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By | Chris Mellor 23rd September 2014 14:28

HP is giving away FREE* STORAGE to lucky server customers

And you don't even have to buy HP hardware. How about that?

HP is giving away a one terabyte software SAN licence to every Xeon E5 v3-based server buyer, whether they buy Dell, HP, IBM or Lenovo servers.

The software is the StoreVirtual VSA (Virtual Storage Appliance), the old LeftHand iSCSI SAN software technology. It turns a server’s own direct-attached storage into a networked, block-access storage resource. HP says StoreVirtual VSA supports all x86-based servers as well as hypervisor-attached external storage platforms; it can scale out to dozens of nodes and 1.6PB of capacity.

HP reckons it will distribute more than 72PB of capacity this way; that’s 72,000 licences, if our rusty maths is right.

Customers can download the software and 1TB licence from an HP site (hp.com/go/unlockVSA). HP states: “Any customer that purchases an Intel Xeon processor E5 v3-based server” will be able to do this.

HP’s own HP ProLiant Gen9 Servers automates VSA deployment as part of server setup, making it easy to use StoreVirtual. Gen 8 ProLiant servers got a free StoreVirtual licence but HP is going further this time around the ProLiant generational block.

David Scott, storage SVP and GM at HP, said: “The cost of shared storage is still a common server virtualisation roadblock for SMBs and enterprise remote office sites. By offering no-cost VSA software with Intel Xeon E5 v3–based processor servers, HP and Intel are making SDS available to the world for free, giving customers access to hypervisor- agnostic, hardware-independent rich data services while preserving choice and lowering costs.”

If they need more space capacity, customers can purchase StoreVirtual VSA software in 4TB, 10TB, and 50TB size licences. They can also use HP’s own 12Gbit/s SAS interconnect D3000 disk enclosure as the direct-attached server storage.

How will customers hear about the StoreVirtual offer?

Craig Nunes, worldwide marketing VP for HP Storage, said: "There are two ways customers will hear about this promotion - through joint digital and social marketing with Intel, and through the server reseller channel."

HP and Intel have teamed up to extend their marketing efforts promoting software-defined storage and the new servers. HP reckons that, with Intel, "we are doubling our digital marketing coverage". Nunes thinks that the channel partner tack "is a powerful one for all involved. For the server reseller, combining the StoreVirtual VSA promotion with (any) Xeon E5 v3-based servers is a great upsell opportunity from previous generation servers, as well as pulling through additional disk/flash capacity."

"The fact that the promotion is available for any new generation server they sell expands the opportunity further. For the customer, buying the latest Xeon v E5 v3-based server with 'built-in' enterprise-class storage for virtualisation may actually cost them less than buying the last generation server and the shared storage hardware normally required for virtualisation."

HP is also offering a 60-day free trial of StoreOnce VSA software providing 10TB of hardware-independent, software-based backup and deduplication that supports VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V hypervisors. It’s downloadable upon registration at hp.com/go/tryVSA.

How will non-HP customers get to hear about this free StoreVirtual offer? Dell, IBM, Lenovo and, we presume, Cisco won't want to tell them? Stay tuned. ®

* You have to pay to scale up, of course...

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