Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series vs FlexPod comparison

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Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series and FlexPod based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out what your peers are saying about Nutanix, Dell Technologies, VMware and others in HCI.
To learn more, read our detailed HCI Report (Updated: January 2023).
672,785 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"We went from "no way DB applications would have good performance" to "Wow! We can now actually have a DB running and have some VMs running at the same time."""The main benefit is that StarWind is almost maintenance-free.""The product has improved the ability to mimic physical SAN environments to demo scenarios and troubleshoot problems.""The top-notch support before, during, and after deployments are better than any other vendor I have come across.""It includes every feature that a traditional SAN offers and so much more.""In the three years that we have been using StarWind, the product has yet to cause us any problems.""This product now allows us to migrate virtual machines between nodes as if we had a dedicated $100,000 SAN in the mix without the additional cost and management of the SAN.""It has allowed us to save a lot of time and money by letting us create a vSAN within a Windows VM on the environment it controls."

More StarWind Virtual SAN Pros →

"It is very scalable. It is also very secure. Cisco's security portfolio is integrated with it, which makes it secure. It is a platform-based device. Its performance is also fairly good in comparison to any other solution.""The scalability of the product is quite good overall - as long as you plan correctly from the outset.""The technical support has been very good for this solution.""The implementation process is okay.""With our four HyperFlex HX hosts (consisting of processor, memory, and disk), the performance is very fast and we have no problems at all. In all of the five years that we have been using HyperFlex, we haven't needed to increase our budget to buy additional hosts.""Cisco offers very good quality.""Stretch cluster allows us to warranty a service for the customer.""It's very easy to integrate with the ACI network."

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"FlexPod’s prevalidated architectures are very important to our organization... Especially in healthcare, it is absolutely critical that we have a validated performance platform. It has to work every time.""The solution’s validated designs for major enterprise apps are also extremely important in our organization. We don't always have time to research products and solutions ourselves. By going with a validated design, we're assured that it's the latest and greatest. It's supported by the three major vendors that we deal with.""The flexibility, operational efficiency, and scalability of FlexPod has been a huge factor for us because our customers have workloads that need to run on classical HTTPs, flash storage, or possibly in the cloud. This flexibility and enhanced ability of the solution is very important for this. We trust in it.""The feature I have found most valuable is data protection.""The most significant benefit is storage flexibility. FlexPod is a reference design to build on and add the appropriate resources you need for your workloads. That's what differentiates it from something like HCI, where you have to buy certain size pieces when you want to expand.""FlexPod has reduced our overall TCO and simplified our operations.""Integration is most valuable. This is a reference architecture. So, we don't have to design something from scratch and figure out how it is going to work.""It reduced the total cost of ownership."

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Cons
"It would be nice to see a new UI for the windows client, as it is not the easiest to find settings.""Though I have learned some of the nuances with the upgrading of firmware/windows/etc., it would be nice to have a more efficient method of doing so.""Other vendors such as VMware vSAN have a bigger community of users, so it is easier to find more pre-sale or post-sale information from users.""The most disappointing side of the application is the free edition. There used to be GUI attached. That has recently changed to only CLI management of the application.""If there was one thing we could request, it would be the ability to shrink volumes. For example, we want to be able to decrease in the size of the volume.""The documentation could be clearer in terms of explaining the installation.""I had issues locating the documentation that applied to my version of StarWind vSAN.""Diagnostics information or alerts on the state of systems could also be implemented to give more visibility."

More StarWind Virtual SAN Cons →

"Deployment on-prem was quite difficult.""Cisco HyperFlex should decrease the amount of memory needed from the Controller VM that controls the physical discs. They control the discs by using the virtual VM over every ESXi host and the VM consumes memory and consumes more hardware resources. They have to improve that by decreasing the amount of required memory and CPUs to control this disc on the server.""I have been receiving a memory overflow message every day when I use the solution.""The initial setup can be a bit complex.""When it comes to customer needs, the licensing price could be better.""If we compare it with VMware, the VMware product is basically very open, and it can be easily integrated with any platform. VMware product is also available on the cloud and is not an appliance-based product, whereas Cisco HyperFlex is an appliance-based product. Companies that want to use HCI as a platform or as a service would prefer something without an appliance. A SaaS-based product is better for a customer who is using the cloud and has multiple resources, workflows, and devices on the cloud and wants to go for a hyper-converged solution. This is where improvement is needed. In addition to an appliance-based product, Cisco should provide a SaaS-based product. Its price should be lower. Cisco needs to work on the pricing model for this product. Its price is a big road blocker when competing against Nutanix and VMware, which are its main competitors.""This solution is lacking in replication and backup abilities that I would like to see in a future release similar to HPE SimpliVity.""One of the biggest problems with HyperFlex HX is that if you want to adjust your solution in terms of processing power, memory, or disk capacity, you have to buy completely new hosts. From a financial perspective, it can be very expensive to do so, and from a legal perspective, there are all kinds of compliance issues we would have to sort out before buying any new solution or application."

