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HP Ushers In Future of Web Access Computing with Blade Servers
Standards Support, Alliance Program Accelerate Technology Adoption
PALO ALTO, Calif., Dec. 4, 2001
Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HWP) today launched the industry's first blade server product series based on open industry standards. The series enables enterprises, telecommunications companies and service providers to streamline Internet data center management by adding flexible, efficient, easy-to-manage server capacity and Internet functionality in a highly compact unit.
HP also announced a blade server alliance program to help accelerate the delivery of compatible products that use the same CompactPCI®(1) industry standard used in HP blade servers. The program helps both hardware and software providers to develop, test and market their blades products and give customers more computing options.
More than 20 companies have already endorsed the HP blade server and its open standards-based architecture, including Accton Technology Corporation, Agilent Technologies, AMD, Amphus, Brocade, Diversified Technology, Inc., Ensim, F5 Networks, Force Computers, GDA Technologies, InfoValue, Inktomi, Intel Corporation, Oracle Corporation, OSA Technologies, PolyServe, Radisys, RealNetworks, Savastra Systems, SBS Technologies, ServerWorks, SonicWall, Transmeta and TurboLinux.
HP's blade server products are essentially "computers on a board" operating in a compact chassis(2) that reduces complex wiring issues. The products include server, storage, appliance, network, switch and management blades and are supported by HP OpenView service manageability tools which include comprehensive network, system, storage, application and service management solutions. HP blade server products will initially run on the Linux operating system distributions of Red Hat, Debian and SuSE. HP-UX and Microsoft® Windows® are expected to be available on the blade server in the first half of 2002.
"We are pleased that HP has chosen Windows as a key element for its server appliance solution for the Internet, telecommunications and enterprises on its open standards-based blade architecture," said Brian Valentine, senior vice president, Windows Division, Microsoft.
With this blade server product series, HP aims to seize the leadership position in the rapidly expanding blades market, which IDC estimates will reach $2.9 billion by 2005. IDC also estimates that by 2005, the blade unit design will have captured approximately 23 percent of entry-level server unit sales and 10 percent of entry-level server revenue.(3)
"We are excited to test HP's blade server technology to support DirecWay Services. HP's blade server technology will reduce power, space and cabling requirements," said Emil Regard, vice president of strategic marketing, Hughes Network Systems. "The ability to easily manage and support blade environments will help us reduce IT costs and HP's open standards product has the potential to help our business operate more efficiently."
The innovative unit design of the HP blade server products, combined with HP's end-to-end service offerings, allows organizations to operate more efficiently by deploying Internet-edge computing solutions in highly constrained environments. Designed for flexibility, the extensive variety of HP blade server products and services provide a smooth integration into existing IT environments, fast deployment, ease of management and ongoing investment protection.
"The blades market is poised for rapid growth and HP's approach to blades is leading the way for the expansion of that market," said John Humphreys, IDC. "HP's blade server offers customers a very open, flexible architecture that delivers higher levels of management, lower total cost of ownership, greater ease-of-use and higher performance than current blade architectures or rack servers. HP appears to be ahead of its competition in this space, with well-developed ecosystems of partners that will drive real benefit for customers."
Alliance Program to Spur Market Development
The HP Blade Server Alliance program will expand customer choice and adoption by accelerating third-party blade solution development in support of HP's open standard blade product series.
Offering a comprehensive set of equipment, development, testing, marketing and business services for members, the alliance program assists members with their "go to market" efforts. The program is open to all types of software and hardware vendors.
"HP's blade server initiative represents an important advance in high-performance computing, and Inktomi is pleased to participate in the HP Blade Server Alliance program," said Kevin Brown, vice president of Channels and Business Development, Inktomi. "HP's focus on leading innovation through partners creates a win for everyone, especially customers."
The HP Blade Server Alliance program will provide product interoperability assurance with testing certification programs, which are expected to be available in 2002. More information, including a listing of participating companies and information on how new companies can join the program, is available at HP's Developer and Solution Partner Portal at http://www.hp.com/dspp/blades.
Complementary Solutions and Services
HP enables customers to manage their blade server resources by providing a comprehensive portfolio of management solutions that rapidly delivers a reliable, high-performing, easy to manage infrastructure including HP Toptools hardware management.
HP's world-class services assist customers in the transformation to blade technology. These offerings range from conventional financing to integration and on-going management services to the financing of blade server solutions to include third-party applications.
"Total cost of ownership is a huge issue for CIOs and department heads in this economy, and our blade servers directly address this," said Duane Zitzner, president, HP Computing Systems. "HP has the technology leadership, services capabilities and experience to change the face of server computing and proliferate this new wave of technology. The robust blades ecosystem we are creating with our partners will open the door to more efficient business models for many companies."
Availability and Pricing
The HP blade server chassis, server blade, storage blade, network blade and management blade are currently available for order. The estimated U.S. retail price starts at $1,925 for a single server blade or $7,525 for an HP blade server chassis with one management blade.
Hewlett-Packard Company -- a leading global provider of computing and imaging solutions and services -- is focused on making technology and its benefits accessible to all. HP had total revenue of $45.2 billion in its 2001 fiscal year. Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.hp.com.
(1) The CompactPCI standard was developed by the PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturers Group, a consortium of suppliers and users which develop specifications for PCI-based systems and boards for use in industrial and telecom computing applications. The consortium's mission is to extend the PCI standard, as approved by the PCI Special Interest Group. The first CompactPCI specification was published in 1995 and in recent years several important extensions have been added, including the Hot Swap Specification and the CompactPCI Computer Telephony Specification. Further information is available from http://www.picmg.com.
(2) The compact chassis is pre-cabled and NEBS Level 3 compliant. NEBS (network equipment building standards) is a stringent set of specifications and tests that thoroughly validate telecommunications equipment with regards to environmental performance. NEBS was set forth by Bell Labs to certify telecommunications equipment for worst-case operating scenarios. Products that earn NEBS compliance are designed for the most heavy-duty of environments.
(3) IDC Webinar titled "Intel Architecture Server Market Outlook" given on Oct. 25, 2001.
Intel is a U.S. registered trademark of Intel Corporation. HP-UX Release 10.20 and later and HP-UX Release 11.00 and later (in both 32- and 64-bit configurations) on all HP 9000 computers are Open Group UNIX 95 branded products. UNIX is a registered trademark of the Open Group. Microsoft and Windows are U.S. registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation.
This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. Risks, uncertainties and assumptions include the possibility that the market for the sale of certain products and services may not develop as expected; that development of these products and services may not proceed as planned; and other risks that are described from time to time in HP's Securities and Exchange Commission reports, including but not limited to the annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended Oct. 31, 2000, and subsequently filed reports. If any of these risks or uncertainties materializes or any of these assumptions proves incorrect, HP's results could differ materially from HP's expectations in these statements. HP assumes no obligation and does not intend to update these forward-looking statements.