The device works very well.
We like how we can report and access everything directly over the cloud.
The solution runs pretty fast.
Download the HPE Nimble Storage Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: August 2022
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HPE Nimble Storage was previously known as Nimble Storage.
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The device works very well.
We like how we can report and access everything directly over the cloud.
The solution runs pretty fast.
The solution requires a higher availability.
The pricing of the solution isn't ideal. They should work to make it more affordable. It's very expensive.
I'd like to be able to configure the solution from vCenter, which isn't possible right now.
It would be great if the solution offered even more integrations and plugins.
We've been using the solution for three years.
The solution is very stable. It's been working for three years, and we haven't had any errors. There aren't crashes. There isn't any bug or glitch that affects the way it functions.
The scalability is good. It's easy to expand the solution as needed.
We have around 1,000 people working with the solution currently. We use it quite extensively.
The technical support is really good. They give us adapted support and it's very helpful. We're satisfied with the level of support we get.
I have experience with a few different solutions. Nimble is quite a large solution that runs well without errors. One of its competitors, NetApp, is good but hard to configure. You need to really be an expert to configure it. With Nimble, you don't have to be overly technical.
I've also worked with Huawei devices in the past as well.
The solution has an easy initial setup. It was straightforward. We didn't find it to be complex. You don't need advanced knowledge, or to be an expert.
Deployment is pretty quick and takes just 25 minutes. It's really quite fast.
We had three team members deploy the solution. They also maintain it. They were all part of the administration team.
We were able to install the solution ourselves without any outside help. We didn't need any help from an integrator or consultant.
The solution is quite expensive. We can't really afford to buy a second device.
We've recently been looking at Pure Storage.
We're currently using model CS5000 and we're on version 5.05.200.
We are not yet on the cloud. We're on-premise. We installed it in our data center. In tests and features, they call it InfoSight. InfoSight collects logs and tries to send to the cloud. It's customizable, and it offers reports for you and any upgrade. It tries to give you information about your device.
I'd recommend the solution. I'd rate it nine out of ten.
We are a solution provider and Nimble is one of the storage products that we implement for our clients.
The most valuable feature is data mirroring.
The documentation is good.
Scalability, in terms of being able to scale out, is not easy and should be improved.
In the future, I would like to see the vendor upgrade the hardware.
I have been working with Nimble Storage for seven years.
This product is definitely stable and we use it on a daily basis.
Scaling up is easy, but scaling out is not easy.
We have a team of five people who are responsible for maintenance. There are a very large number of end-users.
I have never been in contact with technical support because we have sanctions that prohibit it. When I need assistance then I seek help in the community.
I have worked with other similar solutions and I find that there are no big differences between them.
The initial setup is very easy.
Once the solution has been delivered, I can set it up myself.
The pricing is better than some of the competitors, such as Dell EMC.
My advice for anybody who is implementing Nimble Storage is to perform a step-by-step deployment, and write down the steps as you go. This will ultimately save a lot of time if you experience any problems.
I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
Our primary use of this solution is to host business-critical applications in the cloud for customers.
We can have fewer resources manning and monitoring the storage and we can reallocate resources to work on other things while maintaining confidence in our storage solution.
We have successfully integrated various applications such as SAP Business One, Microsoft Dynamics GP, any of the ERP systems we have tried work.
The Nimble Storage solution has enhanced performance over the previous system.
I haven't got the details of the IOPS (Input/Output Operations Per Second) so I don't know it exactly, but definitely performance on the service is much better.
The most valuable feature for our organization is that the solution provides us access to the storage we need without having to have multiple storage experts on staff to address changing storage needs.
As far as what future versions of the product should include, I don't have any experience with what it is lacking. It is really up to the technical guys to determine what is potentially missing from the solution.
The uptime for the solution is excellent. So far, so good.
While we have not had the need to scale yet and we haven't utilized it, it does seem like the utility should scale up quite easily.
The storage capacity efficiency is decent. We get about 2.1 dedupe capabilities using the solution.
Our experiences with technical support have proven to be excellent so far.
We previously used a different solution and knew we needed to change our solution to provide storage for our virtualization. The storage solution we had previously could not provide this and so it was not adequate. It was a rented system from another company and we were not happy with the performance.
The initial setup was fairly straightforward. However, we did need to ask some questions to understand how they do the LANs and other technical details of it. There were no major stumbling blocks.
We didn't use a vendor or reseller to deploy. We implemented the solution ourselves.
Our return on investment appears to be excellent. The product delivers a lot of return to our company in various ways.
We purchased the solution for something in the $80,000 range. It was a fixed-price option.
We had a couple of options that we were considering before going with Nimble. We also looked at some of the offerings from Dell. I think those were the two main ones. There was a third one, Tintri, which we were not happy with because of their bankruptcy filings. Nimble was the leading option coming out of the gate and ended up being the solution we selected.
On a scale of one to ten, I would say this product is a nine. I think it does what it promises and support is decent. The only drawback I find is the size of the components. They never told us that the hardware has a large form factor and we were barely able to squeeze it into our older racks.
Storage is a critical piece of our business and, with a small team like the one that we have, Nimble ends up being a pretty good system that fits our need while lowering administrative needs.
For anyone considering this solution seriously, I would suggest you do your research with other competitors out there and look at what you are using, what type of infrastructure you have, as well as resources you have to support your system. Based on that, I would do a small POC (Proof of Concept). The flash version is more expensive, but I think you can get away with this with a hybrid model. The solution we chose is a hybrid system which we found to be just as good as the flash system. We have another system that is flash-only and the hybrid appears to behave just as well. We accomplished that by just adding 20% or so SSDs and doing that gave us what we needed to achieve similar performance.
We have feeds into HP that give us the Infosight analysis. However, I'm not sure if we're doing it proactively.
The all-flash solution could be considered as positioning our organization for growth, but we also have a hybrid system which we find just as good as the flash. Either would position us for growth compared to previous solutions.
Our primary use case if for our central data storage. This contains our files, financial services, and customer data.
We are a 24/7 operation, even though our corporate office is a typical Monday through Friday operation. It is vital that we have all of our data up and running, all of the time because a lot of our customers have what they call "volume runs" during the month. For example, one of our customers is subscription-based, so we have to run about three million packages during a two-week timeframe. All of the data has to be fully accessible and we can't afford to have any downtime.
This solution has increased our performance by ten to fifteen percent. From both an operational standpoint and management perspective, it is an improvement. It has also reduced costs and allowed us to allocate more towards other projects.
My engineers have said that this solution has improved our throughput. This has helped because when a customer comes up asked for a solution then we can guarantee it will actually meet the demand for their product or service.
The All-Flash storage positions us for growth because of the speed aspect. We have pool data that doesn’t have to be accessed quickly, but when it comes to other things then we are required to be on the spot. This is especially true for SQL databases.
The most valuable features of this solution are it's reliability and the redundancy that it provides. This is also a good product from a financial perspective.
The performance of this solution allows us to have real-time access for SQL databases.
I would like to see more advanced analytics in the next release of this solution. Perhaps it will help us to see things that we're not seeing already.
We have almost one hundred percent uptime. It seems very reliable and cost-effective, and it seems like it can be molded to any solution that you need.
From what I have heard, it is extremely scalable. It is interesting because you can start with a very small margin and expand to as high as you want, with very little effort on the side of the end-user.
Technical support for this solution is very good. It's always on-demand, and we never feel like we're too far off from getting support. It's always available when we need it, and you're getting a live person a lot faster than you would from other providers.
We did not use another solution prior to this one.
The initial setup of this solution was a lot more straightforward than we thought it was going to be.
We handled the deployment in-house.
The ROI from this solution comes from the savings in time, just from managing and keeping everything up and running. It also reduces the stress and burden on our database team.
We looked at providers other than HP, such as Pure Storage, but we don't like to be on the bleeding edge. We prefer to be with providers that have been stable and around for a long period of time.
This solution is efficient in more than one way. Not only is it high performing, but it is also more compact and fits better in our storage arrays than equipment from other storage providers. This helps out with space in the data center.
We have experienced an increase in performance of ten to fifteen percent.
This product has proven itself to be very reliable and we're looking forward to where it's going to take us in the future. Everything that they've told us it's going to do, it has done and exceeded.
The biggest lesson that I have learned is not to run at any solution that is already out there. Really dive into what it is that you need. Find out what your baseline is, and have a number in mind from a cost perspective. Then take a look at what your priorities are. Is it cost, or uptime, or perhaps having a reliable solution? Always define what your parameters are.
My advice to anybody considering a solution such as this is to always do your research. Look at everything, including peer evaluations, and always take your time. I have met a lot of people that try to rush into a solution and then end up finding stuff that they didn't think they needed. So, as much as possible, take your time and do your studies.
I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.
We have a primary data center, and then a secondary data center for our applications and our colo (colocation data center). Our financial and document management systems are on this platform.
This solution has given us reliability that is evident by the fact that it has been running for five years with virtually no hiccups.
InfoSight automatically predicted or resolved problems in your environment. It has given us insights with respect to our VM using more resources than we thought.
Our performance has increased by approximately ten to fifteen percent.
The most valuable features of this solution are the replication functionality and the snapshotting of the storage array.
InfoSight has been very useful because it gives me the ability to see what ones are actually working and how they’re functioning.
We use this for business-critical applications. Our financial and documentation management systems are on this platform.
An area that needs improvement is extending the life of the device after five years.
The solution is very good with respect to stability. The uptime is very good.
The scalability of this solution is moderate.
Storage capacity efficiency is very fitting for our company and our usage.
Technical support for this solution is good.
We implemented this solution because our legacy applications needed a better solution than we already had. We used to use the HP LeftHand Storage Array. Our performance has increased by approximately ten to fifteen percent.
The initial setup was very straightforward.
We deployed this solution ourselves.
We have seen ROI, but I do not have specific data points.
Our options were IBM and HP, and we found that HP was the better choice for us.
Using this solution has shown us some of the things that are possible, and what we can better improve on in the future.
Nimble Storage is a solution that I would recommend to anybody who is in the same kind of space as I am.
I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
Our primary use for this solution is SAN storage for virtual server workloads. We do not use cloud volumes.
This is a storage solution and while it is faster than our old storage platform, that in and of itself hasn't really improved any of the operational aspects of the company.
Performance has been restored to the same level of what we replaced, although it has taken six months of working with Hewlett Packard to allow them to understand our unique environment.
I don't think that it's fair to say that All-Flash is for growth. It's the next logical progression that we had to make.
I really like the form factor, which is nice and compact and small.
We do use Infosight, but it does not greatly affect us because we are one hundred percent Hyper-V, and the analytics are not yet released for that environment. I know that they are coming later this year.
The storage capacity efficiency is very good.
It would have been nice if the vendor had informed us of a known bug that occurred during the firmware upgrade because we could have prevented our only major failure.
I would like to see greater integration with Microsoft's Hyper-V platform. We are one hundred percent Hyper-V and no longer have use for the expensive VMware platform.
This solution is very stable. The uptime is excellent. We had only one major failure, and it was during the firmware upgrade. There was a known bug, and it would have been nice if they had told us because we could have prevented the failure.
Performance has been restored to the same level of what we replaced, although it has taken six months of working with Hewlett Packard to allow them to understand our unique environment.
This is a very scalable solution.
The support for this solution has been phenomenal.
We needed additional capacity and our old SAN solution was seven years old, at about end-of-life. We had been using a Dell Compellent, and it wasn't really suited for our type of workload.
The initial setup of this solution is very straightforward.
We handled the deployment in-house.
I would say that we have seen ROI, but the specifics are elusive because it was replacing an older, end-of-life platform.
There are no licensing costs for this solution.
The only vendor on our shortlist was Nimble. We had investigated them years ago because other sister companies within the community had already begun using them. We want to have a synergy with them.
The biggest lesson that I have learned from using this solution is to only make changes in maintenance windows, even when the engineers say that nothing will happen.
My advice to anybody who is implementing this solution is to go through a detailed sizing operation with HPE so that it can be appropriately scoped.
We do use this solution for business-critical applications but it is too broad and there are too many to name a specific example.
I like this product, but there is always room for improvement and nothing can be a ten.
I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
Secondary storage and supplemental primary storage are our use cases. We use Nimble for business-critical applications such as accounting, our in-house EPS platforms.
The InfoSight platform and the reporting help us to identify network issues and compatibility problems.
All-flash also positions our company for growth. We've deployed 3PAR all-flash for our core applications and will not transition outside of flash from this point forward.
Nimble has increased performance with better IOPS evaluation, mixed-load capacity. Also, it improves throughput which means we've been able to transition off of remaining rack mounts onto Nimble plus virtualization structure, in a cost-effective manner.
The solution's uptime is fantastic. It's 100 percent. In addition, Nimble's storage capacity efficiency is very effective.
I'm very impressed with the stability of the solution.
We haven't had to scale beyond our initial purchase.
We have used tech support. Nimble's technical support is excellent.
We previously used Dell EMC. We went to Nimble because of space-growth requirements.
The initial setup was straightforward. The platform is fairly intuitive with standardized SCSI configuration and it was up and running. The product was very self-explanatory so we were able to move it into production very fast.
We had install assistance from HPE, but they would probably not be required for further installs. Our experience with HPE's assistance was good.
We've seen ROI in the retirement of obsolete platforms, the reduction of the licensing cost of outside products, and by collapsing of other storage platforms into a single platform.
We looked at 3PAR, Tintri, Pure, and more. We chose Nimble because it was an HPE acquisition and due to familiarity with Nimble products.
My advice is that you bring it onsite and evaluate InfoSight's reporting.
The biggest lesson we've learned from using Nimble is that it provides better insight with a single pane of glass.
It's feature-complete for what we are looking for. I rate it a ten out of ten. We've been very happy with Nimble.
The primary use case is storage virtualization. We use it for public facing customer workloads.
We spend less time managing it.
The all-flash positions our organization for growth. It is much easier to use, and we do not have to worry about the I/O profile of the workloads that we putting on the array.
The solution has increased our throughput.
The way the market is going, supporting NVMe storage would be useful as a step up.
The stability of the solution is fantastic.
The uptime is great.
The scalability is good. It is easy to scale out.
The solution’s storage capacity efficiency is as good as anyone else's that I have seen.
We find the support is pretty good. It is pretty easy to get a hold of the support team. They generally know what they are talking about.
The storage that we had was going out of support. We previously used mostly HPE 3PAR. We switched to Nimble mostly because it was simpler to administer. Also, the scale that we needed in Nimble was probably better suited for us than the 3PAR systems.
