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VxRail OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

VxRail is the #2 ranked solution in our list of HCI Software. It is most often compared to VMware vSAN: VxRail vs VMware vSAN

What is VxRail?

VxRail is the only fully integrated, preconfigured, and pre-tested VMware hyper-converged infrastructure appliance family on the market. Based on VMware’s vSphere and Virtual SAN, and EMC software, VxRail delivers an all-in-one IT infrastructure transformation by leveraging a known and proven building block for the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC).

With the power of a whole SAN in just two rack units, they provide a simple, cost effective hyper-converged solution for a wide variety of applications and workloads. VxRail Appliances deliver resiliency, QoS, and centralized management functionality enabling faster, better, and simpler management of consolidated workloads, virtual desktops, business-critical applications, and remote office infrastructure.

VxRail is also known as VCE VxRail .

VxRail Buyer's Guide

Download the VxRail Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: September 2021

VxRail Customers

World Wide Technology Inc, Renault Sport Formula One Team, 8x8 Inc, Brownes, Canadian Pacific, Canopy, Denton, EDF, Unilin, Xerox

VxRail Video

Archived VxRail Reviews (more than two years old)

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Phil Weingart
Manager of Solutions Architecture at Trace3 Inc
Real User
Integrates well with automation tools, and improves ease of manageability

What is our primary use case?

The primary use for this solution is storage refresh, where you want to take advantage of the HCI functionality and/or bringing in another tier of storage. 

How has it helped my organization?

This solution has improved our organization in the following ways: Easier to manage: reduced management points, consolidated alerts, automation. Capacity planning: manage growth with one purchase as well as plan my depreciation of assets easier.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature of this solution is the automation and integration points with other automation tools.  

What needs improvement?

Having a native replication would be an improvement.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for three years.

What is our primary use case?

The primary use for this solution is storage refresh, where you want to take advantage of the HCI functionality and/or bringing in another tier of storage. 

How has it helped my organization?

This solution has improved our organization in the following ways:

  • Easier to manage: reduced management points, consolidated alerts, automation.
  • Capacity planning: manage growth with one purchase as well as plan my depreciation of assets easier.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature of this solution is the automation and integration points with other automation tools.  

What needs improvement?

Having a native replication would be an improvement.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for three years.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
NH
Managing Director at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Allows for flexibility across the hybrid cloud

Pros and Cons

  • "I like the new releases that Dell EMC is doing with VMware. They are allowing for flexibility across the hybrid cloud. This allows organizations to use containers and to be able to move into the public cloud, but also not have lock-in. They can come back to the private cloud when they want to, so it's creating a lot of flexibility across the stack."
  • "It still has some maturity to grow. It needs to be more tightly integrated with its own family of products. It has shown that it is open with the other products within the market, through its stack, but it needs to have the proof in the market (with use-cases), and it has to have the scalability with the integration."

What is our primary use case?

It is part of the VMware stack for our data center and cloud.

How has it helped my organization?

I'm one of the architects for hybrid cloud. I like the new releases that Dell EMC is doing with VMware. They are allowing for flexibility across the hybrid cloud. This allows organizations to use containers and to be able to move into the public cloud, but also not have lock-in. They can come back to the private cloud when they want to, so it's creating a lot of flexibility across the stack.

What is most valuable?

Looking at the modernization and flexibility with VCM and VCF into the cloud.

What needs improvement?

We would like to see tighter integration with Pivotal, because we're looking for end-to-end transformation and tight integration. So, we would like to see the Dell EMC family have stronger integration with their products, as this would be the best thing.

It still has some maturity to grow. It needs to be more tightly integrated with its own family of products. It has shown that it is open with the other products within the market, through its stack, but it needs to have the proof in the market (with use-cases), and it has to have the scalability with the integration.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is a lot more stable than it used to be.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's a lot more scalable than it was. With the combination of the stack, I just recently went to training two weeks ago. For somebody who had been certified in VMware, then sort of stopped using it, I'm back as a proponent of using the solutions across the hybrid cloud and within the data center consolidation and hybrid cloud solutions.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have not used technical support. I've just been going to technical training as a partner.

How was the initial setup?

It should be straightforward. That's what we're trying to do. We are trying to make it straightforward.

What about the implementation team?

I lead the largest integrator group that we're partnering with.

What was our ROI?

The real ROI is the benefit of being able to do a true hybrid cloud, not having to move from CAPEX to OPEX in a pure break. 

It is also being able to have the flexibility without having lock-in. By being able to use skills that you already have within your data center, you can optimize those as you are adding-on public cloud skills. Then, you can continue to build upon those skills with flexibility and immediate use them within the market.

