Anonymous UserSenior Systems Engineer at a tech services company
Christian GruetznerService Architecture at All for One Group AG
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use. Here are some excerpts of what they said:
"There are many benefits to this solution. Storage virtualization and the ability to migrate massive amounts of data to other systems without impacting your client are the most valuable. It is non-disruptive for my users. We migrated 350 terabytes of data in one night to a new machine without a small system going down and a single user complaining about the performance. You have to fine-tune a lot of storage machines constantly for performance and for making sure that they are optimal, but IBM Spectrum Virtualize does this by itself. It does the adjustment on its own, and it does it right. That's what makes it different. I had a huge VSP from Hitachi, which is also a type of virtualization-based engine but with a decent size. It was a continuous performance-tuning exercise. I never had that issue with IBM Spectrum Virtualize."
"I like all the features, but the most impressive recently has been the introduction of IBM's Flash Core Modules. They are a form of a flash drive, but they have many more features."
"The ability to add the virtual machine on the Spectrum environment to sort out the data movers(DMs) and their schedules is a valuable feature. You are able to have, for example, four data movers to balance them so you do not have too much work on one data mover."
"The FlexClones make all the management easier for us."
"NetApp's XCP Migration Tool... was pretty awesome. It replicated the data faster than any other tool that I've seen. That was a big help."
"NetApp's Cloud Manager automation capabilities are very good because it's REST-API-driven, so we can completely automate everything. It has a good overview if you want to just have a look into your environment as well."
"Another feature which gets a lot of attention in our environment is the File Services Solutions in the cloud, because it's a completely, fully-managed service. We don't have to take care of any updates, upgrades, or configurations."
"Unified Manager, System Manager, and Cloud Manager are all GUI-based. It's easy for somebody who has not been exposed to this for years to pick it up and work with it."
"We use the mirroring to mirror our volumes to our DR location. We also create snapshots for backups. Snapshots will create a specified snapshot to be able to do a DR test without disrupting our standard mirrors. That means we can create a point-in-time snapshot, then use the ability of FlexClones to make a writeable volume to test with, and then blow it away after the DR test."
"We're using snapshots as well and it's a pretty useful feature. That is one of the main NetApp benefits. Knowing how to use snapshots in the on-prem environment, using snapshots on the cloud solution was natural for us."
"The solution’s Snapshot copies and thin clones in terms of operational recovery are good. Snapshot copies are pretty much the write-in time data backups. Obviously, critical data is snapshotted a lot more frequently, and even clients and end users find it easier to restore whatever they need if it's file-based, statical, etc."
"I hate I/O groups. If you start swapping I/O groups, they can be potentially risky. If they could get rid of the whole I/O group principle, the risk is not there anymore. I understand the fundamental thing about I/O groups, but they are risky."
"t is limited in terms of a single system to eight nodes or four, what they call IO groups."
"The only errors I find sometimes is the solution tells me I cannot operate it because a service has turned off, you can just go back to the VM, go to services, and turn back the services. However, this should improve."
"The only issue we had lately was that outside our VPC we could not reach the virtual IP, the floating IP. I heard that they have fixed that..."
"Scale-up and scale-out could be improved. It would be interesting to have multiple HA pairs on one cluster, for example, or to increase the single instances more, from a performance perspective. It would be good to get more performance out of a single HA pair."
"One difficulty is that it has no SAP HANA certification. The asset performance restrictions create challenges with the infrastructure underneath: The disks and stuff like that often have lower latencies than SAP HANA itself has to have."
"Some of the licensing is a little kludgy. We just created an HA environment in Azure and their licensing for SVMs per node is a little kludgy. They're working on it right now."
"The DR has room for improvement. For example, we now have NetApp in Western Europe and we would like to back up the information to another region. It's impossible. We need to bring up an additional NetApp in that other region and create a Cloud Manager automation to copy the data... I would prefer it to be a more integrated solution like it was in the NetApp solution about a year ago. I would like to see something like AltaVault but in the cloud."
