Earlier in the year I got to spend two days at HP in Cupertino with Tony Redmond and Paul Robichaux talking to HP and Microsoft about HP’s new E5000 messaging appliance for Exchange 2010. In a nutshell, the E5000 is a complete out-of-the-box highly available Exchange 2010 solution which includes a 2 mailbox server DAG with pre-designed storage as well as redundant Client Access (CAS) and Hub Transport servers. HP wrapped the Exchange setup and configuration steps you’d often hire a consultant for with a number of easy to use wizards that will take you from a rather large ~170 pound box to a running Exchange 2010 solution in the course of a day or so.
While in Cupertino, Tony, Paul, and I spent two days inside a TV studio learning about the new appliance, evaluating it, and discussing our take on it. HP has over the course of a few months cut our discussions down to half a dozen 5 – 10 minute videos about the product. It was a really interesting experience to do this on camera even after the numerous reshoots as someone said something comical and the whole thing broke down.
In any case, if you’re interested in the new solution, check out the videos below, with descriptions I poached from Paul’s blog.
- Introduction to HP E5000 Hardware, featuring lots of oohing and aahing over the E5000′s chassis. Although HP’s Dean Steadman is in this video, I don’t think you can see the bandage he had to put on after an unlucky encounter with a sharp edge on the E5000 prototype. Too bad; we had great fun mocking him because of it.
- HP E5000: Complete and Optimized: a roundtable discussion of why HP designed the E5000 the way they did, and what they were attempting to accomplish with it.
- HP E5000: Simple and Cost Efficient, in which we explore the thorny question of how you get support for something that combines an operating system and application from Microsoft with HP’s hardware.
- HP E5000: Resilient/Highly Available, in which we explore whether you can safely use the word “appliance” to describe the E5000 (I voted that yes, we in fact could.)
- HP E5000: Large Low Cost Mailboxes. Do you want to go back to 100MB mailboxes? Neither do Microsoft’s Jeff Mealiffe or HP’s Karl Robinson, both of whom join our roundtable discussion of ways to deliver large, cheap mailboxes to sate users’ unceasing demands.
- HP E5000: Installation & Startup, in which HP’s Karl Robinson and Paul Robichaux walk through the out-of-the-box setup process. (Hint: we skip the boring parts, like installing Exchange.)
If you’re looking for a ready to go Exchange solution for somewhere in the neighborhood of 1,000 to 3,000 mailboxes, I’d really encourage you to check this solution out. I was certainly impressed by the appliance.