IBM Spectrum Virtualize vs VMware vSAN comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary

We performed a comparison between IBM Spectrum Virtualize and VMware vSAN based on real PeerSpot user reviews.

Find out in this report how the two Software Defined Storage (SDS) solutions compare in terms of features, pricing, service and support, easy of deployment, and ROI.
To learn more, read our detailed IBM Spectrum Virtualize vs. VMware vSAN Report (Updated: May 2023).
757,198 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:
"The abstraction flair and the abstraction layer. We had a mixture of different storage arrays, and the wonderful thing about SVC is is that it normalizes all it into a single driver. A single view that all hosts see simultaneously.""There are many benefits to this solution. Storage virtualization and the ability to migrate massive amounts of data to other systems without impacting your client are the most valuable. It is non-disruptive for my users. We migrated 350 terabytes of data in one night to a new machine without a small system going down and a single user complaining about the performance. You have to fine-tune a lot of storage machines constantly for performance and for making sure that they are optimal, but IBM Spectrum Virtualize does this by itself. It does the adjustment on its own, and it does it right. That's what makes it different. I had a huge VSP from Hitachi, which is also a type of virtualization-based engine but with a decent size. It was a continuous performance-tuning exercise. I never had that issue with IBM Spectrum Virtualize.""One of the main features of Spectrum Virtualize is it virtualizes the servers from the storage. We have a very large infrastructure. A major advantage is when you get the aged storage arrays and you have to replace all of those.""We can failover easily, because a lot of our data is replicated from family to the second replication.""Migration from configurations where servers have storage provisioned from older SAN disk systems to newer storage systems is almost seamless using image mode migration techniques, with only a short outage of the servers.""I like all the features, but the most impressive recently has been the introduction of IBM's Flash Core Modules. They are a form of a flash drive, but they have many more features.""It provides transparency, because of its advanced copy features.""When we add storage behind it, the product is good for the customers because their customers do not notice that anything is happening due to the virtualization."

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"VMware has been around for a long time are are doing a decent job at catching up with the latest technologies i.e. bringing in kubernetes and containerization. Overall, this is a great tool for virtualization.""Technical support is very helpful and very good at resolving issues.""The performance of VMware vSAN is very good.""The performance has exceeded our expectations and exceeded our traditional converged infrastructure.""Storage policies are used to perform operations in the VMs. This feature allows you to create storage policies for VMs to get performance, high availability, I/O policies, etc.""The implementation is simple, it was very straightforward. It took us approximately three weeks because it was installed in four locations.""The most valuable features are ease of deployment, and ease of management. If you compare it to other software-defined storage products, it's much easier. It's a checkbox. It's lot easier to manage.""vSAN can help customers save on storage system costs, and also save on the human cost."

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"I hate I/O groups. If you start swapping I/O groups, they can be potentially risky. If they could get rid of the whole I/O group principle, the risk is not there anymore. I understand the fundamental thing about I/O groups, but they are risky.""In general, the migration is complicated. Though, it is case-by-case.""They are actually working on one bug we found, which was with flash restore. This was the user interface design for virtual environments.""There are things that occur when you get to this size and capacity. We're very large, i.e., petabytes. When you get to that sheer volume of the numbers of things, it is too big for people to keep track of.""The disk reliability is not that good.""I already discussed possible improvements with some of the guys from Hearnsley. One of our frustrations is when you go to expand volumes in a global mirror environment, you have to stop everything in order to expand. So that's one of the things.""GUI should be developed in HTML5 as opposed to Java.""NBME support and support for a higher Fibre Channel lengths could be improved, but those are already on the roadmap."

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"The updating process could be easier.""I see room for improvement for vSAN just around general hardware compatibility and expanding that sort of matrix.""Based on my testing, I would like to expand deduplication to include hybrid deployments and not just for all-flash deployments.""One thing in vSAN that I would like to improve is using vSAN as a repository for files or other things. For example, with Horizon, maybe we can save profiles with UEM on there. That would be a good feature that I would like.""The product can be improved in a couple of ways. One of those would be that they have a lot of hidden features, that are through the CLI, that would be great to have in the GUI, or just be more open about those features. It's something called RVC. It's a tool in the back end. It's a really great tool, but I had to find it through Reddit. So more information on stuff like that would be great. Also, in the user interface, giving us more features and more reporting that we can do from vSphere itself would be helpful.""Improvements can be made with respect to scalability.""It would be much improved if we could somehow integrate a better backup with it. Right now, we're using Veeam and it's okay, but I would like more of a VDP vSAN solution. That would be excellent. The VDP, at least the last time we looked at, it was just not quite there.""We do see weird things crop up every now and again. It will say that a drive gets kicked off even though it's fine, and we have to re-add it."