The initial setup was pretty straightforward.
We deployed in-house.
I have not seen ROI.
The all-flash array has increased our performance. It has been good.
We buy the arrays outright, so we don't pay anything on an ongoing monthly basis for licensing.
We probably only looked at HPE and Nimble, and they are the same company now anyway.
If you are not going for the all-flash arrays, then try to understand your I/O profile and working set. That will help you with your sizing.
Performance is great. It is still reasonably expensive, but the product is good. It does what it needs to.
From an availability viewpoint, it provides us with confidence that applications will be available when they need to be.
It does what it says on its own.
We use it in small business setups with 10, 15, or 20 VMs per customer. Our entire system runs on Nimble Storage, e.g., Windows Active Directory, Windows Servers, and WEP.
Everything is just faster. Though, it is not necessarily required for the deployment that we do. It just gives us a bit of that extra speed.
InfoSight has helped us resolved an issue where the snapshots were growing too big.
Speed versus storage space is the most valuable feature.
I don't think it is officially released yet, but the main reason that we chose Nimble is because of the sync rep feature. So, I would like to see that further evolve. This feature will be essential for our setups.
The stability is good. I have no issues.
The uptime is good. I can update without any downtime, so that is good.
The scalability is average. We had a unit that wasn't that old, which we couldn't extend anymore.
The solution’s storage capacity efficiency is good.
The technical support is awesome.
When it came to renewal, the requirements are based on customer demands and projects.
The initial setup is always easy. It was easy before it was part of HPE, so I am happy that they took this with them.
We deployed in-house.
The solution has increased performance.
Our hybrid solution could do with some more competitive pricing and more scaled-down deployments. Already, the smallest one is too much for us. We would flourish by having a smaller unit.
If you don't go cheap, it is eventually worth it. However, the initial investment is high.
We looked at Nimble and NetApp.
I have had some bad experiences previously with the performance of the NetApp units, which is the reason that we went with Nimble.
Go with Nimble if you want the best.
It is reliable, the support is good, and it provides us with good performance.
The primary use case is production storage. We run ERP applications, as an example, of our business-critical applications.
There has been no downtime, which is probably the best thing.
We use InfoSight predictive analytics. It helps us from a performance perspective by identifying potential bottlenecks.
InfoSight has identified controller failures or performance issues.
Performance and support are its most valuable features.
The uptime has been solid.
The stability is excellent.
The scalability is good. We bought it in such a way that we could add disk to it, so we provided foresight into our purchase anyway.
The solution’s storage capacity efficiency is good. The new solution is doing deduplication now, as well as compression. The old solutions could only do compression, so it has been good that way.
All-flash positions our organization for growth. Our last solution did not.
The technical support is excellent. My team is extremely happy with Nimble Support and InfoSight.
We had performance issue on our previous solution (AF3000).
The initial setup was straightforward because we have a rep who we have dealt with for six to seven years.
We used a reseller, CDW, for the deployment. Our experience with CDW was good, but it was our Nimble HPE rep who really did the work.
The solution has doubled our performance, which is why we upgraded.
The solution has improved our throughput, keeping applications responsive.
It is a CAPEX investment. Over the anticipated lifespan, I would say the pricing is $10,000 a month.
The price has room for improvement.
Pure Storage and Nimble were on our shortlist.
We chose Nimble because they were the incumbent. We had a good experience with them. They have good support. Ultimately, they had the better price.
We receive great support. We have had no unplanned downtime.
Our experience with the product has been excellent.
We use it to extend the data center a little further. We have videos which are very large in size and which cannot be compressed. We ran out of space in the data center so we moved the media data center and expanded it. The videos are a business-critical application. We provide videos for students to access 24/7.
We feel that we can rely on this solution more for the business-critical applications we have, compared to what we had earlier.
Also, the all-flash positions our organization for growth. Video quality keeps increasing. From 4K we are now moving to 8K and we expect that the size of each video file is going to grow very high. So our data size is increasing very fast.
In addition, we have noticed that the solution has increased performance.
We like the performance.
I would like to see more integrations. They might already have them, but I want to integrate it with the different hardware we have.
We moved to this solution for the stability. We had an HPE consultant configuring it and we went through some of those features that it enables. We also like the cloud-ready portion and when we move to the cloud that will be used as another factor in justifying our decision.
In terms of scalability, when I said "cloud," that was one of the things that we looked at when considering how we would grow, how we would expand. We are still evaluating. We do have some cloud storage, but we want to have one solution for that. We definitely think that with this product's features, we can go into the cloud and scale to whatever we like.
Technical support has been good so far. We had one issue up til now, but we are good. They took care of it.
We had legacy storage and my team recommended that we had to move to something new.
The initial setup was straightforward. We estimated, in the beginning, that we could do it over the weekend, and it went as we planned. We didn't see any issues.
We had an HPE consultant. Our experience was good.
We haven't evaluated ROI yet.
We had Dell EMC, as well as the company that was originally Sun Microsystems. We also had a couple of startups. We went with HPE mostly because of the familiarity and because my team recommended it because of its performance.
We like the flexibility. Anybody who is looking for a product that is easy to use and deploy, this is good.
I do need to evaluate the security aspect of it, especially intelligence to counter any unpredictable growth. I would also like to see how to use the storage space efficiently, because we do, at times, suddenly come across big videos.
It is our primary source platform. It underlines all of our Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 applications. We use hybrid, not flash.
It has reduced the requirement to have a specialist storage engineer.
InfoSight has allowed us to centralize our management, understanding how it correlates to the array. It has identified a network issue in the network configuration of ESXi hosts. It enables us to get servers back up faster by 25 percent.
It has stabilized throughput and provided less downtime for our applications.
I would like to have integration into cloud providers, apart from HPE.
The release cycle for the firmware upgrades could be improved. They are a bit long.
It's very stable. It is 100 percent up.
It's very scalable. We can scale it up and down.
We haven't had to increase capacity.
The technical support is fantastic.
The existing SAN was no longer a fit for purpose.
The initial setup was incredibly simple. It was up and running within half an hour.
We deployed it in-house.
It has increased our performance and allowed us to expand out what we can deliver.
Definitely, give the product a go and do a PoC.
It fits my needs perfectly.
Biggest lesson learnt: Sometimes, the simplest solution is actually a complex solution.
In our company, it is the back-end storage for virtual machines and file storage.
On our website, there are many different business-critical things running.
We migrated from a hybrid cloud to an all-flash. We have seen our average latency go from four milliseconds to point four. Therefore, we are getting 10 times better performance down to the end user on everything. We have seen an increase in our IOPS by ten times.
Infosight is good. We watch the capacity side of it. That is about all we have seen on there. InfoSight does allow us to get servers back up faster. We run a lot of virtual servers, so it is about ten times faster from deploying until it is up.
I want to see the full integration with OneView. I know they have started it, but I haven't had a chance to look at and evaluate it.
Uptime has been a 100 percent in our environment.
The product is very stable. There was some concern about HPE buying Nimble, but I think that it has gone okay, so far.
It is very scalable.
The deduplication of all-flash enables you to grow without having to actually grow the storage. That piece of the all-flash enables you to really grow, not having to keep growing in the racks.
The technical support is very good.
We came from a spinning SAN to hybrid SAN to all-flash. We just followed that path.
We moved to all-flash because we were pushing the latency of the hybrid so far it was unusable.
The initial setup was very easy. I don't even know if we had to look at documentation, except in the very beginning, where we have to consult in. The solution provided what we needed to set it up.
We did it ourselves.
The solution has improved our throughput, because when we move large data it is just that much faster.
Every user is ten times faster at doing whatever work they're doing.
Performance per dollar, when we looked at it, was the highest that we could get for what we needed.
We evaluated other competitors (Pure Storage and NetApp), and it came down to cost per a dollar of what you could get.
Pure Storage had better deduplication rates, but it just cost three times more.
The product comes down to budget, I/O, and the use case that you need.
It is really efficient in the size that it is.
Biggest lesson learnt: All-flash matters.
The primary use case is to monitor my storage.
We are in radiology. Although most of our radiologists just read x-rays, there are moments when it is STAT read, where they have to read things ASAP. This applies to the emergency room and emergency departments. Sometimes, things need to be read, and it is a matter of life or death. This can also apply to cancers, detections, etc. Therefore, we need to make sure the storage stays up, and it is working. Then, our radiologists can do their job.
For us, it is about speed and stability. There are a lot of redundancies in place. I am able to access what I need to access.
Our situation is sort of unique. We need fast disk for compute, but then we also need more traditional disk for our images. Having Nimble, where I can have both fast and traditional disk in one pane, and still see everything, is pretty awesome.
We use InfoSight for predictive analysis because the answer to most of our problems is that, "It isn't our problem." However, we are being blamed for it. Thus, I can get my answers improved by using InfoSight that it isn't us causing the problem by going into it. For example, one of our applications was acting weird, and we had the application vendor on. They really couldn't answer much. As one of my troubleshoot methods, I said, "Let me check InfoSight." I logged in, and I could see a VM that was heavily pegged and almost in a critical-like status. That VM was the reason why the issue was the way it was. Now, It wasn't because of our infrastructure set up, it still was an application issue, but I was able to pinpoint exactly what it was based off of that.
That application with problems had about 30 servers. As I'm not an application vendor, I don't know which servers serve what purpose within the application. I was able to go into InfoSight, and it told me that one in particular needed to be worked on, so I didn't have to waste time looking at the other 29 servers. Therefore, I knew that one was the one that we work on, and that is the one that needs to be fixed.
We use a platform as a service and have multiple application vendors who comprise that platform. There are moments when those application vendors put the blame on us. By working in InfoSight, I am able to say, "No, it is not us." I can actually provide proof, either by using screenshots or through reporting.
I wish they would put the InfoSight page back the way it was. I got in it for the first time about two years ago, and it looked the same for about a year and a half. Then, about six months ago, it changed. There are different options now. I can still get to where I need to go, but it feels like it takes longer, where before it didn't. Also, I felt like I had a lot more options before. I have to do a lot more to digging now to get to where I need to go. I just wish they had their old page back.
There are a lot of redundancies in all the right areas, so it is pretty stable.
I get alerts, email, and texts that I regularly check a couple of times a day.
I check the solution's storage capacity a couple times a day. One of the tasks in the morning is someone on my team will go in and take a screenshot of exactly what our capacity is at the moment. Then, we are able to do trend analysis and some forecasting of when we think our capacity is going to be close to maximum or not.
I have already already grown it and added an extra array earlier last year. I still have room for more. So, the scalability is pretty good.
This solution is not for growth, but it can grow. We have the capability to grow, but we're not there yet.
I rarely call the technical support, but when I do, they are good.
We did not have a previous solution.
The initial setup was straightforward. It is a lot of plug and play. Although, there was a diagram of instructions, which was maybe one sheet long. So, it was easy. A lot of that stuff was already ready for me.
When I scaled up, the system came to me, and I did it myself.
We do use a reseller, Logicalis.
We are still too new with our product to know what the ROI is.
The solution has improved our throughput.
We looked at other storage companies. The fact that I can incorporate both flash and spin into one pane, look at Nimble and still get solutions. For me, it was a no-brainer.
This was the discovery phase. We vetted out quite a few storage arrays. This one was the one that we all came in agreement with.
We looked at Hitachi and Pure Storage. The reason why Pure Storage was removed from our list was because they only offered flash. We needed both flash and spin.
At my previous place of employment, I mentioned to my previous boss about this solution because it would have been good at my prior place of employment. They were in a similar situation. They had flash, spinning disks, etc. However, they used Pure Storage, Hitachi, and even some Dell EMC. When you have so many different arrays, or so many different companies, that you have to work with, it is very easy when there is a problem for a vendor to point their finger at another vendor. For a better chance of a successful integration, keep the products (and vendors) down to a minimum.
I don't really have to do a whole lot to it. Plug it in, and it does its job successfully.
The performance was already good. This isn't a reactionary, but being proactive. We are doing these measures to ensure that we don't have an issue.
The biggest lesson learned is to keep using Nimble.
We have type of a private cloud-hosted solution in our data center. Nimble allows incredibly, fast data access for our SAN to our hypervisors and cluster. Nimble is just so good at what they do as far as the adaptive and hybrid flash stuff. We have two arrays: We have an adaptive and hybrid.
We have a lot of healthcare clients. We have some who are in surgery at five in the morning. We are running these pretty heavy, intensive databases and SQL servers on the Nimble (or which are pulling off the Nimble). Having that type of server pinned to a specific volume, then having that volume accessible and prioritized over the other data which is on there, that is super helpful. This is why we like Nimble and what they do.
We want rock solid stability, making sure all of our customers have complete 100 percent uptime, which is our goal. Nimble achieves that pretty well.
InfoSight is a regular part of our weekly routine. We don't use it every single day, but we do check in on things every once in a while. Luckily, with Nimble, you can forget it and you don't really have to worry about it. However, if we do need to look into an issue, we definitely use InfoSight.
InfoSight has increased the availability of analytics and our ability to quickly get to them. We can migrate things faster. We can pull stuff out of production. We can restore from backups more quickly with the Nimble system than anything else.
We have had a couple of networking issues, temperature alarms, and a few things in our data center going on where InfoSight will scale back our utilization (or whatever) in order to keep us productive and up.
InfoSight has enabled us to get our servers back up faster, especially on the back-end. We have instant recovery. We are able to access that fast storage within seconds, which is very helpful. It enabled us to get service back up in a minute and a half.
The solution has improved our throughput tremendously. It has been on-demand access with 10 gig fiber. The disks, even though some of them are spinning discs, are rated, or in Nimble's little custom config in the way that it hits the cache first, then throws it off to the cold later. This is perfect, and it is great. It has improved everything.
The way that it optimizes the hot data versus cold data is really what Nimble does super well.
I would like deduplication by default on all the volumes. I still don't understand (or know why) dedupe isn't enabled for the templates out-of-the-box. We have to go in and manually enable it each and every time. It might help to have a software revision for something like this, or even a more intuitive local dashboard, not InfoSight, but Nimble's local dash. That would be great.
The UI and local dash need improvement. They have changed it around a little bit between firmware upgrades. When you do that, things are out of place and not where they used to be. There is also some granular nitty-gritty analytics that we would like to get down into deeper, like when you view volumes, you have percent-free space, and the ability to sort those volumes by the percentage or sort by the amount of data: the megabytes, gigabytes, etc. That is no longer available in the new UI. I would love to see that improved, where you can sort down the list.
