HP Launches Virtualization Hardware, Services - InformationWeek

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HP Launches Virtualization Hardware, Services

HP also released a new version of its Unix operating system -- HP-UX 11i V3 -- to help manage processors, memory, and applications together in order to shift resources.

Hewlett-Packard this week launched several products ranging from thin clients and blade servers to disk arrays optimized for virtualization.

On the infrastructure level, HP on Wednesday introduced the ProLiant BL495c blade, which is designed specifically to host virtual machines. VM-friendly features include a maximum of 128 GB of memory and two additional network connections for a total of eight to communicate with applications and storage systems. Pricing for the BL495c starts at $2,449.

As a storage subsystem for virtualized applications, HP launched the StorageWorks 4400 Scalable NAS File Services. The new offering integrates the company's 4400 Enterprise disk array with HP's PolyServe NAS file system.

"The integrated offering is new, but the components are existing products," John Bennett, director of data center transformation solutions for HP, told InformationWeek.

The file system is optimized for virtualization in that it brings data stored in the disk array closer to virtualized applications, based on usage patterns, for quicker access and overall better performance, Bennett said. The starting price for the integrated storage sub-system is $94,270.

HP also released a new version of its Unix operating system. The HP-UX 11i V3 is available with HP's Virtual Server Environment that's been upgraded with features that boost the performance of VMs by eliminating overhead, particularly as it relates to memory and input/output. At the system level, the combined software can manage processors, memory, and applications together in order to shift resources to where they are most needed to increase the throughput of the machine by as much as 15% over previous generations of the product, Bennett said.

On the desktop side, HP introduced four thin clients for companies looking to virtualize desktop applications on a central server. The t5630, t5545, t5540 and t5145 clients feature scratch-resistant finishes, expanded multimedia features and better management support. Pricing starts at $199.

HP also introduced a new blade workstation. The ProLiant xw460c delivers better graphics capabilities through the latest Nvidia Quadro FX graphics card. The high-end workstation is targeted at financial trading, computer-aided design and the oil and gas industry.

Finally, HP launched blade PCs and thin clients certified for Citrix, a maker of virtual desktop infrastructure software. HP also is making "virtualization accelerator services" available to companies that want HP consultants to help with the planning, designing and implementing of virtualization products. The consulting services start at $15,000.

HP introduced its latest virtualization technology less than two weeks before the start of the VMworld conference in Las Vegas. HP rival Dell is scheduled to make a virtualization-related technology announcement on Friday.

In related news, InformationWeek has published a report that assesses how virtualization does in smaller enterprises. The download is available here (registration required).

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