HP Recasts Entry-Level Storage Debate

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HP has introduced new entry-level storage offerings that the company claims cost 25-50% less than comparable solutions from Dell/EMC and IBM.

The HP StorageWorks Modular Smart Array (MSA) family includes two direct-attached storage (DAS) offerings and one storage area network (SAN) model.

“They’re coming in at very competitive pricing,” Mike Karp, senior analyst at Enterprise Management Associates, told Enterprise Storage Forum. “When you get a major player like that coming in, it buys a level of service that may not have existed before, and it provides customers with a growth path.”

The MSA1000, the entry-level SAN offering, costs $17,345, compared to $23,000 for the Dell/EMC CX200 and $26,604 for the
IBM FAStT200, HP says.

IBM , for its part, says it considers the $32,000 FAStT600 model to be the competition for the CX200.

HP’s MSA1000 offers transmission rates of up to 30,000 IOPS (Input/Output operations per second), throughput of up to 200 MB per second, and
scalability from 2-6 TB.

In comparison, the Dell/EMC CX200 offers 40,000 IOPS, 200 MB throughput, and also scales to 6 TB, while the dual controller IBM FAStT600 delivers 45,000
IOPS, 400 MB throughput, and scalability to 6.4 TB.

The two new DAS products are the MSA30, for workgroup and departmental users, and the MSA500, for remote sites and distributed clustered environments.

At $7,944 for a comparable configuration, HP says the MSA500 is 53% cheaper than the Dell DAS High-Availability Package, which lists for $17,000.

The MSA30, MSA500, and MSA1000 are available immediately, with estimated U.S. list prices starting at $3,200, $5,700, and $9,995, respectively, and can run on either Microsoft Windows or Linux operating systems.

The offerings are targeted at small and medium businesses (SMBs), as well as enterprises that want an easily replicable solution for remote offices, says Paul Miller, HP’s VP of marketing for Industry Standard Servers.

The drives in all three models are transferable, and each device immediately recognizes data from the other devices. That data and drive migration is unique to HP, according to Miller.

Miller says HP’s aggressive pricing is the result of the company’s merger with Compaq.

“You’ll see HP continue to be price-aggressive in the storage and server space,” Miller told ESF. “We’re not just slashing prices. We’re doing
it by our capabilities.”

HP is also offering a number of packaged solutions for ease of deployment.

The ProLiant DL380 Packaged Cluster with MSA500 includes two HP ProLiant DL380 servers, an MSA500 enclosure, two host bus adapters (HBAs), and required
cables. HP says the solution is ideal for remote and branch offices with limited on-site IT support. It carries an estimated U.S. list price of $9,999.

The ProLiant DL380 Packaged Cluster with MSA1000 includes two HP ProLiant DL380 servers, an MSA1000 enclosure, two HBAs, one eight-port Fibre Channel switch, and required cables, and is targeted at multiple clusters and multi-node clusters capable of supporting up to 20 servers. It lists for

MSA500 and MSA1000 Starter Kits provide hardware and software for storage consolidation in direct attach SCSI or entry-level SAN environments, respectively, and the MSA500 and MSA1000 High Availability Kits enhance the Starter Kit offerings by providing hardware and software for fully redundant configurations.

The MSA500 and MSA1000 Starter Kits cost $5,499 and $14,900, respectively, and the MSA500 and MSA1000 High Availability Kits list for $3,999 and $14,500, respectively.

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Paul Shread
Paul Shread
eSecurity Editor Paul Shread has covered nearly every aspect of enterprise technology in his 20+ years in IT journalism, including an award-winning series on software-defined data centers. He wrote a column on small business technology for Time.com, and covered financial markets for 10 years, from the dot-com boom and bust to the 2007-2009 financial crisis. He holds a market analyst certification.
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