If you were talking to someone whose organization is considering HPE Synergy, what would you say?
How would you rate it and why? Any other tips or advice?
My suggestion is to go with HPE Synergy Composer v2 once it is released. Have HPE support with you while doing hardware upgrades.
Do your research but evaluate this system. I rate it an eight out of ten because there's no perfect system. Ten is perfect but every system has its little glitches.
Except for the setup, everything else is fantastic. It is a really good product, but make sure you have a lot of time to set it up. We run VMware on it, and always have. So, it is either run it on the stack or run it on Synergy, which is the same thing for us. VMware helps us implement our business requirements more so than Synergy.
This solution has decreased our deployment time by approximately sixty-five percent. My advice is that if you're looking for a product that helps you save time when deploying your hosts, then this is the perfect solution. It is flexible and can handle many different workloads. The biggest thing that I have learned from using this solution is to be patient. Once it's up and running it's great. I would rate this solution a seven out of ten.
Synergy is definitely a solution that I would recommend for forward-thinking IT shops. The biggest lesson that I have learned is to make sure that you do all of the available training sessions on the new technology. I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
My advice would be to set up a face-to-face meeting with the product experts from HPE. If you go through resellers or vendors that's fine, but make sure you have the HPE resources there. They know the product the best. One of the lessons we've learned from using this solution is that you really need to take your time and learn the new features of these. There's so much. It's not just a simple blade enclosure and you plug your servers in and go. There are a lot of advanced features, with some of the composability stuff that we haven't even really scratched the surface of. The big lesson is to really learn the product and what it can do for you, because chances are it can do a lot more than what you initially think.
The biggest lesson I learned personally, using Synergy, was that it takes quite a while to properly evaluate something as complex as Synergy. Two weeks in, I was ready to just say, "This as a piece of junk and I never want to use it." But two months in, it was actually working really well and I was trying to figure out how we could make it work in our environment. It takes a while, but if you can get it set up right and get a little bit of expertise in it, it's a wonderful platform. My advice would be to take your time. Get very familiar with it and make sure it's going to meet the needs that your business has, because it may not. Or maybe it fits perfectly. If you don't take the time to really study it then you won't know, and you don't want to get stuck. That's would be an expensive mistake to make. The product is well-designed and engineered. They've thought through a lot of the things that were problems with the c7000 chassis, for example, and they've made a lot of improvements. From an engineering perspective, I would give it an eight out of ten. It might be right for all workloads but it's not right for all environments. Our environment is one of those that doesn't fit well with HCI.
Take the time to understand the ecosystem and all of the capabilities, then use that to leverage further capabilities down the road. The more that we use it, the better that we will understand it.
If you are deploying solutions that are well aligned with what HPE has designed this platform to do, then you will probably have pretty good success. If you are sort of weird, like us, and the things you do come off as strange, or whatever, there will be some things you will have to pay close attention to and watch out for. Therefore, you should really be partnering with HPE. You should be asking to talk to their development teams and getting feedback, such as, "Here's what we're seeing and here's how we're using it." Sometimes, as we've heard from the development teams, we've used features that they've created in ways they didn't imagine. We had some results that we didn't expect nor did they. So, that's what we're working on. If you think you will be in a similar situation, open that communication channel early and express that need to your account team. Deployment time has decreased, for sure. What we have detected is we think the care and feeding maintenance over time might be a little higher than what we had expected. However, that is part of: * How are we going to structure the team? * How are we going to plan the work? * How will the solution set get better? I don't think our development team really knows of the solution or has any interactivity with it. Therefore, it hasn't necessarily enhanced nor has it detracted from a developer standpoint either. In our environment, with what we are trying to achieve, it still has a ways to go. The biggest lesson learned is that if you really buy into software-defined and start moving to infrastructure as code, there is a lot of power potential there, if you can just stay the course.
If someone is looking at HPE Synergy, c7000, or Cisco UCS, Synergy is worth a shot because it provides a lot of flexibility and automation. It can make the lives of operations team members, or whoever is managing the hardware, much better due to the automation. The biggest thing that I like about Synergy is the automation. Compared to the other product that I have used, I would rate Synergy at eight out of ten. This is a cool platform. Compared to UCS this is a little better, more user-friendly.