More VMware vSAN Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "Generally the bundled licensing is more cost effective and gives flexibility to the solution. Linking into the Spectrum Suite can also be advantageous, but depends on the scale of the enterprise."
  • "We have struggled with Pure Storage, but people are understanding that much of Pure has been consumer grade SSDs. Therefore, when the customer is really understands what they are getting, they realize that IBM presents the same sort of value as existing vendors."
  • "We would like the CPU cycle to save more on the licensing costs for us."
  • "Do a proof of concept, if you are not comfortable jumping in, but do it."
  • "It has a lot of advanced functions for a reasonable price."
  • "I am very happy with the pricing. There is no comparison when it comes to pricing. I have looked at all solutions from EMC, Veritas, Hitachi, Dell, etc. None of them compares to IBM when it comes to pricing. I get great pricing from them."
  • "The entry point of pricing for this product is the most amazing price ever in the industry."
  • "This solution came as an additional cost for the TSM package we chose."
  • More IBM Spectrum Virtualize Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The first 1-2 years of purchasing vSAN will be expensive. Thereafter, the longer you are running it, the more cost savings you will have."
  • "Its reasonable, compare with other storage vendors"
  • "Basically, vSAN is a license in addition to that of the classic VMware Vsphere, which is also mandatory."
  • "​I would like to see this technology be made available to smaller businesses, who might benefit from high availability but struggle with the entry fee.​"
  • "Perhaps a bundle, like Essentials, would allow more businesses to make the leap to the product."
  • "We have increased our user productivity."
  • "What made us go with this solution was price point. When you can utilize existing storage infrastructure, and not have to continually purchase new SAN products out there that are going up in price as time goes by, then it's a wonderful thing."
  • "We did consider other hyperconverged solutions. It usually came down to price. vSan was the most cost effective thing."
  • More VMware vSAN Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:Compared to other storage vendors, the solution is quite convenient to use.
    Top Answer:The pricing is pretty good. I rate the solution’s pricing a five out of ten. We have to pay for additional licenses.
    Top Answer:The solution could have a better built-in performance monitor. I use a different product for performance monitoring.
    Top Answer:While both run on the vSAN technology from VMware, vSAN needs to be deployed on vSAN ready nodes while VxRail is an engineered system. The choice to choose which technology depends on two major… more »
    Top Answer:We found the reduced power consumption with Nutanix Acropolis AOS a very attractive feature. We also like the interface that allows you to talk directly to your VM from the present software. We found… more »
    Top Answer:HPE SimpliVity is a hyper-converged infrastructure solution that is primarily geared to mid-sized companies. We researched VMware vSAN but found HPE was a better option for us HPE SimpliVity has… more »
    Average Words per Review
    out of 39 in HCI
    Average Words per Review
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    IBM Spectrum Virtualize is a dependable solution that improves data value, security, and simplicity for new and existing storage infrastructure. Proven over 12 years in thousands of deployments, its innovative virtualization capabilities help organizations achieve better data economics by supporting new workloads that are critical to their success. IBM Spectrum Virtualize software helps make new and existing storage more effective and standardizes functions traditionally deployed separately in disk systems for greater flexibility and potentially lower costs.

    VMware vSAN is a software-defined storage product that is used in collaboration with VMware ESXi hypervisor and that provisions and manages storage based on policies, regardless of the underlying hardware. The solution enables you to prime your business for growth through its seamless evolution (it is integrated with vSphere and requires no new tools), its flexibility, and its multi-cloud capabilities. As an industry-leading software, VMware vSAN provides high levels of performance with minimal impact on CPU and memory.