Although, everybody tries to say that public cloud can be more cost-effective. By having that flexibility that fits your business need, there is a greater business case and value case for the business to create that flexibility. By going with the VxRail and full speed of VCM and VCF, it's a much greater investment and creates a greater flexibility and scalability for the customer.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Dell has a really strong set of solutions, probably the best in the market.

What other advice do I have?

The first thing they should do is look at their overall enterprise architecture. Don't immediately follow the advice and take the jump to move. What they want to do is look at the investments that they've already made, and look at what the future state is that they want to go to, not just for that one simple solution. They need to look at what's their entire enterprise architecture future state, then consider everything: skills, interoperatability, integration, and future scalability. Then, look at the solution that they want to go with because they want that flexibility. They should be able to not only move to the public cloud, but be able to move back to the private cloud, and understand what's the cost of their legacy.

They should be looking at replace, refactor, and retire. How long is it going to take them to retire? You don't want to just rush into retiring your applications or replacing them if they're applications that are not coasting a lot to maintain, or you don't do a lot with them. Then, retiring those applications should be a thoughtful, longer process. It's okay to consolidate them and continue to run them on your VMware environment.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner.
Learn what your peers think about VxRail. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: September 2021.
542,029 professionals have used our research since 2012.
DR
Solutions Architect
Real User
Its flexiblity gives us rack space and it saves on manpower

Pros and Cons

  • "It gives us tons of flexibility. We can create new machines, then destroy them if they don't work out. We test a lot of use cases that may or may not play out. We can build all types of scenarios into virtual machines that we may or may not use. If we don't use them, we just turn them off, no using up resources."
  • "I would like them to include an easier solution to host its own DNS. When they changed to version 6.5, they took out the easy features of letting the rail be its own DNS. You can still trick the system and make the VxRail Manager another one of the rail-required VMs become the DNS, but it's a lot of extra work. I'd like to see it put back into the UI."

What is our primary use case?

We use it in a infrastructure in a box-style setup for onsite deployments. We take certain assets to remote locations and record data for whatever sorties that they are doing.

How has it helped my organization?

The flexibility has improved our organization. If we went the traditional method, we would have to carry a lot more equipment. VxRail allows us to take all the systems that we would use in a full rack in a quarter rack.

What is most valuable?

It gives us tons of flexibility. We can create new machines, then destroy them if they don't work out. We test a lot of use cases that may or may not play out. We can build all types of scenarios into virtual machines that we may or may not use. If we don't use them, we just turn them off, no using up resources.

What needs improvement?

I would like them to include an easier solution to host its own DNS. When they changed to version 6.5, they took out the easy features of letting the rail be its own DNS. You can still trick the system and make the VxRail Manager another one of the rail-required VMs become the DNS, but it's a lot of extra work. I'd like to see it put back into the UI.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of version 6.5 and above has been pretty good. 

Version 6.0 and below has always been kind of a pain to work with, but there have been huge improvements. I like the inclusion of the HTML5 vCenter.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is great. Thankfully, our data needs are in the 200 gigabyte range when we go out onsite, so we're not overloading it. We just have the single rail that has four hosts on it.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is not so great. They had the VMware personnel trying to help us out. We had some issues on one of the rails, and it never got resolved. It is just one of those things on the to-do list. 

They were walking me through some of the diagnostic stuff, and it was clear that they had no idea. I ended up sending five different sets of logs to their FTP site, and there was no resolution. After I sent the last set of logs, which was right over Christmas break, they were like, "We can't keep this ticket open for two weeks while Dell EMC goes offline at the end of the year." 

This just something I haven't picked back up yet. Thankfully, it's not a production critical piece of equipment right now. However, I would love to figure out how to do a factory reset and start from scratch. This was from version 6.0, and I've got reservations with anything lower than version 6.5.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward for versions 6.5 and 6.7.

What was our ROI?

There is the logistical cost savings of the produced footprint of the equipment. 

There is an administrative cost savings. Instead of having seven to 15 separate boxes that someone has to administer on 15 different terminals, you can do the majority of it from one interface. Therefore, it saves on manpower costs.

What other advice do I have?

I don't think I would have picked a different product.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
SB
Lead Service Engineer at a healthcare company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
It is very stable and easy to scale out

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is its high performance."
  • "There are still some features which aren't built into Cisco, like virtualized networking, that use its applications. However, these can be purchased through another product as an additional licensing cost to us."

What is our primary use case?

We use it to consolidate our data center footprint.

How has it helped my organization?

Hyper-converged solutions seem a lot easier to manage, especially with the single pane of glass view into all the management pieces of it.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is its high performance.

The single pane of glass manager is a lot easier than having multiple systems to manage.

Being able to call one vendor instead of multiple vendors is a lot easier.

What needs improvement?

