Another Hidden HP Secret: P4000sb Storage Blades

HP P4000sb Storage BladeI recently found another hidden gem within HP’s arsonel of offerings that combines the HP StorageWorks line with the HP Proliant BladeSystem line.  The solution is found within an HP bundle titled, “HP StorageWorks P4800 G2 63TB SAS BladeSystem SAN Solution” and is quite an offering.If you are a constant reader of my blog, you’ll know that I focus on blade servers, so my expertise around storage is pretty minimal.  The purpose of writing up this blog post is to bring awareness to the offering and to point out how vendors are looking to utiliticize the blade form factor.  In HP’s case, they pre-load the LeftHand SAN/iQ software onto the blade servers so you don’t have to worry about it.  In fact, they use 4 x HP BL460s as part of the overall bundle.  Each server has 8GB of RAM and 2 x 10Gb uplinks as well as 2 x SAS ports per server.  It doesn’t really matter how they are built, though, because they serve a single purpose – to run the storage software. 

So, what’s in the bundle (U.S. part #  BM480A#0D1):

Software:

  • SAN/iQ Storage Clustering
  • SAN/iQ Network RAID (synchronous replication)
  • SAN/iQ Thin Provisioning
  • SAN/iQ Application Integrated Snapshots
  • SAN/iQ Remote Copy (asynchronous replication)
  • SAN/iQ Multi-Site/DR Solution (synchronous replication across locations)
  • SAN/iQ Solution Pack for Microsoft Windows

Hardware:

  • Four redundant active-active scalable P4000sb Storage Blades for BladeSystem c-Class Enclosure
  • Two HP StorageWorks MDS 600 enclosures with 140 450GB 15K SAS disk drives
  • Two 3Gb 8-port SAS 2.0 BL-c Switch Module for BladeSystem c-Class Enclosure
  • Eight Mini SAS 2m cables
  • 24GB RAM
  • 2,048 MB battery backed cache
  • Support for RAID 5, 10, 6
  • Eight 10Gbit NIC ports
  • iLO2 Management

Services:

  • P4000 SAN Solutions include services resulting in 3yrs of HW&SW, 9×5, NBD
  • Factory warranty for all P4000 SAN Solutions is 1yr, 9×5, NBD for Hardware

One additional tidbit of information: BladeSystem SAN Solutions are HP Factory Integrated, which means this solution must be ordered with a C7000 enclosure, two Flex-10 modules, PDU and a rack  – and these are not included in the price.  Maybe HP will change this policy in the future, but for now…

If you wonder why there are so many blade servers for this design, I think I can answer it.  Two P4000sb Storage Blades are allocated to each StorageWorks MDS600 in an active-active design so if one fails, the other maintains connectivity. 

I found another interesting diagram in one of the HP guides that references this solution that shows how the MDS600 is cabled to the 2 x SAS controllers on the HP BladeSystem C7000 chassis.  It shows how there are multiple paths of redundancy providing all 160 drives visibility across each of the 4 storage blades:

That’s all I have for you.  It’s not very technical, but it gives some insight as to what vendors are doing with storage and blade servers.  I have another interesting example in tomorrow’s post (I hope I can get to it.)

Additional details on the HP StorageWorks P4800 SAN solution can be found at http://h18000.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/13552_na/13552_na.html.

IF you are an HP Partner – there’s AMAZING resources on the HP Partner Portal as well.  Follow these click-thru steps from the main page of the portal:  Products > Storage > Disk Storage Systems > P4000 SAN Solutions > HP StorageWorks P4000 SAN Solutions > HP StorageWorks P4000 G2 SAN Solutions > HP StorageWorks P4800 G2 63TB SAS BladeSystem SAN Solution