Compare Dell EMC Unity XT vs. Pure Storage FlashArray

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Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Dell EMC Unity XT vs. Pure Storage FlashArray and other solutions. Updated: September 2020.
437,168 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members

We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:

Pros
Things that have been really useful, of course, are the clustering features and being able to stay online during failovers and code upgrades; and just being able to seamlessly do all sorts of movement of data without having to disrupt end-users' ability to get to those files. And we can take advantage of new shelves, new hardware, upgrade in place. It's kind of magic when it comes to doing those sorts of things.The ease of use, the SnapMirror capabilities, the cloning, and the efficiencies are all good features.We are using the AQoS operating system, which allows us to get a lot more out of our AFF systems.The most valuable features are the ease of administration and configuration, as well as the speed of deployment.The most important features are the IOPS and the ease of the ONTAP manageability.Before we implemented AFF, Oracle was running on a traditional storage spindle and at a very low speed with high latency, and the database was not running very well. After we converted from the spinning disk to the all-flash array, it was at least four times faster to access the volume than before.The most valuable features of the solution are speed, performance, and reliability.The most valuable feature is speed.

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This product is perfect for small, and mid-range customers who need to pay less, but still, get enterprise-level capabilities.This solution makes it easy to manage storage, provision new workloads, and scale-up.The All-Flash models are pretty fast for the vast majority of our remote workloads.We use replication for disaster recovery (DR), making our DR process much easier.It has reduced complexity.We have resolved IT challenges with this solution. It sped up our environment. We went from spinning disk to all-flash, which reduced our footprint.It has good performance.We can get almost real-time response times.

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The speed of the Pure FlashArray is very, very fast and nothing in the market can compare to it.We also use VMware integrations developed by Pure, their plugins in our vCenter environment. They help by allowing our non-technical operations teams to deploy new data stores and resize data stores without me having to involve myself all the time to do those simple tasks.Their REST API is wonderful, well-documented, and easy to use.As soon as we introduced our first Pure Storage FlashArray, the first benefit was at least twice the performance increase. Our production databases simply ran twice as fast with no other change.Pure Storage technology allowed us to automate tasks, reducing something which started as a 12-hour turnaround down to about 15 minutes.The data reduction technology part of the scalability has been impressive, like its ability to host additional workloads, volumes of data, and databases.The performance is very good.For us, the most valuable feature is the compression and deduplication. Being able to deploy a three to one ratio for storage is absolutely critical in today's world with the growing need for storage and the growing need for more space.

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Cons
One of the areas that the product can improve is definitely in the user interface. We don't use it for SAN, but we've looked at using it for SAN and the SAN workflows are really problematic for my admins, and they just don't like doing SAN provisioning on that app. That really needs to change if we're going to adopt it and actually consider it to be a strong competitor versus some of the other options out there.There are little things that need improvement. For example, if you are setting up a SnapMirror through the GUI, you are forced to change the destination name of the volume, and we like to keep the volume names the same.The quality of technical support has dwindled over time and needs to be improved.On the fiber channel side, there is a limit of sixteen terabytes on each line, and we would like to see this raised because we are having to use some other products.The certification classes are good, but they don't cover enough of the material, and the exams only test on what is covered in class.The monitor and performance need improvement. Right now we are using the active IQ OnCommand Unified Manager, but we also have to do the Grafana to do the performance and I hope we will be able to see the improvement of the active IQ in terms of the performance graph. It should also be more detailed.Tech support is a place where there is room to improve the product experience. The response time when they are busy is not very good.The price of NVMe storage is very expensive.

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This product needs to have better integration with enterprise backup solutions and archiving devices.This solution would be improved with the addition of flexible raid volumes.We would like to see the concept of Storage Groups brought back to this product line.I haven't seen the roadmap for this solution.It is missing some features, like deduplication.Because we can do synchronous replication between the two sites, this made the setup challenging for this piece. They did not know how to set this up initially. We ended up having to do bidirectional synchronous replication.I would like them to continue to build on the solution and expand on the functionality, like replication.We'd like to see a cheaper version of an all-flash array in that footprint.

