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HPE: Let’s See! TFDx Pre-Attendance Thoughts

  1. HPE: Let’s See! TFDx Pre-Attendance Thoughts
  2. HPE Storage at Nth Symposium 2019: What I Hope to See
  3. HPE: What Did We See? TFDx Post-Attendance Thoughts

What would you focus on if you were an ambitious company that planned to offer your entire portfolio “as a Service” by 2022? It’s a safe bet that the following objects would make your shortlist: optimization, automation, and technologies like Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence (ML/AI). Everything as a Service, though, is a lofty goal for a company like HPE, whose portfolio reaches far beyond storage.

So, what am I expecting from Tech Field Day Exclusive with HPE Storage 2019? With only three years to goal time, HPE needs more than hardware refreshes. I do expect HPE to give at least one storage array some love, though.


Primera, HPE’s All-Flash storage array, is billed as next-generation 3PAR. However, this array has fused Nimble’s simplicity and InfoSight predictive analytics with 3PAR’s enterprise storage architecture that was designed for availability reliability. While Primera is interesting, I don’t expect it to be the primary focus, though.

To deliver on its “able to consume” promise, HPE needs to tap into more than its principles of partnering, innovating, and acting.  It needs acquisitions. But before we talk acquisition, let’s meet the star of HPE’s “as a Service” plans: GreenLake Hybrid Cloud.

GreenLake Hybrid Cloud

GreenLake is a platform designed for delivering “as a Service” solutions on-premises, in the cloud, and at edge. I would be shocked if our TFD presentations weren’t GreenLake-heavy.

HPE has been dropping announcements like this at more events than HPE Discover. At Nutanix .NEXT, HPE announced the General Availability (GA) of consuming Nutanix storage and its AHV hypervisor in GreenLake.

Can we expect any significant announcements at HPE’s TFDx event, or will we be deep-diving into solutions? Be sure to tune-into my ‘after the event” post for answers.

Acquisition-based Speculation

Another part of the story that I look forward to hearing at HPE’s TFDx event is more about this year’s three acquisitions and their role in the “new consumption experience'” that HPE is creating with GreenLake.

All three acquisitions deal in the AI/ML space. This makes sense because AI/ML is required for many purposes including manage and streamlining operational complexity, but also gaining insights from explosive amounts of data. In addition, AI/ML fuel the optimization and automation that the “as a Service” world demands. Cray, MapR, and BlueAI are the newest additions to HPE’s portfolio.

  • Cray builds supercomputers at exascale. With the Cray acquisition,  HPE can now offer HPC as a Service and ML/AI based analytics on HPC through Green Lake. Also, because HPC can notoriously be challenging to manage, an as-a-service offering is compelling.
  • MapR, and BlueData AI. MapR and BlueData AI were collaborators before they were both acquired independently by HPE.

MapR provides persistent storage for containers. BlueData AI leverages native Kubernetes to create a “data fabric” that can span on-premises, off-premises, and edge deployments. Together, MapR and BlueData create a solution that supports stateful containers, with POSIX support, capable of running at the edge, cloud, and on-premises. Also, this solution includes an ability to both run existing ML models and build new ones using IoT data.

More importantly, though, this Data Fabric fills in some container operational gaps. Features added include support for security and multi-tenancy, high-availability of data, and data protection features like mirroring and snapshots that Kubernetes can administer. In addition, a global namespace is supported. Volumes can also persist even after a container is deleted.

Final Thoughts

Honestly, is there a better time to attend an HPE event? Amid a quest to bring a subscription-based model to fruition, HPE is innovating like mad. This will be my first HPE event and also my first trip to Anaheim. I can’t wait.

About the author

Becky Elliott

After dropping out of a liberal arts college that focused on reading and discussing the “Great Books”, Becky accidentally found her way into an IT career. For 20+ years, she has held a number of roles in Dev and Ops, and the area in between the two. Recently, she both re-discovered a childhood love for writing and awakened a hero’s journey-kind of desire to encourage others to share their stories.

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