With the first release of applications from the one-year-old partnership between HP (news, site) and Microsoft (news, site), both companies hope to counter complete-stack vendors -- like Oracle or IBM -- and offer easily deployed and maintained data management offerings.

The release of four new appliances, which includes business intelligence and data warehousing products, sees both companies focusing on deployments and systems maintenance, rather than pricing, and offers an integrated stack that can compete in any market.

Microsoft-HP Partnership

When the partnership was announced 12 months ago, both signed into a deal that aimed to invest US$ 250 million in simplifying the IT environments for companies of all sizes and develop products that would be built on a new infrastructure-to-application model, as well as push cloud computing forward by speeding up application implementation.

Initially, the agreement was made for three years, but with ongoing development of IT stacks by other major players through acquisitions or research, it wouldn't be a surprise if this agreement was extended if the products turn out to be successful.

This time around, the releases have focused on business intelligence and data warehousing. They include:

1. HP Business Decision Appliance

Optimized for Microsoft SQL Server and SharePoint, this set of business intelligence tools can be installed and configured in less than an hour. It will enable users to share data analyses built with MS PowerPivott for MS Excel and share that content with others across SharePoint 2010.

It also allows IT to centrally audit, monitor and manage solutions created by end users from a single dashboard and greatly reduces the time and effort it takes for IT to configure and a comprehensive business intelligence solution.

2. HP Business Data Warehouse Appliance

HP Business Data Warehouse Appliance is aimed at the SMB sector and complements HP’s Enterprise Data Warehouse Appliance, which is designed for large organizations, optimized for SQL Server 2008 R2 and was introduced in November.

It offers improved data access with massive scalability and faster queries than traditional SQL Server databases. It also works with MS’s Business Intelligence platform.

3. Enterprise-class Messaging

A new messaging service for enterprises, HP E5000 Messaging System for Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 is a self-contained, pre-configured platform for Microsoft Exchange Server 2010.

It can be deployed in a few hours, delivers large mailboxes at a low cost, centralized archiving and 24/7 access from any device. It can also scale as business needs grow.

4. Cloud Computing

HP and Microsoft also plan to deliver the HP Database Consolidation Appliance. This appliance consolidates hundreds of databases into a single, virtual environment, providing users with a private cloud database solution that offers self-service, on-demand scalability and dynamic elasticity with the additional control offered through an on-premises deployment.

Future Releases

In addition to this, both companies are offering support and consulting services for the converged application appliances to accelerate business service delivery. The services portfolios include assessment, design, proof of concept and implementation, as well as ongoing support.

Both companies also say that there will be further releases in the future. Both are collaborating on an engineering roadmap for data management machines, converged, pre-packaged application solutions, comprehensive virtualization offerings and integrated management tools.

The HP Business Decision Appliance and HP Enterprise Data Warehouse with services and support are available now, while the HP E5000 Messaging System will be available in March. The HP Business Data Warehouse Appliance is expected to be available in June.