HP signs server virtualization pact with SWsoft

Quoting from Storage Pipeline:

Hewlett-Packard is adding to the virtualization capabilities of its server line through a technology and marketing agreement with SWsoft.
Under the deal, signed last week, HP channel partners will be able to sell and install SWsoft’s server virtualization technology with HP’s Itanium-based Integrity servers and other platforms, said Kurt Daniel, managing director at SWsoft, Herndon, Va.

The two companies have put in place joint technology development and joint marketing programs, Daniel said. “No other vendor supports 64-bit Itanium like us,” he said. “And HP is pushing hard on its Itanium strategy.”

The SWsoft technology not only allows server partitioning, it provides the ability to automatically provision servers and migrate applications from one virtual server to another, Daniel said.

Virtualization is becoming important to customers as more and more look to consolidate server infrastructures, said Chris Case, president of Sequel Data Systems, an Austin, Texas-based HP-exclusive solution provider.

“Almost every customer is asking about virtualization,” Case said. “We can call on almost any account, ask if the customer is looking at server consolidation, and 75 percent of the time they say yes.”

Sequel already is a VMware solution provider and is in the process of being enterprise-certified, Case said.

Most of the solution provider’s VMware sales are tied to HP’s x86-based or AMD-based blade servers, he said.

While AMD Opteron-based servers running Linux are the hot combination today, Case said Sequel is migrating customers from HP’s Alpha-based servers to Itanium-based Integrity servers, which could present some good opportunities for virtualization technology. “We will be watching to see what HP does with it,” Case said.

Daniel said he expects the initial push from the joint HP-SWsoft agreement to focus on direct sales, but the channel will be a critical part of the sales strategy going forward.

Aside from the SWsoft deal, HP also sells VMware’s server virtualization software.