Storage wasn’t the brightest spot in HP’s fiscal Q2 earnings report yesterday, but it was far from the darkest spot. In fact, there weren’t any dark spots.

The only laggards were software (down 1% from last year) and services (which grew only 2% from the previous year, to $8.7 billion).

Overall, HP (NYSE: HPQ) posted revenue for the second quarter of $30.8 billion, up 13% over the same quarter last year. Net earnings were $2.2 billion for the quarter, an increase of 28% from fiscal Q2 2009.

It’s difficult to put context on earnings these days because of the relative macro economic conditions today vs. a year ago, but by anyone’s estimates this was a stellar performance by HP in a still-tough climate.

In fact, it prompted The Motley Fool to pen a column comparing HP to IBM (see “HP is the New Big Blue”).

Unfortunately, HP does not get real granular in breaking down its product lines, but the Enterprise Storage and Server segment racked up $4.5 billion in total revenue, up 31% over the previous year. That segment was led by Industry Standard Server revenue, which increased 54%, while the Storage segment revenue increased a solid 16%, with the EVA product line up 3%.

Operating profit for the Enterprise Storage and Servers segment was $571 million (12.6% of revenue), which was up from $250 million (7.2% of revenue) in Q2 2009.

HP is clearly a bellwether for the overall IT industry, although not so much for the storage sector. However, NetApp and Brocade are bellwethers for the storage industry. Brocade (NSDQ: BRCD) will report results for its fiscal second quarter after the market closes tomorrow (Thurs., May 20), and NetApp (NSDQ: NTAP) will announce results for its fiscal fourth quarter next week (Wed., May 26).

Stay tuned to see if you’re in the right business or not as the market turns.

For comments on the results from Brocade’s and NetApp’s previous quarter earnings report, see my blog posts:
Brocade’s earnings a mixed bag
NetApp hit$ a home run

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