There are still some features which aren't built into Cisco, like virtualized networking, that use its applications. However, these can be purchased through another product as an additional licensing cost to us.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is very stable. We've had no issues. The only thing that we have had to replace is the disk.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is very easy to scale out.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have used technical support for disk replacement.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We had legacy ESX infrastructure previously. It really came down to consolidating our data center, which is what drove our solution switch.

How was the initial setup?

We had Dell EMC Professional Services come in and install it, then do the handover and some training,

What about the implementation team?

We worked with Dell EMC directly. Our experience with them was great.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked at Cisco and HPE. A lot of what drove of our decision is because VxRail is VMware integrated, so it was easy to manage and learn.

What other advice do I have?

We are happy with the product.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
GB
System Administrator at a hospitality company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
We have plenty of scalability and can add more nodes

Pros and Cons

  • "We were able to speed up our gaming software, which was a big plus."
  • "I would like an easier migration. This way, if a node fails like it did, the data would have been migrated and I would not have had to get up at three in the morning."

What is our primary use case?

We use it for storing all the information for our gaming and distribution software.

How has it helped my organization?

We were able to get past drives. We were also able to speed up our gaming software, which was a big plus.

What needs improvement?

I would like an easier migration. This way, if a node fails like it did, the data would have been migrated and I would not have had to get up at three in the morning.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It runs better than our previous solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have plenty of scalability and can add more nodes, if needed.

How are customer service and technical support?

We had one node that failed, and the technical support was very good about helping us.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We switched because the previous solution was seven years old. We could no longer get support on it.

This is a better SAN solution than the one that we used to use.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward for us, because the Dell EMC team did all the work.

What about the implementation team?

We used Dell EMC to install it. We are very happy with it.

We did have issues with the migration.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated CDW and Insight. We went with CDW because it seemed to be the better option of the two companies.

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend the solution, as we have been very happy with it.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
JL
Enterprise Architect at Unisys
Real User
All the different layers of architecture have worked quite well: network, storage, and compute

Pros and Cons

  • "It is truly a hyper-converged infrastructure, so everything is there together."
  • "I would like better integration with VCF from VMware, which is the Cloud Foundation tool set, so we can easily provision servers very quickly."

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case is that it is used as a tools pod where we can easily deploy our tools for any particular client on-premise. These tools include server management tools, storage management tools, network management tools (like SolarWinds), and other types of products (like Nagios), so we can put them in one place. We also work with Red Hat Satellite, WSUS, and all the particular tools that our teams need to manage to operate environments for clients.

How has it helped my organization?

Because of the quicker deployment, we don't have to ask each team, what do you need? Then finding a VMware farm to put an instance of this on is much faster now. We know that we need this many and can easily just put it in one place and on one device. That's why it's a quicker deployment, because we are able to put it up very quickly for clients.

What is most valuable?

It is truly a hyper-converged infrastructure, so everything is there together. We normally go with either a two node or three node infrastructure, which is nice and small. 

Everything is there: The storage, the network, and it is all in one package, so it's easily deployable in a very quick fashion.

What needs improvement?

I would like better integration with VCF from VMware, which is the Cloud Foundation tool set, so we can easily provision servers very quickly.

Dell EMC could put in their own monitoring tool set for this environment, or if they wanted to, they could use it to expand into other environments.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No problems with it at all. All the different layers of architecture have worked quite well: network, storage, and compute. Everything has worked quite fine.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We haven't really gone beyond what we started off with: three nodes. However, we're looking at other clients where we will be doing upwards of four to 15 nodes.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have never used the technical support.

What was our ROI?

It can easily be put on one rack. You only need a very small area of the rack, so it's definitely much cheaper to run from a power standpoint. 

You can easily deploy it very quickly. So, it's cheap to manage.

It's cheap to be sitting on an on-premise data center.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Nobody else was on our shortlist, because Dell EMC is our strategic partner. We were expecting them to bring us something that would work very quickly and easily, but also be at a reasonable price point, and they did.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner.
AT
Principal at Austin Tovey Ltd
Real User
It reduces latency, because it's bringing the storage closer to the chip

Pros and Cons

  • "It's a turnkey solution, which is good for customers, because they are buying into stability."
  • "I would like it to tier to the cloud effectively, making sure that cold data can be pushed out to some sort of Bitbucket."

What is our primary use case?

It is for small-to-medium businesses, who are looking to simplify IT effectively, reduce costs, and make it easier to maintain their whole lifecycle process.

How has it helped my organization?

For my customers who have it, it's reducing the complexity of IT management, single panes of glass, etc. It eliminates the three-tier architecture effectively where there is storage and storage network, then compute.

What is most valuable?

