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Pure Storage FlashArray vs VMware vSAN comparison

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Featured Review
Find out what your peers are saying about Pure Storage, NetApp, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and others in All-Flash Storage Arrays. Updated: January 2022.
564,322 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.""The high performance is very valuable, as well as the enterprise reliability features.""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."

More Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array Pros →

"Processes that used to take 40 minutes to two hours can be completed in five minutes.""The speed of the Pure FlashArray is very, very fast and nothing in the market can compare to it.""Support has been helpful.""The technical support is very good.""I like its speed. It has all the features that I need.""I like FlashArray's ActiveCluster as well as its snapshot and cloning capabilities.""FlashArray has many valuable features. It's very user-friendly and it has high availability, so there is comparatively less downtime. During maintenance, there is no shutdown procedure, so you can directly power off the Array and manage the shutdown process without any data loss, which is a unique feature. Managing replication and data migration is also very easy.""It's very fast and very easy to use. It performs well and is both flexible and compatible. We like it because it's easy to use."

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"The installation is very easy.""The solution is quite stable.""VMware vSAN is easy to configure, with basic functionality and the customer can maintain the solution.""It easily integrates with all types of storage.""Allows us to implement more quickly, and to ease the maintenance.""The feature that I have found most valuable is that it is easy to deploy. It is easy to create and delete virtual servers. It is easy to create the load balancing and the clustering.""I have found the solution to be scalable.""The scalability is very good and the solution is stable and reliable."

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Cons
"I would like to see the management layer improved.""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."

More Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array Cons →

"Beyond a certain amount of petabytes, you have to have a separate system. Basically, it's not infinitely scalable.""I like what they're doing, but some of my customers complain that they do not have all the bells and whistles and knobs to fine-tune workloads that some of the competitors have. In my opinion, that's good. All customers don't have dedicated storage gurus, and they can get themselves into trouble if they fine-tune too many of those high-performance knobs, but they do get knocked down. Pure Storage takes a hit in the minds and opinions of some of the customers because they cannot customize things as much as compared to a legacy storage provider's appliance such as NetApp, Dell EMC, or even HPE. I personally think 95% of my customers are better off letting the system fine-tune itself. That was something that you needed to do 12 or 15 years ago, but now with all-flash, the technology can handle what it needs to handle. Customers just end up shooting themselves in the foot if they are tweaking too many default settings.""Larger capacity and more storage ports would be the two things I'd like to see.""The price should be lower.""The system has dual controllers but does not have a high level of resiliency built-in.""Its price could be cheaper. It is not the cheapest one out there, but I'm not directly involved in the figures and negotiations.""This product has only two active controllers, whereas other solutions can have more. This is something that needs to improve.""CIFS and SMB Shares cannot be mounted directly."

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"They can package it in a way that is specific to the hardware infrastructure and the hardware platform. It should stay fairly up to date with the drivers and the manufacturer issues. The problem with uncoupling the proprietary technology and component capabilities is that by uncoupling them, you run into some concerns or challenges over the poor performance model. These concerns really come when you start talking about high performance, high bandwidth, and high availability types of environments. While vSAN is a leader, in a critical view, it is not about being cost-effective. It is more about the immediate impact of money loss to the business in critical applications where we want to maintain a continuous operational 59 model. It is, however, good for QA/QC tasks. I don't necessarily know how it works in regards to VDI or virtual desktop infrastructure.""More focus has to be put on deduplication and compression with a hybrid architecture.""A vSAN cluster must have compression and deduplication to be an all-flash array, but it's not supported with a hybrid array. Deduplication and compression work better with an all-flash array, so I think that VMware should give customers the option to activate and support this feature for hybrid arrays. Other products like Nutanix support this.""VMware vSAN could improve by having better integration with other vendors and the storage is limited, I prefer it to the traditional storage.""If one node out of your ten nodes fails, it takes a lot of time to replicate and rebalance VMware vSAN. This time can be reduced. When a node fails and the data is not accessible, vSAN has to be rebalanced to make the redundancy level of two again. However, if it is taking a lot of time and any other hardware fails during that time, then we have a problem. Two disk failures mean that all data will be lost, and we may have to recover it from the backup. So, the number of threads that run to do the rebalancing could be more so that the time taken to make it fully redundant again is not so much.""Because of virtual storage, the system reaches reserve storage for its functions. It also consumes a certain amount of storage, which then results in the creation of a fault tolerance for the system. All of this adds to a lot of capacity being consumed in terms of storage for each drive for vSan. I find this to be one drawback of using vSan.""In a future release, they can bring in the object storage capabilities to this solution. Currently, there is not any compatibility.""The solution functions as the marketing says, as long as you follow certain rules."

