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HP reveals its new Gen8 ProLiant Servers
February 17, 2012
HP has officially launched its Generation 8 (Gen8) ProLiant servers this week during its HP Global Partners Conference (GPC) 2012, taking place in Las Vegas.
The new Gen8 systems are the product of Project Voyager, which was a two-year, $300 million initiative with the sole aim to add more intelligence, automation and consideration for optimising power utilization, system configuration and management, and providing more efficient performance.
"We want to create the world's first self-sufficient servers," said John Gromala, HP's director of marketing for industry-standard servers and software. "We've embedded automation inside the systems and have intelligent links between the workloads and software that are operating and the hardware itself to cut the lifecycle operation tasks, get rid of those time-consuming tasks people are dealing with, and have lower facilities costs to cut the overall cost of those systems in half."
"HP is getting out ahead of the crowd," said Jed Scaramella, research manager for enterprise servers at IDC. "They didn't officially tie it to the processor but it is expected it will use that processor. I think HP really has a good strategy to announce early to get ahead." For its part, HP would only say that the ProLiant Gen8 servers will be equipped with x86-based processors from AMD and Intel.
At the heart of the systems, which HP will start shipping next month, is the company's ProActive Insight architecture, designed to give IT administrators constant updates on the server's health, power utilisation and key diagnostics. HP claims that these new features make it possible to deploy these servers three times faster than earlier systems with up to 93 percent less downtime.
The ProActive Insight architecture provides four key components:
1. Integrated Lifecycle Automation: By continuously monitoring the system, 69 percent of the routine tasks required for system updates can be eliminated, while allowing for the accelerated deployment of systems.
2. Dynamic Workload Acceleration: With the increased consumption of data, performance in processing these applications can increase by six times, the company claims, thanks to the system's new design that integrates converged server and storage. HP also boosted throughput with new data-mirroring techniques (via improved algorithms), providing more efficient performance from the storage system, which also provides improved uptime and setup.
3. Automated Energy Optimization: Information such as location, power utilization and thermal readings allow for improved aggregated usage of systems within the rack and datacenter, according to Gromala. By assimilating this information, it eliminates power configuration errors and the manual record-keeping that's required in the datacenter whenever a system gets deployed.
4. Proactive Service and Support: An online call-based IT management and personalized support portal called Insight Online is designed to substantially improve time to resolution by 40 percent. The company said this is achieved via an active link between the systems and HP to better deal with the service and support issues they've dealt with in the past.