Cisco UCS B-Series Review

A highly available and flexible solution with a single point of administration


What is our primary use case?

Our whole VMware Farm is running on Flexpod, which uses the UCS B-Series for compute resources. Using the Blade along with Fibre Interconnect, it provides high availability and ease of migration to other hardware in case of failure. The cabling and power footprint is at the lowest so far.

How has it helped my organization?

It provides high availability with flexibility and a single point of administration using the Flexpod solutions. With all of the hardware on a single dashboard, it is easy to troubleshoot and to administer. The blade system provides faster back-end communication between systems.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features of this solution are profiling, ease of administration, and monitoring.

Profiling provides easier deployment and configuration, especially if the new systems are intended only to increase compute resources.

The Dashboard is quite impressive and is, so far, the best based on my experience. It provides a detailed view that is easy to follow. The cross-links on the information are great.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see the availability increased during upgrades and patching. There are patches that cannot be implemented without any downtime or reboot required. If the newer version could eliminate downtime during patches or firmware upgrades, it would be great.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This solution is very much stable, especially the network side.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability is very flexible, thanks to Profiling of the hardware on which you can transfer the profile of a system to another without any action or configuration needed.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is great all the way, although no major issues have yet been encountered in terms of UCS / Flexpod.

If you previously used a different solution, which one did you use and why did you switch?

Prior to this solution, we used an HP Blade C3000 System. Based on the reviews and corporate standard we went to Cisco Flexpod solutions.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup of this solution is impressive.

What about the implementation team?

The vendor helped us implement the Flexpod, and we would rate them an eight out of ten.

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

The price of this solution is a little bit higher, but given that this system is Cisco, it feels more secure and dependable.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did not evaluate other options before choosing this solution.

What other advice do I have?

Right now we haven't encountered any issues on our system that could result in our KPI being impacted.

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