Hewlett Packard (HP) beefed up its storage strategy on Wednesday with a $350m acquisition and a raft of new products. The company will acquire enterprise storage vendor, StorageApps, in an all-stock transaction.
StorageApps specialises in storage virtualisation technology, which HP will build into its Federated Storage Area Management strategy. A technology still under develpoment, storage virtualisation allows customers to manage multiple mixed vendor storage devices as if they were a single homogeneous device.
"StorageApps' speciality is virtualisation, which is one of the key drivers for storage growth and which should help HP's nascent storage offerings," said Deutsche Banc Alex Brown analyst George Elling.
HP also announced that from next year it will begin shipping a variety of storage products using the iSCSI (Internet Small Computer System Interface) standard for linking data storage systems over IP.
In competition with Fibre Channel and SCSI, the iSCSI standard has won wide industry backing and should create more options for HP to offer its customers.
iSCSI allows storage devices to connect to existing IP networks, making more information available to more parts of the network. It also makes it easier for administrators to manage their storage area network systems remotely.
Enterprise Storage Group analyst Arun Taneja said it was important for HP to let its customers know that it was in step with iSCSI storage products being developed by the likes of IBM, EMC and Compaq.
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