While InfoSight is very useful, if you widen your scope of range when you're trying to look at a month of reports, the averaging that it does sort of skews things a bit. If you drill down further into a day or hour, it looks a lot better. I wish they would have a chart or GUI that didn't average as heavily, just giving you minute spikes and things that you could see on a wider view.
The stability is awesome. The product has always been reliable. It has been 100 percent up. We have never had any downtime with it. Even if a controller fails due to our firmware or whatever, it rolls over to the second one and keeps us running.
Outside of the outages which are beyond Nimble, such as power issues in the data center or heat. Nothing has been an issue with the Nimble product.
The scalability is awesome. We have the potential for multiple petabytes moving forward. While we don't take advantage of that right now, as we only have maybe 400 to 500 terabytes, the scalability (and the ability to add a shelf dynamically by just throwing it in there and adding it to the pool) is simple and easy. We already did this with our CS300, and it turned out real well.
Nimble's support is awesome and one of the best. You sort of get a Tier 3 plus guy every time that you call, no matter if it is a Tier 0 issue. This is super helpful in case we ever have problems.
The technical support never has anything that they can't solve for us. I have thrown everything at them that I could, and they are always on top of it.
We were running out of space. The ability to compress and dedupe stuff with Nimble is unmatched.
Coming off old Dell EMC PowerVaults and our own custom SAN solution that that we had running with storage, it has changed our entire ecosystem dramatically with the fast access times and the 10 gig fiber coming off of it. There is just nothing like it. The access times are less than two milliseconds.
We keep our latency super low, even with 200 plus servers on it, which has really changed the ball game. Access to that data used to be a lot slower. Now, it's not, which is great.
The initial setup is very straightforward. I set up one last week, and you plug in your basic information for the array: The name and IPs, then you add it to your group, defining where you want it to point to. It's simple. It took me about 10 minutes to get everything up and rolling with the new HF.
We used a reseller, Flair Data Systems, out of Colorado Springs for our deployment. Flair has been awesome. They are partners for a lot of other things, as well as Nimble products.
We have seen tremendous ROI. It pays for itself 10 times over in the matter of four years.
The solution has increased our performance. We have about 20 times the IOPS that we use to, which was a huge selling point for us. We don't even use close to the amount that it is capable of handling, but it is certainly 20 times faster than what we had before.
We looked at Dell EMC, Nimbus, and Nimble.
Nimble just stuck out of the pack. The demo that they gave us years ago was really what sold it. We have a reseller who we work with, and we are a partner with them for other things. We do networks for them, and they do other system switching for us. The reseller had a Nimble and demonstrate it to us, which made the deal right there. It wasn't Nimble who did the demo, it was the reseller, and the reseller really came through.
Try it out. Demo it. Just have somebody put it in front of you, so you can poke around and demonstrate how it works with a real environment. Check out a Hyper-V or VMware. VMware is a lot more integrated with Nimble than Hyper-V. Live migrate your stuff. Move your stuff. Send backups to it. Send it over across the wire to a DR. Everything just works, and that is what we want.
It has been rock solid, 100 percent on time, and we have never had any issues with it.
We receive about a 2.4x compression rate, even on our old HPE CS300. With the new HF-Series, we will probably achieve a lot more than that because they have a lot of deduplication, etc. Unfortunately, we just deployed that last week. So, we are still in the trial process with it.
All-flash is coming down the pipeline. We don't have all-flash yet. We have all hybrid arrays. We are moving in that direction probably within the next two years or so.
We don't utilize any public cloud or HPE cloud stuff yet.
Biggest lesson learnt: Always go with a great vendor that has a great product.
We use it for all of our storage, backups, and our user storage. Everything goes onto it. We have gone from multiple devices down to a single Nimble.
It hosts all of our databases for all of our servers. It hosts the servers themselves and our GFS retention jobs. It hosts everything that is critical for our business.
We went from hosting a lot of our external storage on ten different NASs. Now, we have all of our storage on a Nimble. Previously, we had three or four chassis just full of stuff. We consolidated our server space down to 25 percent of what it used to be, just from storage.
It is because of the way Nimble handles that storage. It can compress it down, making it smaller for us.
On some of our backup jobs, we are getting a dedupe rate of 11 to 13 times. Nimble is taking up a minuscule amount of actual raw storage for backups, etc.
Data management has improved vastly. We have gone from multiple devices down to a single device, making management much simpler. Previously, you could spend hours just going from one device to another, and now, it is all in a central location.
It has improved the throughput because of how the device interconnects with our network. It has 10 gig connections to the network and also multiple 8 gig connections through our Brocade switches back to the server farm. From just the sheer number of connections that it makes onto the network and devices, the throughput is staggering.
We have over 100 terabytes of storage, and it is all solid state. That is pretty valuable for everything we do.
The build alone is amazing and the way everything is modular. It's swapable.
The storage capacity efficiency is phenomenal. It is off the charts in comparison to the compression ratios that we got before. We are able to save a lot more to the device.
I would like to see the network portion of the product improve, especially with some of the things which are coming out from Aruba and HPE. Both are innovating more of an automated networking. I would like to see our Nimble meld into that and do some automated networking.
The product is up 99.99 percent of the time, and it just stays up. We have it on multiple power supplies. The product runs constantly. When there is a problem, it notifies you of the problem.
We have never had any critical failures with it. It is always up. Every time a single component is broken, it has been repaired within 24 hours.
The parts are hot swapable. We just get a part in the mail, and we are good to go. You literally walk in, pull one out, and put a new one in, then the thing is running again.
The scalability is great. We just scaled up. We just bought the additional hard drive array for it, and we love it.
I don't think we are even utilizing 50 percent of the all-flash. We intentionally bought that anticipating growth.
Nimble is scalable and modular enough that you can take whatever solutions that you had in the past, pull those all together, and put them into a Nimble. It does all the things that we did before in a single package.
The technical support is awesome. They are actually monitoring the device. When we have had a hard drive failure, we have found that we come into work, and they are notifying us that a hard drive failed overnight. We haven't even had a chance to look at it yet.
The former CIO hadn't upgraded anything in almost 20 years. Everything that we had was completely outdated. We wanted to move to a more efficient solution for our on-premise stuff. We were also looking into things with the cloud, but that doesn't have a lot to do with Nimble, per se. We just needed to modernize.
We had all on-premise bare metal servers. We got rid of it four years ago, when they were still doing their backups to tape. This is why when we went to the Nimble. We cut our use of space down to about 25 percent.
Our other systems administrator dealt with the integration of the product.
I think we used an integrator and a consultant. They were on campus for about five days, helping us integrate everything and move everything over.
For education, ROI is pretty hard to determine. However, that was part of the finance portion. Our chief financial officer sat down and did an ROI on it and came to the same conclusion that we did: Nimble is the right choice for us.
We are paying for the licensing yearly.
We had Dell EMC, Nimble, and 3PAR come out. Our partner is Logicalis, and they set up all these interviews for us. We interviewed them one at a time. With our partner, we came to the decision that Nimble was the right choice for us.
There is nothing like it that we can buy that even comes close to this product. We looked at five different products, then we decided to go with Nimble. It is hands down the best device that was available to us.
I would definitely point a colleague toward the Nimble product. Most of my peers are also at universities, and the product fits perfectly into what we are trying to do. As another administrator at another university, it will be key to what they are doing.
It has met all of our needs. We haven't had any issues.
They have been consistently innovating stuff and seeing it before we even think of the possible outcomes. We are consistently shocked by what is coming out.
We do HIPAA compliance as a university. Part of that compliance has to do with how we back up employee files, which we do on the cloud, but we don't use the Nimble for that.
InfoSight. It's AI for the data center. It's very easy. It does a lot of the work for the customer. That is why HPE bought InfoSight, so they could deploy it across all their other platforms as well. It's a big game-changer. It's one of the easiest things to talk about when you're working with a customer. Customers don't want to do a whole lot of troubleshooting themselves, and with InfoSight and the whole system, it helps to deal with all these issues.
From what I've seen personally, customers that have Nimble don't really switch away from it. When newer versions come out, they usually have everything in terms of all the support and all the additional components that might be needed to help.
With the newest models, you're getting decompression and dedupe on some of the entry-level models, and this fixes a lot of issues for customers. Therefore, I am not hearing anything at this point. They just released the newest version, and so far, it's going well.
It is a scalable product. They just released Gen 5 a couple weeks ago, and there's a lot of ability, depending on the need.
They have very good, high-level support. You deal with Level 3 technicians, so that is a key takeaway. Customers don't want to be triaged, jump from here to there, and be in the line for X amount of time. They want things done, and they want them done now. With Nimble, in my experience with it, this is where they has been beneficial.
For the Nimble product line, support is very strong. There is a lot of different information, but you get a lot of support with Nimble, and Level 3 technical support is a huge benefit for customers. Especially knowing that you receive it right off the bat, as opposed to going through all the stages. Support, coupled with the InfoSight, triages a lot of their issues.
I did not set it up myself, but based on conversations with some of our solution architects, it seems like it's a straightforward setup: out-of-the-box and easy to deploy.
I have had a lot of personal success with it. Our organization has had a lot of success with it. It has a very straightforward presentation. It does the job for a lot of customers, and it's a great enterprise solution for many of them.
We use Nimble for our virtualized workloads.
We have been using it close to three years. Therefore, it was even before the HPE acquisition of Nimble that we started using it.
It has been performing well so far. Initially, we purchased Nimble for low-end or less critical workloads, and it has started to evolve. Now, it is right up there with our Tier-Two storage for CO3 and CO4 level workloads.
We have lost that dependency with traditional data center architecture where you have your storage team and server team. Now, our virtual admins are able to take control of Nimble and know how to allocate the storage, whenever it is required, thus reducing time.
The most valuable feature is InfoSight, and the ability that InfoSight gives you, from insight within your environment to what is going on at the storage layer. Also, since we use this product integrated with VMware, we are able to have a view of our virtual infrastructure segregated up to the VM level. We are able to see where the most IOPS are located, etc. Therefore, we are able to prevent and predict where things are going well or badly.
The solution that I have is a hybrid, not a full flash. The hybrid version could be improved.
Stability has not been an issue at all. We have not had a major issue nor downtime which has occurred with Nimble. Whenever we have code updates, you have high availability between your controllers, which is good.
With scalability, we had to replace one of our controllers to upgrade CPU in cache. In the case of something like this, as long as the team is able to manage it within a scheduled downtime window, it is pretty simple.
Technical support is good. We recently use them. There was a bug on the latest firmware release. So, we had to call and see what was going on. There were some features that were enabled recently that were affecting read IOPS or how the way read IOPS are managed. It was simple fix. They just gave us what we needed to do and what we needed to change, then we applied the changes.
We were looking for something where the cost would not be as high as what we were used to with traditional storage arrays. Even so, it has been on par in terms of performance, even though the price was lower, with what we had with other arrays.
The initial setup was straightforward. The initial setup took a little bit over a week because we were in the learning phase.
We have other arrays, like VNX or HDS from Hitachi. Complexity-wise, this product (Nimble) is simpler and nimbler to set up.
We recently implemented smaller Nimble boxes or arrays for an isolated environment, which was set up by me, within one or two days.
We have not quantified it. However, with the capabilities on compression, we have seen a lot of VMs running because probably 80 to 95 percent of the data is the same. Therefore, we are able to get a good compression ratio. Because of this, I think we have saved a lot compared to a traditional storage array.
We had also shortlisted EMC. We initially went with Nimble because of price, but later figured out the other benefits.
It is a good investment, especially on virtualized workloads. We have seen a lot of benefit there. We have not used it for other types of virtual workloads, both mixed workload applications and databases.
For my new company, we bought tens of them, almost 50. Our use case is to swap out the existing FCoE infrastructure from one of the other array providers and switch to Nimble because we were having performance issues. And the use case is more for our KSN databases. We chose Nimble because we need high performance, low latency, and a good price for SSD. We PoC'ed, and they won.
It makes things less complex. It's a simple product and does what it's supposed to do.
Regarding InfoSight, I have installed eight of them out of the 50 units we bought, and we have found, with the analysis, bad drives and we have been able to figure it out ourselves.
It's easy to use, it's just like 3PAR. I made clusters of 32 hosts with 50 volumes and that took barely an hour. I scripted a lot of it, filled in the names of volumes, the names of servers. It just spit it out and ran it and it was fine.
I want it to be an active-active array. Nimble would be great as an active-active array because then everything checks out. It would give a feeling of comfort.
We've only had it for about a month so I can't really comment on the stability. It hasn't been that long.
We bought our Nimbles half-populated on the A-side, so I have scalability right there. If I wanted to add more drives, I would just populate the B-side. It scales from 9.60 all the way to 7.60 now (or is it 3.68?) - I'm not sure. That is a 4x difference. But thinking about scalability, we're getting dedupe ratios of a minimum of 15 all the way up to 700.
Tech support goes above and beyond. We had to downgrade one of them because we want to be on the stable release, not necessarily the cutting edge. I called up and they showed up and did it for me, no issues. It's pretty good.
We had 10 requirements and they filled most if not all the checkboxes, except for the active-active controller piece.
Setting up Nimble is easy. It takes five minutes. You run "Setup" and that is it. Put an IP on and it's ready to go.
Other arrays are 2x if not 3x the price.
EMC, NetApp, and Pure storage too.
Do the hard work and it pays for itself. Do a PoC and, when you check your requirements, it will fill in most of them if not all.
This solution is a nine out of 10 because it's not active-active. If it was active-active it would be a 10 because the data reduction is so good it's ridiculous.
It's an adjunct storage repository and it compliments our 3PAR solution. We currently use it as a file store for backup, file, and compute storage workloads.
As an adjunct to our 3PAR platform, which is currently at capacity, it assists us in delaying the renewal of our 3PAR. It's an additional service on top of our storage solutions.
Something I would like to see is more clarity regarding the positioning of Nimble versus 3PAR. I am struggling with the boundaries within which these two are competing.
I can't comment on scalability just yet. I've just bought three of them, and I've got another five on order, but I am architecting it on a scale set at the moment.
I had capacity issues, and my scale-out of existing solutions was not viable, so I had to look for something new. I was forced into a Nimble purchase through an acquisition that we made, so I became familiar with the product and then decided to expand the product.
I use it as a rudimentary backup, so it's not the most effective use for the hybrid storage solution that we bought. I have bought an All-Flash for some virtual workloads, and that was quite a cost-effective solution for us.
