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HP sees 3PAR as a three-gap product

Now that Hewlett-Packard has closed its $2.35 billion 3PAR acquisition, HP executives are looking for 3PAR’s InServ storage systems to fill three spots in its product lineup.

HP’s GM of enterprise storage, servers and networking David Donatelli said Tuesday during HP analyst day that 3PAR is a technology leader in the storage space and a key to his plans to revive HP’s storage business. Pointing to HP’s 11% market share in external storage, Donatelli said “storage is an area we really want to improve on. We want to go after the 89 percent of the market we don’t have.”

And HP is counting on its shiny new toy to chase that market share.

“3PAR has the new storage software architecture on the market, and it has all the features customers want,” Donatelli said, mentioning thin provisioning and sub-volume automated tiering among those features.

Donatelli said 3PAR’s products will complement HP’s current storage lineup without replacing any platform. The vendor plans to continue its P4000 (Left-Hand iSCSI), P6500 and P8500 (EVA) and P9500 (XP) families, as well as its scale-out NAS (Ibrix). But he said EVA would become a lower mid-tier platform with 3PAR taking over the high end of the midrange, open systems enterprise, and cloud storage segments.

“With 3PAR, we can cover multiple markets with a single product,” Donatelli said. “Everybody has unique products by market segment, even we do. But for the service provider and cloud space we had nothing. 3Par covers mid-tier, the high end and the cloud. You can start it small [with two controllers] and grow it [to eight controllers]. It supports three distinct markets.”

HP launched its P9500 enterprise system Monday based on the same architecture as Hitachi Data Systems’ Virtual Storage Platfrom (VSP). Donatelli said that product “is great for our installed base and mainframes.”

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