FlexPod Review

Makes our environment more homogeneous, so there are not as many technologies to study and learn

What is our primary use case?

Two hour production products are fully running in AWS. For the FlexPod, we just run everything on it.

We bought all the parts separately. So, we are running a certified FlexPod design with the AFF A700, UCS chassis, and Cisco Nexus FIs.

We are using both AWS and Azure.

How has it helped my organization?

The solution makes our staff more efficient, enabling them to spend time on tasks that drive our business forward. The environment is more homogeneous, so there are not as many technologies to study and learn. People can focus on improving their knowledge in existing technologies.

It simplifies our lives.

We use a smaller footprint of equipment right now.

What is most valuable?

  • The compact design
  • Cost savings

The solution’s validated designs for major enterprise apps in our organization are very important. We use all certified designs to be eligible for the enterprise support and to receive support promptly. That is why we extremely rely on the certified designs and best practices.

What needs improvement?

There were a lot of elemental failures, like RAM or blades.

Hardware stability needs improvement. We replaced a lot of RAM this past year. We had to replace the complete blade once after extensive troubleshooting. Any given time, we have approximately one blade down within the entire infrastructure, unfortunately.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is good. It breaks sometimes.

The solution has decreased the unplanned downtime incidents in our organization. We have almost eliminated downtime (by 90 percent) since using FlexPod.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is very expensive.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is good. We haven't needed to contact Cisco support regarding FlexPod as the entity. For NetApp and UCS, we receive a lot of attention.

The solution’s unified support for the entire stack is very important. With FlexPod, you receive a higher attention level when you ask for support. This is very beneficial in a time-sensitive business.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We did not have FlexPod before. We had a bunch of standalone HPE rack servers.

We switched after analyzing the performance needs and what customers wanted to spend.

We reduced the environmental footprint, like reducing electricity costs and heating. However, we are hosting our data centers from somebody else. We reduced our footprint of equipment by approximately 80 percent. Meaning that about 70 percent of our cabinets right now are empty because we switched to FlexPod.

What about the implementation team?

For the deployment of UCS, we uses an integrator and fellow reseller. Our experience with them was very good. Everything works.

What was our ROI?

The application performance improved by 50 to 70 percent.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Cisco and NetApp were on our shortlist.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate it an eight (out of 10).

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

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