"How it handles erasure coding. I feel it the improvement should be there. Basically, it should be seamless. You don't want to have an underlying hardware issue or something, then suddenly there's no reads or writes. Luckily, it's at a replication site, so our main production site is still working and writing to it. But, the replication site has stopped right now while we try to bring that node back. Since we implemented in bare-metal, not in appliance, we had to go back to the original vendor. They didn't send it in time, and we had a hardware memory issue. Then, we had a hard disk issue, which brought the node down physically."
"We have used technical support. As long as they don't call me at four o'clock in the morning to tell me that a drive failed and they are sending me another one, I like it. They have a tendency to do that."
"Multipathing for iSCSI LUNs is difficult to deal with from the client-side and I'd love to see a single entry point that can be moved around within the cluster to simplify the client configuration."
"I am very happy with the pricing. There is no comparison when it comes to pricing. I have looked at all solutions from EMC, Veritas, Hitachi, Dell, etc. None of them compares to IBM when it comes to pricing. I get great pricing from them."
"The entry point of pricing for this product is the most amazing price ever in the industry."
"This solution came as an additional cost for the TSM package we chose."
"They allow a special price if you are working closely with them. Since we have a lot of NetApp systems, we got some kind of discount. That's something they do for other customers, not just for us. The price was fair. In addition to the licensing fees, you're paying Amazon for your usage..."
"The standard pricing is online. Pricing depends. If you're using the PayGo model, then it's just the normal costs on the Microsoft page. If you're using Bring Your Own License, which is what we're doing, then you get with your sales contact at NetApp and start figuring out what price is the best, in the end, for your company."
"In addition to the standard licensing fees, there are fees for Azure, the VMs themselves and for data transfer."
"Cloud is cloud. It's still expensive. Any good solution comes with a price tag. That's where we are looking to see how well we can manage our data in the cloud by trying to optimize the costs."
"I know the licensing is a bit on the high-end. That's when we had to downsize our MetroCluster disks and just migrate to disks that were half used. We migrated into those just to reduce maintenance costs."
"Cost is a big factor, because a lot of companies can't afford enterprise grade equipment all the time. They skimp where they can. I would recommend that they improve the cost."
"Our licensing costs are folded into the hardware purchases and I have never differentiated between the two."
"For NetApp it's about $20,000 for a single node and $30,000 for the HA."
IBM Spectrum Virtualize is a dependable solution that improves data value, security, and simplicity for new and existing storage infrastructure. Proven over 12 years in thousands of deployments, its innovative virtualization capabilities help organizations achieve better data economics by supporting new workloads that are critical to their success. IBM Spectrum Virtualize software helps make new and existing storage more effective and standardizes functions traditionally deployed separately in disk systems for greater flexibility and potentially lower costs.
The leading enterprise-grade storage management solution, delivers secure, proven storage management services and supports up to a capacity of 368TB. Software service supports various use cases, such as: File shares and block-level storage serving NAS (NFS, SMB / CIFS) and SAN (iSCSI) Disaster Recovery, Backup, and Archive DevOps Databases (SQL, Oracle, NoSQL) Cloud Volumes ONTAP is offered in a standard single-node configuration or in a High Availability (HA) configuration.
Sign up for a 30-day trial to see how Cloud Volumes ONTAP can help you optimize cloud storage costs and performance, while enhancing data enterprise-grade protection, security, and compliance - wherever your data lives.
IBM Spectrum Virtualize is ranked 9th in Software Defined Storage (SDS) with 3 reviews while NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP is ranked 1st in Cloud Software Defined Storage with 30 reviews. IBM Spectrum Virtualize is rated 8.6, while NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP is rated 8.8. The top reviewer of IBM Spectrum Virtualize writes "Enables us to build an infrastructure and replace storage with no disruption to our hosts whatsoever". On the other hand, the top reviewer of NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP writes "Enables us to manage multiple petabytes of storage with a small team, including single node and HA instances". IBM Spectrum Virtualize is most compared with VMware vSAN, Dell EMC VPLEX, IBM Spectrum Scale, DataCore SANsymphony SDS and IBM Spectrum Accelerate, whereas NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP is most compared with Azure NetApp Files, Red Hat Ceph Storage, VMware vSAN and IBM Spectrum Scale.
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