Most Helpful Review
When we had issues due to a bad Postgres database, Nimble was very helpful and even replaced the array with a brand...
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It has good dedupe and compression. Also, the built-in data migration capabilities are pretty good, as is the federation. When we started migrating the workloads from different storage platforms, like NetApp and XtremeIO, it helped us in moving to that direction.
With auto-tiering, it's easier to understand than most arrays, knowing that all of your writes go to the tier that you specify, with easy-to-create storage profiles.
A valuable feature is the performance of the auto-tiering. It will move hot data up to your fastest Tier 1 or move your slow data down. Data progression is what it's called. With the auto-tiering you can have multiple tiers, you can have your Tier 1 be either spinning or flash, all the way down to 7.2K. It will change the RAID on the fly so your writes come in at RAID 10. After they sit for a while, they get converted to RAID 5, then they'll cool off and move down the tiers. Your performance is kept going, while the cold data is moved to your slow, non-performance tiers.
With federation, you can have multiple systems across sites. You can treat them as one, and with a live migration, volumes don't go down. You can move them from site to site, doing maintenance, and keep your environment up.
It's very scalable, especially with federation. If you outgrow the number of spindles that a unit can support, depending on the model, you can go into federation.
The most valuable feature is the no-forklift upgrade. While the thing is running, I can change out the controllers one at a time and keep the customer up and running. I can add shelves and storage and SSD drives or spinning drives to the system, while it's running. I can bring all that in and rebalance the load across the new disks or, if we take disks away, rebalance the load across what's remaining, and it just works.
There's some new stuff coming with 7.3, which just got released, where they're spreading the sparing across the whole array, rather than having a dedicated spare disk, and have it sit there and do nothing until one of them dies, and then it kicks in - and having to rebuild all of that. Now, they'll do the sparing across all the disks and they say that is going to add not only space but performance to the array, with 7.3.
The most valuable feature is the ability to replicate. We are running a financial company and it needs to be available 24/7. We can't afford any downtime.
InfoSight - analytics sight that collects data for all Nimble arrays deployed
InfoSight. It's AI for the data center. It's very easy, it does a lot of the work for the customer... InfoSight and the whole system, help them to deal with troubleshooting.
Our virtual admins are able to take control of Nimble and know how to allocate the storage, whenever it is required, thus reducing time.
The most valuable feature is InfoSight, and the ability that InfoSight gives you, from insight within your environment to what is going on at the storage layer.
It's easy to use, it's just like 3PAR. I made clusters of 32 hosts with 50 volumes and that took barely an hour. I scripted a lot of it, filled in the names of volumes, the names of servers.
InfoSight provides real-time reporting, it gives you information about your different volumes, how the arrays are being used, I/O, performance in general.
Scalability is another reason we chose to go with Nimble: upgrading to another storage array. If we need higher capacity or throughput, we can just replace controllers, we don't have to replace or forklift-upgrade the whole chassis.
I use InfoSight quite a bit. It works well. It allows you to get some insight into what's happening in your environment immediately, instead of having to send things off and having them analyzed and sent back to you.
Licensing, especially on the storage line, could use some simplification. It's not terrible, but, for example, with the Isilon series, they've gone to completely a la carte. A la carte is very difficult to traverse, as to what you need. It would be more beneficial, at least from my point of view as a customer, if they did it more like car companies do, where there are package lines
One option I would like to see is, when you're up on the view-screen, to be able to incorporate getting to what HPE call the iLO, the Integrated Lights-Out. To be able to get that instead of having to go back and trying to find IP addresses and re-institute those would be good. It would be good to be able to that put on the initial splash screen.
I would like to see higher compression, dedupe, faster I/O, and bigger drives.
I would like to see an integrated key manager in the controllers. Currently, it's an external product. It would be nice to have the option of having a built-in key for self-encrypting drive features.
