Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series Review

Scalability - adding nodes in a new data center as business divisions shift to it - is key for us

What is our primary use case?

We use it as an application server and for storage.

What is most valuable?

The feature that we are most interested in is the scalability. When needed, we are able to add more nodes and scale it up further. That is the feature which we sought. All three nodes are similar and maintaining paths is easy.

Our company has various business divisions. One of the business divisions has shifted to a new location. Other divisions will join in the future. We have started a data center for the first division that shifted, and as and when more divisions join, we'll be adding more nodes. That is the reason we see scalability as an important feature.

What needs improvement?

I would like it to be easier to manage the server, create VMs, and manage the VMs on the client.

For how long have I used the solution?

Less than one year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

As far as the server is performing, everything is good. There have been no problems and no downtime. We haven't been using it a long time but up until now it has been stable.

How are customer service and technical support?

Our technical support is done through our partner.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We were using more on the VMware side. This is the first time we are using HyperFlex. We had an HPE-based system which we replaced with this. It was HPE Simplivity but it was no good. We did not get good feedback about Simplivity.

How was the initial setup?

The deployment was very fast, they completed it in a couple of days. Cisco ships all the servers pre-installed. It was pretty straightforward. We didn't really have an implementation strategy. It wasn't so complicated.

The deployment only required one person from our side - our server maintenance engineer - and one from the implementation partner.

What about the implementation team?

The initial setup was done by our implementation partner, S.K. International. Initially they struggled a bit and then, finally, they did a good job.

They are maintaining it right now. We may take over after a year. We will have a person to do all the maintenance. We already have a team maintaining the other servers, so maybe we will have them do this too.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Initially HyperFlex was a little costly, it was higher, but Cisco wanted to get into our company, so they gave us a fair discount.

We have also gone for another setup from Cisco, which we should soon receive, the vGPU. On this second purchase they were not able to give the same discount.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We had various options. We looked at Dell EMC, Nutanix, and others. We also evaluated Simplivity, from HPE, and we finally ended up with HyperFlex.

With Cisco, the entire solution was from the same vendor, whereas with Dell EMC and Simplivity there were different vendors. Our main point was scalability. That's where Cisco scored well, but most important was a good price.

What other advice do I have?

There are around 250 users working on it right now. It is used for our manufacturing solution which collects information and Exchange data. There are other users who are using the storage.

We will expand its use in the future. As far as the compute is concerned, we will be using it to pick up 60 percent of the work. As far as the storage goes, we are only using ten to 15 percent. In the next few years we will expand and in the seventh year we may have to upgrade or replace the server.

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

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