HP Puts Big Business Storage Within SMB Reach

HP has revamped its data storage portfolio, expanding on its options for small- and midsized- businesses (SMBs).

The company today unveiled new products for organizations whose storage management needs are just beginning to outgrow what local and external drives can provide. Among them is the MSA 1040 storage system, a stepping stone toward advanced storage area networks (SAN), according to Craig Nunes, vice president of marketing for HP Storage.

Exemplifying one of his company’s “strong go-to options for customers in the entry level,” the new MSA packs more power for less money, allowing a greater number of small businesses to adopt more productivity-enhancing applications, consolidate storage or virtualize their environments, said Nunes. “We have packed about 50 percent more performance and come in at a 25 percent lower price,” he boasted.

A 1 GbE iSCSI, dual-controller configuration starts at $6,500. Prices start at $7,500 and $8,500 for the 8 Gb Fibre Channel and 10 GbE iSCSI versions, respectively. By HP’s estimates, this puts business-class storage management within the reach of 50 percent more SMBs, possibly boosting the platform popularity even further. More than 400,000 deployments of HP MSA Storage have graced the server rooms and data centers of organizations worldwide. The new HP MSA 1040 storage system goes on sale on March 31.

What’s New for Small Business NAS

On the network-attached storage (NAS) front, the company has issued updates its HP StoreEasy Storage portfolio to provide “a stress-free approach to storage,” said Nunes. They include “new sync-share capabilities” along with a “40 percent performance boost” that delivers snappier file access courtesy of Server Message Block protocol bandwidth management capabilities, in part, at no additional cost to existing and new customers.

Integrating HP StoreEasy into a small business network is easier than before, added Nunes. “We added a wizard to speed network configuration,” he said. New built-in intelligence allows even novices to get their NAS up and running, he added. In addition, new quality-of-service (QoS) features provide load-balancing companies that use Microsoft’s Hyper-V virtualized environment.

HP’s updated StoreEasy Storage systems ship on April 7. Prices start at $4,490.

Data Backup for Growth-oriented Medium Business

Firmly representing the “M” in SMB (or perhaps some very well-heeled small businesses) is the HP StoreOnce 4500, the tech giant’s disk-based backup system. Nunes described the StoreOnce 4500 as the “first appliance that has a good amount of disk expandability. You start small but grow into it.”

Compared to its predecessor’s upper limit of 36 TB, the new StoreOnce 4500 can scale “up to 124 TB with no change in entry pricing (a free firmware and software update for existing customers). We really boosted the headroom here,” said Nunes.

To maximize that capacity, the system features built-in data deduplication. Customers can mix-and-match drive capacity, and the 4500 now supports any combination of 2 TB and 4 TB drive shelves, up to three shelves. Each 48 TB expansion shelf weighs in at a hefty $70,000.

No need to give into sticker shock as SMBs mull their data protection options, said Nunes. The StoreOnce platform is designed to grow along with a business. “Customers can start with a virtual machine-based appliance” and upgrade as finances allow, he said.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Small Business Computing. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

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