It is a pre-architected solution, so it's an off-the-shelf solution designed by Dell EMC engineers who work with VMware. 

It's a turnkey solution, which is good for customers, because they are buying into stability.

What needs improvement?

I would like it to tier to the cloud effectively, making sure that cold data can be pushed out to some sort of Bitbucket. As far as I'm aware, it's not there yet. I have heard rumors it's on the roadmap. I have customers who want to do it and got the public cloud space. They want to be able to move workloads in and out of VxRail.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

So far, the stability is good.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I'm not at the stage yet where I need to expand with my customers, but it is easy to add on to.

How are customer service and technical support?

I haven't used the technical support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

It is a logical progression for customers who are on a three-tier architecture to go with VxRail. It reduces the cost of ownership, so you don't need that storage network layer anymore. You're not buying a dedicated piece of hardware for the storage. It reduces latency, because it's bringing the storage closer to the chip, which is always going to be a good thing. Customers like lower latency and higher IOPS.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is very straightforward. Fill out the spreadsheet and generate the JSON file, then pump it in. 

Customers like it. It's simple to deploy. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The price point needs improvement, certainly for smaller SMBs. The cost of it is still quite painful. I think all vendors should do a product which is capped either by terabytes, IOPs, or VM instances. It should be an SMB solution that's going to make hyper-converged solutions easier for SMBs to get hold of. It's fine for those big guys that have billions of dollars of budget, but not for customers who have barely a 100,000 dollars or pounds in budget.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

There is only Dell EMC in my world. In hyper-converged, I do a lot of storage spaces as well, like Microsoft storage spaces. Obviously, customers who already bought into the VMware product line will want to stay down the hypervisor route, and customers who are already Microsoft customers will want to stay down the Hyper-V route.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
RP
Unit Manager & Solutions Architect at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Reseller
Offers the ability to consolidate the compute and storage into the same hardware

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature in the VxRail solution is the software that binds the management portal and its ease of use of managing the environment. The guys don't have to worry about getting multiple solutions specialist. You can have one person looking at and managing the whole environment."
  • "From a hardware and software perspective, there could be an improvement in the sales cycle, as there is a lot of hoops to go through to get pricing on a solution."

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case for this solution is that we usually propose this to consolidate the compute and storage into the same hardware, basically moving away from traditional infrastructure to a more elastic cloud-based infrastructure.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature in the VxRail solution is the software that binds the management portal and its ease of use of managing the environment. The guys don't have to worry about getting a multiple solutions specialist. You can have one person looking at and managing the whole environment.

What needs improvement?

From a hardware and software perspective, there could be an improvement in the sales cycle, as there are a lot of hoops to go through to get pricing on a solution.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's very stable. The guys are always at the forefront of updating and trying to improve the performance and the efficiency of the solution especially when it comes to the data management side of it.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is excellent. 

The scalability is built into the whole design of the solution and you don't have to worry about replacing the whole entire environment. You can scale up or scale down depending on what your requirements are for that time in your business.

How are customer service and technical support?

The experience with Dell services and support has always been good as it is one of the best value adds when providing Dell solutions.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup of VxRail is straightforward, especially if you know what you are doing. It is quite simple because the solution is pretty intuitive in the way that Dell has set it up, as most of the planning is done upfront before deployment starts.

What about the implementation team?

We support solution providers as we are part of the distribution track. 

We are consultants to solution providers and set up talks with the end user customers to get the product into the field. 

What was our ROI?

We don't see ROI directly but we can gauge it from when we are talking to our customers. They do realize an ROI and specifically on the operations side of things. They don't have to employ or outsource that many specialists in their support teams, as it's easier to manage than traditional solutions.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Most of the licensing cost is built into the solution since it's an appliance. You don't have to worry about additional licensing or support add-ons.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

With VxRail, the vendor choice is always Dell. The main reason being is because of the comprehensive hardware and software support as well as the deployment features. When proposing a solution, we need to look at the full package available by a single vendor rather than going with multiple different vendors to get a similar solution.

What other advice do I have?

For anyone interested in deploying VxRail, I'd say the first step would be to make sure to engage the Dell solutions engineer to ensure that the solution is scoped correctly. Doing this off the bat will always help when you are looking at the right solution at the right time rather than having to plan for future growth up front.

On a scale from one to ten, one being the worst and ten being the best, I'd rate this product a nine because of the simplicity of deploying it as well as the ease of management of VxRail being implemented. 

Customers can get many benefits with utilizing VxRail and all the innovations that are coming up. Specifically being able to move VxRail workloads into the various public cloud solutions. The simplest way to modernize and extend your VMware environment.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: We are a distributor of Dell technologies products.
EM
Senior Consultant at SoftEd Systems
Real User
Has a quick installation and is easy to manage

Pros and Cons

  • "I can roll out the system in thirty minutes and the customer can work with it."
  • "I would like to see integration with vCenter if possible."