I think good evaluation criteria include checking the scalability of the product. I also think the reporting aspect of it is very complete.
I would rate it at eight out of 10, and the reason for that is it's not as flexible a storage solution as the current versions of 3PAR.
We use Nimble to virtualize all of our applications. For the hypervisor we use VMware. We use Nimble for the storage platform for the hypervisor.
It's been performing amazingly.
Our organization functions very similarly to how it had operated prior to Nimble, but our applications are more responsive. The time it takes to produce some reports - specifically our year-end accounting reports which, sometimes, could take a half a day to produce - now, with Nimble on the backside, with the high I/O that it has, we're finding that we're reducing the time to process these reports by up to 70 to 80 percent. It's a significant improvement.
InfoSight provides real-time reporting, it gives you information about your different volumes, how the arrays are being used, I/O, performance in general. That's where we find value in it as well.
What I have seen so far has been sufficient for our needs.
Scalability is another reason we chose to go with Nimble: upgrading to another storage array. If we need higher capacity or throughput, we can just replace controllers, we don't have to replace or forklift-upgrade the whole chassis.
I've used their technical support once. They contacted me, proactively. It was a positive experience. We were there doing some regular maintenance and accidentally pulled a 10-gig module and, while we were swapping it, and thought we had done it right, the array went offline for about 20 or 30 seconds. They let us know that there was something wrong pretty quickly. That was pretty awesome.
We were previously a Dell EqualLogic shop for some 15 years. In fact, we still have them in production. Since the acquisition of EqualLogic by Dell, the product doesn't seem to be increasing in technology as we would have hoped, as had happened previously. I had always had my eye on Nimble anyway and was waiting for the right opportunity. That opportunity came, and I already knew what I wanted. I jumped ship and we're going full speed ahead with Nimble.
We're transitioning everything over to Nimble because of the high performance we get out of it and the ease of use. From a supportability standpoint, it's a lot simpler. The Nimble people seem to detect when things have problems before we report that there's an issue.
We needed a vendor that would come in at a similar price point, which they did. But we needed to have a better way of doing disaster recovery. That was probably the primary objective, how we would handle that going forward. The way we did Snapshotting, the old Dell EqualLogic way, was somewhat bloated, took up a lot of space and required a lot of free array space. With Nimble, a lot of those limitations didn't exist. Also, obviously, compatibility with hypervisors was important, and Nimble is compatible with all of them.
We absolutely already see a return on investment. There's definitely value in it. Not only from the increase in productivity for the users using the applications that Nimble is hosting, but from an IT standpoint, expanding the volumes, regular maintenance, adding, it's just very simple to use.
We have only had it a short period of time, so it's hard to tell if it has affected our IT operation expenses yet. Maybe it has a little bit.
We did consider other vendors. Ultimately, I had had my eye on Nimble for a long time, and I had already researched it, had done my homework on it, and was just waiting for the right opportunity.
From a virtualized infrastructure standpoint, I would advise that, if you are looking for a high-performing storage array - not necessarily long-term storage because the price per gig is pretty expensive on an all-flash array. But, application performance, database performance, if you're running Exchange environments, SQL environments, If you're doing that type of stuff, then Nimble is a good match for that type of workload.
I would definitely and easily rate Nimble a 10 out of 10.
It has improved our ability to deliver care to patients quickly. Our previous arrays, they were having a lot of slowness issues and that was impacting the way that our providers were giving patient care. It has really helped us keep up and keep our users happy, and keep our patients safe and healthy.
Ease of installation, it's very easy to set up, to get up and running. It works well, I don't have any issues with it. Also, they have unparalleled customer support. You call in and you talk to a technician who knows what he's doing and can typically solve your problem on that call.
I use InfoSight quite a bit. It works well. It allows you to get some insight into what's happening in your environment immediately, instead of having to send things off and having them analyzed and sent back to you.
The only thing I'm really looking for in my next array is some hyperconverged, so if they had something in that space... But I know they have SimpliVity so that is probably not going to happen.
It's very stable. As far as staying up, we're a hospital, we run 24/7, 365 days a year. We can't afford to be down and it has been completely stable. Even through upgrades, there is no downtime, not even a hiccup for users.
I don't know how far up it scales. It certainly scales up far enough for our needs. We're not a huge environment so it meets all of our needs.
With the array we had, the maintenance contract was over and it was going to cost us a lot to continue support on it. Plus, we were having a lot of latency issues with it and a lot of complaints from users. We had a lot of support calls. We did a PoC on the Nimble and we were able to immediately show that it would improve our performance.
Our criteria when evaluating vendors include ease of use, something with a good management interface that doesn't require plug-ins or Java or Flash, so having the HTML5 interface was ideal. I really looked for something that would give me insight into what was happening on the array in my stack. With other arrays I've had in the past, it was really hard to pinpoint whether it was a storage issue, or a server issue, or a network issue. I also wanted an all-flash solution because I had tried some tiered storage before and it never seemed to have the data in the right tier. I had flash storage but what needed to be running fast wasn't in flash, it was on SATA and performance would take a hit.
We went with Nimble because it fit all our criteria. Also, the sales team was great and the fact that they offer free training is awesome. There are not very many vendors that do that. Doing our PoC really proved that it was the product that we needed to fill our needs.
The setup was very straightforward. It was the quickest array I've ever set up in my life. Other systems, I sometimes spent a month getting them up and configured. With help from support and technicians onsite, my SE from Nimble came out, I had it up and running in 10 minutes and moved production loads over to it.
We saw a really quick return on investment with it because of the issues that we were having. We were able to reduce our support calls by about 70 percent. And on top of that our staff's time - the ability to take care of patient faster. I would say within three months or we got ROI on it.
Look at the portfolio and decide what meets your needs because there is a wide range of performance that you can get out there. I've been burned before, a little bit, on some of the lower-performance arrays. You get them in there and within three months you have already maxed out the performance. So make sure you buy what you need. Get something that's going to be upgradable and last.
Nimble has really met all of our needs and at a price we could afford. It certainly wasn't as expensive as a lot of other all-flash solutions that we could have bought. It does what we need it to do. It's expandable, everything is built into it, you don't have to go by other agents to do things, the replication is built in.
Nimble is a secondary VMware environment in our organization, so it's not running mission-critical applications at this point or responsible for complex business needs.
When we initially bought it, Nimble helped improve our organization as that was when we went through and we virtualized everything. Nimble was the back-end SAN for everything.
Now that it's owned by HPE, all of my SANs are under one support organization.
I haven't thought about what I might want to see in a future release mainly because we're trying to figure out where we want to head next: if we want to go with the Synergy system or if we want to continue down the hyperconverged path.
I haven't had a service call on it for three years. I would say that is pretty good.
We were able to take on and add the second one with the first one fairly easily. The second one was actually in Cincinnati and we brought it to Arizona. We had them separated and now they're co-joined.
We haven't needed any technical support on the two Nimble SANs that we've had, for the last three years.
They're now coming up on six or seven years old. I think we got our money's worth.
I would rate Nimble an eight out of 10, with cost probably being the big factor. It was a little on the pricey side at the time that it was bought. I came in late to the game, it was already in place when I got to the company. But, going back over the documentation, it was probably a little pricey.
I feel most IT consultants, traditionally, would consider Nimble a mid-line or a starter-line, but I feel that they operate in an enterprise-class. I believe that especially their All Flash Arrays that came out, that was their new adaptation from their hybrid. We use an AF5000 in our environment, and we're getting almost 20-to-one performance compared to what we had with our traditional legacy stack, the EMC VMAX 10K.
I think HPE is headed in the right direction. From what I know, their management is actually putting Nimble on the forefront to be the leader, and I think that's where it belongs. To stay ahead of the game, they need to put Nimble in front and stay there, and ride that horse throughout.
It is stable for us, from a hardware standpoint.
We have been fortunate enough to deal with still with the Nimble engineers and not had to transfer over to HPE. Now if you were to ask me about the HPE support on the SimpliVity stack, I would have to say "failure to deliver."
It was actually one of the bleeding edge technologies we reviewed over the legacy stack that we were dealing with traditionally. We used EMC in the past from a spindle and, at that point, we didn't feel EMC was adequate to fulfill our needs. So we looked at Nimble from price and technology points of view and it met everything, all of our reviews and all of our requirements.
The setup was very, very simple. When we got our AF5000, no kidding, we had it up in production within two hours. If we were to take the similar setup, with the EMC VMAX, it took us over three months. Big difference.
The return on investment for us has been a tremendous asset. Before, we were on the legacy stack with the EMC and we just weren't getting our nightly batch jobs done on time, and that was having to run throughout the day. With Nimble, we have actually reduced that window from 12 hours to six hours, so we got a 50 percent return on investment, right off the bat.
I am actually here, at the HPE Discover 2018 conference, to find out what they plan on doing with Nimble in the future. We're also a user of the SimpliVity stack and I didn't feel that the roadmap for that has played out. We're here to see how the Nimble is going to play out. I'm very interested because we're coming up on a refresh cycle and we want to know whether we want to go down that path or not.
I would rate it a 10 out of 10. I'm not being biased by any means. It checks all the boxes for us.
Our Nimble unit serves our corporate storage infrastructure, all running VMware on top of it. It's primarily VDI file storage and the virtual environment itself.
We have been using it for about three years and the performance has been excellent. We haven't had any outages.
Our upgrades are seamless. Whether we're adding storage, or upgrading the software, we don't take an outage for those upgrades.
Also, InfoSight does exactly what it needs to do. It tells us when we have problems and if we need to move things around. Mostly we use it for capacity planning so we can get the forecast of when we're going to be out of space and order more disk expansion before we run out of actual space.
The only thing that I can really compare Nimble to is all-flash because, right now, Nimble is a hybrid solution. I would like to see them come out with an all-flash alternative.
I'd also like to see them incorporate tools that let me get granular with the VMs. I want to see an individual VM, I want to Snapshot and recover an individual VM. Those are the kind of daily operations features that I'd like to see.
Stability is great. We have never had a problem with the arrays.
In terms of scalability, it's excellent. I think we have four of them now.
We have used technical support. Everything has been solved really quickly. Because I'm the vice president, I don't do the engineer's work but I would hear about it if there was a problem.
In terms of how technical support compares to support provided by other companies, our other source product is EMC and it's very difficult to be worse than EMC.
The switch was because of budgetary constraints. I knew I couldn't put in an EMC array in the initial solution that we used before, which was for VDI. If I had tried to deal with the EMC, I would not have gotten the performance and it would have cost a lot more.
So we had to look outside the box. We chose Nimble over Tintri at the time, because Tintri's solution, while very good - with the things I was talking about, like granular VM, etc. - it's a footprint that you have to buy all at once. For the Nimble, I buy the unit and I can keep adding to it. With Tintri you have to pick a 13-terabyte or a 45-terabyte and when you run out of that, you buy another 45-terabyte. To me, it just didn't seem as expandable.
In terms of criteria for selecting a vendor, other than scalability and price, the key is performance. The bar was set at EMC. EMC just adds flash disks to a standard array and accelerates things somewhat, but it really doesn't get you to where you need to be. With EMC, you need to buy a lot of disks, you need to get into the 200s for spindle count. With any of the newer hybrid solutions - Tintri, Nimble, Pure - those are all all-flash solutions or hybrid solutions that take advantage of flash the way it's supposed to be.
I'm based out of Southern California. We first implemented it in Virginia, so I flew in to meet an engineer to complete it. By the time I had flown in and got to the data center, he was already done. I expected it to take several hours but it was more like an hour, and most of that hour was unpacking it out of the box.
Compared to EMC, you can't install EMC's products yourself, and it's days of implementation.
If we had stuck with EMC, we would have spent a lot more. We have EMC in-house, we have a bunch of them. Switching to Nimble saved me millions of dollars over the past three years.
Our production environment runs off of Pure Storage, our corporate environment runs off of Nimble.
I'd put Nimble at about an eight out of 10 because Pure storage reset our standard for what is absolutely the best. Pure is a whole different platform and not hybrid. I like Nimble, it's very good, it works, it's definitely cost-effective. It's not all-flash, so you don't get the performance of all-flash. But if you don't have a couple of million dollars to spend on Pure, Nimble is an excellent choice.
In terms of advice, it gets down to budget. Nimble fills a need for performance within a budget that is in the sub-million dollar range. If you're going up over a million dollars, where you can just throw money at the solution, there is Pure and there is Texas Memory Systems and all those high-end solutions. But if you want enterprise-level storage and you want a hybrid, the Nimble has served us well.
It has been three years, and the performance has been great. We have bought eight more since buying the first one.
In our organization, when people say "I need a new server," I say, "I have the space."
My version does not have dedupe, it has compression. I know that they have dedupe now. I just need to buy it.
I have added expansion shelves on several of them. It is simple to do. You plug it in, you attach two cables, then you press one button, like "Add", and that is all you have to do, which is wonderful.
Technical support is very good. When I call, I get a top-tier guy right away. I do not call very often, but if I have a question, such as, how to tear apart this array and add it to this one over here, they tell me right away. It is great.
One of the sales guys was aggressive and he met with me several times. We were, frankly, very impressed and very surprised. He said, "How about if you try it out?" and I said, "Yes." It was try-before-you-buy, and it worked.
Previously, we had some HPE P4500 LeftHand network devices which were getting old. We switched because needed a hardware refresh and more capacity.
The setup was approximately an hour-long process, almost like a one-button process. It was just so easy. Compared to most things that I have ever installed, it was simple and amazingly easy.
The first two that I bought were incredibly expensive, compared to the last five to seven that I have bought. The price has come way down, and it has been a year or so since we bought one.
We thought about the HPE 3PAR, but it seemed to be pricey. Frankly, Nimble came in and sold us on their solution. The 3PAR guy did not really make a strong sales presentation. He just said, "Trust me, it's good." My reaction was, we can't just trust you. Whereas, the Nimble guy told us the ins and outs of it and gave us all the details.
Try it out. You will love InfoSight, their online viewing tool, it is a wonderful addition. HPE thought so too, so they bought it and are putting it in everywhere. It is great, no downtime, with no care and feeding from my point of view. It just works.
It has surpassed all of our needs, it has been great. I need to buy more now, I am almost out of capacity. I would give it an unqualified 10 out of 10.
They could probably improve an organization with just about anything. It is all a matter of ease of use, ease of the implementation, etc. From that perspective, I would like to think it has been able to accomplish what people want done in an easier way, so they can get other stuff done.
