Dell PowerStore vs Pure Storage FlashArray comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on May 22, 2022

We performed a comparison between Dell EMC PowerStore and Pure Storage FlashArray based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Users report that the initial setup and deployment of both solutions is straightforward and easy.

  • Features: Reviewers of both solutions are satisfied with their stability, scalability, flexibility, and performance. PowerStore users say it has good compression and machine learning capabilities but they would like better replication options. Pure Storage FlashArray users say it is secure, user-friendly, and fast but they would like the solution’s reporting to improve.

  • Pricing: Dell EMC PowerStore received mixed reviews in the pricing category. Pure Storage FlashArray users feel that it is an expensive solution.

  • ROI: Users of both products report being very satisfied with the ROI.

  • Service and Support: Most Dell EMC PowerStore users are satisfied with the level of support they receive. Several Dell EMC PowerStore users say that the responsiveness of the support team could be improved. Pure Storage FlashArray users report being very satisfied with the level of support they receive.

Comparison Results: Both products received high marks from users. Pure Storage FlashArray has a slight edge in the comparison due to its superior customer support.

To learn more, read our detailed Dell PowerStore vs. Pure Storage FlashArray Report (Updated: January 2023).
670,400 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
"The newest version of ONTAP has a bit of a learning curve because you need to learn where things are to find them. It is not impossible, but when you are accustomed to the older version of ONTAP, it just takes a bit getting used to it, but it is about the same as before.""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.""The performance is outstanding when it's all Flash. That's the biggest bang for the buck that we get.""The NVMe flash cache is the most useful feature. It lowers transactional speed even more.""Technical support has been okay.""The benefits of being on AFF are the phenomenal speed at which we're able to ingest data and index it, and the IOPS.""In terms of the footprint, it is far more efficient. It has smaller, higher-capacity drives than our older unit. In terms of space, power, and cooling, it has simplified things.""It impacts customer retention because of its overall ease. When you are running a business, where time is a factor, that is the biggest selling point. Things happen really rapidly, when they happen, and being able to say, "Yeah, we can get this up and running in a day, if you want," or even less time in some cases. Sometimes, that can be what makes or breaks our case."

More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Pros →

"PowerStore is easy to use. All the drives use soft encryption. To upgrade it, you download the app, and it runs by itself. It's very easy to deploy, share, and create volumes.""The support is very good.""You can add compute and capacity independently. We have sized the solution based on our current needs, but in the future we can choose to increase capacity if we grow our activity in the market. And if we have more business in our monetary system, we can increase compute. The ability to choose what we increase is a good feature.""The initial setup was straightforward.""The solution is extremely stable.""For access from virtual machines, iSCSI, and NFS, it is very good. It helps increase performance.""The supportability of SCME drives for faster data access from the PowerStore and is the most valuable feature.""The way you're able to manage all your PowerStores as one solution is very good for us. PowerStore enables you to federate or cluster multiple appliances with automated load balancing. In terms of management, it's helpful that we can do it from a single interface where we're able to manage multiple PowerStores. When you have multiple PowerStores it works intelligently by running the workloads based on the needs of the infrastructure."

More Dell PowerStore Pros →

"I use all the features of this solution and I find them to be easy to use and functional, such as the compression and capacity to expand.""I like its speed. It has all the features that I need.""The most valuable feature of Pure Storage FlashArray is the complete set of functions it provides.""We've had different types of storage, and three things of this solution are valuable. The first one is its outstanding performance. The second one is its stability. In the about three years that we've had it, we've had component failures, but we never had a service interruption or any data loss. The third one, which is really critical, is that it is super easy to use in terms of provisioning, storage, and managing the arrays. I'm able to maintain a multi-site environment with a couple of dozen arrays with a single mid-level storage admin.""Pure Storage is extremely reliable — it's never failed.""The availability and ease of use are the big features.""We've been using FlashArray's snapshot for backups. Their replication across sites and response time are also excellent.""The mobile app is very helpful."

More Pure Storage FlashArray Pros →

Cons
"Some of the graphical user interface changes in the later versions of NetApp have not been as good as the older ones, like in the 9.5 era.""After the three-year prepay, the extended warranty is a little expensive.""Its integration could be improved.""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.""For ONTAP, in general, the deduplication ratio and Snapshot limitation are areas that need improvement. There is a global limitation on the number of Snapshots or clones that can be spun off of a particular Snapshot. If those limitations are increased, it might be helpful.""The initial setup has a lot more steps in it than are probably necessary for a base deployment, unlike other vendors where it's more straightforward. It could be a little bit more streamlined.""It used to give us the volume where LANs should be placed when we created a LAN in the older version. However, in the newer version of ONTAP, it does not give where to place the LAN in the volume. So, that liberty has been taken away. If that was there again, it would be very good.""It can get a little expensive if you need to add more disks. The cost is a pain point for us, especially in terms of expansion."

