Compare HPE SimpliVity vs. VMware vSAN

HPE SimpliVity is ranked 5th in Hyper-Converged (HCI) with 35 reviews while VMware vSAN is ranked 1st in Hyper-Converged (HCI) with 55 reviews. HPE SimpliVity is rated 8.8, while VMware vSAN is rated 8.4. The top reviewer of HPE SimpliVity writes "Freed up resources to do more application delivery type functionalities". On the other hand, the top reviewer of VMware vSAN writes "Gives us a lot of advantages when we need to expand resources". HPE SimpliVity is most compared with Nutanix, VxRail and VMware vSAN, whereas VMware vSAN is most compared with Nutanix, VxRail and HPE SimpliVity. See our HPE SimpliVity vs. VMware vSAN report.
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Most Helpful Review
Find out what your peers are saying about HPE SimpliVity vs. VMware vSAN and other solutions. Updated: January 2020.
396,515 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:

Among the valuable features are that it's a complete solution, it's easy to use, and there is not a lot of management time involved in operating the solution.A very small package but with lots of memory and CPU.The biggest benefit of this solution is that If you use it, you can use it for the company headquarters and also for all the branches. You use the same system, only a smaller size. With SimipliVity you can also use the included backup solution. You don't need any other solution to back up the data or to transfer it.The most valuable aspect of the HPE SimpliVity is the DL380 G10. We have mostly been using VMware and Hyper-V. On one side we have Hyper-V and the other side we have the VMware.The scalability is its most valuable feature. It's also able to do stretch clustering.The solution's simplicity is its most valuable feature. The usability is also good.The rate of compression for the data in SimpliVity is the most valuable feature.As a point for optimization on our infrastructure, it works great for us.

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We can also create test cases. We can even throttle down performance or release more performance. So, we can run more precise test scenarios.When we do to do more scaled load testing, we can run more dense workloads and still have the same results across all specific nodesIt is more stable now than it was before. It's not like it was in the first year. Now it is stable, and we trust it more.VMware vSAN has greatly reduced refresh spending.The newer versions of this solution are much more stable and easier to manage.As a function of our core business, it's a sought after tool that helps us provide analytical support across a wide spectrum of client needs. It's allowed us to test out in our connected restaurant - "TheWorks" - a fully-functional restaurant experience center that allows our clients to discover the value of our connected solutions firsthand. We deploy vSAN in this customer-like environment within a hyperconvergent infrastruction (HCI) to give our clients a better understanding and help optimize data and the end-users' experience.The most valuable feature is the ability to continue our business needs and have higher visibility. It has definitely increased our business productivity levels.To me, VMware is a leader of the visualizations. I think everyone just follow VMware.

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I would like to see it be a truly hybrid-cloud solution where I could take my on-prem SimpliVity environment and have replication to a cloud install.I would like them to add more connection capability, a hub and spoke model, to improve the number of connections that it can handle.The price is quite high. The system could also be more scalable.A lot of our customers are using VMware and also are using Hyper-V. Hyper-V is not very stable on the HP SimpliVity.I would like to see it able to restore item levels, especially for databases.The initial setup was a little complex because we were in the first version, fresh releases.When we make some upgrades to the platform, it does take time to stabilize the structure again.The initial setup was complex. It took a few months to integrate and adapt to the new platform.

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When we talk about improvements for vSAN, there is some way to go from a at least stability perspective. Adding all these new features is nice, but we are now at the level that most of the features you need in production are there.Upgradability could be a bit easier sometimes. We are now where vSAN can be updated without ESXi, but there is still enough dependency. So that would be good if that actually would uncoupled even more.Disaster recovery needs to be improved, when there is a crisis, there is a problem with what is the quickest way to get out of it.This solution is not great for large file shares/object/rich media repository.This solution would benefit from better collaboration with Cisco for driver updates.I would like to see the availability of more template based VMware systems. Combined with the ability to check and measure multiple and converging data segments. Another issue I've seen is that the tool seems to be slow when first starting up.I would love for this product to be cheaper and easier to configure.It is an expensive solution.

