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HP and Microsoft team up for server and storage consolidation push

Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard have announced a joint marketing campaign that targets the multibillion-dollar server and storage consolidation market already dominated by Network Appliance and EMC.

The collaboration will focus on consolidating old Microsoft Netware, Exchange and Unix servers onto modern, high-capacity arrays from HP, using Microsoft's "more tightly" integrated Windows 2003 operating system, which is due out in April.

HP said it would also announcing Windows-friendly software products during the next six months.

"There are two million file servers and half a million message servers out there, and customers are starting to understand the benefits of consolidating their server and storage environment," said Roger Archibault, vice-president and general manager of HP's Infrastructure and NAS Division.

Neither Microsoft nor HP would disclose the amount to be spent on the campaign, saying only that it would be between hundreds of thousands and millions of dollars.

Microsoft's Enterprise Storage Division vice president of sales and marketing Charles Stevens said the two companies will promote new products, training and joint services that will be announced during the next few years.

One of the first efforts will be a North American road show beginning in March to demonstrate joint architectures and products. The road show is expected to reach more than 3,500 customers and channel partners via live events and simultaneous webcasts.

"HP's strategy of integrating leading NAS solutions with [storage-area networks] to provide a single, managed storage pool has advanced our market position considerably over the past three quarters," said Howard Elias, senior vice president and general manager of HP Network Storage Solutions.

"By collaborating with Microsoft and integrating Windows-powered NAS as a key part of our NAS portfolio, HP is able to reach the broadest cross-section of customers with the industry's most comprehensive set of NAS and NAS/SAN fusion solutions."

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