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It is not possible to create a cluster on top of multiple arrays.If they could make it cheaper, that would be something.The higher education moves slowly. We are still looking forward to implementing the full list of existing features.In terms of the future, I have been excited by some of the copy data management stuff that they're talking about building into the environment. There are feature sets where I've done a lot of automation work. So, I am always looking forward to extensions of their API. They're also talking about a phone home centralized analytics database being used as a centralized management console with a list of new cloud features, but this doesn't seem finalized.Storage. There could be better storage.The scalability of the solution is not as good as it probably could be.A year ago they promised that they would be able to read through the database encryption with more metric and they have not delivered on that patch, which is significant because it gives us back so much more storage room. We want to be able to read through the encryption.We would like to see better troubleshooting aspects. It helps us if we can find out where the problem is. Right now, it's difficult. Sometimes it's difficult to pinpoint the issue. If they had more visibility and more troubleshooting feature built into the tool that would really help.

More Pure Storage FlashArray Cons »

Pricing and Cost Advice
It's expensive. it's in the hundreds of thousands. It's beneficial, but at times, I feel compared to other vendors, we are paying a premium for the licensing that other vendors include.The price to performance ratio with NetApp is unmatched by any other vendor right now.The pricing is not a lot considering what you get and it bundles hardware and licensing.Comparing this solution to others it may seem expensive, but the price to performance for NetApp is greater.We would like it to be free.One of the reasons we like this solution is that all of the features are included with the one license.We don't like the cost. We would like to buy more.It definitely reduces costs because it simply takes less power to run these systems. While the SSDs don't take power, they are in general very big right now. So, the running cost has decreased for a lot of our customers.

More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Pricing and Cost Advice »

Our CAPEX was close to $42,000 and operating costs are below $1000.Our costs are roughly $200,000 a year.The solution is extremely functional for the price that we pay for it. It is worth the investment.We purchased a five-year warranty.Compression is making a difference towards the amount of hardware that we need to purchase.The return on the investment was simply speeding up our entire vSphere stack, which allowed our developers and engineers to get their workloads done faster and simpler. We were experiencing VM snapshot times of 45 minutes to two or three hours, and it shrunk it down to under five minutes.It scales, but then you have to buy additional stuff.With the large Unity that we bought, it has saved us about one and a half rack space. That's our return on investment on our flash array. We also need less Fibre Channel connectivity.

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In terms of other contemporary arrays, Pure is something you need to have a use case for, as it's not priced for you to buy one off-the-shelf. If you have a use case, heavy lift Oracle Databases, any type of noticeable virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), or need low latency and high throughput, you should consider all-flash at least and probably Pure Storage.I don't know the exact cost but it's around $1,000.Pure has been flexible with us on the pricing models.We have 16 or 18 arrays. We like to do the three-year support model so that we get Evergreen and therefore, we get free upgrades. We pay around more than 1.5 million dollars.Our costs are around $100,000.I have had a couple of customers who have complained about the cost. It can be a little more expensive than some of the other platforms. After it has been installed, I have never had a customer say, "I wish we wouldn't have spent all that extra money." They have always been happy with the product after it has been installed. They might be on the fence about it because of the price, but everybody who I have ever seen install it, they are always happy with it.We evaluated Oracle and Hitachi, but Pure Storage had the better pricing.The cost has room for improvement.

More Pure Storage FlashArray Pricing and Cost Advice »

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Questions from the Community
Top Answer: Well, Is one thing NetApp Storage has vs other brand is the mix of protocol CIFS with NFS booth working together in the same volume that features is difficult to find in other Storage but the… more »
Top Answer: We reduced our floor space by reducing 44 racks units to four rack units. It has helped us with our data center economies of scale. It reduces our support costs too, which is great.
Top Answer: We don't like the cost. We would like to buy more.
Top Answer: The PowerMax NVMe is the high-end storage fromDellEMC it can provide up to 10M IOPS, however, if you need less, you can go with the new Unity XT which is going to have NVMe as well. The new Unity… more »
Top Answer: Well, Is one thing NetApp Storage has vs other brand is the mix of protocol CIFS with NFS booth working together in the same volume that features is difficult to find in other Storage but the… more »
Top Answer: This solution makes it easy to manage storage, provision new workloads, and scale-up.
Top Answer: I read all of the previous answers and agree that both Nimble and Pure and solid options. Pure is definitely more expensive. Both products will grow as need grows. Our organization chose Nimble… more »
Top Answer: Your questions lack context. What is the best storage for AI machine learning? For what purpose are you utilizing AI machine learning? As a tool to better place data? As a tool to build algorithms… more »
Top Answer: The speed of the Pure FlashArray is very, very fast and nothing in the market can compare to it.
Popular Comparisons
Also Known As
NetApp All Flash FAS, NetApp AFF, NetApp Flash FASEMC Unity, Dell EMC Unity
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NetApp
Dell EMC
Pure Storage
Overview

