HPE StoreVirtual Review

The network RAID is the key feature of the system which, with StoreVirtual, is a build-out of HP servers with software on it.

Valuable Features

The network RAID is the key feature of the system which, with StoreVirtual, is a build-out of HP servers with software on it. The system creates volumes over multiple “servers”. With network RAID 10, you have two synchronous copies of your data. With network RAID 10+1, you’ve get three copies of the data, and with network RAID 10+2 there are four copies.

Of course, you invest a lot of space in redundancy, but you can chose by volume which network RAID to use. For lower performance volumes, you can even use network RAID five.

Improvements to My Organization

We’ve created two data centers. This allows us to keep working when there are power outages on one of the two sites. The data centers are about 150 meters apart in different buildings.

Room for Improvement

The way iSCSI sessions are handled could be improved. But if your system is designed right, this isn’t an issue. I’m quite curious to see the improvements in the next version because this already is a very mature and complete product.

Use of Solution

I've been using it for five years. I spent four years setting it up, and one as an administrator.

Deployment Issues

The greatest problem for installation is choosing a place for the “Fail Over Manager” (FOM). This is a third system that allows the systems to avoid a split-brain scenario. It’s not a requirement, but when this is placed well, your system will fail over automatically from one site to the other and back.

Stability Issues

This is a very reliable product. I’ve never known one of the dozen systems I’ve installed to fail.

Scalability Issues

The system is quite scalable, but extra storage means an extra box and, depending on your architecture, two boxes at once.

Customer Service and Technical Support

In Belgium, I’ve had difficulties getting the right engineer on site. Storage engineers see it as a server box, and server engineers are not always aware of the storage implications. Phone support is, however, very accessible and accurate.

Previous Solutions

I also used P2000, Dell EquaLogic and DataCore. P2000 is a lower-end product. EquaLogic didn’t have online replication and automated fail over at the time. DataCore is storage software, and I found it difficult to maintain due to the large hardware base they need to support.

Initial Setup

The difficult part about the setup is the network part. You need to configure flow control, jumbo frames, LACP trunks, and, in some cases, spanning tree correctly. Once the network setup is correct, the configuration is very straight forward.

Implementation Team

I was part of the vendor team.

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