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Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe vs IBM FlashSystem comparison

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Featured Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe vs. IBM FlashSystem and other solutions. Updated: January 2022.
563,327 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"There's lots of flexibility in how we use the resources while also maintaining a small footprint.""We have been able to consolidate storage into Pavilion. Pavilions are our only SANs because it is a bring your own disk solution. When new drives come out, we are able to take out half of the drives in the system, put in new drives, move our VMs over to the new drives, take the other drives out, and populate those with new drives. Then, we are suddenly twice as dense as we were before. NVMe flash is only going to get denser and cheaper so we can make use of that every couple of years by just throwing newer disks into it at a fraction of the cost of a new SAN.""The high performance is very valuable, as well as the enterprise reliability features."

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"The solution's snapshot capabilities and replication are very good features. Snapshots are allowing us to quickly build analytical models directly from production data. This gives us amazing insights into market trends and allows us to build more effective trading algorithms. Replication offers us unparalleled levels of resilience.""Technical support has been excellent.""They're basically tanks. You could take a baseball bat to the thing, and it's still going to keep running and doing what it's supposed to do. We've had a couple of part failures, and you can pretty much replace any part on that thing at any time during the day in the middle of production without worrying about anything happening.""The SRDF site-to-site replication for the volumes is the most important feature for us. That enables us to do site recovery and replication for our VMware infrastructure.""We removed the need to observe whether we ran into issues with the performance of disks or number of IOPS. Previously, our Oracle Database would throw us performance errors. Now, with PowerMax, everything runs smoothly.""We find the service level option to provision storage very valuable. The ability to define different service levels for storage groups helps us in prioritizing our workload at the infrastructure level.""The optimization of the cache memory of each engine and the use of persistent memory.""The UI is very easy to use. We can add volumes and manage them easily."

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"No queuing and high ops, speed, and performance.""IBM FlashSystem is flexible, quick, and has a solid design.""The performance is very good and we use this product to enhance our core system.""Installing FlashSystem is very easy. It takes less than half an hour, and I can handle it all myself.""One of the most valuable features is that it's very easy to use and configure. It used to be more difficult, but now it's almost flawless.""The performance of IBM FlashSystem is very good. The new technology and high throughput have given us more confidence in the solution. The management of the system has improved and we can control the monitoring system alerts and multiple FlashSystems with the Enterprise Cloud Edition, which is free. The migration of recently stored data to a new flash is much easier. You can move your data because you can utilize it externally.""The most valuable features are flexibility and performance.""IBM FlashSystem has been stable in our operations."

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Cons
"In our current configuration, we can only run the line controllers in high availability, active-standby mode, whereas we would like to see active-active implemented.""The rail system that Pavilion uses to mount up into a standard Dell or APC cabinet extends further back than normal rails, and they cover up the zero PDU slot. So, I don't like the rail system that comes with the device. That is my biggest complaint.""I would like to see the management layer improved."

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"I would like to see more development in the cloud environment. It would be good if it comes in the cloud kind of setup.""If the solution had more power-saving capabilities, it would be quite nice.""I think management is where PowerMax is weakest. We're still managing it like we managed EMC arrays in the early 2000s. There's a slicker, fancier GUI that does more things, but at the end of the day, you still have to dig into the command line and issue a lot of the same commands that we still were using almost 20 years ago.""PowerMax Storage needs improvement in the area of monitoring tools. It should have more functions and more complicated analysis options inside the monitoring tools.""They can make the GUI better, especially for the ones that come out of the box. We did encounter a bit of difficulty in setting up the storage. We had to deploy Solutions Enabler on a Linux machine to be able to fully interact with the storage. They need to upgrade the web interface for the management of the storage that comes out of the box. The management interface for NFS is also a bit old and not very intuitive.""The main feature that I personally want to see is the possibility to upgrade to the next generation without changing all the components and just change the engine, relying on the compatibility matrices between two different generations. Meaning that we could just keep the enclosure and upgrade the engine, integrating the enclosure to the existing pool, then adding automation tools for orchestration.""Although they call it unified storage where you have SAN and NAS, with a NAS implementation on top of a SAN, the NAS implementation is a little complicated and clumsy. As SAN, as block storage, it is very powerful... If they could provide a very good NAS implementation, it would be better, so that customers don't have to look for other simple solutions for NAS.""Support of the product can be slow and an administrative challenge: planning, scheduling, and overseeing data center access for a Dell EMC rep. One improvement could be to enable a self-maintenance option. The requirements that we go through to get Dell EMC onsite to replace failed drives, power supplies, and other small redundant parts can be unnecessarily complex. If simplified, they could send us the parts, then we could replace them much faster, more easily, and truly within the SLA parameters."

