HP helps users measure bytes in bucks

Hewlett-Packard released storage management software Monday that should help companies keep better track in financial terms of the flow of data in their companies.

HP has added the OpenView Storage Accountant product to its Storage Area Manager suite of software. The new application was designed to give systems administrators a financial picture of how much data is passing through a storage box.

Users could, for example, track not just how many gigabytes of information a storage product is managing, but also how much it costs per hour to support a particular application or even to support the storage needs of a remote office, said Nimish Shelat, worldwide product manager for Storage Accountant.

"This product allows you to talk to a controller in terms of dollars instead of gigabytes," Shelat said.

The software can track who is using a particular part of the storage network, how long they are using it and how much information is being controlled by the user. HP expects companies to use the tool to track how much its costs to support a new application or to run financial analysis on a particular unit or office in the company.

HP also released version 2.0 of its Storage Allocator software, which is also part of the Storage Area Manager suite. With the latest release, HP added support for the Linux and Windows 2000 operating systems, said Phil Kemp, worldwide product marketing manager for Storage Area Manager at HP. The Storage Allocator product allows an administrator to designate which servers or PCs can access certain parts of a large storage system. The product already supported HP-UX, Solaris and Windows NT.

Both software products will be available in October as part of the Storage Area Manager suite and as separate products. HP could not provide pricing for the October launch but said the products will be similar in price to current offerings. The suite currently starts at US$75,200, and the Allocator software starts at $20,000 without support services, Kemp said.

HP will also start selling its Surestore 181G-byte disk drive this month for $13,000, according to a spokeswoman.

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