LAS VEGAS: HP today unveiled its ProLiant Generation 8 ‘self-sufficient server’, part of the firm’s Project Voyager, aimed at optimising server use, reducing the potential for admin errors in the datacentre and letting firms go green with their IT infrastructure.
Mark Potter, senior vice president and general manager for HP Industry Standard Servers and Software, painted a bleak picture for datacentre use during his keynote at HP’s Global Partner Conference in Las Vegas.
He noted that for a typical datacentre, $50m will be spent over three years on manual processes, while unplanned downtime can cost customers up to $10m per hour.
At the same time, the amount of data continues to explode. According to Potter, 165,000 pictures are uploaded every 60 seconds, as well as 200 million searches carried out for information. He added that data will quadruple over the next two years.
The Gen8 servers are designed to help firms cope with this data overload, with many of the capabilities based on features in HP’s ProActive Insight architecture for managing server lifecycles, which has been developed in close conjunction with the new server hardware.
According to HP, administrators can be three times more productive using the new servers, and will benefit from six times faster performance in storage, compared to existing models.
HP has also built in some new technology to help admins avoid errors in server management.
Smart Socket is designed to prevent admins from damaging the pins when installing new processors. The technology will place the processor on top of the pins on the motherboard via a mechanical guide, and will be perfectly aligned every time, HP said.
With Smart Drive, HP is hoping to reduce instances of errors when switching drives.
“If you get hard drive failure, the traditional thing is that the server continues to run but you need to replace that drive,” Potter said.
"But the technician often accidentally unplugs the wrong drive. This brand new technology will tell the admin not to remove the drive.”
HP has also looked to improve storage performance via solid state drives.
“We’ve merged solid state technology and high-performance memory so you can deliver persistence of data in that cache even if you have a power failure,” Potter said.
HP also pushed the green message with its Gen8 server launch. The firm's 3-D Sea of Sensors technology offers twice the datacentre capacity of current products, and 70 per cent more computing per watt, which HP said leads to a potential $7m saving in energy costs in a typical datacentre over three years.
The advanced sensor technology supports rack-based power capping, with usage monitored so that admins do not over-provision power.
“We’ll cap it at 100 per cent of the maximum use we’ve ever seen,” said Potter.
“Admins can take the extra power to use elsewhere.”
GPS is also used to let admins locate servers.
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