Most Helpful Review
Researched Vblock but chose FlexPod: A reliable, versatile solution that offers great value and proven performance
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Going from the old monolithic server and silo storage that they used to use is an improvement. With the FlexPod solution, just being able to manage and monitor the overall environment helps.
Availability is the most valuable part of this solution. We have not had any trouble since we installed it.
Things got a lot faster. We can pull and test in DEV systems much more rapidly and are clearing up a lot of DBA time. In the past, every time we tested it, we needed to be refreshed. In the past, it would take a day of our DBA's time, and now it's just point, click, and ten minutes later it's done.
For us as an IT department, it helped us a lot. Before we implemented FlexPod, we were using different solutions all based on a virtual infrastructure. On VMware, before implementing FlexPod, we had a lot of problems doing backups with disaster recovery. After integrating it, it enabled us to have shorter maintenance windows, instant backups, instant recovery, which also minimized the number of alerts that we get from the application team and from the employees who were working on the application that something is not working.
FlexPod's unified support for the entire stack is very important. Before, the customers would log a ticket by Cisco and a ticket by NetApp. It's better when vendors can parter and look for a solution together.
I see the most value in the UCS portion. I love Cisco UCS.
A valuable feature of the FlexPod solution is that it is all one architecture and I can call one number and get support for Cisco and NetApp without having to jump through open TAC (Technical Assistance Center) cases and do multiple things to get issues addressed.
With FlexPod, it is about the synergy of the server, the storage, and the whole management layer. Together, it is really about minimizing staff. You don't have to hire more people. You can work with the minimum level of resources and the availability is really good. We have had very little downtime.
The most valuable features are reliability and high availability.
It's an integrated box Mac solution, so it's a plug and play. The deployment and build is pre-made and ready to deploy. It makes it easy to apply.
The component integration means I don't have to worry about technology mismatches.
Finding a fully bundled, deployed, and configured solution with a short delivery time and unique support is really attractive.
Some of the key features are the ease of operation and access, without constraining actions. The tool is available to actually move things around, do things quickly quickly.
We have seen measurable increases in our system performance. Those increases have been directly measurable in application performance and the delivery of critical business information to our users.
The XtremIO All-Flash array delivers performance, reliability, and deduplication.
It has improved system performance, batch times for off-hours processing, and reliability with production applications.
I think it is sufficient for now, but in the next generation, I'd just like to see bigger, faster, and better.
We would like more integration with some other HCI solutions so we can take advantage of other opportunities.
Not a ten because it could always be cheaper, it could always be faster.
The upgrades should be improved. We would like to have the ability to do unified upgrades of the whole infrastructure from beginning to end.
You must build each block separately, that's a disadvantage sometimes.
Possibly the UCS could get a bit better. Other than that, overall I don't necessarily have any sorts of constraints or issues with it. It's done the job that it's been bought to do.
The upgrade process needs to be improved and it would be nice to manage everything from a single pane of glass.
There is always room for improvement. I believe we can do hot swaps on the fly. On the release upgrades, if there was a way to do a release on the fly, that would really be cool because it does take some downtime. It takes restarting. It is more of a software thing. Customers hate doing releases.
In the next release, I would like to see a smaller footprint in the data center and have improvements to disk performance.
The user control could be more advanced. They should work to improve this in future releases.
The integration with other vendors' products needs to be looked at. It's not as flexible as we would like it to be.
While most public clouds are deployed on Linux, there is current no certified Vblock working on KVM hypervisors.
I would like to see them improve their switching infrastructure and rely on Cisco configurations. They are a bit more complex and technical, but result in a slightly reduced cost in terms of switching on the network side of it.
Tighter alignment could simplify and speed up the configuration and delivery process.
Improve the patching process and timeliness of updates/releases.
It needs more customer/client involvement in back-end management.
Pricing and Cost Advice
The product is kind of expensive even from an entry-level standpoint. I would say FlexPod would be the way to go if you are a larger business or one with large data volume.
The NetApp portion was a $5 million investment five years ago. That has served the customer well over five and a half years.
It is cost-effective.
We fear high availability so we can't buy from different providers.
FlexPod has saved data center costs, due to the fact that we reduced our footprint for storage in a big way. We went from three complete racks down to a 2U storage array for more than 300 terabytes of storage.
We immediately saw a return on investment due to the fact that replacing our legacy storage arrays with the new AFFs reduced the footprint and maintenance costs. Overall, we saw an almost immediate ROI.
We would like everything in one piece of hardware. This way we can just sell the product like a silo by putting everything in a stack together.
The scalability is very expensive.
The paid support for Vblock is expensive.
I think the pricing is on the higher end of the spectrum. There could be some adjustments that could be made there. Regarding licensing, watch compatibility with external products that you run on Vblock. It has got to be properly architected, otherwise, you will run into licensing issues.
It is not cheap.
Vblock appears from the first while to be very expensive. There are more items you cannot see in the BOQ: customer service, support, delivery short time, and highly experienced VCE engineers.
I would not say the pricing is not good value. It is still on the expensive side, near the top-end of cost compared to what's available now. Also, the licensing has to be improved. There has to be a clear definition of the licensing from the initial set-up so the customer knows what they are paying for, without being hit later on with extra licensing. The licensing definitions should be clearer and, perhaps, have one set of licenses rather than multiple licenses.
out of 18 in Converged Infrastructure
Average Words per Review
out of 18 in Converged Infrastructure
Average Words per Review
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Also Known As
The FlexPod platform, developed by NetApp and Cisco, is a flexible, converged infrastructure solution that delivers prevalidated storage, networking, and server technologies. It’s designed to increase IT responsiveness to business demands while reducing your overall cost of computing. Think maximum uptime, minimal risk
VCE Vblock Systems is an all-in-one virtualization platform that integrates the leading storage, network, and compute technologies from the likes of EMC, VMware and Cisco. VCE Vblock allows organizations to easily and securely deploy cloud computing and virtualization in their environments, supporting these multiple technologies and providing flexibility and agility for changing business needs.
Learn more about FlexPod
Learn more about Vblock
|University of Sao Paulo, WD-40, The Commonwell Mutual Insurance Group||Xerox, ACS, and Columbia Sportswear.|
Financial Services Firm16%
Comms Service Provider10%
Software R&D Company21%
Comms Service Provider18%
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Software R&D Company40%
Comms Service Provider16%
Financial Services Firm10%