More VMware vSAN Cons →

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 →

  • "Its price is almost double than any other flash storage solution."
  • "The price, in general, is around $100,000, however, I know it costs more."
  • "They have a standardized fee; it's been the same price for 10 years straight. I am happy with the price — I think it's good."
  • "We do not incur additional costs beyond the licensing fee."
  • "My organization has a yearly license, but I believe that Pure Storage FlashArray has capacity-based licenses as well. I'm definitely happy with the pricing."
  • "There is an annual or perpetual license required for this solution."
  • "Pure is typically more expensive than everyone else. You get what you pay for, but I have lost deals to similar solutions because of pricing. They include everything, and that's another positive about Pure Storage. They aren't trying to nickel and dime their customers for different features. It is all included in one price. The license is by capacity, and the price depends on the capacity and the discount we're getting from the vendor. You get the SKU of the physical appliance, support, and maintenance, and that's it. You're licensed for whatever feature they offer. It is all rolled up into the price of the appliance."
  • "The pricing is reasonable."
  • More Pure Storage FlashArray Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "If they could reduce the cost, it would be better. Licensing costs are something that they could take care of. If you are a smaller and strong IT team, then VMware vSAN is a very good product. If you want to expand in the service provider space, then you will have to go for an open-source solution like OpenStack. We are now looking at OpenStack because we sell licensing costs. We are a service provider, so the IT component data is a substantial component in our overall costing. We feel that OpenStack might help us to cut down the licensing cost. Therefore, we are looking at SAS storage instead of vSAN. SAS is open source, but it is not wise to have open source without having the backend support. We are using RedHat SAS, and it is an open-source solution. You can also have a free version, but we are using it with support from RedHat so that we have somebody to back us up in case we have a problem. If you do normal business, then IT expense is 1% or 2% of the total turnover. The higher licensing costs sometimes don't make difference to the big companies who are not service providers and are using it only for their internal use. For them, the IT cost is 1% or 2%, but for an IT service provider, the IT costs will go up to 15% to 16% of the total cost of the operations. This is where the licensing costs become irrelevant. For example, the licensing cost of using VMware, VC, and vSAN is 8% of my monthly revenue. Every month, I pay about $35,000, and, with the revised plan, it will be something like $50,000 or revenue of 600k per month, which means almost 8% of the revenue is going into VMware licensing. In a very competitive world, 8% as a cost element is huge. So, if I can bring it down to 2%, I save 6% in revenue expenditure. In terms of profit, 6% of 30% is something like another 25% increase in my profit. My profit can be almost 25%. It would be 20% to 25% in case I am able to handle the licensing costs and bring them to a very low level. Because these IT costs are substantial for us, that is why we are going with OpenStack. OpenStack has a limitation that it requires more hardware. There will be some increase in the hardware cost, but overall we will save 5% to 6% of our licensing cost by using OpenStack."
  • "It is fairly cost-effective for entry to mid-level performance based on the underlying hardware components."
  • "The price is expensive."
  • "It is an expensive solution. There should be more flexible with licensing to allow small businesses the essentials of the solution's features."
  • "The price of vSAN could be lower."
  • "It is too expensive."
  • "It is expensive, but you get what you pay for."
  • "The price is okay."
  • More VMware vSAN 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: 
    Both are great platforms, but if you are considering all flash solutions, I would recommend you to consider Pure… more »
    Top Answer: 
    We've been using FlashArray's snapshot for backups. Their replication across sites and response time are also excellent… more »
    Top Answer: 
    I think that the pricing is less expensive compared to other standard products in the market today. Even the support… more »
    Top Answer: 
    While both run on the vSAN technology from VMware, vSAN needs to be deployed on vSAN ready nodes while VxRail is an… more »
    Top Answer: 
    We found the reduced power consumption with Nutanix Acropolis AOS a very attractive feature. We also like the interface… more »
    Top Answer: 
    HPE SimpliVity is a hyper-converged infrastructure solution that is primarily geared to mid-sized companies. We… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Pavilion HFA
    vSAN
    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

