Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Tuesday, February 7, 2023

HPE Opens Up Server Storage, Networking 

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (NYSE: HPE) continues to open up its cloud infrastructure offerings with the release of a new storage server line as its targets the datacenter shift to specialized infrastructure and open source cloud computing platforms like OpenStack.

HPE is banking on the steady shift to open infrastructure as a way to manage cloud-scale datacenters. Along with enhancements to its cloud-based line of servers, the company also released upgrades to its network switches as it woos cloud service providers looking for ways to handle explosive data growth and movement.

The new storage server line targets "massive cloud storage" in datacenters while emphasizing enterprise applications such as data analytics. The "minimalist bare-iron design" based on open standards also is geared to high-density storage in a small datacenter footprint. HPE said the its new storage server supports up to 80 large form factor hard drives delivering up to 640 TB of storage in a 4U chassis.

The new storage server line also incorporates software-defined object and file storage resulting from HPE's expanded partnership with Scality announced earlier this year. The partnership addresses efforts to overcome data storage at massive scale. The expanded HPE-Scality partnership builds on an earlier agreement to package Scality's Ring software with HPE's Apollo 4000 and ProLiant servers. Hewlett Packard Ventures has also acquired an equity stake in San Francisco-based Scality.

Scality's software supports HPE's x86 servers. This week's announcement expands support to HPE's new line of Cloudline CL5200 storage servers. The goal is to reduce the cost of datacenter storage at the petabyte scale, the partners said on Tuesday (March 8).

As datacenter storage capacity grows, networking is fast becoming the next major bottleneck for big data and other web-scale applications. With that in mind, HPE rolled out a family of network switches also aimed at datacenter service providers. The package of four new switches, including a 25/100 Gbps option, target specific applications and workload requirements, HPE noted. The switch portfolio runs on several open-source network operating systems. HPE said that list would include OpenSwitch later this year.

HPE meanwhile said this week it is expanding Helion platform-as-a-service that includes an OpenStack enterprise distribution based on a reference framework for supporting OpenStack Swift object storage. The new cloud object storage capability running on ProLiant Gen 9 servers is available now.

HPE said its new line of open-source storage servers and network switches are available now.

The open source infrastructure push follows HPE's upbeat quarterly earning report last week. The company reported quarterly earnings and revenue on March 3 that exceeded analysts' expectations. "During our first quarter as an independent company, we saw the progress that comes from being more focused and nimble," CEO Meg Whitman asserted.

About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).

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