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HPE revamps Nimble Storage portfolio

'Generation five' of the Nimble portfolio triples all flash value and is NVMe/SCM ready.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has announced the refresh of the entire Nimble portfolio, moving into "gen five" all-flash and adaptive flash arrays that boast a 3x performance boost versus the previous generation.

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Speaking with ZDNet ahead of the launch, Jean Paul Bovaird, who runs HPE's storage and incubation business in the APAC region, said the new HPE Nimble Storage platform is backed by a guarantee to "deliver the best storage efficiency of any all-flash array".

It is also designed to take advantage of Storage Class Memory (SCM) and NVMe, in what he said is "protecting customer investments" over the long term.

HPE announced that it was acquiring Nimble Storage for $1 billion in cash in March last year. At the time, the company said it wanted to use Nimble to jumpstart its puttering storage business with a broader range of flash storage options that complement its existing 3PAR product line, adding also Nimble's InfoSight predictive analytics platform across its storage portfolio.

There are three parts to the announcement HPE made on Monday, with the second, the HPE Store More Guarantee, assuring customers that they can store more data per raw terabyte of storage than any other vendor's all-flash array.

If HPE is not able to meet the storage efficiency of an all-flash competitor, HPE will accommodate the incremental storage for free, it said.

"As we're sizing out environments, we're going to put in the guarantee that from an application perspective and from an effective capacity perspective that Nimble will perform or have more effective capacity than any other all-flash array vendor out there," Bovaird said.

The third part of the announcement is centred on NVMe and SCM-ready arrays, with Bovaird calling this "future proofing".

"As we moved from spinning disc drives into SSD or flash, there was massive performance gains and latency improvements that happened with that. Storage-class memory is that next big jump that we expect to start seeing more mainstreamed over the next couple of quarters," he said.

The Nimble product launch continues on the storage strategy that HPE set forth earlier this year, Bovaird explained.

"The first is the fact that storage today or data optimisation systems and solutions need to be predictive, so our strategy for driving this enables customers to gain a different experience when managing and then leveraging storage systems in their environment," he said.

"The idea here is to use predictive analytics like an artificial intelligence engine to improve the overall efficiency and experience for customers."

According to Bovaird, the idea is that predicative analytics will anticipate and prevent issues across the entire infrastructure stack prior to customers even seeing them. It will cover only the HPE infrastructure portfolio, but applications from other vendors will be monitored by the analytics engine.

"This is being done all the way up the application level, down the stack to the individual blocks that sit on the disc drive," he continued. "InfoSight is able to automatically predict and remediate service tickets and really drive up the SLAs within customer environments."

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