HP Blows A Data Center To Bits

How far will data center vendors go to demonstrate the disaster-proof nature of their products? Pretty far, it seems. First we had Sun Microsystems putting a Blackbox on a shake table to simulate a major earthquake. HP has turned the publicity stunt volume up to 11, and has actually blown up an entire data center (link via ComputerWorld) to demonstrate the fail-over capabilities of its technology.

At a high-tech ballistics center managed by National Technical Systems in Camden, Arkansas, HP simulated a gas leak using real explosives that resulted in a very real explosion and datacenter destruction. What was blown up? Products from the entire spectrum of HP products, including HP servers, HP StorageWorks products, HP Software and HP Procurve networking products running in five operating environments

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About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.


  1. I suppose since we're closing down 85 data centers world wide we've got some extra equipment to do something with. It doesn't take a teenage boy to come up with the idea to blow stuff up (although it helps to have one on call, just in case 8)). Obviously, the fish part went too far. Pete Johnson, HP.com Chief Architect, Personal Blog: http://nerdguru.net

  2. Niklas O

    Didn't HP put a bullet through one of there storage servers a while back to show off there fault tolerance?

  3. Pete: I have two teenage sons. Their verdict on the video: "Hey, can we see that again?" :) I'll admit to curiosity about what HP will do with all the equipment from the consolidated data centers (aside from blowing some of it up). Given the next-generation nature of the new buildings, I gather that only a limited amount of that equipment will migrate to the new facilities.

  4. Hi Rich, Yes, a limited amount of the equipment in the legacy data centers will be moving to the new ones. I got a tour last month and it's pretty amazing how cutting edge they are. Upon closer inspection, though, the stuff blown up in the video appears to be newer machines used to make a point about the capabilities of the storage products. I agree, the video the StorageWorks guys put together is very compelling and shows how well the failover is built into these products. That kind of HA is crucial to any enterprise, including HP's. I'm glad my servers have such tools at their disposal. Pete Johnson, HP.com Chief Architect, Personal Blog: http://nerdguru.net