HP CTO Fink: HP Helion Cloud, 'The Machine' On Tap To Revolutionize IT


HP CTO Martin Fink
HP CTO Martin Fink and a mockup of 'The Machine'

Hewlett-Packard is committed to developing OpenStack-based clouds and a new hardware platform called, for now, "The Machine," as a way to meet customers' burgeoning requirements for easy-to-use and flexible data center solutions.

That's the word from Martin Fink, HP CTO, executive vice president and head of HP's Advanced Research Labs, who outlined his vision for flexible, automated data center infrastructures during a keynote presentation at the Nth Symposium, held this week in Anaheim, Calif.

Fink, speaking before a crowd of current and potential customers of Nth Generation, a San Diego-based solution provider and HP channel partner that sponsored the event, said most potential users of cloud technology expect their clouds to automatically scale, automatically repair themselves and offer fault tolerance.

[Related: CRN Exclusive: HP CTO Martin Fink On HP's Helion Global Open Network Vs. Cisco Global Intercloud]

"And another thing customers want -- they want it cheaper," he said. "We don't like that part."

Given the heavy reliance IT already places on such open source technologies as the Linux operating system, Apache web servers and WordPress content management systems, it is only natural to choose open source as the base for cloud development, and that means OpenStack, Fink said.

HP's new Helion distributed cloud computing solution brings customers the benefits of open source, including open standards, application portability, flexibility and lower cost, all with the full support of HP and its partners, Fink said.

"The idea of saying, 'Hey, Mr. Customers, you can go to openstack.org and download the requirements, and, 'Hey, you can deploy it yourself' is not a very good conversation starter," he said.

Helion definitely will be open for partners, said Rich Baldwin, Nth Generation's CIO and chief strategy officer.

HP Helion is a new major brand from HP that brings together all HP's top cloud initiatives, including the HP Cloud and the company's Infrastructure-as-a-Service and Platform-as-a-Service technologies, Baldwin told CRN. "The software HP is developing facilitates the hybrid cloud model," he said.

Baldwin said he was impressed when Fink brought another HP employee on the stage to demonstrate how quickly one could build services using HP Helion.

"The demo we saw was pretty basic," he said. "But what went on behind the scenes was impressive. He said he could make 10 instances of WordPress, and immediately had them ready. That's the technology customers need to get to production quickly."

HP Helion OpenStack cloud technology comes in two versions, Fink said.

NEXT: The Two Editions Of Helion OpenStack