Dell EMC ECS Review

A reliable all-in-one solution with guaranteed performance

What is our primary use case?

We are a system integrator and this is one of the products that we implement for our clients.

This is a cloud-based object storage platform.

What is most valuable?

What I like best about this product is that it is a complete solution, both hardware, and software, by the same vendor. There are many object storage systems that are sold as a software solution, only. At the same time, some vendors only sell the hardware. With this product, they are combined to make a complete solution.

What needs improvement?

Technical support needs to be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using EMC Elastic Cloud Storage for about a year and a half.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This is a stable solution. In a traditional storage system, the more years that you use it, the more problems you can expect to have. With EMC Elastic Cloud Storage, we haven't experienced any such problems.

By comparison, we have experience with EMC Isilon network-attached storage, and after two or three years, you can expect to have hard drive failures and other hardware problems. This doesn't necessarily make the system unstable but there will be performance-related issues that come about because data is being rebalanced between drives.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This product is definitely scalable. We have a few hundred people who are connected to services that use this storage system. Less than ten of them are administrators and support staff, whereas the remainder is end-users.

How are customer service and technical support?

Generally speaking, there have been some issues with support because Dell and EMC are still in the merging stage. Sometimes, after you find a solution to the problem you are trying to solve, the web page changes because they are still in the process of integrating everything. As a result, sometimes you spend a long time searching for the information that you need to resolve issues.

Another issue with technical support, in particular when it is being handled from India, is the difference in time. If you want to set up a Webex meeting with somebody from technical support then it is often not possible because of the difference in time.

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

I have experience with mixed-vendor solutions. For example, with Cisco, they sell the S-Series Storage Servers and you can use this hardware with software from another vendor. However, with a multivendor system, you can have trouble with interoperability between hardware and software.

The other problem with a multivendor solution is that you don't have packages that are tested for performance, so you don't know what to expect. In this cloud-based configuration, you have a product that is fully tested. Even if the performance is less than you hoped then you at least know what to expect in advance of implementing it. When we sell it to our customers, they are fully aware of what they are buying.

With a Cisco solution, you have more control over what you are purchasing. You can choose the amount of memory and cache, for example. The problem is that you aren't sure how much processing power you will need to get the results that you want. This is because they do not test the specific hardware and software bundle. With EMC, you have a tool that is guaranteed to work as marketed.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is relatively easy. You have to take care to do it properly but overall, it is fine. It should take a few hours to deploy.

What other advice do I have?

There are many ways to make products better, although, for the purpose that our customers are using this solution, you can't do it better. It is a product that I recommend. 

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
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