What is our primary use case?

We use this solution for middle customers and headquarters. It's very scalable and works fine. I can roll out the system in thirty minutes and the customer can work with it. 

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the quick installation. I build the system for the customer and then it is quick and easy to manage. The price is a little bit on the higher side but the system and management are so quick and easy that it's worth it for the customer. 

What needs improvement?

I would like to see integration with vCenter if possible.

For how long have I used the solution?

Between two and three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

In terms of stability, it's an easy solution. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I can start with two systems for a robot, or I can start with a bigger system that has twelve or more nodes, and I can add the customer's workload. 

We had a big project in Germany that started with one cluster. It expanded over a year and a half to a fourteen cluster system.

How are customer service and technical support?

In the beginning, we had to put in a lot of requests with their technical support. Now, we have fewer tickets. The support is okay.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup of this solution is not complex. Take it out of the package and implement; it's very easy.

What about the implementation team?

We implement the systems ourselves.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We use Dell EMC products and this solution was the best one for our customers and projects.

What other advice do I have?

We typically use G Series, but for a certain customer, we have the P Series to handle the application workload. The P Series has more performance which you may need for your application. All of the other clusters are G Series. 

I have some colleagues who also use this solution. This is a good product of the future.

I would rate it a ten out of ten. I love it.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
NB
Engineer at a legal firm with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Dual power capabilities take up a quarter of the energy than we were using before which equals savings every month

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable feature is the fact that the storage is integrated with the VxRail so I don't have to go in between systems when I have to monitor my storage."
  • "The only issue which is every now and again is that when you log in it will tell you that there's an issue with VxRail when there actually isn't. All that's required is a refresh or reload. The solution itself works but you may get some bad reports every now and again. Probably once every couple of months; there is no effect to the solution's capabilities."

What is our primary use case?

I use VxRail in my DR site, so it houses my virtual infrastructure. I also use it for storage.

How has it helped my organization?

One way VxRail has improved my organization is in the way that I am now able to replicate the virtual because I'm using vSAN. I use the code point for VMware. I'm able to replicate my Unity appliance in my production environment to the vSAN which I wasn't able to do when I was using the older solution. I can replicate my production servers into the vSAN which is in the VxRail using the recover points of a VM. That's a great improvement. 

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the fact that the storage is integrated with the VxRail so I don't have to go in between systems when I have to monitor my storage.

The second valuable feature would be the space. Because they're all combined I save a lot of space when it comes to the rack. I was able to consolidate two racks into one and the one is only used in about half a rack. The storage and the VMware servers are all in the same infrastructure.

What needs improvement?

If they can improve the HTML client that would be great because the HTML client is a lot more responsive. It's a lot smoother than the flash that it comes with and flash updates every minute and every time flash updates I can't open my web client. You should update and make sure the HTML client works. If it does then you have a product that gives you an excellent 9.5/10 from most vendors with no problem.

Everybody complains that for 6.5 and 6.7 there's no desktop client for V7. Everyone misses the desktop client. I don't like the web client. If they can bring back the desktop client for the next release of the VxRail that would be great.

For how long have I used the solution?

Over two and half years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution itself is pretty stable. We've been using it for about two and a half years and I don't think it has ever gone down.

The only issue which is every now and again is that when you log in it will tell you that there's an issue with VxRail when there actually isn't. All that's required is a refresh or reload. The solution itself works but you may get some bad reports every now and again. Probably once every couple of months; there is no effect to the solution's capabilities. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is pretty good. Currently, we are looking at expanding. We're down to 50 terabytes and we plan on bringing on a lot more storage. We're speaking to Dell EMC. We need to buy another add-on and we can expand, it won't take on a lot more space. With a few more drives it will be huge. It's pretty scalable; it's going to grow with no problem.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have used technical support several times. I have two tickets open right now. They are usually pretty responsive. They know how to grasp and gather information. They do a lot of back and forth emailing. Sometimes I have to request a Webex so I can see what's happening. They tend to go back and forth for days.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Before VxRail we used the VNX system, which is old technology with a lot more discs. We were looking to consolidate space. We're off-site, so we have a couple of racks and we were running out of space. We needed something that would compact everything, so we started looking around. We looked at XtremIO. Then we looked into using VMware, and they have this solution that integrates with the storage, VxRail, which is VMware and vSAN. We decided to try it out. We took a look and figured we already use the product, we already have a million things with Dell EMC so we thought it would be easier just to keep going with Dell EMC. The integration purchase went smoothly. We negotiated a reasonable price, and then after that, we set it up and its been going for the last two and a half years without any issues.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was pretty straightforward. Once the storage was up, EMC did the actual deployment, configuring, and setting up the initial part of it and then the reseller took over and did the more advanced configuration. 

