EMC VNX [EOL] Review

We're able to over-provision and have had plenty of storage for the past two years, but ​it only supports 10Gb copper and not 10Gb fiber.


Valuable Features

The cost of the product, because it's considered an entry level product for what it does, but it had everything we needed for a great price.

Improvements to My Organization

All our storage is now in two places, a primary site and a DR site. Network shares, VM storage, etc. all come from the same physical infrastructure at both locations. Instead of getting more servers for storage, we were able to over-provision this and have had plenty of storage for the past two years. We recently just added another DAE to both locations pretty easily which extends the storage even more.

Room for Improvement

It only supports 10Gb copper, and cannot do 10Gb fiber. The system health screen could be more useful and show more important information. No support for flash drives.

Use of Solution

I've used it for two years.

Stability Issues

Stability has been rock solid, as we have been running both units for over two years with no major problems. There are redundant power supplies for everything. We have lost a DAE because of a double power failure and the unit still was fully functional, once the DAE came back online it meshed back into the array seamlessly.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service:

EMC customer service has always been spot on. Any issues we have are dealt with right away.

Technical Support:

EMC has great online support and tech support over the phone. Their knowledge base is pretty easy to use and updates are easy to find.

Initial Setup

Deployment was quite straight forward, we did not need any assistance from EMC. Any small questions we had could easily be found online or via YouTube.

It was very straightforward as long as you have a basic knowledge of networks and network storage. The instructions provide a great starting point and you can continue online for more and better information.

Implementation Team

It was done in-house, with just a single deployment person with a second person helping with ISCSI and other configuration options.

ROI

We have not done any calculations, but the costs we have saved in power consumption, data center space, and cooling cannot be ignored. We went from three full racks of servers, to a half rack (not all EMC, the rest is a Cisco UCS deployment). The savings alone on the three factors above over the past two years have probably paid for this investment already.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

Pricing is very good, especially for educational institutions. Licensing is pretty straight forward really, it's just a support contract that is needed to keep everything up to date but there are no extra license fees or anything once you get the unit.

Other Solutions Considered

We evalulated HP, Dell, and NetApp storage products in the same class

Other Advice

Use Google and YouTube when implementing, there are lots of tips and advice out there, along with best practices. There's lots of stuff not on EMC's site but other helpful sites as well. There is a pretty large community now for this product line.

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