Most of the time, people look at our solution - the way we built Synergy - and they say, "Man, we don't need that much power. You built it with the highest processors you can buy, the most RAM you can put in there." I tell them it doesn't really matter, from a Synergy perspective, if you need a smaller solution, less RAM. Synergy is a good play for them, even though they don't need the powerhouse, because Synergy is a platform is solid. They could get gold processors, lower processors, put 512 of RAM in it, and the TCO for them would still be as good as we're getting. The biggest lesson we've learned from using the solution is that we should have gotten on it sooner. That is the main one. We weren't focusing heavily on our density before. Now we are. The thing we've learned is that for every new solution, whether it's storage or networking or whatever it is, we need to focus on the density side of things. We did a big vetting of HPE's Pointnext services which helps move to the solution. We spent a ton of time on it because we really wanted to make it work. Unfortunately, since we're a service provider, the model didn't work for us, but we may use it for storage, so it could work out. What does it not have? That's the harder question. Right now, it has everything we need. We don't really see anything, it doesn't have. I'd rate Synergy a nine out of ten because, after it was done, it was almost perfect. It was getting it done, at the beginning, that was our biggest struggle.
Definitely look into it. It's a great solution. Do your research to make sure that it's for you. The biggest lesson I have learned from using this solution is that HPE builds great solutions in blade infrastructure. I would rate Synergy an eight out of ten, mostly because of the reduction in the number of nodes.
It handles everything that we are looking to do. Consider using it in conjunction with Nimble. Biggest lesson learned: Be more on top of what HPE products and solutions are available.
Definitely go with it. Use this product. It's best-in-breed. The biggest lesson we've learned from using this solution is to continue using this solution. I would give it a nine out of ten for sure because it's 100 percent reliable and for the ease of use. I seldom give anything a ten. There's always room for improvement, I'm just not thinking of a specific feature or two that are missing, but there is certainly a feature or two missing.
Look into Synergy. It's a pretty decent a product at the enterprise scale. It has all the capabilities. The biggest lesson we've learned from using this solution is that the product is really good. When we see the next iteration of the product, and that the company does a very good job of fixing issues, we really like it. That's what happened when we upgraded from c7000 to Synergy. I would give the product about an eight out of ten. The product is pretty rock-solid. There are small issues here and there. But it has helped me to decrease my deployment time, and the number of support calls and time spent on support have been decreased a lot compared to c7000 and the issues that we were seeing with that. That's why I like it.
I am very happy with the solution. I have no major complaints. Support is what I expect from HPE support when it comes to these products. It has simplified our operations. I don't honestly know if it's reduced costs. It probably hasn't as of yet, as we're not full. We're not so much using it for hybrid cloud at the moment. We're using it more for day-to-day operations. We used HPE's Education Services to move to the solution. I would rate Synergy at nine out of ten. Everything has room for improvement. This is a robust, stable, scalable solution. I have no major complaints at this time.
The solution is pretty good and very stable. It has a great support. It works as the brochure says, "It works perfectly." We need to learn about the all the solutions that integrate well with Synergy. E.g., it has a monitoring solution that we need to explore. We also use Hyper-V. So, we are already using physical servers to run it.
Make sure you understand your own decision-making criteria and what is important to your company. Investigate all vendor options. Question your assumptions. Get it into your lab and test it out before you make a sizeable financial commitment. The things that I think are important HPE doesn't, and competitors do think they are important.
Make sure that it will work for you, your environment, what you have in mind, and what you want to accomplish. If you have a lot of small points of presents which are located around the world, this may not the best solution. However, if you are in a big data center or colocated data center, and you will be doing a lot of deployments, then I think this is a good solution. Right now, we are mostly configuring profiles, the configuration of the frame sets, and the logical enclosure groups manually. We are moving towards having Synergy help us manage our IT landscape. That is what we are trying to get to next. We are not using it as a fully composable infrastructure because we have storage outside of Synergy. It is sort of a hybrid of what we were doing before and what composable infrastructure really is, so that is where we are at. It hasn't decreased our deployment time yet, but it can potentially in the future. We are trying to get not only to servers that we deploy, but the infrastructure that deploys the servers. We want to get to the point where that is all configured and deployed using infrastructure as code. We are a long ways from that, but that is where we want to get, and hopefully, we will get there. It was the next generation of what was possible versus the old stuff where it was very confined to one frame versus multiple frames or you could make it composable and move workloads around easier. We don't really have Synergy for our development environment. Biggest lesson learnt: Pay attention to the nuances it. Take advantage of all the stuff which is built into the system. A lot of times, we buy technology and only use one part of it. If you use sort of the whole suite, then it works better.