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Pricing and Cost Advice
We're paying $3,000-$4,000 a month.It's about $10,000 monthly.For three years, it is $60,000 for three nodes. It is quite pricey.The only thing that I think we are paying for is the VMware licenses, but we are enterprise, so it is not horrible.For the VMware licensing, it is approximately $10,000 a year.The time savings on the administration side of things is huge. We had somebody who was dedicated pretty much full-time to hardware, and now, they spend about a quarter of their time a year on hardware-related issues.Upfront costs seems high at first look, but after analyzing all the benefits of SimpliVity, we have come out ahead.It has helped to reduce our VMware licensing costs due to host consolidation.

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ROI from an administrative perspective is clearly much better because I only have to deal with one user interface.I'd love for this product to be cheaper.The only problem I have with VMware is the price. It is a good product, but it is expensive.With vSAN, we didn't find the market that competitive.The vSAN is somewhat expensive to license.The vSAN licensing is not an inexpensive product. It does cost more than hypervisor.We did consider other hyperconverged solutions. It usually came down to price. vSan was the most cost effective thing.What made us go with this solution was price point. When you can utilize existing storage infrastructure, and not have to continually purchase new SAN products out there that are going up in price as time goes by, then it's a wonderful thing.

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Answers from the Community
Miriam Tover
author avatarGavin Haslett

There are a lot of technical differences between both solutions but there are a few notes that are key to understanding the differences.

1. SimpliVity is not tied to a single hypervisor; rather it can work with KVM, Hyper-V and VMware hypervisors.
2. VMware vSAN is kernel-integrated meaning it runs at a much lower level in the processor stack than SimpliVty. Depending on your workloads this may provide a small boost in performance.
3. To combat #2, SimpliVity uses a hardware accelerator in its systems that accelerates writes by acting as a cache and provides compression and deduplication acceleration. In some workloads, this may provide a small boost in performance.
4. While SimpliVity is only available on HPE servers since the acquisition, vSAN works on literally any x86 server so long as your hardware (most importantly drives and HBA's... avoid RAID controllers in hardware) is on the HCL. If you're a current HPE customer then this might not be an issue, but if you are an IBM, Dell, Cisco or Supermicro customer this might be a problem.
5. As an adjunct to #4, there are certified platforms from all the major manufacturers for vSAN; so-called "Ready Nodes" which provide a full stack of hardware that's on the vSAN HCL.
6. I've found support to be a mixed bag. While HPE will do some support of the hypervisor, it can become a "blaming" match between HPE and the hypervisor vendor when issues occur at that level. With vSAN you only have VMware to deal with. However, in fairness, I have found VMware to be very quick to blame hardware which can lead to some finger-pointing as well.
7. vSAN is also available as a "full-stack appliance" like Simplivity where a single vendor provides and supports everything in the stack; that being VxRail from Dell.
8. vSAN's integration into vCenter is obviously second-to-none in terms of storage management. Third-party plugins to vCenter are good but you get into the "two-software-vendors" duel again when calling for support.

General advice though, make sure to analyze your workloads properly before proceeding with any HCI solution. There are salespeople from a number of big companies, HPE and Dell in particular who will tell you that their HCI solution is the answer to ALL your problems. This is patently not true. Many workloads won't fit in HCI due to hardware, software or performance restrictions. HCI can be very cost-effective for general-purpose workloads for office type environments but lack the peak performance and custom components of a solidly-designed 3-2-1 solution (server, switch, SAN).