Deployment took a week to get everything set up with EMC, deployed, powered on and configured. Then the reseller took over and did all the migration and more complex tasks.

What about the implementation team?

We used a reseller for the initial deployment. The deployment was good. It took around a month to get everything up and running. Then we had to copy the data from the old storage to the new one. That didn't take too long.

What was our ROI?

We have seen a return on our investment. We see it mainly in the fact that we are saving money in space and storage. We can use two and a half racks for something else, and we haven't had to replace discs which cost money. We also cut down on power consumption because now we have an empty rack that isn't powered on. Before we had VNX in two of them and you have to plug those into a power source. Power in those data centers isn't cheap and the fact that VxRail is dual power, it takes up probably a quarter of the energy than we were using before. That's a saving every month. We haven't had to replace it. We haven't had to fix it. We haven't had to do anything that has cost us any money.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

We pay yearly for support. The cost was justified by now because it stays up and I don't have to constantly open tickets. I probably rebooted the system once or twice. We haven't replaced any discs in the storage, we haven't had to do any disc replacements, so it just runs. You pay a little more but you cut down on the maintenance. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated XtremIO which is also a Dell EMC product. We chose this because of the integration with VxRail. It integrates the vSAN and VMware and that was the big selling point, the fact that we could run our own vCenter right off of the storage. We know the support and we know what they are going to give us.

I evaluated for a storage increase and it's an add-on whereas with VxRail it is built in and I'm not adding on anything. It's built for both V7 and the vSAN; it works well doing both things. 

What other advice do I have?

On a scale from one to ten, with one being the worst and ten being the best I would give VxRail a solid nine. It's not something that has disappointed. Every time they have a release it's a new version and there are more features added. 

To make it a perfect ten they should improve the HTML client. There's an HTML client that works well in the web client since you don't have the desktop client. It works better than flash, and if they improve that, they might get a 10. Other than that, the product hardware is pretty good. 

I would tell someone considering this solution that it is a product to look over. You can test other solutions like Pure Storage and XtremIO. The fact that VxRail integrates with VMware gives it an edge. 

In my other office, I run VMware by itself and I use Unity which is another Dell product. We are thinking about turning our Unity and VMware into a VxRail, combining and saving space and storage. It's not the cheapest solution but sometimes cheaper is not always better. It's a solution that if you pay for it, you don't have to look at it again. I can't tell you the last time I got an alert.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
KH
Data Center Engineer at Beta Information Technology
User
Faster to deploy and easier to manage

What is our primary use case?

A hyper-converged solution, for SME and entry-level business, easy and fast to deploy and can be used for many use cases.

How has it helped my organization?

Better performance, smaller footprint, lower heat, and power dissipation, faster to deploy and easier to manage.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are: vSAN DRS FT Unicast network Power consumption rate Orchestration HA Disk groups concept.

What needs improvement?

Networking to be included A single upgrade button for all the environment including network resources.

For how long have I used the solution?

Still implementing.

What is our primary use case?

A hyper-converged solution, for SME and entry-level business, easy and fast to deploy and can be used for many use cases.

How has it helped my organization?

Better performance, smaller footprint, lower heat, and power dissipation, faster to deploy and easier to manage.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are:

  • vSAN
  • DRS
  • FT
  • Unicast network
  • Power consumption rate
  • Orchestration
  • HA
  • Disk groups concept.

What needs improvement?

  • Networking to be included
  • A single upgrade button for all the environment including network resources.

For how long have I used the solution?

Still implementing.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Chris-Stanley
IT Manager at Celtic Manor Resort
Real User
RecoverPoint can rectify server issues or any corruption very quickly

Pros and Cons

  • "There is no in-depth config involved nor third-party needed, saving us time and money."
  • "This product has given us clear visibility into what we need technology-wise to grow."
  • "RecoverPoint give us peace of mind knowing any corruption or server issue can be rectified very quickly, making sure the business impact is minimal."
  • "The initial setup between the different Dell departments is fragmented. The engineers who come to rack/stack and do the initial config should be trained on all the areas and work with the different Dell departments whilst they are onsite to give a smoother install and better experience for customer."
  • "At present, VxRail is a hyperconverged state of the art product being installed in a legacy way. We need hyperconverged install teams."

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is company growth, where storage an compute is growing fast. VDI is due to be deployed imminently

How has it helped my organization?

We are opening new properties. This product has given us clear visibility into what we need technology-wise to grow.

What is most valuable?

