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Below from storagenerve

VSP Technology USPV Technology
Name VSP: Virtual Storage Platform USPV: Universal Storage Platform – Virtualization
Cabinet Min: 1 Cabinet
Max: 6 Cabinets (2 Systems)
5 Cabinets
Drives (2.5 inch SAS) Min: 0 Drives (External Storage)
Max: 2.5 inch x 2048 SAS II Drives
3.5 inch x 1152 FC drives
Drives (3.5 inch SAS) Min: 0 Drives (External Storage)
Max: 3.5 inch x 1280 SAS II Drives
3.5 inch x 1152 FC drives
Federation Min: Single System
Max: Two Systems tightly coupled using the Hitachi Star Fabric over PCIe
External Storage (Federation – Virtualization) Max: 255 PB Max: 247 PB
External Storage (Federation Drives) 1TB x 255000 drives 1TB x 247000 drives
Storage 2 PB’s Internal 1 PB Internal
Processors INTEL Quad Core Processors plus ASICs on FED / BED ASICs
Single Controller (System) Min: 1 Cabinet
Max: 3 Cabinets
5 Cabinets
Virtual Storage Director Blades 4 Cores per Blade
Min: 2 Blades (8 Cores)
Max: 8 Blades (32 Cores)
FED (Front End Directors) Each FED has 8 ports
Min: 2 FED (16 ports)
Max: 24 FED (192 Cores)
112 Ports
FED Port Speed 8 Gbps 4 Gbps
FED Port types Min: 16 – FC Ports (8GB)
Max: 192 – FC Ports (8GB),
192 FICON Ports
224 – FC (4GB ports),
112 – FC (8GB ports),
112 – FICON
FCoE It may be supported in a short duration but no support with Release 1 Not Supported
iSCSI Not Supported Not Supported
Infiniband Not Supported Not Supported
BED (Back End Directors) Each BED has 4 SAS links
Min: 0 (incase of external Storage)
Max: 64 BED (64 SAS links – Two federated VSP’s)
64 FC loops – Half duplex AL loops
BED Speed 6 Gbps SAS 4 Gbps FC-AL
Cache 32GB or 64GB Adapters
Min: 2 (64GB cache)
Max: 16 (1024 GB Cache)
512 GB Cache
Cache Protection Flash plus Battery Big Batteries
Power Consumption 30KW (one phase) – 1024 drives 33.2 KW (three phase)
Automated Dynamic Tiering LUN Level and Sub LUN level LUN Level
Secure MultiTenancy Yes No
VAAI – vStorageAPI support Yes (expected late 2010) No
Native within UCP (expected) Yes No
Support for 2.5 inch drives and/or 3.5 inch drives 2.5 inch and 3.5 inch drives 3.5 inch drives only
SATA drive support Yes Yes
SAS and SATA drive support – intermix Yes SAS not supported
FC and SATA drive support – intermix FC not supported Yes
Cache Mirroring Write Cache Mirroring Write Cache Mirroring
Command Suite 7 Supports Supports
SSD Supported Supported
Predecessor USPV USP
Released Sep 2010 2006/2007
Operating System BOS / BOS V BOS / BOS V
LUN based Tiering Yes Yes
Sub LUN based Tiering Yes No
Page Size 42MB 42MB
Large Batteries No Yes
Drive Formats ??? bytes (expecting 520) with 8 bytes ECC ??? bytes (expecting 520) with 8 bytes ECC
Microcode Runs on Virtual Storage Processors Runs on FED, BED
Rack System 19 Inch Racks, 42U 19 inch Racks
Airflow Hot – Cold Aisle Hot – Cold Aisle
RAID Mirroring, RAID 5, RAID 6 Mirroring, RAID 5, RAID 6
Cooling Fans Noise Reduction Non
Cooling Fans Speed 3 level speeds for cooling 1 level speed for cooling
Control Memory On Virtual Storage Directors On FED/BED
Color of the Cabinet Green Bluish / purple
Purchased as VSP only with Controllers or with X number of drives scalable to 2048 drives USPVM only sold with Controllers. USPV sold with controllers and drives. USPVM cannot be upgraded to USPV


Cabinet Numbering and Structure

Below are how two VSP systems are coupled together using the Hitachi Star Switch (PCIe Connect), which enables the expansion of two VSP into a single system scalable to 2048 drives with 1024 GB of cache.