It's also worth noting that the sadly ignored solution of up to 4 servers attached to a shared SAS array of disks can still provide an incredibly low-cost yet highly performant VM cluster using your hypervisor of choice without having the extra layer of software or management for the storage, a SAS array is usually a set-it-and-forget-it setup. It lacks in scalability but for small deployments can be much more cost-effective than an HCI solution particularly one where you know you'll never grow it (remote offices for example).

author avatarErick Gonzales
Real User

I would say the biggest difference is that SimpliVity is a Hardware and software HCI solution and vSAN is a software-only HCI solution. That being said, all the technical differences are related to those approaches. Each solution has its own advantages, for example, SimpliVity is really good with data optimization, compression and deduplication, for a big space workload you would probably need fewer nodes than vSAN, in the other hand vSAN has a unique integration with all VMware software suite, so if you are planning to do more advanced use of your platform you will probably have a more complete suite with the whole stack. Actually, when you plan to go for an HCI solution you should be looking for something else on top of just virtualizing storage workload, so that could be a good point between then. For those who would say that VMware will lock you up with the whole stack, HPE will do the same with SimpliVity, so you don´t have to look who is not going to tie you up, instead you should look for who has the better approach and what terms are the ones that I would like to be tied up and what I don´t.

author avatarLouis Le

The inline compression engine of HPE is very powerful (probably best in the industry). This makes backup and retention a simple and easy job. One of our clients was able to squeeze a nightly that ran 5+ hours into less than 60 mins.

author avatarGustaaf Schrils

The simple answer is that a five year TCO analysis helped break the tie between two very good HCI solutions.

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Also Known As
SimpliVity, HPE HCIvSAN
Hewlett Packard Enterprise

HPE SimpliVity provides the most complete hyperconverged solution, powering the world’s most efficient and resilient data centers and delivering up to 49% cost savings verses public cloud alternatives. A market and customer satisfaction leader, HPE SimpliVity dramatically simplifies IT by combining all infrastructure and advanced data services—including guaranteed data efficiency, built-in data protection, and VM-centric mobility—onto the customer’s choice of server. With HPE SimpliVity, expand your possibilities, not your data center.

VMware vSAN is the industry-leading software powering Hyper-Converged Infrastructure solutions.

What vSAN Does

  1. Enables you to evolve without risk. Seamlessly extend virtualization to storage with an integrated hyper-converged solution that simply works with your overall VMware environment and reduces the risk in digital transformation by using existing tools, skillsets and solutions.
  2. Lowers total cost of ownership by 50% or more with capital and operational savings. Reduce storage CapEx, decrease operational costs, manage the day-to-day operations of compute and storage infrastructure, and accelerate responsiveness to traditionally time-consuming tasks.
  3. vSAN helps customers scale to tomorrow. Prepare for tomorrow's dynamic business in the multi-cloud era with a solution designed to utilize the latest storage and server technologies and ready to support a wide range of applications, from current business critical applications to next-gen applications using containers.
Learn more about HPE SimpliVity
Learn more about VMware vSAN
Sample Customers
Red Bull Racing, Mandarin Oriental, Brigham Young University, UCLA, Merlin Entertainments, Sasa Cosmetics, Travelport, St. John’s Riverside Hospital, Princess House Read Some Case Studies At Home Cloud CaribCINgroupDiscovery Check out the Rest of our Customer Stories Here
Top Industries
Financial Services Firm19%
Healthcare Company10%
Software R&D Company22%
Comms Service Provider18%
Manufacturing Company7%
Healthcare Company18%
Manufacturing Company8%
Software R&D Company32%
Comms Service Provider14%
Manufacturing Company7%
Company Size
Small Business25%
Midsize Enterprise35%
Large Enterprise40%
Small Business19%
Midsize Enterprise45%
Large Enterprise36%
Small Business28%
Midsize Enterprise18%
Large Enterprise54%
Small Business14%
Midsize Enterprise26%
Large Enterprise60%
Find out what your peers are saying about HPE SimpliVity vs. VMware vSAN and other solutions. Updated: January 2020.
396,515 professionals have used our research since 2012.
We monitor all Hyper-Converged (HCI) 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.