Nutanix Review

Being able to upgrade our entire cluster with the click of a button during business hours with zero downtime has made managing our infrastructure so easy


How has it helped my organization?

Processes that used to take hours to complete have been drastically improved due to the nature of Nutanix. Data locality means things complete faster and our users now have more time to complete their work rather than having to wait for a certain job to finish before they can continue on.

What is most valuable?

  • One-Click upgrades
  • Software defined storage
  • The capacity savings

One click upgrades are an absolute godsend. Being able to upgrade our entire cluster with the click of a button during business hours with zero downtime has made managing our infrastructure so easy. Previously, we had to schedule downtime to perform upgrades on our infrastructure and that quickly becomes painful and time consuming.

Because the entire Nutanix system is contained in a VM, we don't have to reboot physical hosts to apply patches. It's just a restart of a guest VM and we're off. This also brings amazing space saving capabilities (given that it's software-defined) across the hot and cold tiers by way of compression, deduplication, and erasure coding.

What needs improvement?

Given all the amazing features, there is room for improvement around the support ability of different hypervisors. Sure, Nutanix now supports four hypervisors but they are not all at feature parity. If you want all the benefits of Nutanix, you need to be on AHV. For some businesses, that's just not an option. I find we miss out on some of the great features due to being on ESX.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No issues at all with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

This is where my experience varies. Previously, I had deployed Nutanix with Dell hardware, and currently, I have deployed Nutanix on Nutanix hardware.

Customer support through Nutanix is excellent. Regardless of the level of priority, I usually hear back from Nutanix support in less than three hours from when I submit a support request.

With Dell kits, you have to call Dell support first who then liaise with Nutanix support. So, there is a bit of a breakdown and resolution that takes a little longer because you don't have direct access to Nutanix support.

Technical Support:

Again, my experience varies.

Nutanix support, amazing. I can't fault them. They know the product and can resolve your issues fast.

Dell support, not as great. Mainly because they aren't Nutanix employees. It's because of this that they aren't as knowledgeable and have to hand off to Nutanix support for more complex issues.

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

In both organisations where I worked, which migrated to Nutanix, we were on traditional 3-tier architecture. We switched over to Nutanix for the ease of management, scalability, and performance gains. In both organisations, we were on aging hardware and it needed to be refreshed.

How was the initial setup?

It is very straightforward. The deployment process is extremely easy thanks to the 'foundation' process. A simple WebUI that guides you through the deployment process and imaging of your new nodes.

What about the implementation team?

Both implementations were done by me. With the ease of deployment, I didn't feel it necessary to engage a vendor.

What was our ROI?

I haven't calculated it yet.

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

While cost may seem higher than your traditional 3-tier architecture, you need to look at the bigger picture. You're not just buying hardware here. You're buying a complete environment that not only is super-fast to deploy, it's amazingly easy to manage. I find that I'm spending less time managing my infrastructure and more time listening to the businesses needs and tailoring our infrastructure to their needs.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at SimpliVity and VMware vSAN.

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