Nutanix

Nutanix Review
Supporting more than one hypervisor allowed us to test different scenarios and didn’t lock us into one option.


Valuable Features:

  • Small footprint: Our datacenter was already pretty full and we would have had to increase its size and add more electrical and cooling. None of that had to be done when we went to Nutanix. We now increase the capacity of our datacenter without having to add more square footage, while increasing its horsepower, allowing us to run more servers utilizing less space than before.
  • High performance
  • Many hypervisors supported: Supporting more than one hypervisor allowed us to test different scenarios and didn’t lock us into just one option, like VMware.
  • Has its own Hypervisor Acropolis

Improvements to My Organization:

We condensed four racks of physical servers into one rack taking up 2U of space.

Room for Improvement:

It has the ability to connect to Azure or AWS for storing backups. I would like to have the capability to spin up a backup on Azure or AWS for disaster recovery purposes.
Right now, you can only send a backup to either Azure or AWS. We would like to take a backup and spin it up to an actual server that could be connected to by users from the outside. This is on their (Nutanix) roadmap but the functionality doesn’t exist at this time.

Use of Solution:

I have used it for five years.

Stability Issues:

NO issues with stability; had a few minor software bugs that were more annoying, but not disruptive.

Scalability Issues:

We have not encountered any scalability issues. To date, I believe the biggest customer has 1000 nodes.

Technical Support:

Support is fantastic and they will even help with issues related to VMware if that is the hypervisor you are running.

Previous Solutions:

We switched from traditional SAN and servers because we needed a smaller footprint while dramatically increasing performance and scalability.

Initial Setup:

Five years ago, the setup was complex (everything was more manual, like upgrading the operating system), but today a large part is automated; for example, the OS upgrade is now a one-click upgrade.

Cost and Licensing Advice:

Make sure you know what features you want, as they have three software licensing editions: Starter, Pro and Ultimate (https://www.nutanix.com/products/software-editions/).

Other Solutions Considered:

Before choosing this product, we also evaluated Simplivity, Stormagic SvSAN, and VMware VSAN.

Other Advice:

Make sure you find a good partner who has extensive experience with this. Also, if you are just doing server virtualization, then evaluate their free Hypervisor Acropolis and you can save quite a bit on not having to buy VMware.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: We liked it so much we became a partner and now sell it to our clients.

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