HPE brags its latest 3PAR OS shrinkwrapper better protects data

And more automation helps admin staff

HPE says its latest 3PAR OS, v 3.3.1, has better data reduction, faster iSCI networking, upgraded data protection and an extra helping of automation to help admin staff.

The Adaptive Data Reduction (ADR) feature can reduce capacity needs by up to 75 per cent*, it claims. It includes both in-line deduplication and compression, and can be selectively applied. HPE also includes a data-packing algorithm to manage writes to flash so as to minimise garbage collection.

HPE also says the ADR code helps to avoid wasting system resources, without explaining what it does.

The improved iSCSI networking involves:

  • Express Writes optimisation reduces latency by up to 40 per cent,
  • Expanded host connectivity and multi-tenant IP networking said to help with cloud computing,

Data protection boosted

This is the main event area of the updated OS as we see it.

Recovery Manager Central (RMC), which provides application-managed snapshots and data movement from 3PAR to secondary StoreOnce Systems, has received many improvements. It’s claimed to provide 23x faster backup and 7x faster restores than the leading backup ISV - thought to be Veritas - with 9x lower CPU consumption.

HPE has lowered RMC cost with all-inclusive 3PAR licensing, and says it can save up to $500K over three years compared to traditional non-HPE backup software.

Data held in StoreOnce Systems can be replicated to the Azure public cloud via StoreOnce VSA software in Microsoft Azure. This has support from RMC, Data Protector and other backup applications.

The new Peer Copy feature enables bi-directional snapshot data transfer between StoreVirtual VSA and 3PAR arrays.

Peer Copy can be used with StoreVirtual VSA Ready Node reference architectures to help protect remote and branch offices by pumping data to central 3PAR arrays.

There are other point data and system protection updates:

  • File Persona updates double scalability, automate provisioning and enable cross-protocol file sharing,
  • Peer Persistence has three-data centre support for disaster recovery (transparent application and host failover) across greater distances.

Other matters

An improved 3PAR StoreServ Management Console (SSMC) can automate and schedule large-scale data migrations of up to 24 3PAR or supported third-party storage systems.

It has Smart SAN integration for automated, one-click SAN zoning of Fibre Channel networks, which can, HPE claims, lower fabric provisioning effort by 90 per cent.

The HPE StoreFront Remote cloud analytics portal will provide 3PAR customers with best practice recommendations to help reduce risk, manage software updates and assist in capacity planning.

A 3PAR Flash Now initiative enables acquisition of an upgraded 3PAR flash array plus networking and data protection for just pennies per usable gigabyte per month via a cloud-like consumption model.

Reg comment

HPE says 3PAR OS is a next-generation OS that provides a future-proof foundation for hybrid IT, and also for an increasingly solid-state array world, but not, however totally all solid-state, hence backing up data to StoreOnce disk systems.

HPE's Bill Philbin, SVP for its Data Center Infrastructure Group, made a semi-veiled point against all-flash rivals in the announcement: "Customers see all-flash storage as only one part of a hybrid IT strategy... we go further to optimize the full stack and provide data mobility across systems — an approach that has helped us grow faster than the market over the last 18 months.”

It says it has a seamless path to emerging technologies such as storage class memory (SCM) and NVM Express (NVMe).

The company has previewed its 3PAR 3D Cache for flash hyper-acceleration - get that term "hyper" - using SCM over NVMe, which shows how the 3PAR array can support new technologies.

However there is no direct mention here of NVME over fabrics, with HPE concentrating on NVMe-accessed SCM drives providing a faster-accessed cache in the array, rather than looking at lowering array network access latency. No doubt it is working on that too.

We might view this software release as clearing the decks for upgraded 3PAR hardware.

Pricing and availability

HPE claims its new, all-inclusive licensing both simplifies purchasing and reduces costs by up to 30 per cent, factoring in savings from its adaptive data reduction technologies.

V3.3.1 of the 3PAR OS is available this quarter at no cost for 3PAR customers with valid support contracts.

StoreOnce VSA for Azure is available this quarter, starting at $1,400.

Peer Copy and Recovery Manager Central should be available in the second 2017 quarter at no cost for 3PAR and StoreVirtual VSA customers with valid support contracts. ®

* Based on terms and conditions as specified in the Get Thin Guarantee at www.hpe.com/us/en/resources/storage/get-thinner.

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