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"The design is a little old-fashioned and could be updated. The rack is very primitive and designed in an older style.""The pricing needs to be more competitive.""A big area for improvement is that the data reduction pool feature is not recommended for use in a production environment because it has stability and performance issues.""Their technical support needs improvement in terms of reachability for the clients and response times. They should be more responsive and have more online platforms for support. They should make more technical information available online. There could be some kind of documentation community.""They can include Amazon file system S3 protocol in the upcoming releases. It is a cloud file system. IBM FlashSystem doesn't have this feature in the box for high-end or mid-range. We have got requests for this from customers because we need to use S3 for EDI application storage. At the beginning of every year, IBM releases firmware. When I find any bugs in the firmware during the year, I am unable to find any information from IBM regarding the bug. I need to open a ticket, and the IBM engineering team makes a patch only for me. This patch is not public. By creating a customized patch for a client, they don't really solve the issue for everyone. If multiple users have the same bug, IBM should upload the patch on the official website so that we can download it. IBM FlashSystem has a monitoring tool in the box, but it is not advanced. I need a more advanced tool for more advanced equations and monitoring. All top three storage vendors, that is, EMC, IBM, and Pure Storage, don't have a powerful monitoring tool. To monitor our box to show the statistics for I/Os and latency, I need to pay for extra software. The built-in monitoring storage is not mature enough to handle all requests and generate all reports that I need. They can include the functionality to stretch a cluster natively without using any additional boxes. In addition, there are some features that EMC has integrated with the box. These features are not available in IBM FlashSystem.""The technical support in my region is satisfactory but it could improve. Support is very important for customers and downtime is very critical for us. We would like onsite or complete technical support which can help us to minimize our downtime or if problems occur.""The customer's expectations are what they get on the cloud, they're expecting even in the on-premises deployments, going forward.""The security features can be improved such that the encryption does not affect performance in any way."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "This is hardware. They have a singular array that you can populate with your own disk, or you can buy the disks through them. For controllers, you pay for the components inside of the SAN, but there is only one chassis that they work with."
  • "The licensing fees are very reasonable."
  • More Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "We hope that with the combination of both NVMe and SCM the next PowerMax will be much cheaper that the one which we acquired."
  • "Negotiate hard and consider the commercial advantages/benefits to Dell EMC for onboarding your product."
  • "One area for improvement, one that everybody always comes to, is price... it's still quite expensive to purchase these big arrays... For us, the pricing doesn't make Dell EMC uncompetitive."
  • "In terms of price-performance, it beat out other competitors when we were taking a look and comparing it to the market. That was one of the biggest driving points for us."
  • "The labor savings and support have been significant. If we're talking 100 hours of labor every three months, that is 100 hours of a database engineer costs. There are performance latency numbers as well as costs associated with recovering data that gets lost, and this system doesn't lose data. You can look at numbers that go around the cost of downtime, if data is not available. This system doesn't go down. Everyone's ROI is going to be unique, but the dependability and performance of the system combined with its ease of operation will definitely save businesses of all sizes money."
  • "Its price is competitive, but they need to have a different price for West Africa. They can do better with the price point to allow us to scale even more. We wanted to migrate our entire storage infrastructure to PowerMax, which would require us to buy more capacity, and from the price point, it didn't attract us."
  • "The PowerMax appliance pricing was reasonable. Dell EMC quoted us a substantial discount."
  • "Support pricing is very high. Our support contract is about to expire and Dell EMC provided us with an extremely high renewal quote. It was four times more than the support contract for our previous EMC VNX solution."
  • More Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The integration is already included in the license cost of IBM FlashSystem. The integration is very easy. You get the IBM storage core with all software, firmware, and upgrades. EMC provides the features in the box, but they are not free for customers. There is a licensing cost for features. We have yearly licensing, but IBM has also provided a new option where you pay as you go. They provide a big box, and I pay, for example, for 10 terabytes. If I exceed 10 terabytes, IBM will charge for the new storage after 10 terabytes. It is a good opportunity in the market for using the storage as a cloud and paying as you go."
  • "They've been much more aggressive in the last five, six years than they were before that."
  • "This is an expensive product and if the price were reduced it would be better."
  • "Among IBM, Dell EMC, and Pure Storage, IBM is the cheapest. The price is also based on our location, the size of our entity, and our regular annual purchases from them. We are a very big IBM customer, so we normally get very high discounts. We are not a big customer of Pure Storage. We don't buy that much from Pure Storage per year. Everything is included in the price. There is no extra license for different functions."
  • "Its price is very good."
  • "I find the pricing of the solution to be very reasonable."
  • "You purchase it as a bundle and the price is comparable."
  • "The solution requires a license and could be less expensive."
  • More IBM FlashSystem Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer: 
    We have been able to consolidate storage into Pavilion. Pavilions are our only SANs because it is a bring your own disk… more »
    Top Answer: 
    This is hardware. They have a singular array that you can populate with your own disk, or you can buy the disks through… more »
    Top Answer: 
    The rail system that Pavilion uses to mount up into a standard Dell or APC cabinet extends further back than normal… more »
    Top Answer: 
    Dell PowerStore is an all-solid-state midrange storage system. It has many internal elements taken from other Dell… more »
    Top Answer: 
    They're basically tanks. You could take a baseball bat to the thing, and it's still going to keep running and doing what… more »
    Top Answer: 
    Its price is competitive, but they need to have a different price for West Africa. They can do better with the price… more »
    Top Answer: 
    As with any engineered solution, it depends on your needs.   However, the bottom line is that for their target markets… more »
    Top Answer: 
    The  V5200 model, released in 2021, is an outstanding system.  In just 1U rack space you get amazing performance at a… more »
    Top Answer: 
    The pricing may be a bit higher than other brands. If you compare the IBM FlashSystems in midrange with Dell EMC in… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Pavilion HFA
    Dell EMC PowerMax, PowerMax
    IBM Storwize
    Learn More
    Overview