Focus on the fluidity of resources and view everything from that lens. Always remember that is the justification for some of the complexity. Once you can set it up appropriately, it will be worth it. If you view it purely from a non-fluid, assign this - just like you would a blade, then you may find it more complex, and in some cases, more expensive to manage. Right now, there are pros and cons to whether it is affecting our customer's IT infrastructure. It is probably net neutral because there are some complexity from an operationalization aspect that increases compared to what they're used to. Being able to know what number frame it is within the Synergy frame. Operationally you are ordering different parts differently based on where you are in that count. That adds a certain complexity to them managing it on a growth and scale perspective. So, you are sort of giving up one efficiency to get the other right now. That is something that will be addressed better over time, and it is even better than it was two years ago already. It hasn't proven to implement new business requirements quickly, but it certainly has that promise. In its worst case, it is just another hardware-centric solution. In its best case, the customer will have the automation tie-in to actually make this happen. Biggest lessons learnt: * You should be aware of your workloads from a time basis, which means you need to be monitoring and analyzing those workloads more. * The absolute necessity of automation.
I would recommend that anybody who does look at Simplicity to look into Synergy. Look into it before they deploy. They should look and make sure it is compatible for their environment. At the scale that we are at, we don't really have too many use cases right now where we can leverage all the technologies behind it. So, it's unfortunate but we are looking forward to getting to that point. We just have to slowly bridge that gap. It is fulfilling our needs. It is not doing anything that has been too different than how we're already using it. Because of how we are using it as a bare bones servers, we just see it as a server. We just haven't really integrated it into the public cloud or hybrid cloud. We are testing out Simplicity and Nimble now, so that might already be a feature.
I would definitely recommend buying it. Most of the requirements of newer applications are based on the availability of newer technology. So, you need more speeds and feeds. You need more proxy, faster storage, and more RAM. The compute resources required for today's workloads and emerging workloads are greater than it was before. This platform is allowing us to meet those needs without having to go out and purchase more gear. It doesn't really affect our development staff. Right now, their development environments aren't on Synergy. They are not actually using it yet. All of our production stuff is in Synergy. The development staff is using the old stuff still. The biggest lesson learned is knowing what you are connecting Synergy to, because there are caveats there and not everything necessarily plays well with Synergy. Make sure you are talking to your HPE techs about what you need it to connect to and what is in your environment that will work well. Also, that they have tested it and proven it. Otherwise, you're going to be their guinea pig.
Go with what is comfortable for the employees. We were using HPE for some time, then we switched off of it for some time. After switching back, our employees adapted to it quickly, because it was easy to use. I wasn't here when they began installing it, so I can't tell what the deployment time was before. Over time as the teams get used to it, the return time is now two to three hours.
Take a serious look at Synergy. The development team hasn't been brought into it.
Ask more questions to challenge the answers that the sales community gives. We went into the product thinking that we knew the product previously. That it just needed to be a maturation of the product, and it wasn't. I would poke more technical questions at them. Sometimes, with the bleeding edge, you have to be careful. We were one of the first adopters of it, and some of the bugs were still in it when we were ready for production work, so maybe it wasn't production ready. It is a good, stable product. It will become more mature. Ask the questions of your sales team and the technical solution architect, ensuring that it's for you. Consider the total cost of ownership, and maybe starting out simpler. It is touted to be composable. However, we haven't used it as composable. It is more of a replacement for an existing service right now. The deployment time stayed about the same, because we deployed the same way. It has added value to the process. It impacted us initially when we were deploying it. We were trying to troubleshoot the problem when we should have been under production, and we were about eight months behind deployment because of it. So, it impacted us in a negative way. With total cost of ownership, once we determine how to start using the composable infrastructure, it should add to that.
The HPE Synergy is a good platform, but they need to look at management and updates to make sure that they know what they are getting into. HPE continues to make a good product. There is no doubt about that. It is a possibility that we could have jumped into this a little too early. It would have been nicer if it where a more mature product when we jumped in. Sometimes waiting a bit can be beneficial.