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"The solution could be improved by including automation for user updates.""I'd like them to bring back the GUI for NetApp ONTAP. They changed the interface in version 9.8, and it's not great. In 9.9 they've tried to bring it back a little bit, but it's still not great.""With the UCS X-Series, I would like to see the fabric interconnects in the chassis. Instead of hanging out so the chassis is 7U, you are increasing your footprint to 9U with the fabric enhancer, where some of the competing solutions are 7U and have collapsed that network fabric into the chassis. This is another thing that I would like to see from Cisco, though not really on the NetApp side since that is pretty solid.""They just announced that they are going to move it along with Intersight from Cisco. That can be a private or public cloud, which is one of the areas where it can grow more and has a lot of potential.""They need to improve the user interface to make it easier to work in this environment. The older version is poor.""Since 2018 or 2019, maybe due to COVID and the chipsets, my DIMMs are dying left and right.""Support could be more integrated. For example, you might call NetApp, and they'll determine that VMware is the issue. It would be helpful if they could automatically engage VMware and bring them onto the same call to transfer ticket information and work together.""I would like to see increased performance."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "I think the cost of this solution is quite fair."
  • "The StarWind VSAN business model is very cost-effective."
  • "This solution has competitive prices and the implementation is very easy."
  • "StarWind is a low-cost, full-featured alternative to the traditional SAN environment, and their support will guide you every step of the setup."
  • "The support contract is well worth it. The price for it was very reasonable and their team has been very engaged whenever we reach out."
  • "This solution is very accessible and the pro-level for support is well worth the cost."
  • "We found that the pricing was perfect; simple and clear."
  • "For two nodes, it cost us $10,000, and we spend $2,000 a year on support."
  • More StarWind Virtual SAN Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "Its price is high. Cisco needs to work on the pricing model for this product. Nutanix or VMware are cheaper products, and they provide almost the same functionality. Its price is a big road blocker when we are working with an end customer, and Nutanix and VMware are in competition. If they can reduce its price, it is actually a better choice for customers."
  • "We are on an annual subscription and the price is fair."
  • "The licensing is perpetual and the only thing that you may need to pay for on a monthly basis is if you're going to use their cloud-based management features."
  • "HyperFlex is a little pricey."
  • "There is a license required to use this solution."
  • "There is no additional licensing cost other than the cost for each part."
  • "HyperFlex is relatively expensive, but you get good value for money."
  • "There is a 30 percent additional premium that all the companies are charging for Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series because of the lack of chips and bottlenecks in the market. The cost of the solution is high right now."
  • More Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "It's expensive, but when you pay for enterprise support and enterprise products, you have to pay the big bucks."
  • "In terms of the cost, the last bill I saw was about $3.5 million, from the latest contract. That might have been for a five-year contract."
  • "The pricing and licensing are quite expensive. However, compared to other solutions, it is okay."
  • "Licensing can be interesting with the new version because of the Intersight integration. I don't know what that looks like yet. I have seen some of the different licensing models, but with the new purchasing, all customers are going to have to buy some sort of Intersight licensing with the Blades or FlexPod. I am curious to see how that option shakes out. Previous to the UCS X-Series, the licensing was the same."
  • "Pricing is always tough. We need to get to a point where the customer's happy. Then, as partners, we are also happy."
  • "Overall, the solution works pretty well. The biggest complaint I have from customers is the cost."
  • "We definitely saw a lot of operational cost savings using FlexPod. As far as capital outlay goes, that was a little bit too much for us to swallow and we weren't able to recognize enough savings in that area to afford it."
  • More FlexPod Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:The most valuable features are high availability and real-time replication between two servers.
    Top Answer:The StarWind Management Console is available only for Microsoft Windows/Windows Server, and should also be available for… more »
    Top Answer: Cisco HyperFlex HS series vs Nutanix Acropolis AOS Cisco HyperFlex gives extended hyper-convergence functions… more »
    Top Answer:VxRail provides stable solutions for technical problems while at the same time not being too expensive for a company to… more »
    Top Answer:When we negotiated with Cisco for the HyperFlex solution, they gave us a good price because they wanted to break into… more »
    Top Answer:The storage efficiency and performance are valuable.
    Top Answer:Licensing can be interesting with the UCS refresh because of Intersight integration (IMM) and SaaS, connected virtual… more »
    Top Answer:The solution could be improved by including automation for user updates.
    Comparisons
    Learn More
    Overview

