. The value is in saving time and sanity," says analyst Arun Taneja of the Taneja Group consultancy. While customers could previously combine HP products with the gateway with considerable effort, now the integration is done for them, Taneja points out.Another refreshed server, the HP ProLiant DL585 G2 Storage Server, combines an HP NAS gateway with Microsoft's Windows Unified Data Storage Server 2003 operating system. The bundle, priced from $18,687 and available February 17, is the second product that uses Microsoft's new software. The OS equips servers with NAS capabilities and, via the software Microsoft acquired from String Bean Software last year, with SCSI target functions as well.

So far, only Dell has announced a similar product leveraging Microsoft's combination software. (See Dell, Microsoft Team on NAS-Plus-iSCSI.)

HP also unveiled a Cisco MDS 9124e Fabric Switch module for its HP BladeSystem. The 4-Gbit/s Fibre Channel module will cost $6,000 for a 12-port model and $9,500 for 24 ports and ship on March 1.

Rounding out HP's announcement is that the vendor's Data Protector software utility for a range of operating systems, including Unix, Windows, and Linux, now has 256-bit AES encryption at a license cost of $490 per client.

Analysts say the group of announcements is incremental but will bolster HP's bid to compete with EMC and NetApp in enterprise NAS. HP already bolstered its SMB NAS bid with the release of All-In-One a few months ago. (See HP Fills In SMB Storage.)"There is a potpourri of announcements lumped together in this so-called launch," Taneja says. "A few, while not grandiose, will make a big difference in terms of HP's marketing efforts."

HP could use the help. This announcement is the first to be made after the company split off certain software products from its StorageWorks division in an effort to jumpstart ailing storage sales. (See HP Reshuffles More Software.)

At least one analyst, who asked not to be named, thinks the announcement, while lackluster, shows HP throwing weight behind storage improvements: "One has to ask, 'Where's the beef?' It comes across as rehashing old news... On the positive side, it's great to see HP at least making an announcement that they are still thinking about storage products, including the EVA."

Mary Jander, Site Editor, Byte and Switch

  • Dell Inc. (Nasdaq: DELL)

  • EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC)

  • Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ)

  • Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT)

  • Network Appliance Inc. (Nasdaq: NTAP)

  • PolyServe Inc.

  • Taneja Group0

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