More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Cons →

"I do not like having to use VPLEX for synchronous replication, as opposed to having the store software built-in.""The price is on the higher side.""During the installation phase, the licensing part was not straightforward. It was very difficult for the technicians, who are not trained Dell EMC technicians, to do the licensing because the information on their website is not straightforward... Eventually, I had to pass this task to our business partner and they did it for us.""Could use some additional automation.""The setup process could be improved. We had some issues regarding configuration and the time it took to do things. It wasn't specifically the people we worked with, but more the process and how it's done. They can work on that.""More demonstration and training options are needed.""Where the system needs to improve is by adding more enterprise features like replication on other sites. We would also like it to be much more aligned with the VMware version. For example, today we have two different versions of VMware ESXi running to keep the PowerStore online. It would be better if the software cycling was faster.""Many customers are looking for a cyber recovery feature included in PowerStore. We would like to see this added in a future release."

More Dell PowerStore Cons →

"Data reduction is an area that needs improvement. There is a garbage collection service that runs but during that time, system utilization increases.""Pricing could be better in comparison to other solutions.""A minor issue that comes to mind is that, every once in a while, a hard drive will go bad.""The integration capabilities could be improved.""I feel like there is too much automation; the user doesn't have any manual input.""It was not proactive communication.""Pure Storage FlashArray could improve in the area of cryptographic information in the consoles. The user-friendliness could improve. The Pure Storage FlashArray team should come and log into the system with their maintenance credentials and then pull out the information as evidence of cryptography.""When we were doing some tests, we found that there was an I/O freeze when they were switching the controller."

More Pure Storage FlashArray Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "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."
  • "The list price of AFF is too expensive... they need to be careful with the pricing of the new NVMe disks. They are way too expensive."
  • "I looked at other vendors for other potential projects and thought NetApp's pricing was very competitive."
  • "There is room for improvement when it comes to the cost. The cost is very high compared to other devices."
  • More NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The price is not cheap, but it's worth it for the features you get from the storage. If you can afford it, you are probably buying the best solution that you can have for this virtual environment."
  • "There's still a cap on the upgrade path, where you can consume all the engines within the frame before you have to go to another frame... Normally, we exceed the IOPS on the frames before we can ever exhaust the storage, so anything they can do to help us avoid stranded storage capacity, capacity that we couldn't get to, would be beneficial."
  • "When we compared it with the other solutions, the pricing of PowerStore was equal. The pricing is good."
  • "The price of Dell EMC PowerStore could be better, it is a bit expensive."
  • "We only have a single machine and we are currently using half of the hard disk slots. We have asked for an upgrade for the rest of the hard disks but, from my point of view, it costs too much. We have 12 to 15 hard disks inside and if we try to upgrade only the hard disks, it costs the same as the complete system. This is something I don't understand."
  • "We are happy with the pricing that we get from Dell."
  • "Licensing is very simple. Everything is included in the basic license. There are no concerns about having to pay to add a feature. Everything is there."
  • "The licensing for this solution is good and is in the mid-range tier."
  • More Dell PowerStore 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 →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:Well, Is one thing NetApp Storage has vs other brand is the mix of protocol CIFS with NFS booth working together in the… more »
    Top Answer:This question is very dependent on your requirements. Both are among the best in the field. Of course, the intended cost… more »
    Top Answer:The answer depends on your needs and budget. If you want high performance (who doesn't) or let's say the latency matters… more »
    Top Answer:PowerStore is flexible, scalable, simple, and performant with market-leading economics for a wide range of legacy and… more »
    Top Answer:Dell EMC PowerStore is a unified storage platform that has the added benefit of being scalable. The automated management… more »
    Top Answer:Dell PowerStore is an all-solid-state midrange storage system. It has many internal elements taken from other Dell… 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 find the ease of usability and setup valuable.
    Top Answer:The licensing cost is close to zero. Every new function or functionality is included when paying the annual maintenance… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    NetApp All Flash FAS, NetApp AFF, NetApp Flash FAS
    PowerStore
    Learn More
    Overview

    NetApp All Flash FAS (AFF) is a storage infrastructure that contains only flash memory drives instead of spinning-disk drives. NetApp All Flash FAS (AFF) addresses enterprise storage requirements with best-in-class data management, higher performance, and flexibility. All Flash FAS systems accelerate your operations without sacrificing the effectiveness, dependability, or adaptability of your IT infrastructure, since they are built on ONTAP data management software. As an enterprise-grade all-flash array, the NetApp All Flash FAS (AFF) manages and safeguards your critical data, making your datacenter’s transition to flash simple and painless.

