What is most valuable?
High-availability, performance, compression, cost to performance ratio and InfoSight. We’ve increased our performance, removing disk-latency errors in our SQL environments, and provide more information with InfoSight. We are seeing 60% compression on our legacy data.
How has it helped my organization?
Provides the performance needed to meet business requirements of sub-3 second shipping label generation. Increased disk performance for all VMs, SQL databases, and applications, providing additional load capacity and faster response times.
What needs improvement?
Small tweaks to the management UI for usability.
For how long have I used the solution?
CS300 since 2/2015, CS500 since 5/2016. The CS300 was initially purchased to support a project that required high disk performance and met all expectations. A year later, we proceeded with a data center consolidation, replacing our CX4-240s with a single CS500 and an expansion shelf. The data on the CS300 was migrated, seamlessly without downtime, to the CS500. The CS300 was then converted to a fiber channel array to support our legacy environments.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
No. We have had zero downtime on both arrays, including through multiple software upgrades.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
No. We have not pushed the arrays to their limits, but we did cluster the CS300 and 500 when we migrated the data. The clustering was easy to do and would provide the scaling if we needed. In addition, hardware upgrades provide us another method to increase scale without downtime.
How are customer service and technical support?
Very good. The support is very knowledge and drive the case to resolution, even if it is not a Nimble issue.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
EMC CX4s. Better performance, better cost, reduce rack space/cooling/power. We reduced our disk latency from 12-15ms to 1-2ms.
How was the initial setup?
Straightforward. The most difficult part was connecting the iSCSI to the switches in a HA fashion. Nimble engineers provided great support in the setup. The planning documentation provided by Nimble simplified the setup. The software upgrade was very easy to complete to get the new array up to date.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
Licensing is all inclusive, which makes it simple. Pricing on their hybrid arrays are very competitive.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
We evaluated Pure Storage and EMC XtremeIO. We found both products could not scale in the way Nimble can, they could not compete on the price to performance ratio, and they could not provide a competitive right-sized solution.
What other advice do I have?
Insure you have your iSCSI network ready. The Nimble agent on the hosts does require a restart. Data migration will depend on your application, our VM hosts were easy, while our SQL databases required planned downtime.
Nimble provides a rock-solid product, scalable with great support.