Dell EMC Unity Review

Just works, and is relatively feature-rich, but cloud analytics could be better


What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is virtualization.

What is most valuable?

It's a great product if you want something that just works, and works fairly well. It's a product that's tested, tried, and true, where a multitude of customers have depended on the product for the overall requirements of their companies' data. Typically, a company's data is the lifeline of the company. So, if you want something that's tried, tested, and true, that is relatively feature-rich, and that just works, go for it, right. It's a fantastic product.

What needs improvement?

There are a lot of things that can be done with it. It's got Cloud IQ, but I think it's not as mature as it could be, they could make it more effective. They could make it more comparable to some of the other products out there that have cloud analytics. The amount of insight that the Unity product is able to give, at this point, is okay, but not class-leading. Some of the other data-reduction technologies, like deduplication, are not to the level of other competitors and what their products provide.

I'm nitpicking here and there. Overall, it's a solid product.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's a stable product. You look at something like Unity, which is based on several generations of product, it's built on products such as the Clariions and the VNX, etc., so it's pretty stable. It's a tried and true product.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

If you build it out correctly and it's intended for the workloads that you anticipate, then it's absolutely scalable. If you start to do more with it, and it wasn't built for that particular use case, then it's not as scalable. At the same, with Unity now, you've got the ability to do data-in-place upgrades. From that aspect, it can be relatively more scalable.

How is customer service and technical support?

I have not used the technical support myself because I'm the architect building out the solution.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is pretty straightforward. Most arrays these days, they've made them pretty easy to set up. There's typically a management setup, and so on, that you have to follow through. But it's not overly difficult.

What other advice do I have?

It's going to be hard for Dell EMC to really rebuild Unity because Unity, in my opinion, is still a more traditional array. Although they've improved the code, there's only so much they can do, because it's based on technology that's over ten years old. So, for them to make it more next-generation would be difficult. You're getting a tried and true product and you're slapping feature sets on top of it, which is good, but it's not going to be a true next-generation product. And that's okay, it's intended for a certain use case and it works well.

It's better than an average product but it's not a "godsend" product.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Reseller.
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