Yesterday, HP announced two new products: the new P10000 3Par Storage System (V-Class) and PeerMotion (a data migration feature for both P10000 3Par and P4000 Lefthand).

New 3Par Hardware

This is a good news for HP/3Par customer because it’s the first real announcement from HP about 3Par after the acquisition and reaffirms that they are working hard on storage.

The V-Class is an update to the previous tier 1 T-Class storage system: new (4th generation) ASIC, updated front-end connectivity and back-end (but still no SAS), more disks and so on. (you can find many detailed and technical information at the official HP website).
What I can say is that this update is, more or less, what you can expect from 3Par: it’s the logical progression of the platform.
I’m sure we will soon see tons of amazing benchmarks to demonstrate what this new HW is really worth of!

Peer Motion software

Well, we know that the future lies in federated storage system pools and this is the first step that HP is taking in that direction.

Peer Motion, as you can read on the official website and product data sheet, is a software feature allowing non disruptive data migrations between similar systems.
This means that you can move LUNs (and relative workloads) between systems without service disruption to load balance the traffic and obtain the maximum from your storage systems.

Unfortunately the documentation on Peer Motion is very vague and I still haven’t found any useful technical informations on it.
The documentation on the website talks about federation but the word “migration” appears very often. The confusion reaches its peak when you read analysts reports where Peer Motion is compared to EMC FLM (a product aimed at data migrations between DMX and VMAX!).
From my personal point of view, Peer Motion should be compared to Compellent’s Live Volume or EMC Vplex.

At the moment, It’s not clear to me how PeerMotion works technically, what kind of resources it needs (i.e. how LUNs are moved between systems), the integration (in terms of transparency to the hosts) with other S.O./Hypervisors/Applications and the level of automation we can expect from it.

Analysts: the bad of the announcement

IMHO, the worst part of the announcement were the first analyst papers (here, here and here). It’s obvious to me that they saw the same slideware and then produced “copy&paste” marketing documents. Calling reports this kind of documents is non-sense and they’re an insult to end users.

Bottom line

The P10000 is a great piece of hardware (at least on the spec sheet) and Peer Motion could be a great feature for modern datacenters. The fact that Peer Motion was also announced for P4000 Lefthand (and is compatible with old 3Par arrays) is the icing on the cake and confirms the strong HP commitment on next generation storage solutions.
I can’t comment on the quality of the Peer Motion technical implementation at the moment but I’ll investigate more and hope to get a real demo of it soon.