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2019-11-13T05:28:00Z

What advice do you have for others considering Dell EMC PowerScale (Isilon)?

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If you were talking to someone whose organization is considering Dell EMC PowerScale (Isilon), what would you say?

How would you rate it and why? Any other tips or advice?

ITCS user
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88 Answers

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Top 20Real User

Networking can get a little confusing. The big thing is to make sure you carve out your VLANs to this particular system. Put a lot of thought into the network aspect of it. Don't just slap it into your server network. Carve out an isolated network for your storage subsystems and make sure they have high-speed paths back to wherever you're going to be accessing it from. Don't cheap out on that because this system scales out and scales up. If you start cheaping out on the network part of it, you're not going to be happy with your access to it. The biggest thing is to configure the networking right and give it the unabridged paths that it needs to realize the low-latency, scale-out aspect of the system itself. You can jam yourself up if you neglect the networking aspect of it. The A2000 system they have now, which we didn't even look into, is more of a non-active archival type system. They also have these hybrid systems where you would have staging areas where you could store on spinning disks and tier. Your storage becomes a tiered storage infrastructure where you have spinning and flash storage. You can put your high access, low latency stuff on your flash storage, and your archival, higher latency stuff, on the spinning disks of the hybrid nodes. We were looking at that, but we're not using this particular system as a low latency, production-type system. They also have the all-flash arrays, which is where you're getting massive amounts of throughput but it's just expensive, obviously, because it's flash. It's a lot more money. We weren't looking into that because we did not need speed. We were just looking for storage options. We have a different Dell EMC product that we use for our day-to-day, low latency, server-based storage. That's where our block storage is. Our file storage is what we use the PowerScale for. We didn't want to go to the all-flash array nodes. They're not cheap and we already had a solution in place for that. Overall, the hardware itself, and the OneFs file system, are the best selling points, combined with the delivery and the installation. That's why I continue to buy Dell EMC.

2020-12-30T06:29:00Z
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Top 5LeaderboardReal User

I would recommend going for this solution. PowerScale is already at the edge of the technology. If you give a look at what you find on the market today from the technology point of view, PowerScale hardware and software are at the top. 80 percent of our operations are brands, especially for HPC, but our organization is moving to the cloud from some services. We have discussed with Dell EMC their roadmap of the platform and are very interested in it. We hope we will be able to afford the new features that will come up, like the NVMe nodes. We have some projects using the S3 protocol, but not on PowerScale. They are on the old Isilon for HDFS. We use the CloudIQ feature to monitor performance and other data remotely. We have two platforms on the CloudIQ: PowerScale and PowerStore. We haven't use the platform yet so much that it has been useful. We have typically been users of InsightIQ software to monitor infrastructure. Now, we are using the CloudIQ, but do not much experience. We are not thinking about using it as an enterprise platform. However, we do see increasing our usage over time. I would rate this solution as a 10 out of 10.

2020-11-18T06:45:00Z
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Top 20Real User

We would highly recommend PowerScale. We've been very happy with our overall experience.

2020-11-01T09:42:00Z
author avatar
Top 20Real User

We have been really happy with it. It is one of the few areas in IT that we don't have a headache. We've liked everything that we have used so far with it. We have been very happy with the feature set that it has right now. It's definitely serving our needs. We have been using the solution since version 7. It fits our use case without us having to add new features on our side. I don't know that we have necessarily seen or needed very many of the features that they have added. We have the ability to grow or speed up our cluster easily by adding or replacing new nodes. That makes me pretty confident that if we have a significant change in our data, whether it's the number of crews that we have or number of client servers that we need to deploy, then I'm very confident that PowerScale can handle it.

2020-10-29T10:12:00Z
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Top 20Real User

Just don't underestimate how important a mature product is compared to something leading edge or new. PowerScale's positioned primarily to receive the call within that data centre. We have PowerScale heavily centralized, both in our IT department and on our campuses. We don't really have any storage from PowerScale in the cloud or our edge because we have very good network connectivity. In terms of the right tiers of storage, the level of flexibility that we have for adding different types of storage with different characteristics to our existing cluster now is the best it's ever been in the 13 years that we've managed it. Between CloudIQ and DataIQ, they're replacing their legacy InsightIQ product. We haven't moved to CloudIQ yet to start looking at it. Early on, since we have been using the solution for 13 years, if you added a new node type, then you would have to add three physical nodes to start a new pool and only end up with 66 percent utilisation on that storage pool. Whereas, in the Gen6 hardware, you can have more smaller nodes in one rackmount chassis. Now, you can add a new storage type and gain much better storage efficiency off the bat. The S3 protocol specifically comes in OneFS 9.0. We have a test cluster for it, which we are in the process of upgrading to have a look at their S3 support. However, I haven't used it yet. Typically, we use something like MinIO, which is an open source object gateway, and put that in front of the PowerScale cluster. On the archive side, we still have the A200 nodes. While you can go with the A2000s or go deeper than that, we can manage pretty much anything thrown our way by not going too extreme in our pools by positioning data effectively. I think it's very good. I would rate the solution as a nine out of 10.

2020-10-22T05:36:00Z
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Top 20Real User

Dell EMC keeps adding more features to the solution's OneFS operating system. The last addition was its CloudPools and that allows us to do backups to the public cloud for the data that we want to keep but don't even need on-prem anymore. It turned the system into a never-ending resource. We can now decide what we want to keep, long-term, without having to expand our storage system. PowerScale is one of those things that will grow in your environment. Once you start it with one thing, you'll learn that it can do much more, very quickly. That's a great thing about starting small with it, you can expand very quickly later on.

2020-10-20T04:19:00Z
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Top 5Reseller

We're a reseller of Isilon products. I'm not sure which version of the solution we are using. It's one of the version seven releases. Right now, we are researching moving from on-premise to cloud, and want to know whether there is something that is more convenient than Isilon when moving to a cloud server. For example, with EMC, if you have something on-premise, and if you want a cloud version, you should rather take ECS. The company finds the concept a bit confusing, so they are looking around for something that is similar in terms of ease of use, and yet has a cloud version as an option. As it stands now, I'd advise new users to rather use the Dell EMC service and learn on the job. It will be faster to get set up and be able to handle the solution. It's still a fairly good solution. Overall, I'd rate it eight out of ten.

2020-08-19T07:57:35Z
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Consultant

We use the on-premises deployment model. The solution is very good for file management, but not for other things. I'd rate the solution nine out of ten.

2019-11-13T05:28:00Z
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