A highly virtualized datacenter is just the beginning for realizing large scale benefits like improved utilization and reduced costs. And with virtualization as the starting point, you can add on that foundation with highly agile and flexible services for private cloud computing.

To help you gain those benefits of virtualization and cloud computing quickly, HP and Microsoft are introducing the new HP VirtualSystem VS3 for Microsoft. This is a jointly architected solution based on the Microsoft Private Cloud FastTrack architecture, which couples HP Converged Infrastructure with Windows Server Hyper-V and System Center. It integrates HP ProLiant Generation 8 servers, 3PAR F400 storage, and Virtual Connect Flexible Fabric into shared pools of interoperable resources—all managed through a common management platform that can save you precious time and resources.

The first HP VirtualSystems for Microsoft (VS1 and VS2) were introduced back in Oct. 18, 2011 and were primarily targeted at cost-conscious mid-market and small enterprise customers (VS1) and mid-size enterprise customers with more demanding requirements (VS2). And now HP has announced the latest member of the HP VirtualSystem for Microsoft family ‘VS3’ at MMS (April 17th2012) http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Converged-Infrastructure/How-HP-VirtualSystem-VS3-takes-Microsoft-Private-Cloud-to-New/ba-p/111221, that can meet the scalability, management and performance needs of the very largest organizations.

So what’s new in HP VirtualSystem VS3 for Microsoft? Well first, it is built on tight management integration between System Center 2012 and the new version of HP Insight Control v7.01, which enables end-to-end management of your infrastructure and your applications. With System Center 2012 you can deliver applications on a self-service basis and manage them across private cloud environments. And with a new way to see what’s happening inside the performance of your applications, you can remediate issues faster—before they become show-stoppers.

Second, HP VirtualSystem VS3 for Microsoft is built on the latest Microsoft Private Cloud Fast Track reference architecture which means that it’s pre-validated to deliver predictable, scalable performance based on proven specifications and deployment best practices.

Third, VS3 is built on HP ProLiant Generation 8 Servers that optimize performance for your most demanding workloads and gives you as much as 6x better performance than previous server generations. VS3 also takes advantage of 3PAR F400 storage with automated storage tiering that simplifies the provisioning, management and scale out for multiple workloads. And it is configured with HP’s Virtual Connect Flexible Fabric networking, which enables the predictable performance, high availability, and comprehensive management needed to support large-scale virtualization and convergence implementations.

Speaking of performance, the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) announced new performance benchmarks for HP VirtualSystem for Microsoft at MMS http://www.esgontrack.com. These results show that Microsoft workloads, namely Exchange Server 2010 and SQL Server 2012, work best on a Microsoft Private Cloud Fast Track platform like the HP VirtualSystem.

And finally, a consistent advantage across all versions of HP VirtualSystem for Microsoft (including the new VS3) is HP Factory Express services. This offering eliminates the need to rack, cable and configure the virtualized infrastructure yourself. It gives you built-in HP Start Services, where HP experts install and configure HP Insight Control and System Center 2012 for you and integrate HP VirtualSystem into your existing Active Directory environment. HP estimates that by taking advantage of a standard, factory-installed platform and proven integration services, you can save 50% of the cost of labor and self-installation and configuration – potentially a huge saving! And with several new consulting services that HP also announced http://www8.hp.com/us/en/business-services/it-services.html?compURL=1078262, you can get the help and support you need to make your journey to the cloud.

So if you are at MMS, I encourage you to check out the new HP VirtualSystem VS3 for Microsoft in the ServerQuarium, which is the infrastructure for all of the hands-on labs at the show. And if you are not able to get to Las Vegas, you can learn more about VS3 at the HP VirtualSystem website at http://www.hp.com/solutions/microsoft/virtualsystem. HP VirtualSystem VS3 for Microsoft is scheduled to be available to order in mid-summer.