Mission Critical Computing Blog
Your source for the latest insights on HP Integrity, mission critical computing, and other relevant server and technology topics from the BCS team.

Power Monitoring and Regulation for NonStop: Going Green BIG TIME

Power and thermal costs have become an increasingly important component of data center TCO. For some time, Tom Kondo, another Distinguished Technologist, and I have been working on turning NonStop green. We have worked on making sure that you, the customer, get the answers to the following questions:


· I am buying new cooling solutions. How much power will an enclosure really require? It’s always seems to be wired for more than it needs.

· My NonStop systems have low usage or are even idle part of every day or once a week. Is there any way I can save on power during times of low usage?

· Can I see my power and cooling usage in any form?

· What is the history of my power and cooling usage so I can predict the future?

· How can I set the power regulation policies for my data center?


Tom and I worked with many engineers across HP for the last two years with the result that we now have several recently released power management features shipping on NonStop that you may not be aware of.

Greener Datacenters Around the World

One of the fun parts of my job is that I get to meet with IT people from around the world. Last week, we had a group of mid-level telecom managers and regulators from developing countries here in Cupertino to learn about some of the latest IT trends and technologies. I was asked to discuss Greener data centers.

Meet the HP Integrity Server Builders - Part 3 Blade Link Redefines Scaling

Today’s data centers are often space constrained and challenged by how to power and cool a complex infrastructure.   Often systems are not flexible enough to adapt as business needs change, especially when mission-critical requirements absolutely must be met without fail.  HP’s Blade Link redefines blade scaling by allowing you to really easily join together and manage multiple blades to create 2, 4 and 8 socket systems that best suit your business needs. Shawn Kroeger, Hardware Design Engineer in our Enterprise Systems Lab helped create the new HP Integrity blade servers and demonstrates how simple it is to scale up with Blade Link and reveals some of the benefits realized (9x performance in half the footprint for example!).  Shawn also takes you on a complete tour of inside and out of the new Integrity server blade if you want to dig into the processors, iLO, DIMM slots, NICs and more.


We’ve also included Bruce Henderson from the UNIX systems lab in this video to explain how HP-UX offers optimized performance with the new Integrity servers.  Learn more about 3 key things: 1) Insight Dynamics VSE for maximizing utilization of server resources 2) Serviceguard to maximize availability and service level of resources in your environment and 3) Insight Control Manager to deploy and optimize resources effectively.  Here’s the video:



This is the final blog in my three part Meet the HP Integrity Server Engineers series.  Part 1 addressed the Common Modular Infrastructure and Part 2 digs into Flex Fabric and resiliency enhancements of Integrity.   Each video is under 7 minutes in length.  I hope you find them useful.


Please let us know what else you’d like to hear from our HP Engineers about our mission-critical converged infrastructure.  Comments welcomed!



HP Tech @ Work: Scalable and Mission Critical Windows Solutions

Well, it is
Thursday morning, and the last day of Tech @ Work. I'm catching one last
session before heading to the airport. While I often blog about HP-UX, this
time I'm trying to learn a little more about Windows, especially for mission
critical environments.


Grizaud, the speaker, started out covering some of the trends in the industry:
things like pressure to reduce underutilized servers, reducing physical servers
using virtualization, and things like that.


Laurence  talked about the needs to be scalable,
reliable, and operationally efficient. While scale out is one way to increasing
resources, she focused on scale up solutions. Windows runs on  everything from a 2 socket server to a
Superdome with 64 sockets and 128 cores and 256 threads. Windows 2008 R2 now
supports up to 128 cores, up to 2 Tb of memory, and up to 192 I/O slots that
are available on the Superdome. This provides a stable platform for large OLTP,
Business Intelligence, and Data warehouse workloads, for server consolidation
using VMware, Hyper-V, or database instance stacking, or for I/O or memory
constrained applications that require the added scalability.


At the end of
the day, the scaling requirements of your application will usually determine
whether you use a scale up or scale out model. For instance, SQL 2008 R2 will
be able to balance its workload across all 256 logical processors (threads) on
a current Superdome. HP offers servers that can work in either scenario.


If you are going
to add a whole bunch of workloads to a single server, the impact of an outage
is much more serious since it impacts more workloads. That usually requires a
more reliable and resilient infrastructure. A more reliable system means less
problems. A more resilient server means that if there is a problem, the server
doesn't fail and bring down the workloads. This extends to extended distance
clusters to provide availability even if a server, or datacenter, goes down.


Finally, there
is a requirement for operational efficiency. Most customers have Window servers
running somewhere in their environment. If you are looking for a scale up,
mission critical Windows server, it should use the same tools and processes as
you already use on smaller systems. HP includes the HP Insight Foundation, and
offers the HP Insight Control and HP Insight Dynamics across all of our servers
that offer Windows support.


HP mission
critical Windows servers - offering scalability, resiliency, and operational
efficiency. Do you use scale up Windows servers? If so, what applications do
you run, and what hardware do you utilize.


Well, this is
just about it for me at Tech @ Work this year. It has been a great time with
the new product introductions, meeting customers and colleagues, and listening
to some great speakers. I'm on the road for a few weeks in the APJ region, so
blog updates might be a little more sparse. Hopefully you have found the team
coverage of Tech @ Work interesting.




Another Green IT Discussion


I had the pleasure of delivering a customer briefing for a power company. Needless to say, when I asked my standard question about what is more important - server density with higher power usage versus lower density and lower power usage, the answer was not surprising - for them, floor space is a bigger issue than getting additional power.


We had a great discussion which included the three areas of the Thermal Logic story: Reduce, Reclaim, and Extend.


Reduce is how we reduce the power consumption of systems. That includes things like more efficient power supplies, adaptive fans, processor power improvements, and more.


