What is our primary use case?
The primary use case is that it is used as a tools pod where we can easily deploy our tools for any particular client on-premise. These tools include server management tools, storage management tools, network management tools (like SolarWinds), and other types of products (like Nagios), so we can put them in one place. We also work with Red Hat Satellite, WSUS, and all the particular tools that our teams need to manage to operate environments for clients.
How has it helped my organization?
Because of the quicker deployment, we don't have to ask each team, what do you need? Then finding a VMware farm to put an instance of this on is much faster now. We know that we need this many and can easily just put it in one place and on one device. That's why it's a quicker deployment, because we are able to put it up very quickly for clients.
What is most valuable?
It is truly a hyper-converged infrastructure, so everything is there together. We normally go with either a two node or three node infrastructure, which is nice and small.
Everything is there: The storage, the network, and it is all in one package, so it's easily deployable in a very quick fashion.
What needs improvement?
I would like better integration with VCF from VMware, which is the Cloud Foundation tool set, so we can easily provision servers very quickly.
Dell EMC could put in their own monitoring tool set for this environment, or if they wanted to, they could use it to expand into other environments.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
No problems with it at all. All the different layers of architecture have worked quite well: network, storage, and compute. Everything has worked quite fine.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We haven't really gone beyond what we started off with: three nodes. However, we're looking at other clients where we will be doing upwards of four to 15 nodes.
How are customer service and technical support?
I have never used the technical support.
What was our ROI?
It can easily be put on one rack. You only need a very small area of the rack, so it's definitely much cheaper to run from a power standpoint.
You can easily deploy it very quickly. So, it's cheap to manage.
It's cheap to be sitting on an on-premise data center.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
Nobody else was on our shortlist, because Dell EMC is our strategic partner. We were expecting them to bring us something that would work very quickly and easily, but also be at a reasonable price point, and they did.
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner.