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Dell PowerMax NVMe vs NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) comparison

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Dell PowerMax NVMe vs. NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
May 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about Dell PowerMax NVMe vs. NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) and other solutions. Updated: May 2022.
609,272 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
"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.""There's lots of flexibility in how we use the resources while also maintaining a small footprint."

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"You can use PowerMax for all workloads and consolidation. We have used it to scale thousands of VMs.""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 like the compression, dedupe, and I/O on the PowerMax. They are better than on the XtremIO.""The UI is very easy to use. We can add volumes and manage them easily.""The performance is very good. Our predominant workloads are all less than 5 milliseconds and it's most common to have a sub-1-millisecond response time for our applications. In terms of efficiency, we've turned on compression and we're able to get as high as two-to-one compression on our workloads, on average.""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.""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 compression and deduplication are always on. We get more than 4:1 capacity savings using them. The efficiency benefits from compression and deduplication are through a specialized hardware module within the storage itself, and that means there is no overhead to the compression and dedupe."

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"The most valuable features are the performance and the storage efficiency, due to the compression and deduplication... The efficiency is very important because we can buy fewer disks for more data.""Technical support is good.""The performance is outstanding when it's all Flash. That's the biggest bang for the buck that we get.""The speed of data retrieval is the most valuable feature. We mostly use it for our SAP database and we are getting good IO from the hard drive.""Other manufacturers claim simplicity. In fact, frankly, they do have an advantage in that regard, however, they don't have the functionality. If you were to compare one of those products to NetApp, head to head from a feature perspective, NetApp would wind up in the top 10.""I like some basic features like Snapshot, FlexClone, and advanced features such as SnapMirror, and SnapVault. They also recently enhanced the market with Cloud Volumes ONTAP. I think that NetApp is a very good product.""We recently started using the volume encryption feature, which is helpful because there are some federal projects that require data at rest to be encrypted.""This solution helps accelerate demanding enterprise applications. VMware workloads, the database, and Oracle Solaris are hosted on AFF, which means that our primary priority workloads are on AFF and that the secondary ones are on FAS. That includes the SAN national cloud."

More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Pros →

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

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"Some of the management features could be simplified and that's probably the main thing they need to address.""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.""If the solution had more power-saving capabilities, it would be quite nice.""I would like to see more development in the cloud environment. It would be good if it comes in the cloud kind of setup.""The GUI interface is very complicated and could be improved by streamlining the number of steps in the process.""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.""Firmware updates are a bit painful because you have to involve their support, as opposed to having the ability to do it yourself.""We would like more documentation, a guide to the features of the PowerMax."

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"There is room for improvement with the user interface. There are a few things that cannot be done in the GUI. We do a lot of things through the CLI, but that's grown out of a lack of ability to do them in the GUI. An example is QTrees. You can manage them within the GUI, but the GUI is missing a few options.""During the initial setup, you need to know what you are doing.""It would be better if they just improved the performance of the system.""There is room for improvement in terms of support. I have noticed that if I sometimes call their customer care for a particular issue, they will give me another number and ask me to call that other team. It would be better if they could do a warm transfer. That would save customers time from calling all the numbers again and speaking to another team.""The admin tools and the integration with other products and clouds can be improved. It should also be easier to identify and troubleshoot problems in this solution. It takes a long time, and it should be improved.""I don't like the newest GUI. It needs more options. Some features have been removed. Oversight is not as good in the new GUI compared to the previous version. Though, it might be something that we just need to get used to.""We would like to have a feature that automatically moves volumes between aggregates, based on the performance. We normally need to do this manually.""When comparing with Pure for example, with Pure you have no maintenance anymore and with NetApp, you still need maintenance."

More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) 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 →

  • "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."
  • "It is high-end storage and it is a bit expensive, but it is doing what it is meant for: running business-critical applications or latency-sensitive applications..."
  • More Dell PowerMax NVMe Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "It depends on how you look at things, but they are in a higher price range."
  • "All features are included in the license, whereas with an EMC solution, you have to pay separately for extra terabytes."
  • "The price of NetApp is very expensive, but we don't know how much Pure is, so we can't compare."
  • "We benefited from implementing all-flash by reducing our data center footprint. We took it from 30 racks to just over five. This is one of the biggest savings for us."
  • "The licensing and pricing are fine. As a reseller for the product, we need to make the differentiation in the minds of the customer. They are not just buying some tool that does only one thing, e.g., showing a LAN for a customer. The pricing is fair for what it is."
  • "In addition to simplifying the management across a mix of solutions, AFF simplifies the cost. That was one of the main reasons we purchased AFF."
  • "NetApp AFF is an expensive product, although not compared to other vendors."
  • "The pricing is pretty reasonable for what we get. But if you have to buy any more disk space, it can be quite expensive."
  • More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
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    Top Answer:Dell PowerStore is an all-solid-state midrange storage system. It has many internal elements taken from other Dell… more »
    Top Answer:This platform is reliable in supporting our data availability. We now have a higher performing platform and have been… more »
    Top Answer:The pricing for this solution is good compared to other products on the markets.
    Top Answer:The performance is outstanding when it's all Flash. That's the biggest bang for the buck that we get.
    Top Answer:NetApp AFF is somewhat pricey. If they weren't as pricey, that would be a big deal for us. It's worth it but if you… more »
    Top Answer:The deployment itself, compared to other platforms, should be a lot easier. We don't find it all that complicated… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Pavilion HFA
    Dell EMC PowerMax, PowerMax
    NetApp All Flash FAS, NetApp AFF, NetApp Flash FAS
    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. With end-to-end non-volatile memory express (NVMe), real-time machine learning, seamless cloud mobility, and up to 350GB per second bandwidth, PowerMax features high-speed smarts to power your most critical workloads. PowerMax is true modern scale-up and scale-out storageת designed for mission-critical applications of today and tomorrow – including databases and transaction processing applications as well as real-time analytics workloads that demand uncompromising uptime and extremely low latency.