There are customers who want to do some different things with the Microsoft Resilient File System. There are some customers who want to do different types of connectivity. I do not know if I would call that an improvement, necessarily, because if you want that, you should get a different product.
We have not had any issues whatsoever from our customer base.
I have heard of one customer who had a catastrophic failure. I do not know if it was caused by the product or something they did. From our perspective, the product is very stable.
It fits everywhere. It just depends on what the customer is trying to accomplish. If you are somebody who needs 30 petabytes of storage at rest, it is probably not the right thing to do. If you are somebody who is trying to grow a virtualization implementation of some sort, and you just need storage which keeps growing, that is where it should go. We have used this product in all of those environments, and we have also used different products at the really big end.
They did something very well that most people fail at, they created raving fans! The way they did that was by creating a good product, but more importantly, they created a tech support who supports more than just their product. If you called in and you had VMware trouble, most people would say, "That is a VMware problem," but they would get a guy on the phone who knew what was going on with VMware and help you.
That was the number one thing which made us approve of it. After that, it was just their innovation; their continuing to just keep up with everything.
Since they were acquired by HPE, I cannot speak too much about the technical support. They did have everything down better than anybody else. That was what drew us to them.
If you are a super small company, the product is probably not right for you. It is out of your price range. Anything from mid-SMB up to enterprise, it is absolutely the right product.
I am giving it a 10 out of 10 because I can't think of a reason why I would not. The product is good and always has been.
This is the SAN for our network. We house all of our network files here, as well as our virtual machines.
Nimble Storage is a great storage solution. It provided us a lot insight on the growth of our storage.
InfoSight: It lets us see what we might have to prepare for in the future. This feature has been a big help, especially since we have been recently looking to move on as our contract is almost up.
It is very pricey. You pay for what you get, and this storage solution is great. It is well worth the cost.
It's central SAN storage for all of our production and test data. It's fairly fundamental to our business. As a law firm, we have vast amounts of data that have to be incredible secure. It underpins the delivery of all of our services.
It's performing very well. We've had it for three years. It's exceeded all expectations since we had it.
It has totally taken away a layer of time and effort, management-wise, from two engineers to give that time back into developing more solutions. It has provided us essentially with a platform to go away and be more creative, knowing that that is stable and can do whatever we chuck at it.
More reporting is probably the only thing that is really lacking. It would be helpful to go to the business and say, "This is how we've evolved with our solution, and this is why we need more." Being able to put forward a business case with data to back it up, essentially.
It's purely as and when we get to the point where, we're either on a refresh, or we just need more capacity, or performance, then it's something to take to the business as proof.
We haven't really had any issues with stability.
We have had an issue we were trying to resolve, but the support with Nimble is fantastic. They were able to fix it in a very short amount of time. That was very early on, and ever since then it's been incredibly stable.
Scalability is very good. We've scaled over the course of three years. We've bought extra shelves, extra controllers. It's just very easy to do. Just plug and play. Plug it in and off you go, pretty much.
I was involved in the initial setup. We had a sales engineer come in, but he pretty much sat there and said, "Click here, click there." It was incredibly easy to set up.
We had an incumbent storage provider which was also tendering; one of the bigger storage providers. But we were a bit put out by their ability to provide us with any real reason to stay with them. They didn't seem to have any innovation going on, and their lack of ability to actually support and help us with issues was a factor.
The most important criteria when selecting a vendor are that vendor's ability to support its platform into the future. Also, a track record of actually delivering a solution.
Nimble, when we went with them they were clearly a new company, but they clearly had marketed their product incredibly well, and knew what they were talking about. That was very obvious.
I give it a 10 out of 10, absolutely. I've worked with a lot of technologies and this, by far, outshone any other technology that I've ever used before; their ability to deliver, and ability to support their solution.
I'd say in the market of flash storage, there are quite a lot of vendors out there. Just take your time and don't rush into picking a storage supplier, just because a price looks good. At the end of the day, it underpins everything that you do, particularly if it's your production platform. Just take your time and actually consider your requirements properly.
It's given us more time to do the important things, less time worrying about SANs and failures and picking up the pieces. It just works.
This is a tricky one, really. It does everything we would want from a SAN. It doesn't make the drinks, but all we're looking for is performance and reliability, and it does that.
There hasn't been any downtime that wasn't self-inflicted. We ran out of at space once. We didn't ignore the warnings, but we didn't do anything about the warnings. But it's been perfectly reliable on its own.
We started with a single unit, four years ago we bought another unit; then a more powerful unit about 18 months later, because we had a merger; we bought another system about 18 months ago and then a disk shelf about two months ago. So yes, scalability has been fine.
They know the product inside out, but they are also really good at the ancillary bits, like VMware. You can ring them up with something that's potentially not even a Nimble problem, and you'll get somebody that is really, really good. Best support that we have on anything, really.
In the past we've always gone for secondary and tertiary units, so it's kind of been starting from scratch. This time, the disk shelf, we haven't done it yet, but it's supposed to be as simple as plugging it in and clicking on go. Hopefully, it will be.
Firstly, we get pretty good support from HPE on it, in terms of leads. So that's valuable by definition.
The quality of the service and management tools let us do things like contractual guarantees for storage performance for customers. That's something we couldn't do before.
It's a fairly simple-to-manage platform. We had a situation in the past where we had more storage platforms than we had storage engineers. We've managed to cut that down, which is good.
It is cost-effective, which is important for a service provider, because you're competing with hyper-scale providers who do things at extremely large scale, who tend to kill you on price if you're not careful.
I'd like to see more granular quality of service rules. So things like: I think currently there's not much room for maximum IOPS, but there's not an option for minimum IOPS for a given volume.
It's less about giving us more features and more about giving us ways to contractually guarantee the features that are already there. So something like performance is the classic one. It's more valuable to me to be able to contract the performance that's there, rather than have a new way of doing things, because customers are not interested in signing up for the "best effort, maybe" services anymore.
It's stable, absolutely. We haven't had any challenges with downtime or anything like that yet. We did a pretty long technical proof of concept beforehand, so we were pretty confident when we purchased it that it would be fit for purpose.
Scalability is an interesting issue, because most of our customers grow organically - 10, 20 percent range. But we have deployed it for single, large tenants without too many challenges.
We have a government customer who wants to buy storage on demand. Basically, they want the commercial model of the public cloud and absolutely nothing else. Everything else they want to be to their specifications, and that's worked out quite well for them. They can add 40 terabytes, 100 terabytes at a time without too much of a challenge.
We replaced 3PAR with Nimble.
Everything is complex for us because we're an MSP with so many different customers who all have different, weird requirements. Nothing is ever simple for us, but Nimble was no more complex than anything else we have had to deploy for our customers.
We deployed Nimble about nine months ago, across all of our managed services customers. We've got about six arrays, about 400 terabytes of data provisioned on Nimble at the moment.
When we look to work with a vendor like HPE or any other vendor, there are a couple of things that are important to us. Support is the big one. Is it onshore? Is it local? Are they going to care, basically?
The other one that's important is, what can we do together in the market? One of the competitors that we evaluated in the proof of concept talked a lot about what we'd do in the market, and then made press releases with my competitors, contradicting what they were saying the day before. So trustworthiness, when it comes to co-marketing and that kind of thing; that they're going to support us. Don't get me wrong, you don't expect to be the only partner they work with. But you want them to at least be honest about "here's what we can do together, here's what we can't."
The biggest thing from when they have replaced the old storage is that they have not had to touch it. That once it is set up it, it dynamically understands what data is being stored on it and where to store it, because they have got a flash array at the front, then obviously the standard style of storage at the back. There was not a lot of configuration needed to make it understand what their business was about and how it worked. It was just a big plus that once it was in, they more or less could forget about it.
It allowed them to concentrate on other projects that were obviously important for growing their business rather than having to worry about managing the storage, which is what they used to do with all their old storage.
Before HPE bought Nimble, we had a couple of customers that use it quite extensively, not just for storage of data, but also as their backup solution as well. So, we have found the advantage of it is the easy, rapid setup, but also that it is very easy to manage.
Their remote management and understanding when things are starting to go wrong and their ability to fix them before the customer even knows, this has been a big positive when a customer makes the decision to go with Nimble.
The backup solution that they are using now probably has not been deduped. I think this is probably sort of one area that the customer is a little bit concerned about. It is a timing issue for them, though it is still working at the moment. It is just not giving them enough header space that they thought they would have because the dedupe does not seem to be working as well as it could. So, it is something that needs to be reviewed and to make sure the customer has not clicked a certain feature.
I know for a fact that once they get in touch with HPE or Nimble, they will obviously look at the box remotely, see where there are potentially fine tunings, and if it is just a question of the customer having time to allow them to come online and review it, hopefully it will get solved.
Apart from that, everything else has been positive.
The occasional disk here and there goes. However, they turn up and swap the disk before you even know it. So, stability has been very good in that sense.
We have added a couple of shelves over the years to the product already. We still have capacity to add one more shelf to it, but obviously the product changes and develops all the time and allows the expansion, then you still have the ability to pull out the main engines and replace the controller cards on the actual box itself. You know you have a growth area forward in the product. It is not as if you have to throw it away and start again, when you hit the capacity. That was another advantage, it was easy to upgrade.
I can only really sort of comment when it was Nimble, because obviously HPE has only owned them for a few months now. From both a pre-sales and post-sales, I have always found them really good. They are very professional, know their products, know what they do, and very informative in terms of keeping the customer updated. For me, it is always just been a positive, which would be why I would always recommend them on to other clients, because of that.
Our customers have been looking at 3PAR, but:
It is sort of one of those decisions that it is quite easy to make in terms of the Nimble solution for money for storage size regarding which is more cost effective. Also, the ability to set it up and more or less leave it alone to run itself. It is a big positive.
It's not that expensive and it really brings the latency down; that was the promise from their end and it really did.
Since we are using virtual desktop environments, we had to deal with boot storms and we solved this issue with Nimble.
For me, this product has everything I need in there. What could be improved is performance monitoring, i.e., if it can get even better than what it is now, I will be happy. For example, there should be an exact drilling down to any workload/any virtual machine/any identified issue. So, if an issue appears and there is latency, there could be a faster or easier way to know what the reason is and how we can resolve it with Nimble.
The product is very stable.
We are considering to scale it. We did consider it once and we might consider in the future as well. I had the impression that we can easily scale it.
very goodTechnical Support:
We were using a different solution. I was visiting a specific software house conference (the software that we were using then), they had Nimble there and I was really interested; I asked them questions and then, eventually, it turned out into a project.
While selecting a vendor, I want to be sure that we are getting good value for money and having good performance; for me, that's the main priority.
The setup was very easy, it was a matter of a couple of hours.
the vendor came here at the very beginning and set all up
I looked at the traditional products out there and did a comparison with Nimble as well. For example, we compared EMC Storage with NimbLe and I also did consider SimpliVity, at the time but for this specific workload, it turned out that Nimble had the best approach.
Absolutely, try it out. For me, it was very easy because Nimble offered us to try and buy. They just came, set up the box, and I had a whole month's time to try it; it worked perfectly. For me, it was really easy.
It delivers High IOPS, but more important, low latency. This is the most important part for our usage.
Nimble offers InfoSight, which in turn offers VMVision. This is a terrific feature. You can immediately see which VM causes the highest IOPS and which has the most latency. The downside of this feature is that you can only see it on InfoSight and the data is always a few hours old. It would be awesome if this was in the dashboard of the Nimble and shown as live data.
Also, Nimble requires its DNS to work in order to interface with VMware vCenter is a little thorn in my eye, but I am being nitpicky here.
Our storage solutions are stable and scalable.
The valuable features include encryption of data, hybrid performance, firmware updates, and overall simplicity.
The amount of firmware updates released seem excessive.
There were no issues with stability.
There were no issues with scalability.
The level of technical support is excellent. We are always able to speak to an intelligent engineer 24/7/365.
We used EMC Celerra. We switched due to the complexity of volume management and performance.
The initial setup was straightforward once the decision of connectivity is made.
It is expensive, but it is worth the “uptime”.
Prepare your network properly if using the iSCSI protocol.
Further improvements on existing features, always.
Approximately one year.
Nimble technical support is only level 3, best support experienced compared to any other SAN platforms.
Very easy to set up, approximately 10 mins per system.
I strongly recommend everybody switching from traditional capacity-licensing models, to Box-license.
It's definitely more of an appliance than a storage array in that sense. So from a "set it and forget it" mentality, it definitely is there.
Definitely ease-of-use. I've experienced many different arrays out there and Nimble is definitely there. The analytic side is very helpful on their info site. Integration with VMware is easy. There are not any additional appliance plug-ins to load beyond the basics. It works well.
I would like to see integration with OneView, at least for reporting or some sort of monitoring. Basic stuff like that would be nice. I can't think of any area that is lacking for what we use it for.
It is very stable.
I have used technical support. It is excellent. The best.
We have a slew of HPE products. Since we were a partner with Nimble prior to the acquisition, it was natural for us to use and sell their products.
I was involved in the initial setup. It was very straightforward.
We only evaluated HPE. Our previous experience has a bearing on which vendor we choose. In terms of Nimble, I did a thorough technical evaluation and had discussions with the vendor and with Nimble themselves at the time. My questions were answered.
Try it. They have a VSA, so they have a virtual appliance. I don't know what the options are for testing it that way, but if there is an option to do a PoC, then give it a shot.
InfoSight, for sure, has been the best feature so far.
I really would like to see synchronous replication. This is something that when we have multiple arrays in our environment and being able to do something like a zero RPO. Being a law firm, we really want our data to be protected all the time. Although, we are really rocking the Nimble snapshots and you'll hear them talk about the maximum snapshots that you can have; there's no performance impact and it's just really cool to have that kind of data protection. We're utilizing it but getting further, so as to get the knob all the way down to zero RPO, that would be a really cool feature. I hear that they're working on it.
It has been incredibly stable. It has been so stable that when I started with the Nimble acquisition/purchase process for us, I was the senior storage engineer. However, after implementing Nimble Storage, I did a little bit of the setup, wrote the APIs for us to be able to work with it and then, I had nothing to do. So at the end of the year, when we're supposed to do our employer reviews and self-evaluations, I wrote this whole thing about why you don't need me anymore. Just told them, "Look, congratulations. You no longer need a dedicated storage engineer. Do what you want with that." They said, "Sure. We're going to promote you to become the senior manager of the network and infrastructure team." It's kind of a cool story, it is true.
