HP's white trash data center is up for anything

Your POD or mine?


Hewlett-Packard has finally found its way into the data center trailer park.

It took a while, but the hardware vendor is introducing its own scheme for selling chunks of data centers in pre-packaged containers. HP joins the likes of Sun, IBM, Rackable, and Verari with similar White Trash Data Center programs.

HP calls its offering a "Performance Optimized Data Center" or POD. HP joins IBM by providing the option of filling containers not just with the vendor's own kit, but also a wide variety of third-party metal.

"We engineered our PODs to be the most flexible infrastructure in the industry," said Paul Miller, HP's marketing chief of enterprise gear. "If it can fit into a 19-inch rack, we can pretty much fit it into our POD."

Miller said customers are all about standardized hardware in the container arena. For example, the standards approach lets customers start with half a POD and then move their existing equipment into the container when they need the extra space.

Most other vendors have chosen a ground-up approach for the job — fitting their containers with specialized gear made for life in a 40-foot unit. HP, however, doesn't have new hardware for its container. But at least it's managed to cram a lot of what it currently has in there.

HP claims the shipping containers will support more than 3,500 compute nodes, or 12,000 large form factor hard drives. The company estimates that's equivalent to 4,000-plus square feet of typical data center capacity. It also promises shipment within six weeks of the customer's order.

"We're able to get greater density than people who took the ground-up approach," said Miller.

Container experts, however, will tell you that there's merit to the custom designs. Rackable, for example, appears able to squeeze the most hardware into its ICE Cube systems, which also pay special attention to power and cooling. In addition, the early container players are already crafting second and third generation designs, while HP is just now entering the market with what can be considered a fairly generic approach.

In any case, HP's industry-standard approach would seem to leave it out of the bidding for Microsoft's massive container project in Chicago. Microsoft looks set to buy more than 200 containers from a vendor that's able to meet a very demanding set of requirements. Whoever scores this deal will need to deliver bespoke it.

PODs are built to order through HP Factory Express. HP expects to have the fleet ready for US customers in October, and worldwide by the first quarter of 2009.

A video tour of an HP container is available here. Whoops, we mean here. ®

Similar topics

Narrower topics


Other stories you might like

  • HP turns back on $1b in annual sales by quitting Russia and Belarus
    Revenue hit for HP far larger than many tech providers post-pullout but PC, print giant stays course

    PC and printer giant HP Inc. is boldly but belatedly turning its back on Russia and Belarus due to the continued conflict in Ukraine.

    HP was among the first wave of tech companies to suspend shipments to the countries soon after Russia invaded its neighbor on February 24, but now the company's president and CEO Enrique Lores is making the move more permanent.

    "Considering the COVID environment and long-term outlook for Russia, we have decided to stop our Russia activity and have begun the process of fully winding down our operations," he said on a Q2 earnings call with analysts.

    Continue reading
  • Nvidia shares tumble as China lockdown, Russia blamed for dent in outlook
    Sure, stonking server and gaming sales, but hiring and expenses to slow down, too

    Nvidia exceeded market expectations and on Wednesday reported record first-quarter fiscal 2023 revenue of $8.29 billion, an increase of 46 percent from a year ago and eight percent from the previous quarter.

    Nonetheless the GPU goliath's stock slipped by more than nine percent in after-hours trading amid remarks by CFO Colette Kress regarding the business's financial outlook, and plans to slow hiring and limit expenses. Nvidia stock subsequently recovered a little, and was trading down about seven percent at time of publication.

    Kress said non-GAAP operating expenses in the three months to May 1 increased 35 percent from a year ago to $1.6 billion, and were "driven by employee growth, compensation-related costs and engineering development costs."

    Continue reading
  • It's 2022 and there are still malware-laden PDFs in emails exploiting bugs from 2017
    Crafty file names, encrypted malicious code, Office flaws – ah, it's like the Before Times

    HP's cybersecurity folks have uncovered an email campaign that ticks all the boxes: messages with a PDF attached that embeds a Word document that upon opening infects the victim's Windows PC with malware by exploiting a four-year-old code-execution vulnerability in Microsoft Office.

    Booby-trapping a PDF with a malicious Word document goes against the norm of the past 10 years, according to the HP Wolf Security researchers. For a decade, miscreants have preferred Office file formats, such as Word and Excel, to deliver malicious code rather than PDFs, as users are more used to getting and opening .docx and .xlsx files. About 45 percent of malware stopped by HP's threat intelligence team in the first quarter of the year leveraged Office formats.

    "The reasons are clear: users are familiar with these file types, the applications used to open them are ubiquitous, and they are suited to social engineering lures," Patrick Schläpfer, malware analyst at HP, explained in a write-up, adding that in this latest campaign, "the malware arrived in a PDF document – a format attackers less commonly use to infect PCs."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022