FlexPod Review
Easy to set up and administer.

Valuable Features

The most valuable feature are probably the inter-app ability that it offers; knowing that everything is compatible; and the validated designs that we get with that.

Improvements to My Organization

Ease of set up and administration; knowing everything that we have is going to be working optimally. Getting that kind of support, too, when we call in. We can open up a FlexPod case if we have an issue and then we have vendor support across everything that's in our virtual environment.

Room for Improvement

It might be improved with some refinements to tools, such as the virtual storage console and similar items. We've had a few issues with that. The same thing applies, as far as the Cisco side; the UCS manager is kind of bulky and slow; a Java-based kind of thing. Maybe they could just refine the tools that we use to manage it.

Deployment Issues

It's really good, it's worked well, but we've had a few issues with various parts of the hardware, with our fabric interconnects from Cisco. We actually had to replace two of them because of some sort of corruption that was on them. We did an upgrade on it. Apparently, the specific version we upgraded from to the specific version that we upgraded to, there was a known bug that would cause corruption on our partitions on there. We had to replace those like three times because of issues we had. That was a big pain point, but besides small things like that, it's been pretty rock solid. That would be why my rating is not higher than it is.

I think it was just one of those things that's just so under the radar that it took them a while to even dig up that it was an issue. I referred to it as a known issue, not being that it happens a lot but known that there was some documentation that had pertained to it. It was one of those things, tough to catch until afterwards; already done.

Stability Issues

It's pretty stable; as good as anything else that I've used.

Scalability Issues

Scalability is good, I guess. I'm not sure I can comment too much on that because we haven't grown our environment too much since we set it up.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Technical support has been pretty good.

Previous Solutions

It was already implemented when I started at my company, and then I just setup another new environment after I had gotten there.

Initial Setup

I was involved in setting up one of our FlexPods. It was pretty straightforward. The most complex part was probably the fiber channel setup. If I would do it again, maybe I would look into more of an NFS-type setup; make that a little bit easier. Otherwise, you had the FlexPod, and as far as from the Cisco side and everything, it was pretty straightforward.

Other Solutions Considered

We were just kind of sticking with it for now, because of the validated design; knowing that there are lots of other users that are using the same product; the tried and true results. Our environment requires having a very stable environment. Otherwise, our company loses a lot of money. We wanted to get into something that was well reviewed and know that lots of other people are working with it.

Other Advice

Give it a look. See if it fits your environment. That's kind of it, for anything you purchase, because it's got to fit your environment; it works for us. It works for what we're trying to do.

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

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