HP Announces Innovations in Server Networking and Storage Technologies

March 14, 2005

HP today announced advances in its server networking and storage technologies to help customers simplify their IT infrastructures, improve manageability and performance and lower the costs of enterprise computing environments.
Innovating on top of standards, HP is now offering the industry's first multifunction networking adapters, which provide a "unified fabric" for networking, storage and high-performance clustering over a single connection point. The company is also providing a smooth transition to Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) technology with a comprehensive portfolio that includes a new industry-standard small form factor hard drive, RAID6 availability and HP universal storage technology. HP's universal storage enables customers to seamlessly migrate data across HP's server and storage environments.

Working with partners such as Broadcom and Seagate, HP has extended the industry-standard capabilities of existing networks and SAS-based storage with innovations that can be deployed in existing environments. Over the next 12 months, all of these new technologies will be made available in upcoming HP BladeSystem, HP Integrity, HP ProLiant and HP StorageWorks products.

"Customers expect HP technology and product innovations to improve their productivity and lower their cost of ownership," said Brad Anderson, senior vice president and general manager, Industry Standard Servers, HP. "New standards like SAS and unified fabrics are a direct result of HP's strategy – inventing technology and then collaborating with industry leaders to produce innovative industry standards that move the entire IT infrastructure on a curve that is faster, better and cheaper than before."

Innovations power customers into the next generation of server networking and storage

The typical server environment requires separate connectivity products for networking, storage, interconnects and infrastructure management. With HP's new multifunction networking adapters, customers can use a single connection to manage their infrastructure as a single, unified fabric.

Working closely with Broadcom, HP developed and plans to ship the industry's first multifunction networking adapters – the HP NC370F and the NC370T for PCI-X bus architectures – which help reduce the complexity and costs that customers experience when configuring their server infrastructure. HP is the first vendor to ship multifunction networking beta products to customers and expects general availability by the end of June.

"We are pleased that our development relationship with HP has resulted in these leading-edge networking products based on Broadcom's 5706 networking silicon," said Tom Lagatta, group vice president, Enterprise Computing Group, Broadcom. "Server customers continue to look for this kind of technology, one that simplifies their infrastructure and improves system performance. HP's innovative multifunction networking adapter offers significant cost savings and simplicity to customers via a single Ethernet connection."

HP's SAS offering gives customers improved performance, reliability and scalability while delivering less power consumption and greater configuration flexibility compared to the parallel connections that most architectures have today. HP has developed a comprehensive strategy that simplifies this transition and offers customers enhanced capabilities through:

-- Standardization on universal small form factor drives for SAS and SATA. HP's universal drive approach helps simplify deployments and reduce costs. For the first time, customers can mix both SAS and SATA drives in the same serial backplane taking universal storage to the next level while offering customers greater flexibility.

-- Enhanced resiliency of SAS and SATA scale-out solutions with industry-standard RAID6 built on HP's Advanced Data Guarding technology. RAID6 offers customers an enhanced level of data protection with a second disk available for backup.

-- Seamless migration of serial drives and data between servers, direct-attached storage and HP StorageWorks enclosures. The serial drives are easy to deploy and easily migrated by simply removing the drives and inserting them into another SAS backplane enclosure allowing complete data migration in minutes, not hours.

-- Delivery of the most comprehensive serial infrastructure solutions with new Smart Array serial controllers, storage enclosure (MSA), HP ProLiant servers, and with Hot-Plug SAS and SATA hard drives.

"As data demands in the enterprise continue to grow, HP and Seagate have worked closely to ensure that the entry of SAS in the marketplace is optimally timed to meet the performance demands of the upcoming HP systems," said Brian Dexheimer, executive vice president, Global Sales and Marketing, Seagate. "Deploying SAS-based systems will enable users to take advantage of new levels of breakthrough performance and scalability while retaining the functionality and reliability of SCSI."

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