HPE strengthens its 3PAR portfolio with 15 (!!) major innovations

HPE announced today what they call itself their biggest storage announcement since the 3PAR 7000 platform release 4 years ago.

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They position all the updates and innovations under 4 pillars which highlights the new requirements for the data-center of the future.

 

App acceleration

Express Writes is an optimization of the 3PAR OS protocol by lowering CPU interrupts per write IO. This delivers lower write latency for SSD and HDD. This is now even more optimized in the new 3PAR OS 3.3.1 giving 20% performance increase for FC and double performance gain for iSCSI solutions.

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File Persona has several updates. Improved sharing with NTFS Security mode enables cross protocol file locking on NSF and SMB. Immutable file locking enables more features for enterprise governance.

Also the maximum size of the File Provisioning Group doubled up to 64TiB. Finally, there is also better availability with an Online File System Check utility to complement file system and integrity, and there is a new API version that allows programmatic provisioning and management.

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Ops Simplicity

Smart SAN is delivers target driven peer zoning. This means the configuration of the SAN network will be handled by the target being the 3PAR system. You create a volume (LUN) on 3PAR and present it to a (or multiple) hosts, don’t worry about the zoning, Smart SAN will take care of it. HPE guarantees 80% less steps and 99% less time to do all this, with less human errors. This latest version supports now 3PAR Federation (multiple arrays in 1 logical container for management and load balancing) and has an extended ecosystem.

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SSMC 3.1 (StoreServ Management Console) is the latest version of the web-based on premise tool to manage your 3PAR system. StoreFront Remote is a complement to SSMC because it delivers anytime anywhere storage analytics in the cloud. It delivers insights, advisories and proactive wellness of your HPE storage systems (it supports as well StoreVirtual 3200 and StoreOnce systems).

Both applications got updated with a lot of new features. I will post soon a dedicated article on this.

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Risk mitigation

Persistent Checksum provides end-to-end data integrity, from the HBA down to the disk. It is completely transparent to the apps and hosts behind that HBA. More HBA’s and operating systems are supported with this new 3PAR OS release.

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Peer Persistence enables 3PAR systems located in different data-centers to act as peers to each other providing seamless active host access to both arrays. This means you get automatic recovery with stretched clusters like VMware, Hyper-V and other clustered applications.

New is that it supports now 3 data-center locations allowing more HA and DR scenarios with larger geographic distances.

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RMC or Recovery Manager Central orchestrates replication of 3PAR snapshots directly on StoreOnce systems delivering higher performance data moves and more protection besides the traditional backup solutions. Several integration’s already exist like for instance VMware, Oracle and SQL Server. SAP HANA is added to the list.

New in version 4.0 as well is that it is included in the All-inclusive licensing with every new 3PAR, and it can be deployed with on multiple hyper-visors.

A really cool new feature is the availability of StoreOnce VSA in the Azure Cloud. So now we can move physical and virtual StoreOnce data to the Azure Cloud for 3-2-1 level data protection. 3 copies of data on 2 media with 1 offsite.

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HPE Peer Copy is a new feature that I have been waiting for a long time. Finally, it will be possible to replicate data (bidirectional!) between the 2 HPE flagship storage platforms StoreVirtual (ex Lefthand) and StoreServ (aka 3PAR), without a hardware appliance needed. Use cases are remote sites with VSA and main data-centers with 3PAR. This is IMHO unique in the industry connecting Software Defined storage with physical storage systems.

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Investment Choice

Finally, the most interesting features announced can be found under the investment choice pillar.

Adaptive Data Reduction contains 4 technologies that enhances the system capacity efficiency without sacrificing performance.

Zero Detect and Deduplication was already available, now Compression and Data Packing is added to get even a higher efficiency.

In another article I will dive deeper into ADR, keep checking this blog.

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All-inclusive Software: when HPE acquired 3PAR 7 years ago there were around 1200 software SKU’s. HPE simplified it already by creating software suites, now it becomes even easier by enabling all-inclusive licensing. All 3PAR systems will ship with all features enabled for a single system. If you want a multi-site (HA/DR) environment you will need a Multi-System Software option. HPE claims that the average price for a system will be 20% to 30% lower compared to the licensing structure before.

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With every 3PAR system with SSD storage you have a 5-year warranty so far for media wear-out and electronic failure. Now HPE extends this warranty up to 7 years for all SSD’s bought after June 1st 2015 with a support agreement.

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Further they announced the Online Import support for EMX DMX storage. It supported VNX, Clariion, VMAX, IBM and HDS storage systems, now DMX as well. Same procedure, in 5 simple steps you can migrate your data to 3PAR.

Finally, HPE showed a Tech Preview at HPE Discover in London with 3PAR 3D Cache with Intel 3D-XPoint. It functions as an extension of DRAM cache in the controllers with NVMe storage class memory to deliver extreme application acceleration with All-Flash systems.

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Most of the features are part of the coming 3PAR 0S 3.3.1 software update that will be released soon for all 3PAR customers with a valid support agreement, and is expected Q1 2017. Some features will be available only on the latest 8000/20000 platforms like Adaptive Data Reduction. Other tools like RMC 4.0 and Peer Copy is expected Q2 2017.

 

More information can be found as well on the ATSB storage blog from Calvin Zito aka HPEStorageGuy on http://www.hpe.com/storage/blog.

 

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Author: Bart Heungens

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