What is most valuable?
- CASL makes use of hybrid disks to retrieve frequently used data from a set of flash drives while storing actual data to high capacity SAS drives.
- Zero Copy Clone saves storage space by updating only changed blocks to the cloned copy.
- In-line Compression reduces the amount of space taken up by data without impacting performance.
- Very Efficient Replication – Only replicates changed blocks which eliminates the need for expensive compression/dedup devices such as Riverbed.
- Instantaneous snapshots provides a backup dataset of an entire server or the volume that can be restored or used to retrieve data or clone another server
- Encryption – Ability to encrypt the entire SAN or selected volumes to protect data at rest which meets many government requirements and security requirements.
- Easy setup, GUI interface and command line tools to administer the SAN.
- InfoSight provides access to call history, historical performance, updates, performance metrics for virtual environment, KB articles, Nimble community, all for free – very valuable site.
- Excellent Support Technicians – support techs are very knowledgeable and provides quick and efficient solution. They not only know Nimble SAN but are also very knowledgeable about virtual environments/technologies, switches, fiber, databases, applications and other networking devices that are involved in making a cloud technology.
- Full redundancy makes all the parts hot swappable and expandable.
- Grouping SANS and moving volumes between the SAN while the data is in active use on the servers – without any downtime.
- No licensing for individual features – everything is included.
How has it helped my organization?
We have a small datacenter with Nimble Storage SANs that replicates to Nimble Storage SAN at our remote Disaster Recovery location. We are able to replicate every two hours and some of the tests we have done shows very good data integrity upon recovery at the DR location. Along with virtual servers and Nimble Storage, DR is much easier now.
What needs improvement?
Over a year ago, Nimble was available with either iSCSI connectivity or Fiber. Controllers can be upgraded or replaced with either of the connectivity interfaces. But, a combination of iSCSI and Fiber unit will provide flexibility in connecting SAN with existing network switches or fiber switches which can reduce overall cost and help with connecting high IO devices to the fiber interface.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
Not at all. It’s been up and running ever since. We have had a few hard drive failures. Support actually calls us to let us know that there is a problem and a replacement part is on the way. It arrives in less than 4 hours. If we unplug a wire or perform maintenance on switches, Nimble support gets all the alerts and they proactively contacts us to see if there are any issues. We also receive a call from our Service Engineer to check on the health of the device and whenever there are any updates to the software.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We have expanded cache on one of the SAN which was very easy to do without any downtime.
How are customer service and technical support?
9.9999 on a scale of 1-10 (1=worst, 10=best).
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We had and EMC SAN in the past which took up a lot of space and required regular maintenance from a service technician including several downtimes.
How was the initial setup?
Initial setup can be done using a Nimble setup client or via the console in about 5 easy steps.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
If you are looking for a scalable, easy, performance, expandable SAN which provides all the great features without charging you licensing fees for all these useful features, go with Nimble Storage.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
What other advice do I have?
You will be up and running in an hour. Very easy steps to setup and five clicks to setup volumes, replication, etc.