    NetApp All Flash FAS (AFF) is a robust, scale-out platform designed for virtualized environments and can be deployed as an independent system or a high-performance tier in a NetApp ONTAP configuration.

    NetApp All Flash FAS Features

    NetApp AFF has many valuable key features. Some of the most useful ones include:

    • Cloning and Snapshot copies combined with native space efficiency can lower storage expenses.
    • Near-zero performance impact for snapshot copy creation, cloning, and replication.
    • Application-consistent Snapshot copies simplify app management.
    • Synchronous replication using NetApp MetroCluster software, a feature that is only available from NetApp in the all-flash array market and provides zero RPO and close to zero RTO for workloads that are mission-critical.
    • Support for at-rest data encryption and an onboard key manager to help secure your data through easier key management.
    • NetApp SnapMirror replication software reduces overall system costs by replicating to any type of FAS/AFF system, whether it is all-flash, hybrid, or HDD, on premises or in the cloud.

    NetApp All Flash FAS Benefits

    There are many benefits to implementing NetApp AFF. Some of the biggest advantages the solution offers include:

    • Change the economics of your data center with flash - you'll consume 11 times less electricity, require 11 times less rack space, and spend 67 percent less on support compared to a data center using HDDs.
    • Manage data with a single piece of software for SAN and NAS settings, including flash, disk, and the cloud.
    • Within 10 minutes, you can provision storage and serve data.
    • Inline data reduction technology can reduce SSD storage by 5 to 10 times on average.
    • Protect your data using the system's best-in-class integrated data protection suite.
    • Scale out to 24 nodes, 367PB of effective capacity, and 4 million IOPS without causing disruption.
    • Accelerate applications with up to 12 times more IOPS and 20 times faster response thanks to NetApp ONTAP FlashEssentials.

    Reviews from Real Users

    NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are its handling of read and write operations and its high-capacity drives. PeerSpot users take note of the advantages of these features in their reviews:

    Harish M., Senior Consultant at a tech services company, writes of the solution, “The most valuable feature is its ability to handle high-intensity read and write operations. It works very well in terms of this.” He adds, “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.”

    Another PeerSpot reviewer, a director at an IT Infrastructure Services department at a university, notes, “In terms of the footprint, it is far more efficient. It has smaller, higher-capacity drives than our older unit. In terms of space, power, and cooling, it has simplified things.”

    Dell EMC PowerStore is a midrange next-generation data storage solution. It is designed with a data-centric, intelligent, and adaptable infrastructure and helps consolidate storage and virtual server environments. The Dell EMC PowerStore platform includes two major configurations, including PowerStore T and PowerStore X. Dell EMC PowerStore enables you to deploy the appliance and consolidate data and applications and supports both flash and SCM Optane devices.

    Dell EMC PowerStore Offers:

    • Value
    • Flexibility
    • Simplicity

    Dell EMC PowerStore Features

    Some of the most powerful Dell EMC PowerStore features include:

    • Data-centric design: Dell EMC PowerStore is designed to optimize system performance, scalability, and storage efficiency to support any workload.

    • Intelligent automation: Intelligent automation helps simplify management as well as optimize system resources. Through a programmable infrastructure, it also enables you to easily monitor, analyze, and troubleshoot the environment.

    • Adaptable architecture: Because it has an adaptable architecture, Dell EMC PowerStore is able to provide speed and application mobility and offer flexible deployment models.

    • Scalability: Dell EMC PowerStore can be scaled up and scaled out.

    • Data-in-place upgrades: By providing data-in-place upgrades, you gain a modernized infrastructure without any downtime involved and without impacting applications.

    Dell EMC PowerStore Benefits

    Some of the benefits of using Dell EMC PowerStore include:

    • Flexible deployment: Dell EMC PowerStore is made to modernize the core, edge, and cloud without disruption, leading to flexible deployment.

    • Pay-per-use: Dell EMC PowerStore offers a range of flexible purchase options.

    • Any workload: Because Dell EMC PowerStore is designed to leverage next-gen innovations, it can work with any workload.

    • Programmable infrastructure: Dell EMC PowerStore streamlines application development and also automates storage workflows through integration with VMware and a broad ecosystem of leading management and orchestration frameworks, enabling you to provision services directly from the application tool sets that you use most frequently.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Below are some reviews and helpful feedback written by Dell EMC PowerStore users who are currently using the solution.

    PeerSpot user Maurizio D., who is a CTO at Universita' degli Studi di Pisa, says it "Gives us flexibility, performance, and ease of use. It also has some very good compression capabilities. We were looking for a solution that was easy to install in our VMware environment, that was flexible. PowerStore X is a type of a VMware cluster that you install inside your environment. If you have a VMware environment, like we have in production, it's easy to install and use."

