StorPool Review

Enabled us to replace our SSD-only local storage without any performance penalty

What is our primary use case?

As we needed an all-SSD level of performance, StorPool implemented its SSD-Hybrid system, which keeps a full copy of data on SSD and redundant copies on HDDs to get the best of both - hundreds of thousands of IOPS and lower cost.

How has it helped my organization?

The two 10GE networks provide redundancy and increased performance as they serve as two separate networks doubling the throughput and doing multipathing and load balancing.

We now have a high performance shared storage system which enables us to run on private cloud. Our previous system used bare-metal hardware, which provided high performance but inflexible management. Now we have best of both worlds, SSD-class performance with flexibility of a private cloud system.

What is most valuable?

StorPool is a software-only solution with practically unlimited expansion capabilities. Its performance is very high. We were able to replace our SSD-only local storage systems without any performance penalty.

What needs improvement?

It would be good if, with next releases, StorPool provide a better GUI for monitoring and statistics. This would make our experience even better and complete.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

When we need to grow capacity we simply upgrade to bigger drives or add more drives/servers to the StorPool cluster. 

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

We were running on bare-metal servers and using local RAID 10 BBWBC disk systems. We first started with SAS disks and later switched to all-SSD solutions. We had custom data migration and backup systems to manage this bare-metal configuration. However, as the number of servers grew, management and lack of flexibility became problems. Our initial experiments with building a private cloud were promising but we needed a shared storage system. In our experience, hardware storage solutions are expensive to build and run, so we started looking into software defined storage solutions.

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

Its performance to price ratio is very high.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We first tested open source solutions, Ceph and GlusterFS. GlusterFS is a good solution for file-based storage but it is slow for sync writing disk images. Ceph is also a good block storage solution but our test showed that on similar hardware StorPool outperformed Ceph by a large margin.

What other advice do I have?

I rate it a 10 out of 10. We are very happy with StorPool. Performance is impressive and expansion is as simple as adding an additional node. Furthermore, all this is offered with a professional support team that advises you on all aspects, from hardware selection to private cloud software solutions.

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