Converged server, network and storage solutions can be built and managed more easily, company says

Hewlett-Packard Co. has announced a new Virtual Connect module for BladeSystem that it says will speed up the delivery of applications and services over physical, virtual and cloud computing environments while cutting data centre TCO.

The company says that the enhancements to Virtual Connect provide enough bandwidth to simultaneously stream every movie and TV show on Netflix in HD on one 40Gb Ethernet port.

“IT departments are being increasingly pressured by the need to accommodate the mobile, BYOD workforce, the sheer number of users and by the intensive mining of huge amounts of data,” Robert Checketts, group manager, product marketing for BladeSystem products, told IT World Canada. “Big apps and solutions create bottlenecks, and managers need to improve performance and simplify information delivery.”

As things stand, service delivery is restricted by available bandwidth that has to be shared across applications, storage and networking resources. In response, IT departments are increasingly adopting a converged infrastructure platform where network connections can be managed more efficiently.

In addition to the new module – the full title is the HP Virtual Connect FlexFabric-20/40 F8 module for HP BladeSystem – HP has also rolled out two new FlexFabric Dual-port 20Gb 630 Series BladeSystem adapters. HP says that BladeSystem together with Virtual Connect enables network managers to converge server, network and storage solutions, and manage it all with the HP OneView management tool.

“The new 20 Gb port to the server now means that you can stream 10 Gb Ethernet and 8 Gb Fibre Channel simultaneously, plus have remaining bandwidth to handle all your management traffic,” Checketts said.

HP also announced that it has hit the 10 million mark in Virtual Connect port shipments. Ray Nix, director of BladeSystem product management , said that Virtual Connect’s market momentum has actually been accelerating. It took six years to reach the first five million shipments, he said in an intervew, but only half that time to cover the next five million.

To put the figure in perspective, HP (Nasdaq: HPQ) says that Virtual Connect technology “has reduced over 60,000 km of cable from data centres, or the equivalent of wrapping network cable around the Earth over 1.5 times.”

In addition to doubling the bandwidth of the server connection, HP says that the new module reduces network consolidation costs by 34 per cent compared with previous Virtual Connect iterations, and enables network changes to be made nine times faster than they can on competitors’ system.

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