Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series Review

It is flexible and can quickly deploy machines


What is our primary use case?

Our use case would be deployable mobile headquarters, headquarters on the move, where we can quickly deploy to our small user community and quickly create a mobile data center. This includes using business advantage communications.

How has it helped my organization?

We are in the architecting phase. We are looking at it being more agile in our deployed headquarters. We are in the testing and deployment phase.

What is most valuable?

The flexibility is its most valuable feature; the ability to quickly deploy a number of help machines. It is not constrained by what we want to do. 

What needs improvement?

The product's disadvantage is that it is not necessarily open as I would like it to be. The main platform has some closed features that I would rather not see. For example, I need a mechanism to orchestrate services and an infrastructure as a service model, which is how we are deploying it. We would like to orchestrate it using an open, non-Cisco tool. While there is an API, in order to deploy it, we need to indicate it with a higher layer Network Services Orchestrator. This requires a lot of work to be done. If it could support a more open model, where we have standardized blueprints, templates, or virtual machines, it would be nice. This is an industry problem, not necessarily specific to Cisco.

I would like a lighter product; something which can be carried by a mere human. The typical size still looks like a stack of data center-sized servers, which is typically fine, but not so good if you want to carry it around.

For how long have I used the solution?

Trial/evaluations only.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It works as expected.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Based on the bigger picture, scalability should be good. However, we haven't tested in on scale yet. On paper, it is perfectly fine.

How is customer service and technical support?

The technical support is good.

Which solutions did we use previously?

Our other solution works perfectly fine. However, we do capability upgrades every so often. This is a trigger for me to determine if we are looking in the right direction. As our requirements to be more agile have increased over time when working with our previous system, we learned the system is too complicated. We needed something which is smarter and can be more automated, where a physical engineer use a template and let it run, then get a green light because the system works.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was somewhat complex, but this was because of our requirements. We were pushing the physical structure beyond what Cisco could deliver. This made life a bit miserable for the engineer.

What about the implementation team?

Cisco delivered the solution directly to us. They contributed skill, personnel, equipment, and prototypes.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We are looking at Microsoft, VMware, Cisco, and Dell EMC. In the end, we will make our decision on price and functionality.

What other advice do I have?

Give it a go. Work with their engineers and support staff to see if your solution fits. Challenge them to go a bit further than than their standard product.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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