Europe, Information Forums, and Virtualization
by Hu Yoshida on Oct 25, 2010
Since the announcement of the Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform (VSP) and the Hitachi Command Suite 7 (HCS), our corporate executives have been travelling the world in support of our Information Forums, which will become an annual event. I was invited to some countries in Europe and started with a week of Executive Briefings for customers in France, an Executive Advisory Board meeting in London, and Information Forums in London, Venice, and Stockholm, where I met with a lot of our key customers in Europe as well as our local teams in the countries.
In each city, I spoke with customers who had early installs of our Virtual Storage Platform and all of them reported that it was a solid product. Everyone remarked on the improved performance and all were pleased with the reduced footprint and power. Since we eliminated batteries in favor of SSDs to backup our cache, the controller modules are much more compact and the dense drive modules with 128 Small Form Factor, 2.5 inch drives makes it very space and power efficient. Some of the new features will be rolled out in phases. For instance, the Hitachi Dynamic Tiering, or page level tiering, is available for internal drives today and will be available for external storage later in the year as we gain more experience around best practices.
In the past when we rolled out the USP, the early installs were in mid-size enterprise accounts and the larger enterprise accounts took longer to do evaluations before they signed up. This time the large enterprise accounts are not hesitating to sign up. It appears that enterprises are now comfortable with virtualization and tiering and trust that we can deliver what we promise.
Talking with our local teams in Europe, it appears that storage virtualization is becoming mainstream. Most of the USP V’s that we have been installing across Europe lately are going in with Virtualization and Dynamic Provisioning software. The 3D messaging around the Virtual Storage Platform seems to be helping to focus attention on virtualization of external storage in our existing USP V install base.
After a week at home, I will be off to the Asia Pacific region to see how we are doing there. The reports that I am getting from our executives who have participated in the Information Forums in Asia indicate that we are having similar results.