    PowerMax consists of two models, PowerMax 2000 and 8000. The PowerMax 8000 delivers industry-leading performance density with up to 7.5 million IOPS5 per rack and 187,000 IOPS6 per U (rack unit). PowerMax supports mixed open systems, mainframe, IBM i, block, and file environments. The PowerMax 2000 is the entry point into mission-critical storage, high availability, and delivering robust data services in a safe, secure compact package.

    PowerMax systems incorporate the most current and robust end-to-end NVMe technology with industry-standard NVMe flash drives, NVMe storage class memory drives, and FC-NVMe host connectivity via NVMe over Fabrics. PowerMax SCM, powered by dual-port Intel® Optane™ technology, offers rapid-fire fast performance and secure low latency ideal for electronic trading, real-time analytics, high-performance databases, and big data workloads.

    Features of Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe

    Robust architecture with amazing performance combines demanding mixed workloads.

    • Built-in machine learning automates data placement for maximum performance with no additional management cost.
    • Very secure end-to-end dynamic encryption safeguards digital assets with 3.5:1 data reduction, guaranteed by Dell Technologies.
    • Seamless cloud mobility pushes data from PowerMax to AWS, Azure, Dell EMC ECS, and PowerScale for long-term retention on lower-cost object storage.

    Benefits of Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe

    Powerful Architecture

    • Designed for speed – robust multi-controller scale-up, scale-out architecture with built-in end-to-end NVMe.
    • Performance optimized – up to 350GB/s sustained bandwidth2, under 100µs read latency3.
    • Efficiency without compromise – global inline data reduction with guaranteed 3.5:1 average DRR4.

    Simple Operations

    • Intuitive storage management – provision storage in less than 30 seconds.
    • Workload consolidation – outstanding consolidation of block, file, mainframe, IBM i storage on a single array.
    • DevOps automation and containers – workflow automation and streamlined IT processes (vRA, vRO, CSI, CSM, Kubernetes).
    • Non-disruptive data migration – initiate data migrations from older arrays to PowerMax in three simple steps.

    Trusted Innovation

    • Mission-critical availability – proven six nines availability and the best replication for business continuance, disaster recovery (BC/DR).
    • Deep VMware integration – mission-critical availability and the most efficient scalability for VMware Virtual Volumes deployments (64,000 vVols).
    • Flexible consumption – several options, predictability, and investment protection with pay-per-use solutions and Future-Proof guarantees.

    PowerMax sets the standard for data storage today. It is uniquely, intuitively designed with a multi-controller, active/active scale-out architecture, an industry-standard, end-to-end NVMe. Inline, global dedupe and compression add outstanding efficiency to your data center, even while scaling. Additionally, PowerMax offers you the best in remote replication, proven six nines of availability, and end-to-end efficient encryption so that your data is always secure and your resources are fully optimized.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Ahmed K., a senior storage systems engineer at a pharma/biotech company, says Dell EMC PowerMax NVMe has “secure, fast performance, and good reporting capabilities.”

    Nikolay M. a lead system administrator at Central Hospital of Civil Aviation shares that with PowerMax, “we have not yet hit the ceiling in its efficiency, performance, and scalability… Now, with PowerMax, everything runs smoothly.”

    “We don't have to manage much at all. It really is like a set it and forget it solution. My storage engineers love the system. It is a lot less work than our previous systems… We are saving dozens of hours per month for our storage team, and that is a real cost in our business," adds Paul C., a Senior Solution Architect at Rackspace.

    NetApp AFF8000 All Flash FAS systems combine all-flash performance with unified data management from flash to disk to cloud.  Leverage the Data Fabric to move data securely across your choice of clouds—enabled by Cloud ONTAP™ and NetApp Private Storage for Cloud. Plus, you get the industry’s most efficient and comprehensive integrated data protection suite, on premises or in the cloud.

    Offer
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    Learn more about Dell PowerMax NVMe
    Learn more about NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
    Sample Customers
    Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC), Statistics Netherlands (CBS)
    Rackspace, Open Line
    Acibadem Healthcare Group, AmTrust Financial Services, Citrix Systems, DWD, Mantra Group
    Top Industries
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company28%
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    Government7%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm26%
    Healthcare Company26%
    Retailer10%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company29%
    Comms Service Provider18%
    Financial Services Firm8%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    REVIEWERS
    Healthcare Company15%
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Energy/Utilities Company9%
    Computer Software Company7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company26%
    Comms Service Provider23%
    Manufacturing Company9%
    Government6%
    Company Size
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business22%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise63%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business6%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise76%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business19%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise64%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business12%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise75%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business19%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise63%
    Buyer's Guide
    Dell PowerMax NVMe vs. NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
    May 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Dell PowerMax NVMe vs. NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) and other solutions. Updated: May 2022.
    609,272 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Dell PowerMax NVMe is ranked 7th in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 18 reviews while NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) is ranked 4th in All-Flash Storage Arrays with 21 reviews. Dell PowerMax NVMe is rated 8.8, while NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) is rated 9.0. The top reviewer of Dell 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 NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) writes "Provides us with quick options when restoring things for customers". Dell PowerMax NVMe is most compared with Dell PowerStore, Dell Unity XT, Pure Storage FlashArray, IBM FlashSystem and NetApp NVMe AFF A800, whereas NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) is most compared with Pure Storage FlashArray, Lenovo ThinkSystem DM Series, Dell Unity XT, Dell PowerStore and Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform F Series. See our Dell PowerMax NVMe vs. NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) 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.