HPE StorageWorks MSA Review

As long as you have a basic knowledge of SANs and whatnot, you can get around it without a problem.

What is most valuable?

It's a fairly simple product to set up as well, but it's a little bit more entry level; for those customers that can't afford something larger or whatnot, but would still like to get that shared storage or that SAN functionality. It's a great product for that. They're actually adding a lot of new features to it. It's not as dumb as it used to be. As long as you have a basic knowledge of SANs and whatnot, you can get around it without a problem.

What needs improvement?

They've been adding some different things to it. Maybe if it was a year ago, I would have said yeah, it might be nice to see this, but they've started adding in some different SSD and caching to it that really has revitalized it or reinvigorated that system a little bit.

Rather than it being just dumb storage, they're adding some of the features of the higher-level SANs back into it. Customers can take advantage of some of those things that previously they wouldn't have been able to.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

From my experience with it, I haven't really had issues with it. With installations that I've done, customers have been pretty happy with them.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

They can scale; I don't think they're meant to, but you can add additional shelves and things, which we've done. That's fairly easy to do.

How is customer service and technical support?

I haven't had to call tech support on those.

How was the initial setup?

It's pretty easy to install.

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

They're pretty entry level but you need to be willing to spend some money. It's not going to be $1,000; it might be $10,000 or $15,000. It's all relative what a lot of money is, but they need to be willing to spend some money, invest in their infrastructure. They don't need the performance of a 3PAR or something like that. They're just maybe getting into the whole virtualization, EO mode, and the shared storage and they want the added security and performance of some disk that's not in the local server. I guess that's that type of person or customer.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Dell has an SCv2000, which is fairly similar. Really what it comes down to is they're going to be similar, but some people really align themselves with HPE or with Dell. When it comes down to it, a lot of them are going to just stick to it that way. They're going to say, "I buy Dell, so I'm going to buy theirs." "I buy HPE," so they're going to buy theirs. It can be a hard sell otherwise.

What other advice do I have?

It's a great product for the price. It has a lot of capability for what you're paying for.

**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: We're partners.
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