Firmware upgrades on HP 3PAR StoreServ 7000 systems

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A few months ago we bought a 3PAR StoreServ 7200 system as demo equipment for our lab. The system was delivered with InformOS (aka 3PAR OS) version 3.1.2 patch 1, pretty old nowadays. As new features came out and are only available with newer firmware versions, it was time to upgrade the system.

For a pretty long time HP itself was the only authorized authority to upgrade/update 3PAR systems. That makes absolutely sense for F- or T-class 3PAR systems.These systems are pretty complex and upgrading the Inform OS on these systems is a pain. You wouldn't flash a XP system on your own, too. But with the release of the mid-range system StoreServ7000 things changed. The 7000 series is a bit comparable to EVA systems (not in terms of functionality or performance but rather in easiness of use) and you definetly wouldn't call HP to upgrade your EVA system.

So I decided to give it a try and upgrade our system to the latest version 3.2.1 MU2 patch 7 on my own.

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HP 3PAR StoreServ7200 - Part I

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In December 2012 HP introduced the new midsize model of their 3PAR storage family: the StoreServ7200. The 3PAR systems are not new on the market but costs and complexity kept of most of the customer from using them in their environment.
With the mid-size targeted StoreServ7200 HP now offers the 3PAR technology to SMB customers, giving them an option to the EVA storage family.
The EVA family is quite easy to use and offers good performance to an acceptable price so the 3PAR has to catch up in these areas to make the StoreServ7200 a real alternative to the EVA systems.

This article will have several parts, starting with this first part about installing, configuring and licensing. The second part will be all about management and finally the third part will be probably about performance tuning and everything else.

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