HP to customers: Hey, look at our data center overhaul

HP execs challenge customers to transform data centers, cut costs.

HP's motto when it comes to overhauling data centers is anything we can do, we can help you to do - only better with HP hardware, software and services.

The vendor kicked off its annual Technology Forum & Expo in Las Vegas Wednesday and key company executives took the stage to share with some 7,000 attendees the data center transformation HP underwent using its own technology. CIO Randy Mott explained how in 2005 HP began a project that would ultimately reduce its number of data centers from 85 down to 6, and enable them to operate with 40 per cent fewer servers that offered more than 250 per cent processing power and doubled their storage at less cost. Now IT supports about 1,500 applications (down from more than 6,000) across fewer data centers, which use HP's remote management and automation software.


Slideshow: HP showcases software prowess

"IT spending its going up at faster rates than other expenditures, and there are more IT professionals than there ever was in history -- which would be OK if they were working on innovation," Mott told the crowd. "More people are spending more time supporting obsolete systems and more of our resources are going toward supporting old systems."

Mott went on to explain how today IT is asked to do everything and continues to be challenged by having to do it all across multiple groups -- infrastructure, applications, services, information and clients -- without additional budget dollars. HP's experience also spanned consolidating resources, using its own BladeSystem products, exploring virtualization and deploying intelligent systems to reduce power consumption and save costs by conserving energy in large data centers. HP was able to bring its IT spending from about 4 per cent of revenue down to less than 2 per cent by implementing transformational change in a short time period rather than incremental change over the course of many years.

Today's IT leaders, Mott said, need to better understand what they have in their environment and how to best optimize existing resources to explore new applications and improve services for the business.

"IT has to get good information to understand what is happening in the environment, and get better at delivering more at lower costs," Mott said.

HP also called on Ann Livermore, executive vice president of Technology Solutions Group, to discuss how the vendor's servers, software and services come together to aid customers' data center transformation efforts. Livermore detailed how HP's latest BladeSystem provides 35 per cent the total cost of ownership of competitors' offerings, and said new software introduced this week can now offer more automation across change management processes.

HP also helped author the most recent iteration of ITIL, which the vendor then used to tweak its tools to sync with those best practices.

"We have next generation data centers live today," Livermore said. "HP is offering alternative thinking about business and technology."

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