    Another PeerSpot user, Jorg L., who is an IT Administrator at a construction company, mentions "For access from virtual machines, iSCSI, and NFS, it is very good. It helps increase performance."

    "The administration tools take advantage of machine learning and make recommendations to the admins, and that makes the administration easier," says a Chief Information Officer at a computer software company. He also comments that “Overall, we've benefited from the dedupe, compression, and replication, the advanced technology, of this frame. It's all better than what we had in the previous generation of XtremIO appliances, and above what we were getting in the Dell EMC Unitys.”

    Pure Storage FlashArray is the world’s first enterprise-class storage array that runs exclusively on the nonvolatile memory express (NVMe) protocol for memory access and storage. It represents a totally state-of-the-art type of storage technology. It offers users shared accelerated storage that delivers cutting-edge features in the realms of 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 Storage takes the work out of storage ownership and delivers unprecedented customer satisfaction.

    Pure Storage FlashArray is built with simplicity and reliability in mind. The solution can be implemented and optimized in hours, as opposed to other similar solutions that can take days. It has no moving parts, which removes areas where it could potentially be vulnerable to suffering errors. It is highly stable and gives users the ability to manage system shutdowns in a way that  prevents data loss.

    Benefits of Pure Storage FlashArray

    Some of the benefits of using Pure Storage FlashArray include:

    • A much higher level of speed than similar pieces of technology. Pure Storage FlashArray maximizes the speed at which data can be transferred while at the same time minimizing system latencies that might slow the transfer down. Additionally, it offers users quick memory read and data access speeds.

    • A higher bang for your buck in terms of the storage capabilities you get for the money you pay. They are smaller in size than more standard storage technologies, but they offer flash memory, which enables users to store larger amounts of data than the current standard.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Pure Storage FlashArray is a highly effective piece of storage technology which stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are its overall robustness and the value that it offers by way of its reliability and ease of use. It provides users with many valuable features that allow them to maximize what they can do with this solution. Pure Storage FlashArray’s reliability and ease of use make it a highly valuable solution. 

    PeerSpot user Prabakaran K., a technical consultant at Injazat Data Systems, notes the robustness of this solution when he writes, "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."

    PeerSpot user Jason D., a cloud solutions architect at a tech services company, notes three features that make this solution valuable when he writes, "We've had different types of storage, and three things of this solution are valuable. The first one is its outstanding performance. The second one is its stability. In the about three years that we've had it, we've had component failures, but we never had a service interruption or any data loss. The third one, which is really critical, is that it is super easy to use in terms of provisioning, storage, and managing the arrays. I'm able to maintain a multi-site environment with a couple of dozen arrays with a single mid-level storage admin."

    Offer
    Learn more about NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
    Learn more about Dell PowerStore
    Learn more about Pure Storage FlashArray
    Sample Customers
    Acibadem Healthcare Group, AmTrust Financial Services, Citrix Systems, DWD, Mantra Group
    Information Not Available
    Nielsen, Lamar Advertising, LinkedIn, Betfair, UT-Dallas
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Healthcare Company16%
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Energy/Utilities Company9%
    Computer Software Company8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company23%
    Comms Service Provider17%
    Manufacturing Company10%
    Government7%
    REVIEWERS
    Computer Software Company23%
    Healthcare Company23%
    Financial Services Firm15%
    University8%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company21%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    Government7%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm20%
    Healthcare Company13%
    Manufacturing Company9%
    University7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider10%
    Financial Services Firm9%
    Manufacturing Company8%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business12%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise75%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise61%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business35%
    Midsize Enterprise12%
    Large Enterprise54%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business24%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise60%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business26%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise57%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business23%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise62%
    Buyer's Guide
    Dell PowerStore vs. Pure Storage FlashArray
    January 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about Dell PowerStore vs. Pure Storage FlashArray and other solutions. Updated: January 2023.
    670,400 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Dell PowerStore is ranked 1st in All-Flash Storage with 25 reviews while Pure Storage FlashArray is ranked 2nd in All-Flash Storage with 45 reviews. Dell PowerStore is rated 8.6, while Pure Storage FlashArray is rated 9.0. The top reviewer of Dell PowerStore writes "Saves us power and floor space, and we can quickly assign new data stores for our developers' VMs". On the other hand, 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". Dell PowerStore is most compared with Dell Unity XT, IBM FlashSystem, Dell PowerMax NVMe, HPE Nimble Storage and HPE Primera, whereas Pure Storage FlashArray is most compared with IBM FlashSystem, VMware vSAN, HPE Nimble Storage, Dell Unity XT and Pure Storage FlashBlade. See our Dell PowerStore vs. Pure Storage FlashArray report.

    See our list of best All-Flash Storage vendors.

    We monitor all All-Flash Storage 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.