Rethink BI : Business Insights over Business Intelligence
The purpose of this business insights thought leadership blog is to share the HP point of view on industry trends such as Big Data and Real Time Analytics, and provide updates on key innovations and solutions.

You can’t spell Hadoop without HP, but you can spell it without 2U

By Sanjai Marimadaiah – HP Converged Systems


For many customers, standard rack based 1U and 2U servers have been the only show in town when it comes to deploying Hadoop clusters. 


However, as the scale of Hadoop deployments increases this can present several challenges including server footprint outgrowing available floor space in the datacenter and high costs of cabling, right through to complex administration of all of the physical hardware.


HP has a solution for this in the form of our HP ProLiant SL4500 series, an ultra-dense server platform which with the help of our partners Cloudera, HortonWorks and MapR, we’ve now baked into a series of reference architectures for Hadoop.  These offerings deliver outstanding efficiencies in server real estate, storage density and systems administration, as well as providing stellar performance over and above standard server architectures.


Ultra dense solutions


Because of the 4.3U chassis of the HP ProLiant SL4500, customers can deploy up to nine chassis in a single rack.  This optimizes the use of datacenter real-estate enabling significant storage density of up to 1.6 Petabytes in a single rack, up to 35% more physical servers and 80% more cores than a 2U server configuration.


Where a customer getting started on Hadoop deployment might use a 2U based solution for an economical production grade Hadoop cluster, solutions featuring the HP ProLiant SL4540 are more suitable for high capacity production grade clusters for power users of Hadoop with an established Big Data strategy.


Better management, connectivity, performance and efficiency


In terms of management, the HP ProLiant SL4500 delivers embedded intelligence and automation technology that spans from internal components, to servers, to racks, the data center and even in the cloud.  The HP Insight Cluster Management Utility (CMU) tool enables customers to rapidly deploy Hadoop clusters.  There is also now one Insight Lights Out (iLo) port for the entire chassis which simplifies the administration of all the hardware and firmware elements within.


Connectivity within the HP ProLiant SL4500 presents greater flexibility with customers able to choose between 1Gb Ethernet, 10Gb Ethernet and Infiniband interconnects.


Performance is significantly better with the HP ProLiant SL4500 series delivering up to 23% faster performance than a standard 2U server configuration (based on MapR – see details at


Unparalleled TCO


Hadoop solutions based on hyper-scale servers are a unique offering from HP.  Due to the efficiencies explained above, based on our estimates we believe a customer can save up to $1 Million over a three year period by deploying a Hadoop solution on just 28 HP ProLiant SL4500 nodes, versus 28 rack based servers from one of our competitors.


Hadoop deployment scenarios


There are two key deployment scenarios which we believe are most applicable to Hadoop customers today.


1 HP ProLiant SL4500 - Three Nodes x 15 Drives


This offering is ideal for Hadoop worker nodes as each node is 2 socket so can map 16 cores to 15 disks.  It delivers up to 1M IOPS per Node and up to 135TB total storage capacity. Detailed Hadoop Reference Architectures for SL4500 are now available at .


2 HP ProLiant SL4500 - One Node x 60 Drives


This offering is well positioned for Big Data due to the high storage density plus compute capability, delivering up to 1M IOPS and 180TB storage in a single chassis with a 3TB disk.  It is ideally suited as an active archive of infrequently used Big Data in a disaster recover solution.


What next?


To find out more why not attend one of the events on our roadshow with Cloudera and take a look at some of our materials including the solution brief and reference architectures and the ProLiant SL4500 server series. 

Leave a Comment

We encourage you to share your comments on this post. Comments are moderated and will be reviewed
and posted as promptly as possible during regular business hours

To ensure your comment is published, be sure to follow the community guidelines.

Be sure to enter a unique name. You can't reuse a name that's already in use.
Be sure to enter a unique email address. You can't reuse an email address that's already in use.
Type the characters you see in the picture above.Type the words you hear.
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Do you mean 
About the Author

Follow Us
The opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the authors, not of HP. By using this site, you accept the Terms of Use and Rules of Participation.