HP's storage business is still looking sickly.

Mark Hurd
From Mark Hurd's recent quarterly results statement: "Revenue in Storage grew 1 percent, with growth of 11 percent in our midrange EVA offerings offset by declines in the high-end array and tape businesses. While the growth profile of our Storage business is negatively impacted by our mix toward a declining tape market, we are not happy with our Storage growth in the fourth quarter and we need to do a better job driving top line momentum in the coming year."

HP resell's/OEMs Hitachi Data Systems' TagmaStore for its high-end arrays. One hint from above is that HP will focus less on the tape market and more on disk-to-disk (D2D) backup. It's got a new DAT 160 format coming out next year. But Dell has just announced its ProStor-based removable disk-based backup system, following Tandberg's lead.

This implies tape backup products are going to be under even more pressure.

Imation is reselling ProStor kit under its own brand name. This complements its own Ulysses and Odyssey removable hard drive technology it claims.

Imation's own technology and ProStor's RDX appear to be the only removable disk drive plays in town, apart from Iomega's Rev products. The RDX is missing an autoloader application but that shouldn't be too long coming.

RDX cartridge
It's my bet that HP will climb aboard the ProStor bandwagon; either that or adopt Imation's own technology, or both.

As for high-end arrays it's in the hands of Hitachi Data Systems, if it's a product weakness that is impacting its sales. If that is the case then we can expect a Hurd-driven change. This guy doesn't hang about letting negative situations continue. Shape up or ship out seems to be his mantra. We might say SUSO rather than so-so.