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HP pumps out four new Intel-based ProLiant servers

HP has introduced four new ProLiant servers and its Lights-Out remote management software aimed squarely at midmarket customers.

Hewlett-Packard Co. has announced four new entry-level ProLiant servers and remote management software today designed to help medium-sized companies reduce operating costs.

The four new HP ProLiant servers come with Serial ATA (SATA) disk drives and RAID, as well as a high-efficiency power supply option which helps minimize electricity costs, HP reported.

Designed with medium-sized businesses in mind, the new ProLiant releases include Intel Corp.'s latest quad-core processors, PCI-Express (PCIe), additional storage capacity and faster front-side bus speeds.

HP's midmarket thrust
In designing its new ProLiants, HP kept an eye toward the needs of the midmarket, which make up about 50% of HP's business, said Paul Gottsegen, vice president of marketing, Industry Standard Servers, HP.

"We've been doing a lot in this space, with more affordable ProLiant products and the Shorty last year. We've never offered a turnkey solution like this, though. We are packaging this in a way that allows the servers to be deployed very easily."

Catering to companies with less than 1,000 employees and data centers with relatively small IT staffs, the new servers are backed by HP Total Care, a handholding-type service from HP that smaller companies often use to guide them toward the best-suited platforms, backup, security and so on, Gottsegen said.

Analyst Gordon Haff at Nashua, N.H.-based Illuminata Inc. said the new servers and features aren't revolutionary, but they help the company strengthen its position in the midmarket space.

"What's most notable about this announcement isn't so much product features but the fact that HP is methodically continuing its midmarket push -- which is far more about sales channels and partner development than it is about specific product features," said Haff.

ProLiant's new features
The new platforms include the following features:
  • the HP ProLiant DL180 G5 -- a low-cost, two-processor, 2U server with the newest Intel's Xeon 7300 quad-core architecture, three PCIe slots, optional redundant power supplies, up to 12 large form-factor hot plug drives and 9 TB of storage;
  • the HP ProLiant DL185 G5, a new 2P, 2U, low-cost server with up to 14 large form-factor hot-plug drives, 10.5 TB of storage, dual network interface cards (NICs), three PCIe slots and optional redundant power supplies;
  • the HP ProLiant DL165 G5, a 2P, 1U server with four 3.5-inch hard disk drives; and
  • the HP ProLiant DL160 G5, which was announced in November but is now available. Its two-processor 1U form factor is optimized for Intel's newest Xeon quad-core architecture. It has two PCIe x16 2.0 slots, support for faster front-side bus speeds and double the amount of storage of previous generations for high-performance computing environments

The ProLiant ML110 G5, ML150 G5, ML310 G5 and DL320 G5p have also been updated.

Also new on the HP ProLiant management front are support for Virtual Media USB 2.0, the latest USB standard, and an enhanced Lights-Out 100 remote management suite, whose new Virtual DVD-ROM support allows DVD-ROMs on client PCs to be available to remote servers during boot or run time from a browser. In addition, the Lights-Out 100i Advanced Pack, Lights-Out 100i Select Pack and Lights-Out 100c Remote Management Card give secure remote control for ProLiant 100 series servers.

Haff said he likes just about everything in the management package, and notes that "management has always been a strong feature of ProLiant servers going back to the Compaq days."

HP also collaborated with Microsoft and Citrix Systems Inc. to create new HP Midmarket Business Solutions for ProLiant entry-level servers. The HP Midmarket Business Solutions configurations available today include Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 and Citrix Access Essentials, which give customers access to applications whether they are remote, distributed across a network or mobile. The software keeps data updated, protected and backed up centrally.

Additionally, the HP ProLiant portfolio is supported by HP Care Pack Services, which includes warranties, service and varying levels of support.

The HP ProLiant DL160 G5 is now available with prices starting at $1,399 and the DL185 G5 at $1,749. The DL180 G5 and DL165 G5 are expected to be available within 90 days.

Pricing of the Midmarket Business Solutions is available through HP channel partners and varies based on the number of users and capacity requirements. Pricing for the Lights-Out 100i Advanced Pack is $199 per license; for the Lights-Out 100i Select Pack, $99 per license; and the Lights-Out 100c Remote Management Card, $219.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Bridget Botelho, News Writer.

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