StarWind Virtual SAN Competitors and Alternatives

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Read reviews of StarWind Virtual SAN competitors and alternatives

Bryan Schuler
Network Administrator at MUM Industries
Real User
Top 20
Jan 30, 2019
It is more flexible than most VSAN solutions. You can run it across two hosts. You don't need a third host observing it.

What is our primary use case?

We had a need for some high speed I/O in our data center to run some specific high demand virtual machines. We currently have an older SAN unit, but it's slow, since it uses mechanical drives. Therefore, we decided to obtain a bunch of Intel SSDs and attach them directly to the two virtualized hosts, then I used StarWind virtual machines as the controllers to tie them together into a VSAN. After that, I moved the VMs over. Once everything was hooked up and talking to each other, it works fine.

Pros and Cons

  • "The control panel is nice. It gives you a lot of good feedback as to the status and health of the VSAN."
  • "For improvement, I would like to see how the software determines which networks to use for which purpose. It seems like the naming terminology changes a bit from here to there."

What other advice do I have?

Go for it. Just set it up and follow the instructions. Start with the free version. Make a test bed and play around with it. Then, see how you like it and how it works. because it works. There is nothing hard about it. Once you get it working and understand how the system is implemented in your data center, then everything else is dotting i's and crossing t's. You can get the official licensing for the support or any larger array sizes that you may need. You can allocate and tell it to transfer things as you normally would, as it is a very impressive system. It is probably one of the thingsā€¦
reviewer1083804
User
Real User
May 17, 2019
Simple to manage and has minimized our operational risk in case of disaster

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is for a distributed virtual SAN over two data centers. Virtual SAN uses three servers in two data centers.

Pros and Cons

  • "This solution has a very good user interface, with simple administration/management."
  • "This product could be improved with the inclusion of new health check procedures."

What other advice do I have?

We spent time evaluating this product and there is no doubt that the choice to implement this solution for production was the right one. My advice is to call (contact) them and they will answer your questions to help you find a proper solution.
reviewer1185738
User
Real User
Sep 17, 2019
A robust solution that makes us always available, and matched our limited infrastructure budget

What is our primary use case?

We were looking for a Microsoft Windows 2016 Hyper-V clustered solution that didn't require an external SAN network. Something that could utilize the local storage on each server, and also allowed us to configure the storage as we required it. We had looked at Storage Spaces Direct, but it was too restrictive in terms of configuration.

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature for us is having the ability to configure our local storage using a limited number of disks and using the StarWind VSAN software to keep the cluster nodes in perfect sync."
  • "The system performs as expected, but we're always looking for performance improvements regarding the best utilization of NVMe disks."

What other advice do I have?

So far, the software is doing everything we need.
reviewer1351425
CTO - Partner at SabreTech Consulting LLC
Real User
Top 10
May 17, 2020
Ability to use off the shelf hardware is invaluable in terms of cost and flexibility

What is our primary use case?

We are using VSAN in our private cloud environment to provide highly redundant CSVs to a Hyper-V Cluster. We are using a converged environment so we have two commodity grade servers setup as a highly available StarWind cluster, then we have numerous Hyper-V compute nodes which access CSVs from the StarWind cluster. We are able to use Veeam to backup and replicate the VM files from the CSV/cluster. We use off the shelf 10 GbE SPF+ modules and off the shelf 10 GbE switches. With MPIO, we were able to create a redundant network infrastructure to support our SAN network.

Pros and Cons

  • "The management interface on the software is very simple. It is insanely simple compared to most SANs. The interface is also powerful when used to complete tasks that an IT administrator needs to complete."
  • "StarWind relies on the underlying OS to manage the "SAN files" whether that would be a RAID volume, software RAID (such as LVM), etc. It would be useful if StarWind could incorporate the actual physical drive management inside of the solution, similar to Storage Spaces Direct."
Justin Graves
IT Supervisor at Area Agency on Aging Region 9, Inc.
Real User
Top 10
Jul 28, 2020
Greatly improved virtual machine reliability and accessibility

What is our primary use case?

Highly available HyperV cluster. Our environment includes 2 Hyper-V hosts with onboard storage running about 20 virtual machines. StarWind allowed for a redundant cluster to be configured without any extra storage and easily create an HA cluster. StarWind Virtual San functions as the primary drivers for all of our storage needs in the highly available cluster. It is used almost daily to allow for live migration of machines and failover in the event of maintenance or physical host hardware problems.

Pros and Cons

  • "Highly available storage is the most valuable feature. The entire rollout is hyper-converged and requires no extra storage further than the hosts in which Hyper-V is running. Another feature that has been great is the support from StarWind in general. We have their proactive support package on the main cluster that employs Starwind Virtual SAN."
  • "Management of VSAN itself could be improved. A Web UI for management would be great rather than an application installation. StarWind is testing a command center virtual appliance that I have installed in my environment."
reviewer1397937
Network Specialist at Nexans aeA
Real User
Top 20
Aug 3, 2020
With basic knowledge you can use the GUI from the node to create partitions then, creating volumes on the management console and manage it

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is for physical to virtual environment migration, requiring a VSAN storage for a data center we had an old BLC 460 gen 6 blades with physical storage attached. If we had any issues with the hardware or operating system the downtime for production would be for hours, so we created a virtual data center with VMware vSphere and added 3 20TB storage on each host then created 3-node StarWind scenario being shared on all 3 hosts, and creating virtual machines on 3 hosts and now running on StarWind storage.

Pros and Cons

  • "PowerShell library is pretty good feature as I created with APC PowerChute a script to put volumes on maintenance mode then turning off the StarWind nodes together with the VM and Hosts when UPS reaches 15 percent, this way after a blackout or electrical problems when turning servers on again, there is no issues for syncing or data loss due to energy interrupts."
  • "Android app for monitoring and receiving push notifications as alarms or monitoring I/O from any mobile device could be a good feature and nice to have as we are not always on our desk."

What other advice do I have?

By letting the support team do it next time, as based on their knowledge we have the correct configurations.
TRAIANO ...
Technology Solutions, Support & Training at UNISONMEDIA Group, Inc.
Real User
Top 10
Oct 9, 2020
Resilient with seamless failover, and the support is helpful

What is our primary use case?

We have Microsoft Hyper-V. StarWind is configured as a two-node cluster with a Windows environment. It is crucial for the Virtual Machines that give us the resiliency of Exchange, 4TB File Servers, Networking Services, Quickbooks Server, Terminal Servers, Virtualized Spam Protection, Active Directory Services, and a few others. We needed something that allows for better resiliency than the old way of doing things. We have seen other choices out there but this seemed to be the best one, given our budget and the hardware we wanted to use.

Pros and Cons

  • "Recovery and maintenance are now less stressful and most importantly, it allows our users to keep working."
  • "A mobile app to sync up for overview and status would really be helpful."

What other advice do I have?

Mainly that the costs would be less expensive.
Get our free report covering VMware, Microsoft, Nutanix, and other competitors of StarWind Virtual SAN. Updated: December 2020.
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