ESRS: This gives us the confidence that when we are not monitoring our environment, then Dell Tech is, and can make us aware of any failures/pending issues before those issues impact us globally. We do not have the manpower to monitor 24/7, so this saves us significant costs on support contracts.

RecoverPoint: It give us peace of mind knowing any corruption or server issue can be rectified very quickly, making sure the business impact is minimal. It has also allowed us during our setup to failover an entire cluster. This is a significant improvement for our system availability.

Expansion: Our business is growing rapidly with new hotels being built and acquired. We need to scale our data centre quickly and easily. There is no in-depth config involved nor third-party needed, saving us time and money.

Support - fantastic! as we try to automate the business and the mundane processes , the support element with VXrail has helped us along this journey. We are having to make fewer calls chasing different Storage /Server / VMware / Network vendors , we now make 1 call!



What needs improvement?

The initial setup between the different Dell departments is fragmented (ESRS Team, onsite deployment team, RecoverPoint team, etc.). The engineers who come to rack/stack and do the initial config should be trained on all the areas and work with the different Dell departments whilst they are onsite to give a smoother install and better experience for customer.

At present, VxRail is a hyperconverged state of the art product being installed in a legacy way. We need hyperconverged install teams.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Before we had VxRail, we had stability issues. After installing VxRail, we did not experience issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Before we had VxRail, we had scalability issues. After installing VxRail, we did not experience issues.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would rate technical support as a 10 out of 10.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We switched from converged to HCI for the ease of management and business growth.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup could have been easier. There were too many cooks with all the Dell departments.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Compare it to what you spent on your last solution. Look at other costs: Power, IT staff, time to manage the system, cost of expansion for the future versus current (all costs: human/power/kit).

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated Nutanix, Nimble, Cisco... We went with Dell VxRail, as Dell were already a trusted partner, and it has great support and products.

What other advice do I have?

  • Look at your pain points.
  • Look at where your business is and where it is going.
  • Look at the time currently invested by IT personnel to carry out mundane firmware and software upgrades.
  • Look at how you currently log support calls for different entities.
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
RS
Head of IT at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
The technical support is helpful and answers questions whenever we have issues with the product

Pros and Cons

  • "There is a single vendor with the hardware, software, and maintenance. Thus, there is a single vendor with whom we can contact."
  • "It is scalable. When you are buying it, you have to buy a minimum of three nodes. After that, if you want to add more nodes, you can buy can buy them. You can also add-on additional compute and storage."
  • "The technical support is very helpful and answers questions whenever we have issues with the product."
  • "They should add automation and activation going forward."
  • "Next release, we would like to see online applications."

What is our primary use case?

We use it for our applications, which are all homeward applications and on a Windows-based server. VxRail has performed well so far. 

How has it helped my organization?

With VxRail, there is a single vendor with the hardware, software, and maintenance. Thus, there is a single vendor with whom we can contact. With other products of HPE, you have to procure different vendors and pay the hardware to HPE, the software to VMware, and the maintenance to someone else.

What needs improvement?

  • They should add automation and activation going forward.
  • VxRail is missing some of the features that Nutanix has in its product.
  • Next release, we would like to see online applications.

For how long have I used the solution?

Less than one year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is very stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It is scalable. When you are buying it, you have to buy a minimum of three nodes. After that, if you want to add more nodes, you can buy can buy them. You can also add-on additional compute and storage.

How is customer service and technical support?

The technical support is very helpful and answers questions whenever we have issues with the product.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Compare the VxRail product to Nutanix. Nutanix has more features, but its pricing is higher.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We went with Dell VxRail because we have a good relationship with Dell EMC. The second reason was the price. We procured a very limited edition of VxRail. 

We are currently looking at buying a full featured edition of a hyper-converged product. For example, we are considering buying Nutanix, HPE SimpliVity, VxRail (the third edition), or Cisco HyperFlex solution.

What other advice do I have?

Most important criteria when selecting a vendor:

  • Stability
  • Scalability
  • Technical background of the company
  • Price.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
it_user762255
Systems / Security Administrator with 51-200 employees
Real User
Makes for easier deployments through automation and improved accessibility

Pros and Cons

  • "Its ease of administration is extremely valuable. It allows me to make better use of my time for other tasks instead of maintaining systems through multiple administration consoles."
  • "It makes for easier deployments through automation and improved accessibility."
  • "It needs faster deployment of security patches."

What is our primary use case?

For use with our on-premise infrastructure.

How has it helped my organization?

It makes for easier deployments through automation and improved accessibility. 

What is most valuable?

Its ease of administration is extremely valuable. It allows me to make better use of my time for other tasks instead of maintaining systems through multiple administration consoles.

What needs improvement?

