Windows IT Pro Technical Director Michael Otey and myself recently sat down with HP's Jeff Carlat, marketing director in HP's infrastructure software and blades division, to get an update on their latest product initiatives. According to Carlat, HP was announcing two new product offerings and a new service solution at the show, namely:

HP Insight Control Integration with VMware vCenter
Carlat noted that virtualization adoption has been growing at a substantial clip, but that managing virtualized infrastructures can still be a challenge for IT pros. "Virtualization is pervasive now, impacting everything that we're doing," says Carlat. "As the virtualization market grows, managing virtual server sprawl is becoming a more important consideration for admins." Carlat mentioned that according to industry analysis firm IDC, new virtual server installations should outnumber physical server shipments by the end of 2009.

HP's partial answer to the problem of VM proliferation is the integration of HP Insight Management Control software with VMware vCenter. Using this new capability, IT pros running HP hardware will be able to use this combined solution to monitor and manage both their physical HP servers and their virtual machines. This ability to manage both physical and virtual machines should also help VMware compete more effectively against Microsoft's System Center family and Virtual Machine Manager 2008 products, which can be used to jointly manage both physical and virtual machines.

HP announced some other developments on the virtualization management front, including the HP Virtual Client Essentials software portfolio, a revamped HP Operations Manager for virtualization, new management features for HP StorageWorks Command View Enterprise Virtual Array (EVA), and new HP Network Automation support for VMware vSwitch.

HP Virtual Desktop Reference Solution
HP also announced a new virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) solution that Carlat claims will cost less that $1,000 per user. "We're the first systems provider to offer such a rich VDI solution," says Carlat. "We can provide and bring together data center resources and things like servers, storage, network, and other elements to offer a true end-to-end solution." You can find more information about the new HPI VDI solution here.

HP Virtualization Services
"We've learned that most failed virtualization deployments are due to bad planning and analysis," says Carlat. "So we've decided to offer a number of consulting services to our customers, including help with planning, design, and deployment." Carlat indicated that these new service offerings would start at $18,500, and will initially available in North America.

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