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HPE hyperconverged solutions and the company’s broader view of our digital future


In today’s digital economy, every new idea and start-up can be a potential game-changer for the industry. The threats and opportunities caused by this type of disruption are just beginning--and success today doesn’t ensure sbigstock-Businessman-looking-across-the-114610094.jpguccess tomorrow.

All businesses must be constantly monitoring the industry for new ideas and market trends; sticking your head in the sand is never wise. Jim Keyes of Blockbuster made that mistake in 2008 when he dismissed Netflix as a threat to his business. 

I’m frankly confused by this fascination everyone has with Netflix…Netflix doesn’t really have or do anything that we can’t or don’t already do ourselves.”

Of course, Netflix was a threat--and because Blockbuster didn’t take the time to understand what their customer wanted, they were usurped by Netflix and quickly went out of business.

The author of a recent Nutanix blog questioned why HPE would pay attention to Nutanix and referenced the above quote as an example. I think this quote actually proves the exact opposite of what the blogger intended. Unlike Blockbuster, HPE takes every competitor seriously--large and small. Additionally, we are always taking the time to understand not only our customers' needs, but where the industry is headed.

#HPEDare2Compare twitter campaign

Which brings me to hyperconverged infrastructure—the fastest growing segment in today’s data center. As you would expect, a variety of vendors are competing to bring their solutions to market. And with all these new solutions comes a barrage of claims--including those that sometimes over reach, like “any application at any scale” or citing hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) as the be-all and end-all to run mission-critical workloads.

These claims all sound interesting, but show me the data that backs them up. I’ve looked and haven’t seen any evidence of substantiated claims from other vendors. This lack of documented evidence was a big motivator for HPE to validate our own performance claims and make them public. That’s one of the reasons HPE launched the light-hearted #HPEDare2Compare campaign, to encourage visibility into and substantiation of some of the claimed stats around other vendor’s hyperconverged solutions.


The author of the Nutanix blog I mentioned above also seemed to pick apart HPE’s performance claims, trying to convince readers that HPE is comparing apples to oranges. I disagree—when verifying their claims, HPE states clearly what their product can achieve alone and in comparison to others. (See images above.) In contrast, the chart the Nutanix blogger uses in his article seems to introduce a lot of unclear data, which may confuse the reader as opposed providing clarity. That being said, I encourage this type of dialog, as it improves overall transparency and makes it easier for customers to make more informed business decisions

The bottom line is that HPE provides a variety of important advantages with its hyperconverged offering that Nutanix and other vendors cannot:

  • Trusted and proven architecture—Built on the HPE ProLiant DL380, the world’s best-selling server, the HPE Hyper Converged 380 provides proven architecture for virtualization and cloud. It’s important to remember, if the inexpensive, white box running your mission-critical enterprise fails, your infrastructure becomes very visible!
  • Enterprise-grade reliability--Standard on all of HPE’s hyperconverged systems, HPE StoreVirtual is proven technology with high availability of 99.999% and enterprise-class features such as centralized management, non-disruptive scalability and support of flexible, heterogeneous environments. And, the Hyper Converged 380 provides increased uptime and service levels through built-in disaster recovery—a capability found only in HPE hyperconverged systems.
  • Ecosystem of partners—Partnering with the very best in the industry continues to be key to HPE’s broad plan for now and the future. HPE delivers composability through an open API and the HPE Composable Infrastructure Partner Program that supports the data center tools that customers demand.

The end game: simpler, software-defined solutions

So, what’s really going on here and why all the increased conversation around hyperconverged? Hyperconverged systems are clearly today’s solution for simplifying datacenters, but these isolated simplified systems are not the future of the datacenter. I think the broader discussion that IT needs to be having is how we get in front of datacenter disruption and what new solutions need to be in place to allow us take advantage of even greater opportunities as they appear.  

HPE is working with our partners to explore the increasing efficiencies in the data center with a broader focus. Instead of creating sleek but disconnected data center islands like other HCI vendors, HPE is offering an HCI solution with an upgrade path to composable infrastructure--made up of fluid pools of resources that let you eliminate over-provisioning and stranded capacity, while composing blocks of compute, storage and fabric. With built-in software intelligence, auto discovery capabilities and fluid resource pools, customers will easily enable a broad range of applications and operational models such as virtualization, hybrid cloud, and DevOps.

HPE is also partnering with a growing list of independent software vendors (ISVs) to help customers transform and modernize their data center into a more agile development environment. These partners range from large software suites like VMware® vCenter, Microsoft® System Center, and HPE Software, to focused solution providers like Chef, Docker, Ansible, Arista and many others.  No other hyperconverged vendor is offering this level of integrated partnerships.

A first step in accelerating application delivery

The HPE Hyper Converged 380 is the perfect first step toward a composable infrastructure future because it is cloud and composable ready. The HPE Hyper Converged 380 powered by Intel® is an all-in-one virtualization solution with software-defined intelligence to automate compute, storage and networking in your data center.  The HPE Hyper Converged 380 was designed to provide intuitive automation, complete lifecycle management, intelligence from analytics, and affordability with investment protection. The result is a hyperconverged solution that lets customers deploy VMs at cloud speed, simplify IT operations and reduce costs—all with improved investment protection that comes with a path to composability.

Sure, HPE is a bigger company than some of its competitors, but it is still operating like a small startup-- passionately focused on long term solutions. While other vendors may claim they created a new category of HCI, HPE’s goal is to make the current category even better. But more importantly, HPE is taking a broader view of what is needed to provide a simple, integrated solution across the entire enterprise. This big picture solution will make it easier for IT to deliver services in the most efficient manner possible for today and for the future.


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Paul Miller
VP of Marketing, HPE

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About the Author


Paul Miller is VP of Marketing for the HPE Software-Defined and Cloud Group business unit. The SDCG organization is responsible for marketing for HPE Synergy, HPE OneView, and Hyper Converged Solutions portfolio.