It is a good solution. We are happy with it. You should try it out. The development team is very happy with the performance. Biggest lesson learnt: Try new things, even if it wasn't your first choice. Always look for new things, and if they're good, then you should change.
I prefer OneView a lot to the Enterprise Manager on the c7000s. It is so much cleaner and a lot better. Keep in mind, because you can get a lot denser workloads, you're not going to just go, "Oh, I've X number of c7000 enclosures, or even DLs, so I'm going to get the same amount." You're going to get consolidation. You're going to get more one pane of management than what you did before. Therefore, figure out how to take advantage of that.
It is worth a good hard look. I like the options which are available for the different slots, as opposed to just straight blades. It provides a lot of flexibility, and if that's what you're looking for, then you will definitely like it. We really haven't had any issues, other than size. Everybody has been going that way anyhow, so that is nothing bad. It's been a powerful system and reliable, so far. Account for the size and make sure that you have the proper space in the rack, then everything else will be fine. The solution has affected our TCO by saving us in man-hours. As far as physical licensing, power, heat, and cooling, it is all pretty much the same.
I would recommend an HPE product because it is a good, stable product. Biggest lesson learnt: You should set up two in parallel. In case one goes down, you can fail everything over to the other one.
I would recommend the product. My team is very happy with the way the product is right now. It is an excellent product. We hadn't any issues with it.
Make sure you understand the whole solution. If you're used to doing things the old, manual way, make sure you understand what OneView does, and how it can automate and orchestrate bringing the platform up to speed, and then, what happens after that. If you do that, you'll easily see that it's a big time-saver and it's much easier to manage. The biggest lesson I learned from using this solution is that it is a lot simpler than what I thought it was going to be like, when we were going to deploy. I would rate Synergy as ten out ten because * it's easy to use * rock-solid * straightforward to deploy * easy to expand.
Give it a chance. Go in head-first and, as you go through the process, you'll see that the benefits start showing themselves. But you have to make sure you have good governing processes implemented before you get in there. The lessons we have learned from using this solution include the need to have an initial idea or knowledge of how the platform should work. We learned what kind of processes we needed to put in place to manage the environment before actually deploying. We depended on the reseller to do that. Those are some of the challenges that we have gone through. We haven't gotten too much into the hybrid cloud environment. Everything is still on-prem. However, we run discreet workloads. I think the hybrid cloud environment is the next evolution for us. Similarly, HPE’s Pointnext services will be in our next phase of implementation. I rate it at a nine out of ten. It completely changes the way we do business and there are a lot of opportunities. It especially decreases the time to market significantly.
Come on a training course. Find out what it can do for you. The biggest lesson I have learned from using this solution is that composability is the way to go. No one else can do it. It will be a great win for HPE when it works. It decreases deployment time, certainly, when it works. I can get an operating system or a hypervisor deployed within five minutes. Whereas prior, it might have taken me five hours to do the same job. It's quite significant. What we don't see are the 700 hours that we have to spend setting it up and getting past the bugs in the software to make it work. When it's working its fine. I don't tell customers this. However, it is marketed as a panacea and, with the appropriate work, it can be. I rate Synergy at five out of ten. Once they resolve the issues, it'll be great. The product is only two years old. In another year, another two years maybe, it'll be fantastic. It's just, the reality is, it's breaking new ground. No one else has this solution and there are issues with it. It's possible that much of the skill that was within HPE as a company, is no longer with the company. As a result of people moving away from the company, HPE is left with insufficient expertise, especially in the support area.
Look past the upfront, initial acquisition costs. A lot of your return on the investment is going to be in labor saved, as well as driving consistency and conformity in the environment. I rate Synergy at eight out of ten. Overall, we're pretty happy. There are minor things, like the InfoSight integration into OneView and some stability issues which are more attributed to Intel CPUs than the platform. We've been pretty happy with it. Since getting it set up, it's been very easy to manage and maintain.
It's a pretty good solution depending on what your use case for it is. If you're looking for a blade system, you're looking for density, and you're looking for something that's going to be easy for your guys to spin up and get going, have a look at Synergy. The biggest lesson we've learned from using this solution is to double-check the cables that your VAR orders for you, before the product arrives. Other than that, we've been happy with the product overall. It's one of those things where when it works, it works, and there are no complaints. I give Synergy a nine out of ten. It works really well. We've had good results with it. The only problem is, as I said, the storage module doesn't share across the frames.