In September, HP introduced its OneView platform for converged management. When first introduced, many of my fellow bloggers and I saw it as an appropriate replacement for HP System Insight Manager (SIM), but what we found is that OneView aims to go further than SIM was ever capable and with a cleaner and easier to understand UI. With OneView, HP is looking to bring together disparate management into a centralized console which can handle computer, storage and networking in a unified approach.
This week at HP Discover, Tom Joyce, Senior Vice President and GM of Converged Systems talked with our group of bloggers and it was clear that within the HP Converged Systems space, OneView is going to be the common management plane for all of the infrastructure – both servers, storage and networking. It is a major component of the Converged Systems strategy and a component that HP is investing heavily in developing.
Interface & Support
In terms of UI, HP took a ‘radically simple’ approach to the interface. It is a massive contrast to the busy and complex interfaces HP has designed in the past and at first pass more closely resembles a solution like Dell/Quest’s Foglight dashboards. All of this is welcome change. By heavily summarizing data and getting critical alerts and problems in front of an administrator, the systems potential usefulness increases exponentially.
Not neglecting the need for detail, OneView has an integrated search feature throughout the UI meaning that the details needed are a quick search or drilldown away.
With the initial release, HP OneView supports HP BladeSystem deployments with G7 and Gen8 blades and Gen8 rack-mount ProLiants. Like Virtual Connect, OneView creates server profiles which can be applied to individual blades but takes the concept a step further by also offering the ability to set lower-level BIOS settings on a blade that Virtual Connect does not address. While the initial compatibility list is very limited, more components will be added over time, though no one should expect older generations of server since much of the capabilities relies on iLO4 and other recent HP innovations.
Building upon the ‘Sea of Sensors’ concept that it introduced three or four generations of ProLiants ago, HP is driving towards a unified view of the physical environment surrounding its servers in the datacenter. HP’s Gen8 ProLiants introduced new smart power adapters which assist with mapping and locating hardware within smart racks in a datacenter. OneView is capable of building maps of these smart racks and smart power in order to identify where equipment is located, to identify hot spots and heat issues, and beings to aggregate the data obtained by the sea of sensors and offer context to it.
OneView also offers context for the interconnections of infrastructure as well as the physical environment. OneView offers great overviews of connection points between the server, its enclosure, the network sets and interconnects. It is a logical next step to extend this to connected storage and networks in future iterations.