StarWind HyperConverged Appliance Valuable Features

David Rager
CEO CIO at Store & Haul Inc
High-availability is what I bought it for. The hardware footprint size is good. They use Dell EMC boxes for the appliances. They're pretty standard for the industry, as far as servers go. I think they're good. View full review »
Kristopher Skully
Systems Administrator at Hospice of the Western Reserve
The biggest thing we were looking for was redundancy, with both the compute and the storage, so that way we could lose a full node and still keep everything up and running, and not have to worry about it. Another of the most important features we were looking for, since we're short on time, was something that we could deploy quickly and easily. They were offering what they call a "turnkey solution." We could just buy it, they would preconfigure it, we would throw it in our environment and do some very minimal configuration on the phone with them, and we would be up and running. Then we just needed to start moving our virtual machines over, using Hyper-V’s shared-nothing live migration feature. The solution's hardware footprint is great. We have three 1U servers, a total of 3U, and that's replacing a full rack of equipment. We haven't had to use the ProActive Premium Support feature much yet. But they contacted me one time because there was network glitch on one server. We hadn't actually started migrating virtual machines over to it yet, but they contacted me within ten minutes of the issue happening, as I was still trying to figure it out. I have not seen the problem since. The ProActive Premium Support was another factor that we evaluated when we made the decision to purchase this solution, to make everything easier with less work for us. View full review »
Claire Madison
IT Manager at Projects Inc.
Nearly all of it is valuable. On a software level, it works really well. I've never had any issues with the hosts communicating with each other. The failover works perfectly. They set up everything on a software level and I've been very happy with it. They can monitor the software remotely and make sure everything's working with our Hyper-V cluster. Overall, I have been very happy with the setup of the software. The hardware footprint is perfect. It fits in our rack perfectly and we were able to condense a lot of physical servers we had. It has greatly eliminated the excess stuff in our server rack. The footprint is completely acceptable. We have the ProActive Premium Support and it has reduced our monitoring efforts. It has been very useful. They have been able to detect things such as when there's an issue with the cluster or they're getting some kind of weird reading that I have no idea about. They're really quick to let me know about it and even set up a schedule to address it. I've been very happy with their level of support on that. For example, they had messaged me a couple of times in regard to what they assumed was a bad block on our server. That could be very devastating if there is something actually wrong with our data — a corruption or anything like that. They went in there a couple of times and looked at it and made sure everything was okay. I would consider that pretty nice preventative maintenance. When we first got the appliance, we hadn't done any major updates on the actual hardware itself. They recommended to me that we do an update on it. They pretty much did the whole process for me and that saved me a lot of time on software and firmware updates. The Premium Support has saved me about ten hours of troubleshooting time. Whenever there's an issue, they're quick to reach out to me. I'd consider that a good value in terms of my time in general. There is less I have to worry about, as far as something going wrong with these servers goes, when they're monitoring it 24/7. View full review »
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Andrew_Lee
IT Infrastructure Analyst at a retailer with 201-500 employees
We bought their ProActive Premium Support. That's why they email us when we have rebooted to patch, and they check with us that everything is okay. We've not really had any problems with it, so it has not really presented with any real-world benefits yet. Obviously there are benefits to it because it's monitored. We do monitor stuff onsite, but it's good to have backup. We're a small team so that is one of the major benefits of it. The software is great. It's very easy to understand. I've not delved into any of the command-line stuff, but there's no real need to script it. Since it went in, pretty much the only thing that I have needed to do is increase device image sizes, and that process is very straightforward. As part of the installation, the StarWind representative took me through it. We just migrate everything to the other server, put it into maintenance mode, increase the size, and commit. There really isn't any maintenance. It's fairly self-sufficient. View full review »
ReinierMuller
Interim CTO at Royal Koopmans
The most valuable feature is the high-availability. We have three nodes, and all data will be synched instantly through all the nodes. Even if we had a disaster where two nodes failed, containing dozens of critical machines, almost automatically, all the loads would be run on the remaining node. So it features high-availability and provides business continuity. They are the most important elements for me. It's also fine-tuned, so the performance is the second most valuable feature. It provides great performance. I've only seen I/O performance like this in solutions that are ten times more expensive than the StarWind solution. In the SMB market segment, you cannot sell Dell EMC-like solutions. StarWind is really will be the best solution, with the best price for the performance you get. I only have three nodes, so the footprint is very small, yet I can provide all the IT services that the company requires, including a very demanding ERP system. It would fit in a half-rack if you put everything in one place. But of course, it's high-availability, so you have to spread it between locations. But the footprint is really small. In addition, we have full support from StarWind, 24/7. They know about issues in our environment before we know about them. They see, for instance, network errors before we do and what implementations we have. They send a message to us and our engineers respond with a local, physical check on what is happening. Although the environment of StarWind is great, the overall network environment of the company where I'm working is not so good. StarWind notices when there is something wrong in the network, an issue which might affect the performance or the availability of the StarWind solution. We instantly know whether our problem is in the network, before we actually know about it ourselves, by their sending us emails about the site being down or an error. View full review »
ChrisKlose
IT Manager at a transportation company with 51-200 employees
The fact that it has eliminated a separate SAN has been really handy. We moved away from an older SAN and that's one of the reasons we got this. The synchronization has also worked really well. From a feature point of view, it does what it's supposed to do and that's the best you can hope for. The ProActive Premium Support feature has helped for sure. If there's an issue that we don't know about, we get an alert email. They are very proactive. Where it has created an even greater benefit for us is purely on support. If we have a problem, I can send an email and within an hour somebody's trying to set up a remote session with us. View full review »
reviewer968163
IT Operations Manager
The management interface is really easy to use. Updates are much less painful, and the proactive support is fantastic. View full review »
Ho-Ching Yung
IT Director/Senior Software Developer at a construction company with 201-500 employees
* StarWind Virtual SAN. We no longer have to manage storage via multiple local server disks. * Added fault tolerance helps everybody sleep easier at night knowing we can lose an entire node without affecting production. View full review »
Ben Poole
User
The most valuable features are consolidated storage, low cost and overhead compared to previous solutions. As an NPO, we are always concerned with new technology and the associated costs. The solutions from StarWind were not only a major increase in performance, but they were very affordable for us. View full review »
reviewer977253
User at a non-profit with 501-1,000 employees
* Proactive monitoring and support * The ability to achieve high availability. View full review »
Andrew Wolf
Civil Engineer at a construction company with 11-50 employees
We have found the live migration to be the most valuable feature. It allows us to seamlessly maintain our servers, as well as have peace of mind if something goes wrong. There is a failover machine ready to go. View full review »
PieterGrootendorst
Technical Consultant at GMA
I've found its flexibility and performance to be the most valuable. View full review »
David Roberge
User
The ease of management through one console for the storage of all of our datacenters worldwide: Going from managing multiple SANs with each of their own consoles and software versions to having a single console to handle all of the company's storage simplified things a lot for us. Another thing worth mentioning that isn't really a feature: The support provided by StarWind is among the best we've ever got for any solution. During the implementation of one of our datacenters, our team took an action that made all storage on a cluster unavailable. StarWind got notified of that situation by the cluster. They contacted us, provided us with a fix and also gave us a procedure for the next time we need to perform this type of maintenance. View full review »
reviewer1026594
User
StarWind HCA delivered us a complete solution that works out of the box. There was no need to buy additional hardware; everything came in a box. Also, the software was preinstalled. View full review »
Find out what your peers are saying about StarWind, Dell EMC, DataCore and others in Software Defined Storage (SDS). Updated: November 2019.
383,725 professionals have used our research since 2012.
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