    Pavilion HyperParallel Data Platform

    The Pavilion HyperParallel Data Platform™ dramatically accelerates what organizations achieve by delivering universally unmatched storage performance, in an incredibly compact solution while reducing data center costs and complexity. Unrivaled flexibility for multiple data types and protocols, along with broad ecosystem integration, ensure that every customer has choice and control.

    What is the Pavilion HyperParallel Data Platform

    The Pavilion HyperParallel Data Platform is comprised of the Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array™ and Pavilion HyperOS™. The Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array leverages a unique, switch-based architecture to create a multi-controller solution that delivers an unmatched combination of high performance, ultra-low latency, and storage density. Pavilion HyperOS is a powerful, purpose-built storage operating system designed to unlock the power of the multi-controller Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array, which delivers scalability and flexibility that no other solution can offer.

    Pavilion HyperParallel Data Platform Data Sheet

    Download the Pavilion HyperParallel Data Platform data sheet. Updated: December 2020

    Dell EMC PowerMax is the world’s fastest storage array. It delivers new levels of performance and efficiency with a future-proof architecture that features end-to-end non-volatile memory express (NVMe) and a built-in machine learning engine. PowerMax is built on the comprehensive functionality and proven resiliency of Dell EMC’s flagship storage platform. It is designed for six-nines of availability and offers data-at-rest encryption (D@RE), massive scalability, and best-in-class data protection with Symmetrix Remote Data Facility (SRDF), the gold standard in remote replication.

    IBM FlashSystem products are enterprise computer data storage systems that store data on flash memory chips. Unlike storage systems that use standard solid-state drives, IBM FlashSystem products incorporate custom hardware based on technology from the 2012 acquisition of Texas Memory Systems. This hardware provides performance, reliability, and efficiency benefits versus competitive offerings.

    Offer
    Learn more about Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array
    Learn more about Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe
    Learn more about IBM FlashSystem
    Sample Customers
    Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC), Statistics Netherlands (CBS)
    Rackspace, Open Line
    Celero, Friedhelm Loh Group, Clarks, Mingkang Natregro Health Food Group, Sofia, Etisalat Fights Fraud, UF Health Shands Hospital, Generali, Elecon Engineering Company Limited, Ventiv , Technology, CPFL Energia, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., SciQuest, Coca-Cola Bottling Co. Consolidated, Paddy Power, Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, Interconnect Services, Severstal IP-Only AB, PVU Group GmbH
    Top Industries
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company29%
    Comms Service Provider22%
    Government7%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm25%
    Healthcare Company22%
    Retailer11%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company32%
    Comms Service Provider19%
    Financial Services Firm8%
    Government6%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm30%
    Government11%
    Healthcare Company9%
    Comms Service Provider9%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company29%
    Comms Service Provider28%
    Financial Services Firm6%
    Government5%
    Company Size
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business72%
    Midsize Enterprise3%
    Large Enterprise26%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business6%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise74%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business15%
    Midsize Enterprise8%
    Large Enterprise77%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business34%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise51%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business22%
    Midsize Enterprise21%
    Large Enterprise57%
    Find out what your peers are saying about Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe vs. IBM FlashSystem and other solutions. Updated: January 2022.
    563,327 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe is ranked 4th in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 16 reviews while IBM FlashSystem is ranked 7th in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 27 reviews. Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe is rated 9.0, while IBM FlashSystem is rated 8.4. The top reviewer of Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe writes "CloudIQ ensures that all our arrays are properly communicating so we can see performance and storage capacities". On the other hand, the top reviewer of IBM FlashSystem writes "Good performance, energy efficient with a small form factor, helpful support". Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe is most compared with Dell EMC PowerStore, Dell EMC Unity XT, Pure Storage FlashArray, Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform F Series and Dell EMC XtremIO, whereas IBM FlashSystem is most compared with Pure Storage FlashArray, Dell EMC PowerStore, Dell EMC Unity XT, HPE Nimble Storage and Dell EMC SC Series. See our Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe vs. IBM FlashSystem report.

    See our list of best All-Flash Storage Arrays vendors.

    We monitor all All-Flash Storage Arrays reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.