Dell EMC XtremIO Flash Review

A couple of the valuable features are linear performance and deduplication.


How has it helped my organization?

It provides reliable and predictable performance with very little administration required beyond the initial setup.

What is most valuable?

  • Speed – All Flash makes this array very extremely responsive to virtually all workloads, besting all of our spindle-based arrays by a large margin
  • Linear performance – The XtremIO wasn’t the fastest in all tests against other all flash arrays, but even with a massive workload, the response time and user experience were absolutely predictable with no sharp drop-offs.
  • Administration simplicity – The GUI is very intuitive and simple to use. Other vendors should take note.
  • Excellent deduplication – An excellent feature and strength of the product. Inline dedupe gives you about as real-time on dedupe stats as you can get.

What needs improvement?

Native data replication: To replicate data between XtremIO devices, you need to use EMC’s RecoverPoint appliances to move the data. More and more arrays are providing the ability to replicate the data natively without the need for a secondary device to do it for them.

The EMC VNX platform is the same way. It only requires native replication via RecoverPoint. EMC’s flagship VMAX and their new Unity platform replicate natively. Even EMC's Isilon does data replication natively.

XtremeIO needs to catch up. That’s about the only Achilles heel of the product.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have not had any issues with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not had any issues with scalability.

How is customer service and technical support?

Technical support is excellent.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We did not have a previous solution.

How was the initial setup?

The setup was straightforward. Follow the installation guide and it’s a slam dunk.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated HPE 3PAR, Pure Storage, and EMC VNX all-flash arrays.

What other advice do I have?

We had an established EMC footprint in our data center and a good relationship. Exploring their AFA made sense. To keep things honest, we evaluated other products and conducted a PoC with other vendors.

The XtremeIO product wasn’t always the fastest, but it was absolutely linear in performance and we encountered no issues. The PoC kept pricing honest as well.

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