We can definitely see a need for it being a multi-controller system for customers who want to scale beyond the current capability. That's always a downside. A lot of the new systems are scaling vertically, they scale out, and the Compellent, of course, is controllers with shelves under it, so you don't scale out with it, unless you add another one. But if you do, they don't talk to each other, like some of the other solutions that we sell.
An issue we had was that the controller went down during an upgrade because of their upgrading the code. One side of the switch was down.
In terms of additional features, I would like to see some kind of I/O meter, to indicate what we are using in terms of performance. I would like to see automation with that, where it would give me the trends. I want to know those things easily, to help me know where issues are going to occur.
I would like to have 100% functionality through the web app.
We have had some stability issues with one array which has happened twice during subsequent software updates but is due to a bad Postgres database.
The solution that I have is a hybrid, not a full flash. The hybrid version could be improved.
I want it to be an active-active array. Nimble would be great as an active-active array because then everything checks out. It would give a feeling of comfort.
The only thing I'm really looking for in my next array is some hyperconverged, so if they had something in that space... But I know they have SimpliVity so that is probably not going to happen.
The only thing that I can really compare Nimble to is all-flash because, right now, Nimble is a hybrid solution. I would like to see them come out with an all-flash alternative.
I'd also like to see them incorporate tools that let me get granular with the VMs. I want to see an individual VM, I want to Snapshot and recover an individual VM.
I would like to see native network attached storage (NAS) functionality. Our customers are looking for NAS, and Nimble can't give it to them.
There are customers who want to do some different things with the Microsoft Resilient File System. There are some customers who want to do different types of connectivity. I do not know if I would call that an improvement, necessarily, because if you want that, you should get a different product.
Pricing and Cost Advice
We have found it to be affordable. Comparing the cost with other hardware, it seems to be right in line with the compute and the storage that we get with it.
The scalability seems a bit more expensive than even buying a brand new one so far. That has been kind of a drawback.
We were able to afford two tiers of flash storage at a price where the competition was giving us one tier or just a handful of discs.
The maintenance is usually pretty good. It's not like some of the others where they increase it in the fourth, fifth, or sixth years.
It's absolutely affordable. Again, not having to do a forklift upgrade like some of the others have had to do in the past, it's very affordable for our customers and they continue to buy.
Compared to other solutions out there, it's affordable.
It has a good price point and offers some value-added enterprise features.
We have reviewed many platforms over the years. It is probably the best solution for its value.
Nimble has really met all of our needs and at a price we could afford. It certainly wasn't as expensive as a lot of other all-flash solutions that we could have bought.
If we had stuck with EMC, we would have spent a lot more. We have EMC in-house, we have a bunch of them. Switching to Nimble saved me millions of dollars over the past three years... Nimble fills a need for performance within a budget that is in the sub-million dollar range.
The first two that I bought were incredibly expensive, compared to the last five to seven that I have bought. The price has come way down, and it has been a year or so since we bought one.
If you are a super small company, the product is probably not right for you. It is out of your price range. Anything from mid-SMB up to enterprise, it is absolutely the right product.
It is very pricey. You pay for what you get, and this storage solution is great. It is well worth the cost.
It is cost-effective, which is important for a service provider, because you're competing with hyper-scale providers who do things at extremely large scale, who tend to kill you on price if you're not careful.
It is expensive, but it is worth the “uptime”.
Competitive. No licensing. Since everything is included.
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Also Known As
|SC Series Storage|
|Dell EMC||Hewlett Packard Enterprise||Null Vendor|
Dell EMC SC Series arrays provide a unified platform for the ultimate in performance, adaptability and machine-driven efficiency. SC Series software delivers modern features that help you meet aggressive workload demands using the fewest drives necessary. With an open, future-ready design, SC Series storage integrates seamlessly with applications and infrastructure, enabling you to scale on a single platform and add capabilities without forklift upgrades.
Our Predictive Flash platform closes the app-data gap, giving you the fastest, most reliable access to data. By combining predictive analytics with flash storage, we radically simplify operations.
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