    VMware vSAN Features

    VMware vSAN has many valuable key features. Some of the most useful ones include:

    • Storage policy-based management (SPBM): VMware vSAN supports storage policy-based management for automated management of storage profiles.
    • Software-defined data-at-rest encryption: With this VMware vSAN feature, you can prevent unauthorized access of data at rest.
    • Multiple nodes: VMware vSAN provides clusters that can include as few as 2 nodes or as many as 64 nodes.
    • High security and availability: VMware vSAN offers stretched clusters, allowing more than one virtualization host server to be used in the same setup, promoting higher security as well as availability.
    • Deduplication: VMware vSAN’s deduplication compresses data to ensure efficient storage management and security.
    • HCI mesh updates: VMware vSAN clusters can share storage capacity with non-HCI Sphere clusters and can adopt HCI without having to scale computing resources and storage or replace existing servers.
    • Simplified file services: With VMware vSAN’s file services, backup of file shares is simplified. You can use APIs that allow backup and recovery software vendors to integrate with your VMware vSAN file services, which enables backup software to track new data and add scalability enhancements to files.

    VMware vSAN Benefits

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

    • Reduced total cost of ownership (TCO): VMware vSAN helps you reduce upfront costs for businesses because it can be easily deployed on inexpensive x86 servers. In addition, its highly scalable infrastructure and quick deployment also save organizations time and money, making it an efficient storage solution. 
    • Good manageability: VMWare vSAN is easy to set up, manage, and provision, without sacrificing performance. 
    • Scalability: VMware vSAN is agile and allows administrators to scale storage on demand, quickly, and efficiently via policies and rules.
    • Simplicity: VMWare vSAN is simple to configure since it is embedded in the vSphere hypervisor. Installing it using the vSphere Web Client can be done quickly. 
    • Reduced risk: VMWare vSAN reduces the risk associated with digital transformations by utilizing existing tools, skill sets, and solutions.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Below are some reviews and helpful feedback written by PeerSpot users currently using the VMware vSAN solution.

    PeerSpot user Yves S., CEO, Cloud Evangelist at Comdivision Consulting GmbH, says, “vSAN gives us a lot of advantages when we need to expand resources. We have an overall larger host infrastructure, and we split that up for specific customer test and use cases. In that specific scenario, we can easily add more hosts or reduce the number of hosts in the environment.”

    A reviewer who works in Infrastructure Security explains, “The ease of use is great. The initial setup and upgrade process was pretty straightforward. And, technical support is great.”

    Laurent N., Director at Softlogic, comments, "The feature that I have found most valuable is that it is easy to deploy. It is easy to create and delete virtual servers. It is easy to create the load balancing and the clustering."

    Sample Customers
    Pelephone, Sprint IT Enterprise Services
    Read Some Case Studies At Home Cloud CaribCINgroupDiscovery Check out the Rest of our Customer Stories Here
    Top Industries
    Healthcare Company19%
    Computer Software Company14%
    Computer Software Company21%
    Financial Services Firm11%
    Computer Software Company15%
    Comms Service Provider12%
    Financial Services Firm11%
    Healthcare Company10%
    Educational Organization45%
    Computer Software Company10%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    Company Size
    Small Business23%
    Midsize Enterprise9%
    Large Enterprise67%
    Small Business24%
    Midsize Enterprise13%
    Large Enterprise63%
    Small Business33%
    Midsize Enterprise22%
    Large Enterprise44%
    Small Business13%
    Midsize Enterprise53%
    Large Enterprise34%
    Buyer's Guide
    IBM Spectrum Virtualize vs. VMware vSAN
    May 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about IBM Spectrum Virtualize vs. VMware vSAN and other solutions. Updated: May 2023.
    757,198 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    IBM Spectrum Virtualize is ranked 15th in Software Defined Storage (SDS) with 2 reviews while VMware vSAN is ranked 3rd in HCI with 10 reviews. IBM Spectrum Virtualize is rated 8.8, while VMware vSAN is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of IBM Spectrum Virtualize writes "A highly scalable product that is relatively easy to use and set up". On the other hand, the top reviewer of VMware vSAN writes "Gives us a lot of advantages when we need to expand resources". IBM Spectrum Virtualize is most compared with Dell VPLEX, VxRail, IBM Spectrum Scale, DataCore SANsymphony and Red Hat Ceph Storage, whereas VMware vSAN is most compared with VxRail, Microsoft Storage Spaces Direct, HPE SimpliVity, Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure (NCI) and Red Hat Ceph Storage. See our IBM Spectrum Virtualize vs. VMware vSAN report.

    We monitor all Software Defined Storage (SDS) 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.