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IBM FlashSystem Room for Improvement

Head of IT Infrastructure at a insurance company with 501-1,000 employees

This product lacks some of the options we wanted. For example, expansion was difficult and it required a lot of patching to be done. It's not a seamless process because you need to do multiple modifications or alterations. There is a lot of effort required by the customer in order to expand the hardware.

Further expansion of our model is not feasible. As new models are released, expansion becomes difficult and you have to switch to a new model when you want to upgrade. This means that you have to migrate data between models. We want something where you can use for at least five years, where you can expand the hardware without the inconvenience of changing models. Ideally, the operating system and other applications would not be affected when expanding.

It would be helpful if the solution had built-in safeguards against security threats and malware, such as ransomware. Anything that can be utilized to enhance data integrity would be helpful. 

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Infrastructure Architect Supervisor; Solution Delivery Supervisor at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees

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.

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Director Technical at a tech services company with 11-50 employees

There is always room for improvement, but IBM is less interested in on-premise storage or on-premises solutions going forward. 

They're highly focused on the cloud. I don't see IBM being a very major player, the way that they used to be because they are moving away from this and are trying to move all their customers to the cloud.

Nothing really comes to mind for needing improvement. Some years ago, there would have been an answer to what could be better about this product, but nowadays, virtually all of the companies are meeting all of the features.

More and more, we would like to see how it's easier for the solutions to be bought by the customer more on a pay-per-use basis. That is certainly an improvement.

The customer's expectations are what they get on the cloud, they're expecting even in the on-premises deployments, going forward. 

They want to pay-per-use and not own and get stuck with what they're buying. 

They want flexibility.

IBM does that in a few products, but then more and more you see the business model changing towards that. We'd like to see that in all IBM products.

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Learn what your peers think about IBM FlashSystem. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2022.
563,327 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Infrastructure Solutions Architect at areebah

The pricing could be improved, but I think it's getting better and better with each version. 

IBM needs to implement NAS storage again, as this is a big flaw. Dell EMC is very good at this and if you compared them based on NAS storage, Dell EMC would win right away. IBM's solution for NAS storage is very complicated. We don't have a storage box that provides file sharing from itself, we have to put software on it and go through a whole complicated process. It should be simplified. 

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Storage Manager at a financial services firm with 10,001+ employees

They can improve its initial configuration. The initial configuration is currently very difficult. There are multiple choices or alternative ways to configure based on the use case and what you are targeting out of the device, that is, more capacity or more performance. These multiple alternatives cause a lot of confusion.

They should increase the processing part of the nodes. Currently, you can cluster up to eight nodes. From my experience and the workload that I am facing in my environment currently, I would like to see either a bigger or stronger node or a larger number of nodes that can be clustered together. We formally communicated to them that we need to see either this or that, and they are working on something.

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BT Area Champion/Trainer at a financial services firm with 5,001-10,000 employees

Recently, we deployed SS9100. At the core level that is deployed on that storage, it is not stable. We had an incident not too long ago. Both controllers rebooted simultaneously, within 15 seconds. There was some threshold value defined in the core level, and the system exceeded that threshold value. 

We logged the case to IBM. IBM did internal checks, which we deployed. The permanent fix will be available in the first quarter of 2021. It seems to be an issue on IBM's side. Obviously, we were surprised by how both controllers rebooted. We faced downtime on our applications and on our services. 

The issue which we had recently faced relates to the core level. It should be first tested at IBM labs and then introduced for general release.

IBM should improve its data reduction development.

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Network and System Administrator at TWD Technologies Ltd.

We need to spend more time with the solution in order to detect any shortcomings. So far, we haven't really seen any.

The design is a little old-fashioned and could be updated. The rack is very primitive and designed in an older style. 

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Deputy Chief Technology Officer at a comms service provider with 51-200 employees

The stability of the solution isn't great. We have had a lot of issues with discs over the years.

There should be better integration with utilization platforms.

The pricing needs to be more competitive.

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VP - Head Enterprise IT Infrastructure at MIB

When you add more flash drives or more NVMe, that is the bottleneck or shortcoming with this type of storage. When you fill the first enclosure, you won't be able to add more NVMe until you add more SAS drives.

The security features can be improved such that the encryption does not affect performance in any way.

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Senior System Administrator at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees

It could be easier to implement.

This is an expensive product and if the price were reduced it would be better.

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Deputy director at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees

The GUI for monitoring performance metrics could provide better visibility. For example, it doesn't let me segregate the IOPS per volume.

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Senior Systems Engineer at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees

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.

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Technology Supervisor at a media company with 1,001-5,000 employees

The solution is quite expensive. That's one of the downsides to using it. 

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Storage Administrator at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees

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. There are also some issues with updates when you have different versions installed, which makes it quite difficult for the administrator to choose which version to install.

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Head, Internal Audit at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees

We had issues when attempting to do a flash, we hope to resolve it soon.

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Technical Manager at a manufacturing company with 11-50 employees

The solution is not easy to use and could improve.

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Technical Support Manager at a computer software company with 1,001-5,000 employees

The price is very costly, which could be improved. In the next release, I would like to see some integration with VMware so that storage can be managed directly from a single pane.

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NDT - TECHNICIAN at a paper AND forest products with 1,001-5,000 employees

We use some open-source tools for monitoring, such as Grafana and it should be bundled along with IBM FlashSystem.

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Hybrid IT Enterprise Executive at a tech services company with 11-50 employees

Cloud file sharing is an area that needs improvement.

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Storage Consultant at E-Storage

The Data Reduction Pools (DRP) support could be better.

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System Administrator at a tech services company with 11-50 employees

The data reduction pool feature sucks and is not recommended for use with heavy workloads. I also understand that the APIs don't work well and need improvement. In the next release, I would like to see a better monitoring system for metrics.

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Supervisor Systems / Storage Administrators at a university with 1,001-5,000 employees

Sometimes the performance is effective but it gets resolved in the process.

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Learn what your peers think about IBM FlashSystem. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2022.
563,327 professionals have used our research since 2012.