We've already added another shelf just because we saw another need coming up. It was just so simple, i.e., literally plug and play and very laid back.
I've not worked with HPE support, only with Nimble support, which is right now separate and hopefully, it will stay that way.
Every time that I've worked with Nimble, I've had an absolutely excellent experience. Whether it be the automated, "Hey, we have solved this and already closed this ticket for you"; those are invaluable, i.e., 85% of the tickets are being closed just from InfoSight.
I'll give you an example where I saw the support really step-up, which was when we set up our DR solution. We're actually using DR from their Nimble Storage but it's not under our control. There's a little bit of a conversation that needs to happen and for whatever reason, that conversation wasn't working perfectly and I opened a ticket with Nimble Storage. That was the last thing I did. From then on, the technician who was working and looking at the auto-sups that were coming in. He was working with the other guy saying, "Okay, this is exactly what you need to fix or modify on your side. Let's try it again." I'm checking my email and then they're like, "Okay, we got it." That was it. It was literally a zero-touch fix for me.
We were using a different company before. There are actually several reasons why we decided to look at other vendors. One of which was that we had an unexpected outage with our older storage system for about 56 hours and it was significant enough that even though, we usually were loyal to that company we said, "Maybe we should start talking to other people." We brought in Nimble Storage as well as about three or four other vendors and we did a little bit of bake-off. We had conversations with the teams, asked for references and really when we started asking to put some of our workloads onto their appliance, that's when it really made a difference for us.
They gave us so many options of what we wanted to do. What had happened was because of the company that they were replacing, was one of those big iron-type companies, so they really wanted to just have a picture with their appliance next to ours. Nimble Storage came out and they racked everything for me; they plugged it in, they did all the setup and said, "Here it is. Here's your password. Go ahead and start carving out some volumes." Within probably an hour, I already had my first volumes already mapped and masked to the posts, all ready to go.
We do actually have a certain set of criteria that we use and it's a weighted criteria set. One of the top criteria, for us, is the relationship that you have with the vendor because everybody hopes that things are going to go right, but the real question is when things don't go right, is your team going to stand beside you? I have worked with the sales team and have said, "Hey guys! Is this pillow talk or is this an after-the-sale conversation? Are you still going to stand by me?" This is me, the customer, talking to the vendor.
They stood by me, more than did prior to the purchase. I get constant updates from them checking in, "Hey, do you want to talk about whatever?" I always feel well-prepared. We never had an incident where I really had to hit that red button, but I am 100% confident that if I did, then they would be standing there right probably in the room with me, making sure that I've got everything I need to get through this situation. This is a huge thing, i.e., being right there for us, which is reliability from an array perspective. It has got to have at least 5 nine's and that's just starting the conversation. We absolutely need the critical uptime and from there, there's also the price-point. For us, it's the vendor relationship, product reliability, and then, probably, the price-point while selecting a vendor.
It provides good performance, ease of use and ease of administration. The usage statistics, the cloud and their info site are all very good.
It's easier to administer than other storage solutions so that gives us agility to implement storage services.
Let's see, well you already have the old flash, I felt that was missing but, I don't know. It's a very good solution but the price is not the best, probably better pricing would be good but yes, it's a good solution.
We didn't encounter any issues with stability. It's good, very stable.
I haven't had the need to scale it, but it has good scalability.
Now that I remember I didn't use the technical support.
This was a new project where we needed a storage solution and we evaluated Nimble among others and we decided to go with Nimble.
I wasn't involved in the initial set up.
We evaluated some others but I'd rather not say which vendors. The features of the product, stability, performance, support and cost are important to us.
Try the solution, it's pretty straightforward to use and very easy to manage.
For Nimble, valuable for us is the hybrid solution that they have on flash and spindle disk. So we are able to put very flexible loads on our private clouds in Nimble.
Well it was simple for us to implement this technology. At some point, for the duration of the storage, we were using EMC basically. And also, the analytics piece that Nimbo has is very convenient because you have a lot of information in real time on how the CPU is behaving, on storage and different stuff.
Actually they already have a solution for all flash. So, we are planning to use that in our deployment. So, actually there were no issues with features, and we are waiting for the upgrade.
We have been running with this solution for two years.
We haven't had any issues so far with the stability. It is really stable.
Scalability is a little bit limited. I mean, they have different models and you need to make some upgrades in CPUs or storage. It gets easier at some point but we reach some limits and we need to make an upgrade right away.
The support is very good.
The setup was very straightforward.
Whenever we want some more capacity, CPU, memory, storage etc, then we normally make an analysis and basically we make the upgrades.
We have Nimble and Tripper, as part of the approved solutions. We have Tintri and Dell Compellent.
We have been working with HP on the server side for a long time and I think that now that they have Nimble and Tripper, they have very good and complete solutions. So we trust them. And they have good solutions because depending on the type of load that you are trying to put together, I mean, you can choose either one of these systems.
There were multiple things which helped our choice, but in this particular case, it was EMC because the EMC solution was not using the same technology so we were not seeing the benefits of having this on the analytics especially.
Well its price is very important but also the support. It has a global presence. We are in 35 countries. So, whenever we choose a solution or a standard, we need to define that very clearly. Response time and the technology itself.
I mean go for it. It's a good solution. It's a right mix between costs and return on investment. Definitely upgrade.
Improved performance. It's made my life easier. It integrates very well.
Deduplication and compression.
I would like to see SSL Certification. For someone like me who has been in the field for a long time, it’s easy to overlook. However, for someone who is fresh out of college, it will be hard for them.
The stability is good.
The scalability is really good.
I used technical support once. I would give them a rating of 10/10.
We knew we needed a new solution because we needed something for restored backup.
The setup was straightforward. It wasn't hard. I came from the background of NetApp. Compared to NetApp, it was really easy. It’s pretty easy to configure and easy to set up the volumes. It’s really good. It was more user friendly than NetApp.
It was a decision that was made before I joined to the company. The reason they chose Nimble over other products was because HPE required too many licenses at that time. Nimble didn’t require all of that.
Now that Nimble is an HPE product, HPE has changed their whole licensing for their other products as well.
The shortlist included HPE, Dell, and EMC. We chose Nimble because of all- flash, user-friendliness, and the compression and deduplication. It does way more than any of the other vendors. I have 10 terabytes with compression. That's a big change. Other solutions are not as user-friendly and cannot do all of that compression.
When selecting a vendor, I look for security. We want something that can be integrated and is compatible with our environment.
I would say jump on it right away, because it's really the solution. It is really user-friendly. It will make everybody's life easier. It's really wonderful.
The Nimble solution gives us hybrid storage at an affordable cost. We use it in our corporate IT environment. It's fast relatively easy to implement.
The stability is great. I don't think we've had a failure since we've had it.
It's much easier. We compared it to Sentry, where we had to do forty-two upgrades for more space. Nimble just keeps letting us add arrays over and over.
We have used technical support and they are very good.
We used to use Sentry and we switched to Nimble. It was a Greenfield solution. When choosing a solution for storage venues, which is what I do now, the main elements have to be reliability and support. This is our game. Nimble is now a part of HPE and they just beat out the others.
I was involved in the setup and it was very fast.
The price is excellent.
Look at Nimble. It fits that median point of "I want something better than my own, home-grown solution", and "I don't to buy a product that is too expensive." It is squarely in the middle.
It has vastly improved the responsiveness of our servers. It adds snapshots to help with our DR. The snapshots are sent across the way into our DR site, so we have DR copies of everything. It’s all around just improved the flow of everything.
Its speed, ease of use, and it has been completely reliable.
They keep talking about doing one-to-many replication. This is what we'd like to see, just to help with data replication.
I think it’s very stable. We've never, ever, had it go offline and we've been using it for three years now.
We've scaled up and have had no issues with that. It’s easy, and it doesn't even take it offline when you do it. It’s pretty awesome.
I have used technical support a couple times and they are very good. They keep going until they find a solution, if you're having a problem.
We were using a different storage solution and we weren't getting the speed that we needed out of it for some of our applications. We couldn't run an SQL server on our old one. It was just too slow. We looked into 3PAR , because at the time, Nimble was not yet bought out. We looked into 3PAR , we looked into some of the bigger ones and decided that Nimble gave just as good performance for a much lower cost point.
I was involved in the initial setup, and it was probably a little complex if you never set up any kind of storage system like that. Other than that, it wasn't too bad.
We had the guy come in just because we had never done it before and their sales engineer really made it go a lot easier.
I'd definitely tell them to go with Nimble. I would suggest that they have the Nimble engineer come on site. They don't charge you for that part. This is just so you can get all the thing set up correctly the first time so you are ready to go when you put it into production.
When looking for a vendor, I look for reliability, the features that we need, and the cost.
The admin GUI is pretty ugly. It works, but it requires a plug-in. I never had to use it since the VMware vCenter plug-in is so good.
I have used this product for three years.
We have had no stability problems at all. We have had 100% storage uptime for three years straight.
We have had no scalability problems. I’ve scaled once in three years. I bought a new generation array with more performance and capacity and I migrated my volumes while the VMs were still running.
With Nimble, I can scale in three ways:
We made one support call in three years and it was resolved in less than ten minutes. It is absolutely the best support I’ve ever used.
We had local SSD, PowerVault MD3200, and EqualLogic arrays. We were not happy with EqualLogic’s performance and scale, so we consolidated it all into Nimble.
Setup was super simple compared to every other storage array I’ve used. Tips are easily accessible. Nimble’s forum, “Connect”, is very active and useful. The guides/wizards to create volumes and grant access were thorough.
All-inclusive licensing (encryption, compression, replication, etc.) is very nice.
The initial cost is high in the entry-level market, but worth it for features and performance.
Performance is on par with all flash arrays if you have 20% of your total data “hot”. Size the cache correctly and it will scream.
We looked at Pure Storage, Compellent, and Tintri.
Run a competitive PoC with your favorite arrays. Nimble will come out on top in performance AND price/performance.
With snapshot, we achieve better IT operation as we have a snapshot before any major IT admin work takes place. This is good fallback if anything goes wrong with upgrade, modification, etc.
We heard from the Nimble pre-sales in 2015 that an inline deduplication feature is forthcoming (2016). What I know now is that this is not the case, dedup is only for all-flash array only, something to do with computational constraint. Well, we are a little unhappy with this news but because almost all the competition (VMware VSAN etc.) is also doing the same thing (inline dedup only on all-flash) I guess it’s not yet feasable with current technology.
We have used this solution for one year.
We have not encountered any stability issues. It has been rock solid.
We have not encountered any scalability issues.
The level of technical support is good.
We were using EMC 5200. We switched because there was a forklift upgrade to EMC 5300 that cost almost three times as much compared to Nimble.
The setup was straightforward.
Licensing is very simple and everything is included.
We evaluated other options. We received a competitive offer from NetApps, but they lost on size. They are still a traditional solution, relying on the number of spindles and performance.
Please test first, i.e., get a PoC. The product relies on cache, so streaming data, such as CDR and logs, may not be a good fit, IOPS-wise.
We have changed quite a bit in multiple areas. One area is simplicity in technology, in the following ways:
Basically, InfoSight has been tremendous, together with the support process; the way it proactively sends communication back to the support center, the proactive dispatch of parts, I think has been impressive. InfoSight and the support model really looks very rich in Nimble.
We are fairly happy with the product. I think most of it is definitely satisfying the requirements. But one area, for which we presented our feedback to Nimble, was how we can centralize, i.e., monitor the multiple arrays in a centralized manner, from a single viewer/ single console. Let's say, for example, you buy more and more form Nimble; how can you view all of them in a single console, i.e., viewing it in a single window-pane, such as viewing the health checks, etc. This they have taken up and I think they're going to get back to us, in a month's time or so, is to provide a solution.
The storage can be used in two modes, i.e., in a standalone mode or in clustered mode. In case you are using it in a clustered mode, they are integrated together logically and hence, it is possible. However, in case I'm using it in a standalone mode, they have more than one array, then instead of logging into every single array, how can I get a console from Nimble to view all of them in a single console, i.e. when they are configured in the standalone mode?
It's running perfectly fine and 100% available in the last 18 months.
It is definitely scalable. Of course, every unit has a limit, but it's scalable to 4, 5 or 6x, without touching the base. You can keep on adding the shelves.
The technical support is perfect; very, very good. I love the support forums.
We were using the NetApp solution beforehand. We switched because, one, obviously, we need to have simplicity in the solution; number two, the cost per unit should be attractive so that we can have good business models in place; obviously, the reliability and the interoperability with the product partners, like Cisco and the other compute and network platforms.
We had quite a few issues with other platforms, but Nimble has simplified it quite a bit and they have standardized quite a bit. It is providing results both operationally and commercially. It is very economical with much improved performance.
The setup was very straightforward, and the best part of Nimble is you don't need to have any more storage administrative policy, i.e., even the regular user, like the Windows administrator, can also manage the storage boxes. That's the beauty of Nimble.
It has got some advantages. It sells at a 60-70% lower price compared to NetApp, and EMC. On licensing, it's all bundled. You don't have to buy a separate license with anything. It all comes as one unit, and one bundle. You don't have to really worry about licensing. It comes with everything by default.
We did evaluate quite a few products. We evaluated Nimble vs Nutanix, Pure Storage and Tintri. We also tried exploring the hyperconverged solutions such as Nutanix and a few other products. But we felt that, for the service that we're providing, Nimble is the best choice because we have multiple options, i.e., both hybrid and flash options. It is easy to scale and switch between the platforms. Based on the performance requirements that we have, I think Nimble is the best choice, so we finalized on the product from among multiple other choices.
Go for it. It's definitely a good product from the current scheme of things and the current market trends. We are service providers; we do provide other service models to many customers and have a huge range of customers, so we do evaluate a lot of products, and we do evaluate a lot of softwares/services.
We found Nimble to be very interesting, and we are maintaining a good partnership with them. In fact, it's making good sense for the business models, and it's also meeting up with multiple use cases, i.e., VDI or non-persistent VDI, server workloads, database workloads, etc. Definitely, it is a good product and I would recommend it in the current scheme of things; it's the way to go.
With our previous storage product, I would probably spend 2-4 hours a week managing it, logging, checking on things, and fixing issues. Since we've switched to Nimble, I probably spend an hour a month doing various maintenance tests. It has greatly reduced the amount of handling that our storage requires.
Third-party integrations: A lot of products tend to come out and support NetApp, EMC, and various other storage managers. Nimble tends to be lagging behind in that space, and it's not completely their fault, but I think they could do a better job pushing for those integrations with various third-party products.
