HP recently announced that it was acquiring Ibrix, a provider of storage software for high-performance and cloud computing storage applications. Terms of the deal haven't been disclosed yet at press time, but the acquisition does give HP some additional resources to compete against the likes of EMC and NetApp in the high-end enterprise storage arena.

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At the heart of the acquisition is Ibrix Fusion, a high-performance software platform that provides a parallel file system that is optimized for high performance computing (HPC), cloud computing, and other demanding storage applications. The Ibrix website touts the fact that the Fusion platform has been chosen by "three of the top four Academy Award-winning animation rendering companies, a Top Ten-ranked internet service provider, a trillion dollar financial services company, and one of the largest data centers in Europe."

HP has been skirmishing with EMC and NetApp over the high-end storage solution market, which seen a spate of recent mergers and acquisitions over the last year or so, ranging from EMC's acquisition of Data Domain, IBM's purchase of Diligent and XIV, Dell's buying of EqualLogic, and HP's purchase of Lefthand Networks.

"Customers need highly scalable storage solutions that efficiently and cost-effectively manage massive amounts of information," said Jeff Hausman, vice president of Unified Storage, StorageWorks Division, HP. "This acquisition expands our portfolio to better support the needs of this market segment. In addition, IBRIX’s highly scalable software leverages industry-standard hardware allowing customers to fully maximize their existing investments."

HP expects that the acquisition will be complete by mid-August, and also mentioned that the Ibrix business would be folded into the StorageWorks division in HP’s Technology Solutions Group.

One question does remain to be answered about the acquisition: What does this mean for HP's PolyServe product line? While not directly competitive, PolyServe and Ibrix Fusion do seem to have a fair amount of feature and market overlap. Hopefully HP will address that question in the coming weeks as the acquisition process continues.