Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe Review

Enables me to manage the flows of data and not worry about feeds and speeds anymore


What is our primary use case?

From a storage point of view, our primary uses are as our primary storage which provides all of the capacity for our databases, applications, and most of our mission-critical work at the moment.

We're planning on moving our most critical databases onto the PowerMax to take advantage of all the new features and functions, as well as the ability for it to grow into the future to continue to provide that top level of performance.

Data plays a very important role in our business. It allows us to make good decisions and react to our customers' needs. The PowerMax is going to be where we put the most critical data so we can get the fastest results from that investment.

How has it helped my organization?

One of the valuable features is that less work needs to be done on the arrays now, compared with what used to be. I used to spend most of my day managing the array. Now I'm more managing the interconnections and the flows of data, and not worrying about the feeds and speeds anymore.

We've been doing testing before implementing for our Oracle Databases and we're seeing much better performance than we were with the previous generation.

What is most valuable?

We're using a combination of Unisphere and CloudIQ. CloudIQ has become an optimal tool for us to get the full picture of all the different arrays, from mid-tier all the way up. It gives us that single view and the ability to launch the Unisphere. That is really is powerful in being able to manage the array.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

With it being part of the Symmetrix family over the years, we don't have a worry at all about it being stable and serviceable. It's been many years since we've had a hardware issue with any VMAX array, and I don't see the PowerMax being any different.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

For us, it has enormous scale in the way it can grow with our needs. Starting out as small as we are, with just a small PowerMax 2000, it is amazing how much capacity we can get in such a tiny footprint.

How are customer service and technical support?

Support from Dell EMC has been phenomenal. Getting the box up and running was very simple, and any time we have a problem we get the right engineers working on it.

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

We had been using the VMAX line prior, and this was just a case of capacity and performance growth. We refreshed our environment to get the most performance we can out of our applications.

The architecture - using the NVMe on the back end, with the designed use Storage Class Memory, and NVMe end-to-end in the future - really influenced us in not wanting to go backward with our purchase. Rather, we wanted to buy a future-looking device that we can keep growing into, to get our value out of that investment.

How was the initial setup?

The installation of the PowerMax was very straightforward; probably the easiest implementation of an array that we've done so far.

What about the implementation team?

We did it ourselves.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

PowerMax was the shortlist.

What other advice do I have?

This should be on your shortlist. You should really take look at PowerMax. They're reliable. They do everything you could possibly want and much more. They have a lot of features that other arrays just don't.

We'd rate it as a ten. It has done everything that we've asked it to do and much more.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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