    For SMB, ROBO, Cloud and Hosting providers, who look to cut down virtualization expenses, our solution is StarWind VSAN. It is software that eliminates any need in physical shared storage by basically “mirroring” internal hard disks and flash between hypervisor servers. There is less hardware to buy in general, consequently less money is spent on purchase and maintenance. The existing hardware is used with maximum efficiency, so there is no money wasted at all.

    StarWind Virtual SAN targets those who already have servers, or are bound to a particular vendor list to buy from. In case there is a new virtualization infrastructure to be built from scratch, StarWind offers a much better way – StarWind HyperConverged Appliance. It is a turnkey solution complete with hardware and software, powered by StarWind Virtual SAN. Those who need to build and maintain virtualization infrastructure at little to no expense, may be interested in StarWind Virtual SAN Free.

    The Cisco HyperFlex HX Data Platform is a purpose-built, high-performance, scale-out file system with a wide array of enterprise-class data management services. The data platform’s innovations redefine distributed storage technology, giving you complete hyper-convergence with enterprise storage features:

    • Enterprise-class data management
    • Continuous data optimization
    • Securely encrypted storage
    • Dynamic data placement
    • Clusterwide parallel data distribution
    • Linear and incremental scaling
    • API-based data platform architecture
    • A simplified approach

    The FlexPod platform, developed by NetApp and Cisco, is a flexible, converged infrastructure solution that delivers prevalidated storage, networking, and server technologies. It’s designed to increase IT responsiveness to business demands while reducing your overall cost of computing. Think maximum uptime, minimal risk.

    Offer
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    Try it today

    Learn more about Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series
    Learn more about FlexPod
    Sample Customers
    Baker Tilly BVI, CMS Internet, Board Harpeth Hall School
    BluePearl Veterinary Partners, Ready Pac Foods, Bryant University, Bellevue Group, KPIT Technologies, City Harvest
    University of Sao Paulo, WD-40, The Commonwell Mutual Insurance Group
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Manufacturing Company11%
    Educational Organization10%
    Construction Company9%
    Computer Software Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company19%
    Government9%
    Comms Service Provider8%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Manufacturing Company13%
    Government11%
    Computer Software Company11%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider19%
    Government8%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm14%
    Comms Service Provider10%
    Energy/Utilities Company9%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company23%
    Comms Service Provider12%
    Manufacturing Company10%
    Government8%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business62%
    Midsize Enterprise22%
    Large Enterprise16%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business26%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise58%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business23%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise60%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise62%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business11%
    Midsize Enterprise23%
    Large Enterprise66%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business17%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise70%
    Buyer's Guide
    HCI
    January 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about Nutanix, Dell Technologies, VMware and others in HCI. Updated: January 2023.
    672,785 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series is ranked 8th in HCI with 30 reviews while FlexPod is ranked 1st in Converged Infrastructure with 15 reviews. Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series is rated 7.8, while FlexPod is rated 8.6. The top reviewer of Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series writes "High performance solution that makes it easy to efficiently manage VM resources". On the other hand, the top reviewer of FlexPod writes "Integrates everything so you are using fewer tools". Cisco HyperFlex HX-Series is most compared with VxRail, VMware vSAN, Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI), HPE SimpliVity and Dell vSAN Ready Nodes, whereas FlexPod is most compared with Dell VxBlock System, Dell PowerFlex, Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI), Dell PowerEdge VRTX and VxRail.

    We monitor all HCI 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.