What is most valuable?
StoreVirtual has been real good for us. We started with the original P4300 LeftHand SANs before they became StoreVirtual. What I love about those is the two nodes and the mirroring back and forth, and you can't lose anything. It's very solid, and we haven't really had any trouble with those either. We have a newer StoreVirtual that we've connected to one of the C3000 Blade Enclosures and it runs well. We lost a system board once and we lost a couple of servers, but we were able to bring everything back. Equipment-wise, it allows us to do all our work. We're real happy with that.
How has it helped my organization?
The things we like best about it is just that it's safe, it's reliable, it's easy to transfer data back and forth, it's easy to replicate elsewhere. We've been very happy with them.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
Outside of the one incident on the StoreVirtual where we lost the system board which was a little tough. If the guy who came out to replace it knew what he was doing and put the right firmware on, then we wouldn't have lost any virtual servers. But beyond that, the other ones have been very good and we've been really happy there.
How are customer service and technical support?
It's been hit and miss. I guess there's some guys in Texas or Houston that we've been able to get a hold of who know their stuff and it's like a different group, the LeftHand people. They know their things inside and out, and usually are able to steer us right to what we need, so we've been real happy there.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We'd seen a couple of lunch and learns and meetings and talked to some of the LeftHand people, and decided it made sense cost-wise and function-wise. We were using some Dell EqualLogics, actually we were using EqualLogic before Dell bought them. So we were still using those in conjunction with the LeftHands that then became StoreVirtuals. Then when we put in one of the C3000 BladeEnclosures, we bought an actual StoreVirtual and that gave us the space to run the servers that we need.
How was the initial setup?
The setup has been really easy. I did it three or four times after the system board failed. It was easy to run through the system, but the tech support guys kind of walked me through what we needed to do, and actually I set it up in the first place, so that's been real good too.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
I had a guy from EMC call me once and his whole sales pitch was, "Well, we've got the biggest marketshare." And I told him, "That's a load of crap." Our deal is, we can't afford that stuff, and we don't want it. Even if Dell's got them now, we still don't want it. One of the things that we really love about HPE in all phases is the ability to continue maintenance, to continue coverage. Where we got the word from Dell that five years after the day you bought your EquaLogic you're out of luck. We won't sell you anything, we won't sell you parts, we won't sell you ... and we're like, "Okay, we won't buy your stuff." And we haven't. We got real close on 3PARs, we may still do that again, but we went a different direction. But, you know, "Treat us fair and we'll buy." That's what we love about HP, we really have no complaints.
It was a recommendation from the vendor that we said, "This is solid." When we first bought them, we'd actually gone two or three HP events and listened to the whole talk of, "Here's how, what it's put together, here's how it works." So, that's kind of what lead to it, was that we pretty much just said, "Okay, we'll trust you. Let's go with it." And we've been happy.
What other advice do I have?
I don't think we'd have any good reasons to go elsewhere. In fact we have done that. We were talking to a guy from city of Carson City, and he was having some server issues and so we hooked him up with our vendor, and they took him out of the Dells he had, and gave him some HPs and he's been very happy ever since.