NetApp AFF8000 All Flash FAS systems combine all-flash performance with unified data management from flash to disk to cloud.  Leverage the Data Fabric to move data securely across your choice of clouds—enabled by Cloud ONTAP™ and NetApp Private Storage for Cloud. Plus, you get the industry’s most efficient and comprehensive integrated data protection suite, on premises or in the cloud.

Dell EMC Unity, powered by Intel Xeon processors, delivers the ultimate in simplicity and value, enabling your organization to speed deployment, streamline management and seamlessly tier storage to the cloud.

Dell EMC Unity’s All-Flash and Hybrid Flash storage platforms optimize SSD performance and efficiency, with fully integrated SAN and NAS capabilities. Cloud-based storage analytics and proactive support keep you available and connected.

Pure Storage FlashArray is the world’s first enterprise-class, all-NVMe flash storage array. It represents a new class of storage – shared accelerated storage, that delivers major breakthroughs in performance, simplicity, and consolidation. Pure Storage is fresh and modern today and will be for the next decade. Without forklift upgrades or planned downtime, Pure takes the work out of storage ownership and delivers unprecedented customer satisfaction.

Offer
Learn more about NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
Learn more about Dell EMC Unity XT
Learn more about Pure Storage FlashArray
Sample Customers
Acibadem Healthcare Group, AmTrust Financial Services, Citrix Systems, DWD, Mantra GroupDraper, Rio Grande Pacific, Royal Victoria Regional Health CentreNielsen, Lamar Advertising, LinkedIn, Betfair, UT-Dallas
Top Industries
REVIEWERS
Healthcare Company16%
Financial Services Firm13%
Energy/Utilities Company9%
Retailer8%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Computer Software Company40%
Manufacturing Company14%
Comms Service Provider11%
Government5%
REVIEWERS
Financial Services Firm21%
Healthcare Company16%
Manufacturing Company14%
Energy/Utilities Company5%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Computer Software Company43%
Comms Service Provider14%
Manufacturing Company5%
Media Company5%
REVIEWERS
Financial Services Firm20%
Healthcare Company16%
Government9%
Manufacturing Company8%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Computer Software Company32%
Comms Service Provider11%
Manufacturing Company7%
Government6%
Company Size
REVIEWERS
Small Business12%
Midsize Enterprise12%
Large Enterprise76%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business23%
Midsize Enterprise7%
Large Enterprise69%
REVIEWERS
Small Business25%
Midsize Enterprise26%
Large Enterprise49%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business15%
Midsize Enterprise47%
Large Enterprise38%
REVIEWERS
Small Business23%
Midsize Enterprise19%
Large Enterprise58%
VISITORS READING REVIEWS
Small Business21%
Midsize Enterprise16%
Large Enterprise63%
Find out what your peers are saying about Dell EMC Unity XT vs. Pure Storage FlashArray and other solutions. Updated: September 2020.
437,168 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Dell EMC Unity XT is ranked 2nd in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 49 reviews while Pure Storage FlashArray is ranked 1st in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 103 reviews. Dell EMC Unity XT is rated 8.4, while Pure Storage FlashArray is rated 9.0. The top reviewer of Dell EMC Unity XT writes "The solution is so easy to manage that I forget it is there". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Pure Storage FlashArray writes "A solution with high performance that is easy to install, troubleshoot, and manage capacity". Dell EMC Unity XT is most compared with HPE Nimble Storage, HPE 3PAR StoreServ, IBM FlashSystem, Dell EMC SC Series and Huawei OceanStor, whereas Pure Storage FlashArray is most compared with HPE Nimble Storage, IBM FlashSystem, VMware vSAN, Pure Storage FlashBlade and HPE 3PAR StoreServ. See our Dell EMC Unity XT vs. Pure Storage FlashArray report.

See our list of best All-Flash Storage Arrays vendors.

We monitor all All-Flash Storage Arrays reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.