    Pure Storage FlashArray is the world’s first enterprise-class, all-NVMe flash storage array. It represents a new class of storage – shared accelerated storage, that delivers major breakthroughs in performance, simplicity, and consolidation. Pure Storage is fresh and modern today and will be for the next decade. Without forklift upgrades or planned downtime, Pure takes the work out of storage ownership and delivers unprecedented customer satisfaction.

    VMware vSAN is the industry-leading software powering Hyper-Converged Infrastructure solutions.

    What vSAN Does

    1. Enables you to evolve without risk. Seamlessly extend virtualization to storage with an integrated hyper-converged solution that simply works with your overall VMware environment and reduces the risk in digital transformation by using existing tools, skillsets and solutions.
    2. Lowers total cost of ownership by 50% or more with capital and operational savings. Reduce storage CapEx, decrease operational costs, manage the day-to-day operations of compute and storage infrastructure, and accelerate responsiveness to traditionally time-consuming tasks.
    3. vSAN helps customers scale to tomorrow. Prepare for tomorrow's dynamic business in the multi-cloud era with a solution designed to utilize the latest storage and server technologies and ready to support a wide range of applications, from current business critical applications to next-gen applications using containers.
    Offer
    Learn more about Pavilion HyperParallel Flash Array
    Learn more about Pure Storage FlashArray
    Learn more about VMware vSAN
    Sample Customers
    Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC), Statistics Netherlands (CBS)
    Nielsen, Lamar Advertising, LinkedIn, Betfair, UT-Dallas
    Read Some Case Studies At Home Cloud CaribCINgroupDiscovery Check out the Rest of our Customer Stories Here
    Top Industries
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company29%
    Comms Service Provider22%
    Government7%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm18%
    Healthcare Company13%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Government7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company26%
    Comms Service Provider18%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    Financial Services Firm6%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm13%
    Healthcare Company12%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    Retailer10%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company28%
    Comms Service Provider24%
    Government7%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    Company Size
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business72%
    Midsize Enterprise3%
    Large Enterprise26%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business27%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise56%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business17%
    Midsize Enterprise9%
    Large Enterprise74%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business30%
    Midsize Enterprise23%
    Large Enterprise47%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise67%
    Find out what your peers are saying about Pure Storage, NetApp, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and others in All-Flash Storage Arrays. Updated: January 2022.
    564,322 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Pure Storage FlashArray is ranked 1st in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 33 reviews while VMware vSAN is ranked 2nd in Hyper-Converged (HCI) with 65 reviews. Pure Storage FlashArray is rated 9.2, while VMware vSAN is rated 8.4. The top reviewer of Pure Storage FlashArray writes "Provides protection against ransomware threats with immutable snapshots, and it is well known for its scalability, ease of use, and non-disruptive upgrades". On the other hand, the top reviewer of VMware vSAN writes "Gives us a lot of advantages when we need to expand resources". Pure Storage FlashArray is most compared with NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS), Dell EMC PowerStore, Dell EMC Unity XT, HPE Nimble Storage and Pure Storage FlashBlade, whereas VMware vSAN is most compared with VxRail, Nutanix Acropolis AOS, Microsoft Storage Spaces Direct, HPE SimpliVity and Red Hat Gluster Storage.

    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.