HPE 3PAR Flash Storage Review

My administrators don't need to spend a lot of time on maintaining or troubleshooting issues


What is our primary use case?

Primarily, we use it for SAP storage. At this moment, we are running an ERP system on it. 

SAP is our mission-critical app.

How has it helped my organization?

All-flash is positioning our company for growth. We need to improve our systems with better hardware and systems. That will happen in the next three to six months.

What is most valuable?

It is easy to use and understand. It is also very stable.

What needs improvement?

I would like the documentation easy to find. There is a lot of documentation, but sometimes it is hard to find. You have to do a lot of searching to find it.

Before you could go on the HPE website, and download every driver that you wanted. Now, you need to have a service contract, or something else, to be able to get the drivers. Sometimes, you just need a simple driver, because your machine needs to restart and reinstall. If the machine is not under warranty anymore, it's hard to get the driver. That is a setback when compared to other solutions.

We are in the Caribbean, but we are Sint Maarten. Sint Maarten is French and Dutch. We are on the Dutch side. We speak Dutch and English, but because we are in the Caribbean, the way the system is set up with HPE in Latin America, a lot of times when we contact support, we get a Spanish-speaking people instead of an English-speaking people. I find that is a problem. When we are dealing with support to send somebody over, for example, we make sure to always put the emphasis on, "Make sure you send somebody who is English-speaking to us."

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The product is really stable. The main thing is the solution is easy to use, and my administrators don't spend a lot of time on maintaining or troubleshooting issues because of it.

We never have a problem. The system runs. One of the main things is that we are in the Caribbean. The amount of power outages that we have compared to the US is more than 60 percent higher. The 3PAR can handle that. A lot of systems, when power goes out and it come back, they just don't work. We never had that. The 3PAR was one thing that always used to backup. I had problem with other servers, but not with the 3PAR.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is very scalable and simple. The moment that you understand the product, it is straightforward to use. That is one of the most important things when it comes to our administrators. They don't like complex things.

How are customer service and technical support?

Because we are in the Caribbean, sometimes our waiting time for a problem is a bit longer than when you are in United States.

If you previously used a different solution, which one did you use and why did you switch?

For the solution that we were looking at an ERP system, and what we need to do with it, 3PAR was one of the best. On top of that, the company used to use another product called, LeftHand. After LeftHand, we moved over to 3PAR. When I saw the performance from LeftHand compared to 3PAR, it was a very good improvement and the way to go.

Speed is what we are all looking for right now. Before, people could wait for data, but now, the moment they wait five minutes, and are not typing, that's the minute they say the system is down. In the past, we used to have a different way of storing data. Since we moved over to the 3PAR, where we have two different sizes, the replication and accessibility are much faster.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward. The moment that you are ordering a product, you pay for your support. When they come, there is communication going on between you and them. They check what is available for you. They send a person over, and that's it. After that, once the engineer has left, you have a working product.

What about the implementation team?

We used HPE support, who are special for implementation and installation. When we order a product, we have good support from them. They come and install it for us. Then, we pay for the support after that. We use external support too.

I can't complain about the support. Usually, they send somebody over because we are in the Caribbean. When we install a new product, they have to send a person over, and they are with us a week sorting the system. The fact that we're doing it together is always a very nice experience, because it is hands-on. I find it really good. I'd give them a 10 out of 10 for that. For the last, I will say six to 10 years, we have had three different engineers from HPE, and they were all awesome.

We used to get somebody from Houston, but now, they switched us to somebody from Barbados.

What was our ROI?

We have seen ROI. We have less of maintenance. Our administration has been cut down by a lot. The people who used to administrate other databases are not buy improving the system. 

3PAR has increased our performance by at least 40 percent.

The solution has reduced our time to deployment by at least 60 percent, because there is less maintenance and time to spend on the storage.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Our licensing cost are $32,000 annually.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We are a fully HPE shop since 2000. Since then, we never really went over to a different vendor. We were approached by Dell EMC back then. They wanted to change up our whole server room and data center with their product. However, we are happy with HPE.

What other advice do I have?

I don't really know the other products out there, but I love this product.

We are not running SSDs drive yet. When we move to SSDs, I think it will be much faster.

We are not yet using the HPE GreenLake Flex Capacity offering.

Biggest lesson learnt: if you have a good product, you have less maintenance.

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