What is our primary use case?
Our use case for 3PAR is for all our block storage. Our biggest consumption for 3PAR is for our hypervisors, VMware and Hyper-V. We're almost 90 percent virtualized and 3PAR fits the need for hypervisor environments very well.
We got our first 3PAR in 2008 or 2009 and we're up to 71 3PARs now.
How has it helped my organization?
It propelled our desire to virtualize more quickly, to go from physical servers to more and more virtualized servers.
What is most valuable?
The most valuable feature is its ease of use. Initially, when we had the hybrid solutions that had SSDs and Fibre Channel drives, the AO was the thing we liked the most - moving the data around where it was needed to be kept for hotspots. But now we're using the all-flash arrays and, with the deduplication and compression, it just really fits our virtualization environment very well.
What needs improvement?
In the next release, I would like to see faster upgrades, where it's really transparent to our host and our end-users. No node reboots, those types of things are the next feature set I would like to see.
For how long have I used the solution?
More than five years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
They are very stable, we have very few problems with them.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
Scalability is very good. We have replaced multiple 3PAR systems with just one or two 3PARs, because of how they scale in the all-flash environment.
How are customer service and technical support?
I would rate technical support an eight or nine out of 10.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
I had looked at 3PAR before HPE bought it. Then, when HPE bought it, that solidified the decision - that they had the backing of such a big organization. But the biggest factors were the features and functionality, how the hardware worked. And Adaptive Optimization was something we were really wanting.
How was the initial setup?
The very first 3PAR we got was an eight-node V800, so we were very involved because it was a very big five-rack system, a very large system. It was one of the largest in the southeast. The initial 3PAR was not very straightforward, we had to have help. But since then, we've been able to do some of our own installations without much trouble.
What was our ROI?
HPE has been a long-standing partner with us in terms of block storage, so it's been a continuous investment.
What other advice do I have?
Definitely check it out, especially in your hypervisor environments. That is where the compression has really been a huge benefit for us, allowed us to regain some data center floor space because we're now able to put more of the environment in a smaller number of 3PARs.
It's almost a 10 out of 10 but the reason it's not is that some of the upgrade processes have been a little challenging, not always technically, sometimes services-oriented. But other than that, the product itself, the ease of use and the value it's provided for us make it a valuable asset for us.