HP and Hitachi broaden storage ties

Hitachi Ltd. and Hewlett-Packard Co. Tuesday announced that they have extended a partnership to ensure that their respective storage-management software products will interoperate with each other's hardware products.

Already close partners in the storage space, HP and Hitachi will swap software APIs (application programming interfaces), which should make it easier for users to manage the companies' hardware, they said.

HP has struck similar pacts with IBM Corp. and EMC Corp. to create better ties between the vendors' storage management software and their competing hardware.

HP, based in Palo Alto, California, will now be able to manage Hitachi's Freedom Storage Lightning 9900 and 9900 V Series and Thunder 9200 Series storage systems with its OpenView software. Likewise, Hitachi, based in Tokyo, will use its HiCommand Management software to link with HP's StorageWorks XP, StorageWorks Enterprise Virtual Array (EVA) and StorageWorks Enterprise Modular Array (EMA) storage systems.

With this extension of the partnership, Hitachi can now manage some of the systems HP brought into its portfolio following the acquisition of Compaq Computer Corp. earlier this year.

The deal between the two vendors should come as no surprise, since HP already resells Hitachi's high end storage systems.

HP, Hitachi, EMC, IBM and other vendors have joined in the Storage Networking Industry Association's effort -- dubbed the Storage Management Initiative -- to create a shared management interface for systems in a storage area network (SAN).

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