Reclaim then looks at the more efficient environment, and asks how we can free up stranded capacity. What I mean by that is that many data centers provision the power in their data center based on the face plate requirements of the server - maximum load at the maximum configuration. We all know that most servers don't use that much power ever, let alone on average. Through power calculators monitoring and management tools such as Insight Control power management, we can more accurately provision power to systems and free up the stranded, unused power capacity in the data center.


Third, we can extend the life of the data center. Technologies and services  such as HP Data Center Environmental Edge, HP Modular Cooling, and HP Critical Facilities Services all help our customers get the most out of their existing data centers, or build new ones if needed.


The best part of the briefing isn't my presentation of HP's offerings, but the questions.


First, what is the adoption of power management technologies by customers today? So, the question for our readers - do you use reduce, reclaim, or extend types of technologies or solutions today? If so, which ones?


The second interesting question is what are the biggest power consumers in the data center? Is it network, servers, or storage? Where do we see improvements happening (my answer - all areas). So, once again, where do you think power is being consumed in your data center? I should mention that this is something that I know has been discussed in at least one of The Green Grid's work group calls.


Comments and feedback are always appreciated.





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About the Author(s)
  • • Responsible for product management and marketing of NonStop Database, Business Continuity, and Cloud portfolios. Define product line strategy, positioning, branding, and messaging for all products in my portfolio. • Lead the Business Development efforts to build strategic partnerships to strengthen the eco-system. • Lead the GTM around Big Data with new innovative Analytics solutions resulting in incremental revenue opportunities. • Lead product marketing efforts including strategic positioning, Go-to-Market strategy, Sales Enablement and Analyst Briefing.
  • Joe Androlowicz is a Technical Communications and Marketing manager in HP’s NonStop Product Division. Joe is a 25 year journeyman in information systems design, instructional technologies and multimedia development. He left Apple Computer for Tandem Computers to help launch G03 and hasn’t looked back yet. He previously managed the program management team for the NonStop Education and Training Center and drove the development and growth of the NonStop Certification programs.
  • I work as a Master Architect in HP Servers R & D group. I work with teams spread across the lab and outside to build solutions which are highly available on HP-UX, OpenVMS and Mission Critical Linux platforms. In particular I contribute to develop HP Serviceguard clusters, HP-UX Security and Middleware products. I have been with HP for last 17 years and have exposure to HA/DR field from both R & D and customer perspectives.
  • Kirk Bresniker is the Vice President/Chief Technologist for HP Business Critical Systems where he has technical responsibility for all things Mission Critical, including HP-UX, NonStop and scalable x86 platforms. He joined HP in 1989 after graduating from Santa Clara University and has been an HP Fellow since 2008.
  • I’m the worldwide marketing manager for HP NonStop. I’ll be blogging and tweeting out news as it relates to NonStop solutions – you can find me here and on twitter at @CarolynatHP
  • Cynthia is part of the HP ExpertOne team. ExpertOne offers professional IT training and certifications from infrastructure refresh to areas that span across the datacenter like Cloud and Converged Infrastructure.
  • Hi, I´m part of the HP Servers team and work as Product Marketing Manager with a focus on mission-critical offerings. I´m interested in the business value our technology brings to customers and I'll be blogging about their stories and how our portfolio evolves to help them succeed in today´s market.
  • I am a member of the Enterprise Group Global Marketing team blogging on topics of interest for HP Servers. Check out blog posts on all four Server blog sites-Reality Check, The Eye on Blades, Mission Critical Computing and Hyperscale Computing- for exciting news on the future of compute.
  • I have worked with NonStop systems since 1982. I am a Master Technologist for HP and am part of the IT SWAT organization, the Cloud SWAT and work with HP Labs. I report into the Enterprise Solutions and Architecture organization.
  • HP Servers, Converged Infrastructure, Converged Systems and ExpertOne
  • Luke Oda is a member of the HP's BCS Marketing team. With a primary focus on marketing programs that support HP's BCS portfolio. His interests include all things mission-critical and the continuing innovation that HP demonstrates across the globe.
  • I am the Superdome 2 Product Manager. My interest is to learn how mission critical platform helps customers and would also like to share my thoughts on how Superdome has been helping customers and will continue to do so.
  • I work in the HP Servers marketing group, managing a marketing team responsible for marketing solutions for enterprise customers who run mission-critical workloads and depend on HP to keep their business continuously running.
  • Mohan Parthasarathy is a Technical Architect in the HP-UX lab. His primary focus currently is in the core kernel, platform enablement and virtualization areas of HP-UX. Mohan has worked on various modules of HP-UX, including networking protocol stacks, drivers, core kernel and virtualization
  • I am a Senior Manager managing external content & social media for HP Servers Awareness. Stay tuned for topics on Mission Critical Solutions, Core Enterprise & SMB Solutions, Next Gen Workload Solutions, Big Data & HPC, Cloudline and HPS Options! Follow me @RubyDatHP
  • Greetings! I am on the HP Enterprise Group marketing team. Topics I am interested in include Converged Infrastructure, Converged Systems and Management, and HP BladeSystem.
  • As a Managing Consultant for HP’s Enterprise Solution & Architecture group, I collaborate with client business and IT senior management to understand, prioritize and architect advanced use of data and information, drawing insights required to make informed business decisions. My current focus leverages event-driven business intelligence design techniques and technologies to identify patterns, anticipate outcomes and proactively optimize business response creating a differentiated position in the marketplace for the client.
  • Serviceguard for Linux, HP-UX, OpenVMS
  • Wendy Bartlett is a Distinguished Technologist in HP’s NonStop Enterprise Division, and focuses on dependability – security and availability - for the NonStop server line. She joined Tandem in 1978. Her other main area of interest is system architecture evolution. She has an M.S. degree in computer science from Stanford University.
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