We have used the solution for a little over two years.
We have not encountered any stability issues.
We have not encountered any scalability issues, as it's very scalable.
The level of technical support is 10/10.
We were on NetApp previously. It was too cumbersome to manage. Their support was atrocious, and they were really expensive.
The setup was the easiest thing I've ever done in my life. We had it unboxed, uncrated, racked, and connected to VMware in probably two hours, tops.
Their pricing window was more straightforward than in traditional storage. They have basically guaranteed maintenance pricing. In years four, five, six, and beyond, they don't force you to upgrade like some of the other vendors.
The license is straightforward and it's all inclusive. There's no need to buy different license keys to get access to certain features. What you pay for, and you pay one price, you get it all.
We looked at everybody on the market.
Don't be hesitant, and trust their technology, because it works. Just because they don't have the market share of NetApp and EMC, isn't a reason to overlook them.
We now need fewer hands to manage storage. Nimble has incredible speed and stability.
It’s just perfect the way it is!
Nonetheless, it would be nice to have:
I have used it for more than 3 years.
I have encountered no stability issues.
I have encountered no scalability issues.
Their technical support is the best support that I ever had, and it's free!
We used NetApp. Nimble Storage is a better block storage than NetApp on every single parameter.
Initial setup is very straightforward. Nimble helped us install the first array during the PoC and we installed the rest of the system.
There is no licensing, only an up-front price (and service and support) and the price is cheap for the speed and volume.
We evaluated Violin, and it was much too expensive and not that much faster.
Buy Nimble Storage!
For the most part, we have not encountered any stability issues. But there was one uptime-related firmware bug, which was possible to work around and fixed in a later release.
So far, we have not encountered any scalability issues.
We rate the support as very knowledgeable in the product platform
We previously used a different product. The switch was made to gain a less-complex design for setup and administration.
The initial setup was very simple and after one day of education, all technical staff were comfortable with the platform.
One benefit with the Nimble Storage platform is that is doesn’t contain any software licenses. All functionality comes built-in to the platform.
We compared both traditional vendors including NetApp and HPE as well as upcomers like Pure Storage, Violin, SolidFire, Microsoft Storage Server and others.
Embrace simplicity. You can dispense with in-house deployed administration tools or tricky CLI GUIs. All you need is just a simple and understandable web interface.
Depending on which product platform you are about to replace, you will either just gain far better and predictable performance or you will embark on a journey where you will have to leave the comfort of having a multi-protocol NAS into NFS and/or SMB file servers using Nimble block storage in the backend.
This provides for better decision making and forecasting of the evolution of customer data management infrastructures.
Additionally, the stability of the Nimble OS provides peace of mind even during OS upgrades, which are seamless and non-disruptive.
As a reseller, this product is an easy sell for customers who are price conscious.
This product could improve by adding support for file protocols such as CIFS or NFS, the ability to seamlessly migrate from one volume to another, and the capability to perform in-line deduplication.
Volume encryption must be done prior to occupying data on the volume. A data migration is required if the encryption requirement changes. This could be improved by being able to turn on encryption on previously created volumes without the need for data migration.
Our first customer that we implemented this solution for was 5 months ago.
We have not encountered any stability issues thus far.
There have been no scalability issues. We added an ES1 expansion shelf with no issues.
Technical support is very eager to close tickets. They should verify that the issue has been resolved before closing.
We are a provider of solutions. We will place technologies where they fit.
Initial setup was fairly straightforward. Some understanding of Nimble’s network architecture is required.
This is a great solution if pricing and licensing is a concern.
We evaluated NetApp FAS, EMC Unity, and Pure Storage.
Consider other options if file protocols are required. Enable encryption at the time of setup if required, prior to creating volumes.
The most valuable features are snapshot & replication. The snapshot is straightforward in terms of how you can easily manage your backup schedule based on your RPO & RTO. You can instantly recover your data in a minute when you need it from a specific point in time. The replication was very reliable and efficient for our customers because you can just replicate your data with a minimum 2 Mb bandwidth.
You know, here in the Philippines, internet bandwidth is one of the most critical concerns and with Nimble, bandwidth wasn't an issue for you to have a reliable disaster recovery setup (DR site) and amazingly, Nimble doesn't charge you any additional license cost no matter how big the data that you need to replicate.
Just continue the updates of technology features; I expect there will be more updates in capacity and IOPS as models upgrade in the future.
I have used it for about two years; from the CS200 series and the CS700 series to the new models, which are the CS1000-CS7000 series.
So far, based on my experience in deploying Nimble in different industries such as telcos, manufacturing, retail, hotel & casino, etc., I haven't encountered any major issues in terms of stability because all of the components were fully redundant and aside from that, Nimble has a monitoring system, or what they call InfoSight, which gives you proactive support. The product appliance will send a heartbeat every five minutes to InfoSight just to make sure that all software and hardware components are working properly and 100% up and running.
We have not encountered any scalability issues; this was really a scale to fit. I can just scale up if I need to by upgrading specific components such as CPU, SSD & HDD. I can also scale out by combining different Nimble array models to have flexible adjustment if certain apps need more resources.
Technical support is 10/10. Aside from InfoSight, they have technical support on standby 24/7 when you need it. In terms of hardware replacement, they always make sure that they meet what is expected from the SLA.
I previously used a different solution, and I switched to Nimble because of its cost effectiveness, its ease of use and it is very manageable. Nimble simplified everything for me.
Initial setup was very straightforward. In fact, you can set up the product in just 30 minutes, as long as everything is ready; the checklist, etc.
Pricing is very competitive compared to other solutions. All the features are bundled in the product without any additional cost.
There are no licensing costs.
Before choosing this product, I also evaluated other options such as EMC, HPE, IBM, etc. Among those brands, for me, Nimble was the most cost effective and simplified.
Please evaluate and review other solutions and from that, you can simply compare and experience the advantages of Nimble storage in terms of features, performance, cost effectiveness, reliability, and efficiency.
The performance and simplicity are the most valuable features. We originally moved from NetApp, which in our opinion was an extremely complicated system to learn. It was not intuitive at all, whereas everything about Nimble Storage is intuitive, hence their name. All their online documentation is easy to read and easy to follow. All their online sales information is transparent and usually done by a third party instead of by themselves. As far as the performance, they're able to get much better performance with normal spinning disks. We've always had spinning disks in our storage solutions, but they're able to get better performance out of the typical spinning disk, just by the way they've written their software on the back-end. Then for solid-state drives, they can get better performance through read operations through the data.
One of the reasons why we had to move away from our old storage solutions was that we started to use virtual workstations. That's a solution that we wanted to move forward and we just didn't have the performance to do that with our NetApp solution. That has definitely transformed our business as far as being able to centralize all our workstations into one solution. We can also better leverage disaster recovery, because all our workstations will replicate over to our disaster recovery location.
They only use block-level storage and with NetApp, we were able to use file-level storage. That means we could leverage NFS or we could leverage SIFS and we could actually host a file server on the storage solution itself. We could do that with our NetApp solution. Right now, they only use block-level solutions, so you can only use iSCSI.
I have used this solution for almost two and half years.
I have not had stability issues with Nimble Storage.
We haven't had to scale out yet, but we would have zero issues if we needed to. They have plenty of offerings for us to do that.
I'd give technical support 5/5. When I call, I get somebody on the phone immediately. I just have to press one number to go to technical support and I immediately have somebody on the phone.
Setup was very straightforward. That was one of the things we liked about it most.
I recommend the product because of the licensing and pricing. It seems like they are flexible regarding pricing in compared to other vendors. There is really is no licensing; it's all in one. It all comes in one bundle.
We evaluated NetApp, which is our previous solution, and then we also evaluated Pure Storage.
My advice would be to use it. Just make sure whether you need to go with an all solid-state drive solution or whether you can use their hybrid solution, because there's going to be a big price difference.
The single feature that is valuable is InfoSight and the visibility it gives us for our capacity planning.
It has allowed us to enhance the recovery and deployment of our infrastructure.
It would be beneficial for Nimble to have an NVVM and/or an all-flash solution.
Currently Nimble’s All Flash solution is SSD disk based. Nimble should investigate in having their All Flash Solution with NVM Ram (similar to HP) or memory storage similar to Violin Storage.
I have used Nimble Storage for four years.
We have not had issues with stability.
The issue with scalability is that I can’t expand to more than six arrays with one controller.
I give technical support 4.5/5.
The previous solution was very complex.
I would like to suggest a price reduction seeing that there are similar products in the market. The licensing should not be touched.
We looked at HPE 3PAR and Dell EMC.
If you don’t have a storage team, this product is right for you.
Remote replication for disaster recovery is the primary use of the array. As we get further along in our implementation and are more familiar with the product, we intend to use the cloning features to create development and test environments.
In the past, our virtual servers had been deployed to on-board storage. By using an array, we are able to more easily manage and increase our storage capacities. In the future, we intend to use zero-copy cloning to reduce the time to deploy test environments.
So far, the only area I have noticed that requires improvement is the ability to console directly to the device. The device is supplied with a special adapter that requires a female-to-female serial cable. If standard cables (preferably USB) cannot be used, then complete solutions should be provided with the device.
We have been using the storage array in production for about six months. We are in the process of migrating all our virtual servers to the array and configuring replication to the DR site.
We have not encountered any no stability issues.
We have not encountered any scalability issues.
Technical support has been fantastic. Questions have been answered accurately and in a timely manner.
At one point, we used NetApp. We found it expensive, especially with the storage overhead required. The Nimble product was significantly less expensive and management was simpler.
We used sub-contractors for the initial setup but saw that the process was relatively simple. As with all technologies, there are many different ways of configuring the devices depending on intended usage. We found that we changed some things as we progressed through the implementation. Overall, the implementation has been relatively painless.
We did not evaluate alternatives.
If you have the budget; go for it. As with any storage, don't under-buy, you'll always need more.
We supply hourly (or more frequent) snapshots on our private hosted clients. Under the previous vendor’s arrays, there was large management overhead to keep these working.
Since switching to Nimble arrays, we have not only been able to keep triple the amount of snapshots as standard, using, on average, around 70% less space than keeping 8 on the previous arrays, but the management overhead to keep these going has dropped down to about five minutes a month. Now, using InfoSight, we can see at a glance what we have.
There is not a lot of room for improvement. All the items that we wanted to have implemented when we first started using Nimble arrays were either already on their road map, or added after listening to us, and all bar one have now been fully implemented.
We have now been using Nimble Storage arrays for almost four years. We started with two arrays and now have 16, and support a further eight at client sites.
We have never had any stability issues. The Nimble arrays have survived an awful lot within our environment. We now have 16 arrays and other than a single hard drive failure and a precautionary controller swap (predictive analysis from InfoSight flagged a potential issue, so Nimble replaced the controller rather than risk downtime), the Nimble arrays have been our most reliable hardware.
We have never encountered scalability issues. Using InfoSight to help plan capacity, we know way in advance what we will need to increase performance or capacity. When we need to either increase capacity or performance, all upgrades are performed so simply and with zero down time.
The technical support from Nimble is second to none. Whenever we have called them, we get straight through to a technician, who does not follow a script designed to frustrate you and waste all your time. They listen to your problem, and what, if anything, you have already tried. Then they help and most of the time, any issues are resolved there and then on a single call. Sometimes we have called them simply because we do not understand something, or even a new feature that we wanted to use, and they are happy to dedicate time to us to explain and show us how to do what we want. We have never had an ongoing ticket with Nimble other than when they are awaiting a response or action from us, that we can only perform during weekends.
We used to use a different storage vendor. The two main reasons we changed were the terrible levels of support we received from the previous company and the arrays' performance. The support was important because once, when we had an issue with an array, we had a six-hour outage and the issue prevented DR as well as production environments working. The support was terrible, and it took months to finally resolve the issue.
Performance-wise, the arrays we had were simply not sufficient for our growing environment and the needs of our newer larger clients coming into our infrastructure. This, coupled with the management overhead required to simply keep the plates spinning on these arrays, prompted us to find a more-reliable, better-performing partner with a better support ethos.
When we first started speaking to Nimble, they sent us two trial devices so we could truly perform a PoC that matched our planned deployment. They also sent a senior engineer along for a day to assist us in setting it up. The engineer ended up not really being needed as the array setup is very simple. There are two methods, both shown to us by the engineers.
Since the initial setup, all arrays have been configured by my in-house technicians and usually an array is fully configured, and up and running within half an hour (this doesn’t include time to get it in our racks and patched). After accidentally shipping our arrays to the wrong sites, we were able to easily and remotely talk others through the reconfiguration.
The pricing for the arrays is very transparent. There is one cost for the array, and another for support. There are zero licensing costs. Whatever you pay for the array, you get all features included with full access to their InfoSight, knowledge base and downloads. It’s a very simple model, which our finance team love.
When we went to market, the team already had a good knowledge of other vendors, having used a good variety of arrays between us. Nimble were the first new array we got in to test. They blew us away with their performance and their support. The personal touch they gave us really helped, too. They took the time to learn about our needs and our environment. It was easy to decide not to go to anyone else.
If you’re looking to implement, ask for a trial; Nimble have been very accommodating with us and others. Their products speak for themselves and will show that the figures they post are actually lower than the performance you can get out their arrays. Speak to any Nimble client. There are lot that are happy to take reference calls. This alone speaks volumes for them as a company.
In addition to exceptional performance and reliability, it covers, "for free", all the needs our primary backup system cannot provide due to costly licensing.
The product is near perfect, but there is always room for further development; maybe, more automation in snapshot management.
I have used Nimble Storage for about three years.
We have not had any stability issues.
We have not had any scalability issues.
Technical support is excellent.
We had multiple storage solutions that simply got to their EOL.
Setup was relatively simple, even with the very first Bonjour installer.
Our last purchase took place three years ago. I cannot advise on today's market.
I joined the company after the decision has been made. An external IT provider assisted with making this decision.
Nimble was pretty unique at the time with their new CASL architecture. There are many more products built on the same principles today on the market. So, as usual, shop around before making this strategic decision.
The built-in performance profiles have made tweaking settings for different uses (SQL log files, SQL data files, VMware datastores, etc.) extremely simple. The built-in profiles are more than enough for most implementations, and if you need to create a custom performance profile, the process is simple and well documented. The analytics available via Infosight (The online Nimble support portal) are extremely well written and useful too. In particular, I find the analytics extremely useful when tracking down causes of latency that occasionally crop up and affect processing.
