I’m sitting here in the blogger lounge at HP Discover Europe trying to figure out how to summarize such an intense event in a comprehensive blog post, believe me, it’s no easy task.

First things first, big kudos to HP and Ivy Worldwide, these guys surely know how to pull a great show, everything was just perfect, maybe the Messe wasn’t that easy to navigate around and Frankfurt isn’t the warmest place to be in December 🙂 (next year Barcelona!) but these downs never overshadowed the ups: great announcements, great HP people to speak with and awesome networking occasions.

3Par for everybody!

So let’s start with the storage announcements, surely the topic du jour at HP Discover this year, we saw a massive rehaul of the midrange storage space, HP finally pulled the plug on the EVA and introduced a real midrange 3Par, called StoreServe 7000 (7200 and 7400) and renaming at the same time its high-end counterpart (ex V-Class) now called P10400 and P10800, but let’s get down to the nitty gritty details.

The new StoreServe is a killer machine, first of all, the package is now way smaller and dense than before, with both SFF and LFF drives available, they also moved to a familiar form factor based on (this is my guessing) those Xyratex disk enclosures that we all know and love.

Even if they moved to an industry-standard enclosure they still retain 100% 3Par DNA, with a two controller model (3Par StoreServe 7200) and a four controller model (3Par StoreServe 7400) plus we have new exciting features like Priority Optimization (QoS at the tenant and application level) and Peer Persistence which is similar to Compellent’s Live Volume: transparent failover between two replicating 3Par arrays within Metro distance.

My personal take is that we can now consider HP a strong player in the combative midrange storage market, let’s just hope the execution doesn’t kill the product 🙂

Fly me to the moon

Another interesting piece of tech shown during Discover is the so-called “Project Moonshot”.

Moonshot is a new server computing platform, based on a massively dense, custom-built (but with standard parts) architecture, built around low power Intel and ARM processors, just to give you a reference, we’re talking about a dozen of independent compute modules in a half-height, half-width blade, this is, according to HP, the future for every massively scalable deployment, but in a standardized and perfectly engineered manner, just to be clear, we’re not talking about SMB or SME products, this is something that will appeal the next Facebook or the new Twitter of 2014.

Hop, Hop, Hadoop

HP SL4500 is HP response to the growing demand of Hadoop-friendly hardware platforms, it’s a custom-built x86 industry standard server that can two compute nodes in 4U with a massive amount of disk space in a pretty dense package, not Moonshot-dense, but still very attractive to the space-constrained datacenter as we’re talking about 60 LFF drives in 4U (and you also get two compute nodes!).

My Take

As I already said, big kudos to HP because they pulled a great event together and they absolutely know how to bring great content and HP mindshare to the bloggers, they also finally unveiled what analysts and pundits predicted after the 3Par acquisition: a killer cut-down version of 3Par squarely aimed at the mid market, with an aggressive price tag and a plethora of enterprise functionalities.

DISCLAIMER: HP invited me to the event and covered traveling and lodging expenses but I’m under no obligation to write, tweet or say anything about the event.