Next week I will be visiting Las Vegas to see the HP Technology Forum 2010, where I will be rubbing elbows with HP customers, engineers and partners. I am a big fan of HP’s Enterprise product lines — EVA storage arrays, Bladesystem and ProLiant servers. But this is only on the surface — you see, before these product lines were made by HP, they were Compaq and before that, DEC. I hate to say it, but before HP purchased Compaq the only thing worth buying from HP was Laserjet printers. Their original “Netserver” line was the pits.
The real engineering in servers and storage was being done by the DEC and Compaq folks that ended up working for HP through a series of acquisitions. I can’t say enough about those engineers, and wouldn’t know where to begin! OK, here’s a quick taste for you — Compaq was the first company to start building servers (and later, PCs) with parts that could be unscrewed by hand without needing special tools. Thumbscrews. Levers. You can strip a server down to the motherboard with nothing more than your thumb and forefinger. And… I can’t resist — here’s another. Compaq designed the first PC that finally resulted in the end of the IBM monopoly on the PC market.
But enough about history. These days, HP has excellent engineers and visiting the HP Tech Forum is a great way to meet them and learn from them.
I will be floating on a cloud of geekery of epic proportions. Visions of multiple cores and fibre-channel will be dancing in my head. I’ll be able to turn to just about anyone and say “So… will you be implementing iSCSI or are you making the transition to FCoE?