“The Ibrix platform combined with 3PAR is a real multitenant approach,” says HP VP of Storage Marketing Craig Nunes in an interview on SiliconAngle.tv from SNW in early April 2011 and transcribed on Wikibon.org. “In fact I would tell you it is the only multitenant block-and-file platform in the marketplace.”
Multitenancy is a basic part of the underlying technology for cloud services such as software-as-a-service, which is based on the idea that several organizations share one installation of a business application like ERP or CRM without being conscious of the other users or their data. Thus Mr. Nunes is making a strong claim for HP leadership in an important part of the underlying infrastructure for public, and in some cases private/hybrid, cloud computing.
He defines three basic characteristics for multitenancy and lays claim to HP leadership in all three:
- Scale: “Multi-tenency is scale on a shared platform.” HP with 3PAR and Ibrix, he says, offers utility scale computing based on a multiple node architecture.
- Security: “So what we've built into our platform is a virtual private array capability that really allows you to administratively lock down your data in this shared infrastructure,” he says.
- Resilience: Multitenancy, he says, requires the ability to maintain service levels even in the face of a catastrophic failure. This requires more than providing data access, it means keeping business functionality running and available to all users, and he says that HP's technology provides that level of resilience.
By comparison, many other vendors are claiming cloud level products but really selling their same old basic technology under new names with new brochures. “Marketing always gets to the party first, right? Technology lags. Sometimes it never gets there.”
And the market seems to agree. Seven of the global top-10 cloud service providers are running the 3PAR platform for their utility offering. These service providers understand multitenancy best; their businesses depend on it.
Action Item: HP's leadership has worked from a clear vision of a future of IT technology based on virtualized public and private cloud computing services, a vision that Wikibon basically agrees with. Based on that vision it has made selective acquisitions of several technical leaders from among the new crop of entrepreneurial vendors, such as 3-Par, and appears to have successfully integrated the technologies, as well as the staffs, of those companies with the products of focused internal technical development. The result is a new set of products designed to support that vision. Cloud service vendors and enterprises looking at private or hybrid cloud architectures should take note.