HP unwraps expanded data management plan

Hewlett-Packard is expanding its data management initiative to target companies in the financial services, healthcare and life...

Hewlett-Packard is expanding its data management initiative  to target companies in the financial services, healthcare and life sciences industries with products and services which will help them comply with rigorous data tracking requirements.

The expanded initiative will help companies meet regulatory requirements, such as data archiving and recovery, by providing them with a range of storage, software and server products as well as services.

In that vein, HP also introduced its new OpenView Storage Area Manager 3.1 software yesterday, which provides users with a centralised view of storage capacity from Oracle and Microsoft Exchange products, as well as capacity reports.

"I think we are laying the foundation and vision of where we are going in the future," said Patrick Bonelli, vice president of network storage solutions for HP in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Legislation such as the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act in the US, which sets out detailed data tracking and retention requirements for financial firms, have created a new market for IT companies.

HP, through what it is calling its "Information Lifecycle Management" program, said that it is focusing on helping companies with data retention, availability and recovery, as well as the ability to extract information from e-mail and Microsoft Office documents.

The high costs of storage will help drive companies' needs for these products, according to Bonelli. By managing information and monitoring storage capacity and resources, companies can cut costs and improve efficiencies.

The expanded initiative is built on HP's partner programme, which it hopes will help in targeting specific industries. In the financial services sector, for instance, HP is allying with firms like information protection and application availability software provider Legato Systems.

Looking ahead, HP said that it is working on defining a data management architecture that enables a common framework for the control of data. The company also hopes to introduce a console that will provide companies with a unified and automated way to implement data policies and movement. Bonelli declined to comment further on these projects.

HP already offers backup and recovery, data replication, e-mail archiving and data sanitisation services as part of its Information Lifecycle Management programme.

Scarlet Pruitt writes for IDG News Service

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