IBM FlashSystem 9100 NVMe Review

Good performance, easy to manage, and remains stable even during maintenance

What is our primary use case?

The FlashSystem is currently hosting all of our applications and services.

How has it helped my organization?

The performance of each server was improved when we implemented this product. The IOPS rate is high with flash storage, compared to other types of disks.

What is most valuable?

The administration is easy and very straightforward. It is the same software for managing both flash and non-flash storage. It can be managed using either the GUI or the command-line interface.

It is a high-performance product that serves our requests well.

The IBM Professional Services give us technical support that is both timely and of high quality.

What needs improvement?

I would like to have replication functionality built directly in the product, rather than having to use a separate device for this.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using the IBM FlashSystem A9000 for nearly eight months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This is a very stable product during daily operation, maintenance, and even while upgrading the firmware. It comes configured from IBM with one controller and after testing it for perhaps an hour, the firmware will be updated and the other controller will take over. Then, the next phase begins.

At this point, it again tests the system for about an hour, and then the other controller is updated. There is no downtime, availability is not affected, and it remains stable. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is possible to both scale-up and scale-out, and it depends on the needs of the business. If I need more capacity then it's easy, and this is true even if I need more performance.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is very good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Prior to using the A9000, we were using the V9000 for nearly two years.

Before moving to IBM, were work working with the EMC VMAX storage array. I was not the decision-maker who decided to switch, although it may have been related to cost.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is easy and not complicated.

From scratch, the Rack and Stack take perhaps two days, and the configuration of the system takes an additional day.

What about the implementation team?

The setup is completed by IBM, although we are involved in the post-installation knowledge transfer.

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

There are pricing options from the mid-rand to the high-range, of which the suitability depends upon the requirements.

What other advice do I have?

Overall, I think that this is a good product and I recommend it.

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

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