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SAN basics: All the tools you need to purchase a storage-area network

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HP XP7 Storage enterprise SAN array

The HP XP7 Storage SAN array offers high-availability and disaster recovery features for highly virtualized data centers with large storage requirements.

The HP XP7 Storage enterprise storage SAN array has high-availability (HA) and disaster recovery (DR) features...

to limit downtime, and employs the Common/Consistent Command Line Interface. The XP7 offers a Disk Controller Chassis rack and Drive Chassis rack, and each rack can be configured to prioritize capacity, performance or a balance of the two.

The XP7 Storage unit fits up to 2,304 small form-factor (SFF) drives, 1,152 large form-factor drives, 384 SFF solid-state drives or 192 flash module drives. All drives use SAS interconnect, though the unit also supports near-line SAS drives. A fully configured unit has a total usable capacity of 5.9 petabytes (PB) and a raw capacity of 6.8 PB. The unit supports an additional 247 PB of external storage. In addition, RAID 1, RAID 5 and RAID 6 are supported with a variety of data-to-parity ratios. The HP XP7 Storage array comes with 192 8 Gbps Fibre Channel (FC) ports, 96 8 Gbps/16 Gbps FC ports, 176 8 Gbps Fibre Connection ports or 176 10 Gbps Fibre Channel over Ethernet ports. It has a maximum supported cache of 2 TB, with up to 80 GB of shared memory. A variety of operating systems are supported, including HP NonStop, HP OpenVMS, HP-UX, VMware, Linux, Oracle Solaris and Microsoft Windows.

The XP7 Storage shares the same basic hardware architecture as the Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform because of Hewlett-Packard’s joint technology relationship and OEM agreement with Hitachi Ltd. However, HP develops its own software and firmware for the XP7 Storage.

HP XP7 Storage array features include dedicated High Availability Software, a Data Replication Solution Service and Critical Service software called HP C-Track. The High Availability Software uses an active-active configuration, allowing two XP7 Storage arrays to provide simultaneous read-write access to multiple hosts or a cluster. This means if one half of the cluster fails, the data load will be passed to the remaining half with no downtime or service interruption.

HP XP7 Storage array features include dedicated High Availability Software, a Data Replication Solution Service and Critical Service software called HP C-Track.

HP's Critical Service software provides 24/7 monitoring of the environment. Outages are addressed with a dedicated critical support helpline, with a six-hour timeline from call to repair. The Data Replication Service comes in one of two forms: Business Copy software or the Continuous Access suite, which are both data redundancy tools. Business Copy is a local replication software that provides data copies within a single XP7 Storage unit and its attached storage, using array-based mirroring and snapshot technology. Continuous Access is a family of HA and DR tools that perform data mirroring between XP7 Storage units, including remote mirroring in high workload environments.

The HP XP7 Storage array has a starting price of $462,000, though this may change based on the configuration chosen. It comes with a series of dedicated helplines for support bundled with the Critical Service software, as well as a three-year warranty for parts, labor and on-site maintenance.

Next Steps

Storage needs must adapt to high-availability requests

Storage array performance metrics can be hard to decipher

SAN buying basics guide walks users through the purchase process

This was last published in August 2015

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Buyer's Guide

SAN basics: All the tools you need to purchase a storage-area network

BUYER'S GUIDE SECTIONS

  1. Buying a SAN
  2. SAN system options

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