It needs faster deployment of security patches. Dell EMC is already improving its patching method, but faster security patch rollout would alleviate risks associated from known vulnerabilities within VMware/subsystems.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No issues with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues with scalability.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support has not been needed.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We previously used traditional storage and compute. We switched because we needed a single pane of glass for administration.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Be mindful of your storage needs now and for the future.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated VxRail vs HPE SimpliVity, as well as Flex, and others.

What other advice do I have?

You should make use of all the products available within the solution.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
ITCS user
Infrastructure Senior Specialist at a financial services firm with 51-200 employees
Real User
With SSD cache managed by vSAN technology, all servers have a faster experience

Pros and Cons

  • "It is the most valuable Software Defined Storage ever to manage all storage workloads, and also offers high availability."
  • "We spend around six months waiting for a confirmation and firmware upgrade to confirm this step."

How has it helped my organization?

With SSD cache managed by vSAN technology, all servers have a much faster experience.

What is most valuable?

vSAN: It is the most valuable Software Defined Storage ever to manage all storage workloads, and also offers high availability.

What needs improvement?

It still has compatibility issues with the latest version of VMware vSphere 6.5. In fact, we spend around six months waiting for a confirmation and firmware upgrade to confirm this step.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Only in replication using native RP4VM software.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues.

How are customer service and technical support?

They are always in touch with us doing whatever they can.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I used to use traditional infrastructure (blade servers and SAN storage). I switched for scalability and for the fast-growing data center that I have.

How was the initial setup?

It is a little complex. We had a lot of technical discussions to set a proper plan and basic architecture.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Most of hyper-converged solutions require additional licenses for the virtualization layer (like VMware). Nutanix, for example, offers their solution (Acropolis) for free. So, you have to revisit your needs and budget.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Nutanix, Cisco HyperFlex, and HPE Hyper Converged.

What other advice do I have?

It is good choice if you are looking for flexibility and scalability for the future.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Rodney Barnhardt
Server\Storage Administrator at Charlotte Pipe and Foundry
Real User
Top 20
It allows files to be uploaded, performs a pre-check against the system, then upgrades the appliance from the hardware up through the VMware environment.

Pros and Cons

  • "Being able to perform upgrades and check the system through the VxRail Manager has been very helpful."
  • "My main issue so far is that the installation created a default datacenter name of "Marvin" and it cannot be changed."

How has it helped my organization?

At a remote location where physical servers were deployed in order to address latency or process delays, one of these appliances is now installed and a low cost virtual environment is in place. This has also allowed snapshot backups to be taken with our Avamar solution rather than just performing file level backup with an agent.

What is most valuable?

Being able to perform upgrades and check the system through the VxRail Manager has been very helpful. It allows files to be uploaded, performs a pre-check against the system, then upgrades the appliance from the hardware up through the VMware environment.

What needs improvement?

My main issue so far is that the installation created a default datacenter name of "Marvin" and it cannot be changed. This can be a problem with multiple device\location deployments where all of the names are "Marvin".

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

As with any new product, we have had a few bugs that were address in the last upgrade we performed. For example, we had a host that would appear to become disconnected or missing from vCenter, but later return and be online. However, there has never been an outage or loss of data with any issues. In the above mentioned issue, the VMs still functioned and were reachable. This was correcting with a software update.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not had a reason to scale or add to the initially purchased appliance.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

Our customer service is outstanding. As with many Dell EMC accounts, there is a primary person assigned as our account representative. He maintains regular contact and interaction to ensure we are not only satisfied with our VxRail, but also our other Dell EMC solutions.

Technical Support:

The few times I have contacted technical support they have always been very responsive. I have never felt as though it was a low-level support person, reading a script. They all seem to have been top-level support individuals. As with other Dell EMC products, the appliance includes an ESRS gateway, so they have the ability to remotely access (if allowed) and proactively address issues that may occur through the dial-home service.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

No, we did not have any previous HCI installations.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was not really any more complex than some other HCI deployments. We completed a spreadsheet, with IP addresses and names, that was imported into a JSON file. This was then used to automate the deployment and creation of the virtual environment.

What about the implementation team?

The implementation used a combination of in-house staff being onsite and Dell EMC personnel being on a WebEx. This was mostly due to being one of the early deployments of the system. I am not sure of the current requirements around new deployments.

What was our ROI?

The VxRail has allowed an environment to be created that is easy to manage and back up. This reduces the amount of time that is required by staff to manage and update systems.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

At the time, VMware licensing was purchased separately. I have heard that now it is offered as part of the appliance. There is a permanent vSAN license included since it is required, but vCenter\ESXi host licensing should be validated in the purchase process.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did look at some other solutions, but at the time we were only capable of 1G networking and this device was the only one available at that speed. However, it has performed great and has been easy to manage.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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