Cab 12 Cab 11 Cab 1 Cab 0 Cab 1 Cab 2
Drives only Drives only Controller 1 + Drives Controller 2 + Drives Drives only Drives only

HP P9000 and XP

HP OEMs the Hitachi storage system on the high-end. The Hitachi USP V corresponds to the HP XP24000? and the new Hitachi VSP is the HP P9000? The HP name maybe the P9000 Disk Array Family with Model 9500. The associated software is the P9000. Neither has meaningful architectural details on their website, just the usual marketing rubbish, big words evoking good feelings that a used car sales rep might spout. Why can't we just get the CarFax report!

The good part is the back-end is SAS, not fiber channel, and it may be 2.5in drives, not 3.5in.


Scalability of the P9500
Data Drives 4 4 2044
Spare Drives 1 1 128
Capacity 575 GB * raw
287 GB * usable
- 1.178 PB * raw
1.030 PB * usable
SAS Disk Adapter (DKA) Pairs 1 1 4
Channel Adapter (CHA) Pairs 1 10**
Host Ports 8 8/16 128/160**
Cache 16 GB 16 GB 512 GB
LDEVs 1 1 65,280
Racks 1 1 6

Below is directly from the HP P9000 webpage

P9500 Hardware

The P9500 hardware consists of one or two DKC racks that will hold up to 256 drives each. Each DKC rack can attach to one or two optional DKU racks that each holds up to 384 drives. The DKC Rack contains the Controller Chassis and two 128 slot Drive Chassis. The DKU Racks contain up to three 128 slot Drive Chassis.

Channel Adapter (CHA) Pairs

Channel Adapters (CHA) pairs provide connections to host or servers that use the P9500 for data storage (either directly connected to the servers or through SAN switches). CHA pairs also provide connections to External Storage devices and to remote replication devices. CHAs are configured in pairs for redundancy. A minimum of 1 CHA pair is required. The maximum number of CHA pairs that can be installed in one DKC rack depends on the number of DKAs installed:

CHA pairs available for use in the P9500 include:

The Fibre Channel CHA pair uses SFP (small form factor pluggable) Transceivers on each port of the CHA. Each port is configurable as short wave or long wave by installing the appropriate transceiver. These CHA pairs ship with 8-Gbps short wave transceivers installed on every port.

Disk Adapter (DKA) Sets

The Disk Adapter (DKA) performs all data movement between the drives and Cache Memory. The DKA also provides data protection using RAID 1, RAID 5, and RAID 6.
The P9500 can have one, two or DKA pairs installed.

Cache Memory

Cache Memory is used to temporarily store data from the host until it is written to drive storage, or to stage data requested by the host from a drive. The P9500 contains global mirrored cache. All write data is written in cache twice, one time each on two separate SSD backed up Cache Memory Adapters. This insures that even if one cache board fails that the data is still in the other one until it is safely written a drive. Read data is not mirrored as a copy of that data remains on the drives, allowing more of the total cache capacity available for data.

P9500 Cache Memory can be configured into partitions allocated to particular host/port combinations to ensure that those hosts/ports enjoy optimized performance of cache-oriented I/O. These cache partitions are assigned to specified disk array groups. Up to 32 partitions of at least 4GB can be created in a P9500. Assigning cache in this way provides another method for tuning performance for data access for performance critical applications.

Disk Drives
Drive Specifications
500 GB
300 GB
600 GB
146 GB
Raw capacity (User area)
492.31 GB*
288.21 GB*
576.43 GB*
143.76 GB*
Rotation speed
7,200 rpm
10,000 rpm
10,000 rpm
15,000 rpm
Mean latency time
4.16 ms
2.99 ms
2.99 ms
2.01 ms
Mean seek time (Read/Write)
8.0/8.4 ms
4.0/4.4 ms
3.8/4.4 ms
2.9/3.3 ms
Internal data transfer rate
Up to 142 MB/sec
Up to 208.6 MB/sec
Up to 253.6 MB/sec
Up to 242 MB/sec
Interface type
Dual ported 6 Gbps
Dual ported 6 Gbps
Dual ported 6 Gbps
Dual ported 6 Gbps
SSD Disk Drives
Drive Specifications 200 GB SSD
Raw capacity (User area) 196.92 GB*
Access time  
Interface type Dual ported 3 Gbps SAS


HP recently acquired 3PAR, after Dell started the bidding. Sometime ago, 3PAR launch their storage system with a good system architecture. I am thinking they did not have the resources to update their system, hence the desire to be acquired by some one who did have financial resources to support this. More when new product details are released.