Published: August 15th, 2016

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is giving its channel partners a new tool they can use to entice small and medium-sized business (SMB) owners who might be on the fence regarding on-site data storage.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based IT giant, which spun off from the original Hewlett-Packard Company last year, released two new storage solutions today – the flexible hybrid cloud-based StoreVirtual 3200 and solid-state drive (SSD) based MSA 2042 – specifically aimed at helping SMBs modernize their on-site infrastructure without breaking the bank.

HPE Storage director Brad Parks says the StoreVirtual 3200 and MSA 2042 can help SMBs catch up to the storage capabilities of their enterprise competition.
HPE Storage director Brad Parks says the StoreVirtual 3200 and MSA 2042 can help SMBs catch up to the storage capabilities of their enterprise competition.

“I think the importance of storage and storage technology to both SMB and enterprise customers has increased significantly over the last number of years as technologies like virtualization have become more and more prevalent,” Brad Parks, HPE Storage’s director of GTM strategy and enablement, told CDN. “And the customers we talk to in the segment rely quite heavily on their local channel partners to help advise and serve their technology needs.”

SMB customers in particular are less likely to hire a dedicated IT staff, he noted, and are thus more likely to rely on the expertise of dedicated channel partners to help them out.

In recent years, many of those partners might have extolled the virtues of large-scale hybrid cloud and SSD storage, Parks said, but unfortunately HPE had been unable to accommodate its smaller-scale customer base because the technology simply wasn’t been affordable enough to do so – until now.

“With this release, we’re giving smaller customers access to technology that their larger brethren have been enjoying now for several years,” he said.

The HPE StoreVirtual 3200 (Courtesy HPE)
The HPE StoreVirtual 3200 (Courtesy HPE)

The StoreVirtual 3200 provides SMB customers with an entry-level, dual-controller storage array based on 64-bit ARM technology, a new RAID (redundant array of independent disks) stack, and advanced storage data services including support for more than 2000 snapshots, thin provisioning, and optional data recovery software for under $10,000. It’s also flexible enough to incorporate additional flash and hybrid cloud storage when needed.

“If you think about the ‘S’ in ‘SMB,’ when starting a new company you need e-mail, you need a CRM system… and in time, you may need to develop your own application or customize your platform for a specific industry, so with this release we’re giving those customers room to grow,” Parks said.

It can also save them money: According to HPE, the StoreVirtual 3200 can match the same performance and capacity as the company’s existing 2-node StoreVirtual 4000 configurations, at a 58 per cent lower cost.

The HPE MSA 2042 (Courtesy HPE)
The HPE MSA 2042 (Courtesy HPE)

Meanwhile, the MSA 2042 adds 800 GB of built-in SSD capacity to HPE’s flagship entry-level array, along with an enterprise-level software suite that includes flash acceleration, automated tiering, and data protection features. According to HPE, it delivers up to 60 percent more database transactions per second, and has an application response time 80 percent faster than its predecessor, at 46 per cent of the cost.

“Customers who are using shared storage are often storing data for four or five different critical applications all in the same place, and if you put your eggs in one basket, it better be a good basket,” Parks said, likening the difference to using an HDD-based laptop versus an iPad or iPhone.

“After having that ability to instantly turn on your device and have access to everything you need, none of us would go back to the days of a laptop with a spinning disk drive,” he said. “Even small or midsize businesses are going to want to use flash to make sure that users who access their applications they get that instant gratification.”

And like the StoreVirtual 3200, MSA 2042 allows customers to keep their existing data while expanding it with flash and traditional disk drives in the future. It also supports up to 512 array snapshots and remote replication to any MSA system.

Both devices are available worldwide starting today, with the MSA 2042 priced around $12,820, and the StoreVirtual 3200 around $7,860.

Parks said that HPE has been working with its 100,000-strong channel partners worldwide to ensure the launch is a smooth one, and looks forward to seeing its Canadian partners help a new audience modernize their storage.