The Nimble SANs, as part of an overall move from standalone servers to a combined virtual infrastructure, have allowed my client to be much more responsive to their clients. The client is a SaaS provider that does large analysis/predictive modeling for the retail market. The previous hardware setup had database processes running for 14 hours or more, creating long turn around times for users. The new servers, running on the faster Nimble storage, allowed processing times of two hours or less to be achieved, allowing for faster results, as well as the ability to process more datasets concurrently, servicing more customers.
While I was not present for the sizing discussions, I believe there was some lack of discovery in selecting the model and features for my client. Even though the flash size on the array was doubled from Nimble's initial recommendation, the SAN still has latency issues during the largest dataset imports, due to CPU limitations on the SAN model that presales had recommended for this client. Certainly not the end of the world, and it can be fixed with an upgrade, but it was somewhat frustrating for my clients. I suspect estimations were used as to what the expected load would be, without a full understanding of the data processing being performed.
I originally installed one of these SANs for a customer just over three years ago. Since then, two additional SANs (same model, features and capacity, have since been added).
Deployment was great. The web configuration was extremely easy (and has gotten easier with every major release). Network configuration, utilizing Juniper QFX 5100 10gb switches, was simple too. All Nimble required was jumbo frames and enough network ports of each speed, 1gb and 10gb, for data and management.
The initial SAN that I installed has been extremely stable. The second of the three SANs has had occasional issues with a controller crashing, eventually leading to replacement of one of the controller heads. Failover was seamless each time it happened though, and we were able to keep working with no loss in performance (one of the few advantages of an active/passive array). Support replaced the faulty controller after appropriate testing and troubleshooting, and the problem hasn't recurred.
Yes and no. The SAN chosen was not ideal for the workload found, but growing in breadth, expanding the load across multiple arrays (with and without Group configuration) was very simple and fast, making use of the built-in replication to copy data. It is also easy to expand vertically via upgrading the controllers, though my clients chose not to do it.
Customer service with Nimble has been great every time I've dealt with them. They've always been very responsive and friendly to deal with. I definitely have appreciated the experience of dealing with Nimble Customer Service.Technical Support:
The technical support at Nimble is stellar. The analytics available via the Infosight web portal are extremely detailed, and yet well laid out and easy to peruse. In addition, the portal is regularly upgraded, with additional information, new views, and easier navigation. If the analytics there aren't sufficient, though, technical support is always happy to provide whatever additional help is required, including taking the time to do deep analysis of all settings in the environment (ie, Nimble and VMware settings, or Nimble and Windows settings) to ensure that things are configured optimally.
This particular environment was all standalone servers and storage previously. Decision was made to move to shared storage to support movement from standalone servers to a VMware cluster on Cisco UCS blades.
Initial setup was extremely easy. There was a Windows app for initial configuration to get the SAN configured on the network for management, and then subsequent work (volume creation, snapshot schedules, etc) is all web based and extremely easy.
I implemented these SANs personally, and did not make use of a vendor team.
It's hard to say, since it was a complete change in the datacenter going from
Licensing is dead simple and not a concern on this product, as all features are included. SANs are purposely CPU limited in a particular model, so be aware that even if you have enough flash for all your typical needs, you may hit a hard CPU limit on performance before you run out of flash. Luckily, head upgrades are easy and fully supported, allowing movement up to faster models.
I was not part of the initial hardware selection. My client was working with a VAR to choose and obtain the hardware for a data center refresh. During this process, it eventually worked out that I took over the complete data center refresh project, from design to deployment.
We have a small datacenter with Nimble Storage SANs that replicates to Nimble Storage SAN at our remote Disaster Recovery location. We are able to replicate every two hours and some of the tests we have done shows very good data integrity upon recovery at the DR location. Along with virtual servers and Nimble Storage, DR is much easier now.
Over a year ago, Nimble was available with either iSCSI connectivity or Fiber. Controllers can be upgraded or replaced with either of the connectivity interfaces. But, a combination of iSCSI and Fiber unit will provide flexibility in connecting SAN with existing network switches or fiber switches which can reduce overall cost and help with connecting high IO devices to the fiber interface.
Not at all. It’s been up and running ever since. We have had a few hard drive failures. Support actually calls us to let us know that there is a problem and a replacement part is on the way. It arrives in less than 4 hours. If we unplug a wire or perform maintenance on switches, Nimble support gets all the alerts and they proactively contacts us to see if there are any issues. We also receive a call from our Service Engineer to check on the health of the device and whenever there are any updates to the software.
We have expanded cache on one of the SAN which was very easy to do without any downtime.
9.9999 on a scale of 1-10 (1=worst, 10=best).
We had and EMC SAN in the past which took up a lot of space and required regular maintenance from a service technician including several downtimes.
Initial setup can be done using a Nimble setup client or via the console in about 5 easy steps.
If you are looking for a scalable, easy, performance, expandable SAN which provides all the great features without charging you licensing fees for all these useful features, go with Nimble Storage.
You will be up and running in an hour. Very easy steps to setup and five clicks to setup volumes, replication, etc.
1. Simplified storage administration
A dedicated storage administrator is no longer needed. All of our engineers have attended the one-day training and has the knowledge how to handle the Storage Systems. With our former SAN systems we had to have an external contractor doing part time administration for us due to the complexity. Now we can easily handle the Storage systems ourselves.
2. Very efficient adaptive flash technology
Even without having hundreds of rotating disks like we had in our former SAN system or having to buy an All-flash Storage, we get predictable and low latency numbers for all of our Storage Systems.
3. Simple snapshot management
Managing Snapshots through Volume collections and Protection Plans it’s easy to make sure new volumes get the appropriate replication and snapshot plan applied, which is easy to maintain and change for all volumes. The overview of used storage for snapshots and the ease of use when cloning a snapshot is remarkable compared to legacy Storage products.
4. Central monitoring and health check via the Nimble InfoSight
The InfoSight portal gives us an overall overview of all our Storage Systems and their volumes, snapshots and protection. InfoSight collects data and creates both automatically generated tickets for any problems or risk of problems as well as predictions of storage use based on usage trends. This helps us a lot avoiding anything from volume protection configuration mishaps to prediction on storage outage.
Increased administrative simplicity and predictable performance.
Close to a year. In total we're running about ten systems.
One uptime related firmware bug, which was possible to work around and fixed in a later release.
No, not so far.
We rate the support as very knowledgeable in the product platform.
Yes, the switch was made to gain a less complex design with regards to setup and administration.
The initial setup was very simple and after one day of education all tech staff were comfortable with the platform.
One benefit with the Nimble Storage platform is that is doesn’t contain any software licenses. All functionality comes built-in to the platform.
We compared both traditional vendors as NetApp and HPE, as well as up-comers like Pure Storage, Violin, SolidFire, Microsoft Storage Server and others.
Embrace simplicity – no more in-house deployed admin tools or tricky CLI GUI’s, just a simple and understandable web interface.
Depending on which product platform you are about to replace – you will either just gain a far better and predictable performance or a journey where you will have to leave the comfort of having a multi-protocol NAS into NFS and OR SMB file servers using Nimble block storage in the backend.
Easy to configure and view information of the system's health.
We do not need a dedicated staff member to handle the system we deploy. A regular infrastructure person that attends the Nimble training course will be able to handle the system.
Less manpower overhead to manage the storage.
Scalability, see below.
The company has been using Nimble Storage for three years.
We haven't had any issues.
We're not able to increase space on a small scale, each increase is pretty big.
Good and responsive.
Simple, it can be setup and ready to use within the same business day of delivery.
Pricing is decent.
It depends on your infrastructure specialist, the very technically advanced specialists will prefer something that is not so user friendly. They would prefer more configuration options where only people with the technical know-how will be able to look after the system. Nimble is very easy to work with. Simple technical skilled personnel will be able to handle the system.
These features keep the cost per IO and Gig low while giving very good performance. We have multiple database servers on the SAN that require low latency for optimal performance. This configuration allows us to run the database without over allocating memory to them.
Eliminated all IO bottlenecks, reduced from 6 SANs to 1.
Admin interface can be slow.
No issues scaling.
Support is great, they understand that they can’t live in a bubble. They understand virtualization and other applications.
Yes, Dell EqualLogic. Cost per IO and Gig. Stability.
Very straightforward, up in running and in testing first day.
It is straightforward, no hidden costs.
If you test it yourself, it is clear how it just beats every other product hands down.
No, but the SSD cache could do with increasing on some of our system. That’s a financial (Bean Counter) decision.
The best support ever. They will even assist if the problem lies with Hyper-V, VMware and networking. This is why I don’t think you can go wrong with Nimble!
Really simple.Nimble asks you various questions about IP addresses and then you get a pre-installation checklist. If you didn’t have a clue they’d guide you on the phone initially and then do a WebEx session to get you there. Simple.
Competitive. No licensing. Since everything is included.
They have All Flash arrays if people are concerned about Hybrid performance.
The support is the major factor in choosing Nimble and the performance has been great in all our Mix Load environments.
Snapshotting and replication.
These features provide a good resilience for business continuity and disaster recovery, by enabling us to effectively store data away from our primary site and giving us the ability to restore data relatively quickly.
Ability to replicate data offsite for DR protection in an easy and automated fashion.
Easier retrieval of snapshotted data and more granular control is desired.
This is in comparison to something like Veeam or MS shadow copy, where restoration of files is easier in their respective proprietary GUIs.
Snapshotting with Nimble can be very granular, but the restoration from a snapshot is not as easy as restoring with other systems.
Yes, switched for scalability and cost effectiveness of data storage/protection.
Get what you pay for, in-line pricing with other vendors.
Evaluate with Nimble, they are very helpful and able to answer queries about data storage requirements. No hard sell.
InfoSight is such a wonderful tool and given us insight we’ve never had into our storage environment.
The ‘insight’ into our equipment is fantastic. And their support is old-school, which means that they do an awesome job at being proactive.
InfoSight is such a wonderful tool and given us insight we’ve never had into our storage environment.
Being able to forecast growth and analysis at this level is not possible on our NetApp without a significant investment.
We can forecast when we need to invest in additional storage instead of the former, very manual effort.
We have had excellent support experience with their techs and get proactive notifications of issues instead of us having to monitor the solution.
There have been a couple of instances where we discovered previously unreported bugs.
We used NetApp before, Nimble was a better architecture for us and we receive better support than with the NetApp support team
If you have a logo they want, they get very aggressive with pricing to have that marketing collateral.
You will be very impressed – we didn’t know we had a latency issue on our email system until we were in the process of putting it into production. It was great that the Nimble could provide us an instant benefit.
Flexible scaling for future-proof and Nimble InfoSight, easy and clear to use reporting portal.
Generally speaking, no. However, just yesterday we experienced a volume failure, took down an essential production server. Still in the middle of investigation, will log a case with Nimble soon.
We are currently in the stage of planning to scale up, from what we were promised it should be trouble free.
I’ve yet dealt with technical support which is a good sign. The rep from Nimble and Engineers were helpful when I had question in regards of our scaling up project.
Yes, the decision was made before I joined the company, however, I believe it was due to pricing and the shift of our strategy.
Seems to be competitive and reasonable, however, with industry shifting focus onto cloud platform, many small-midsize businesses are limited to what we are offered.
We previously had Dell EqualLogic It was considered when it’s time for renewal.
Keep future needs in mind. Data might grow at a rate that surprises you.
Ease of use with the hardware and software GUI. Easy firmware upgrades. The performance for the price is extremely valuable.
The hardware is simplistic. The physical wiring of the controllers, upgrading controllers, and adding expansion shelves or cache. The software GUI lays everything out nice and clean. You are able to intuitively find what you need to accomplish in few clicks. The reporting is excellent. The firmware upgrades are easy. Just click and sit back and relax. They are non-invasive and take minimal time. The performance is on par with some of the other solutions that cost much more.
We are heavily reliant on SQL databases. Because of the performance out of the array, we are not storage bottlenecked. The price makes the value extremely appealing.
I used to have some gripes with how the GUI worked such as folder organization but the developers listened and released that in a new firmware version. I do want close to real time performance metrics in InfoSight.
Over 2 years.
The product has been extremely stable for us.
We have scaled up and out at our primary datacenter with no issues.
One of the best support experiences out there.
Yes and because of the performance and abilities of the array such as encryption without purchasing new hardware.
It was easy.
There are no hidden costs, but go for InfoSight.
I inherited this vendor in my environment but it has proven to be a worthy vendor and no plans to change.
We do not need to employ storage specialists to set up and manage our storage.
InfoSight gives us in-depth knowledge to ensure our storage and associated systems are performing well, which is more than we could even get from previous storage systems.
Support for near synchronous replication.
Currently the smallest snapshot window is 15 minutes, that means if we replicate data from one array to another array we will be up to 15 minutes out of date, this is the RPO.
We have a small number of systems that need to be replicated in such a way that we do not lose any data if we need to fail-over to the replica on the second SAN, or at least it should be only seconds behind.
Some SANs, like NetApp, have a synchronous replication feature, so when data is written to SAN1 a copy is sent to SAN2, only when this has been written successfully at SAN2 does the data on SAN1 get flagged as written. This means both SANs are in-step.
This is great if you have the SANs locally and have a fast connection, but if they are in different data centres and the WAN link is slow you get latency issues while the data is written and acknowledged by SAN2.
When I talk about near synchronous replication I am thinking of how DoubleTake from Vision Solutions works, I have been using this for over 15 years to do this type of replication.
This works by copying the block of data on SAN1 directly to the local volume, but taking a copy and putting it into a buffer. This means latency at SAN1 is not compromised.
The copied block is then sent across the WAN to the second SAN, where it is written and acknowledged back to the DoubleTake system on SAN1. Once the acknowledgement is back the local copy on SAN1 is deleted.
This means if any latency on the WAN does not impact the speed of storage on SAN1, although the data on SAN2 could be a little bit behind, but in most cases we are talking seconds at the mots, and once any congestion on then WAN link has gone the replication is nearly as fast as a pure synchronous system will achieve, so for most purposes it is as close to real-time as required.
If the WAN goes down, or you need to take SAN2 off-line for any reason, the only impact on SAN1 is the buffer grows with data to be replicated, and once the WAN or SAN2 is back on line this is flushed to SAN2 as fast as the WAN can transfer the data.
You need a ‘re-synch’ feature in case the volume on SAN2 is corrupted, this checks the CRC on the data blocks between the two systems and re-transmits any blocks that do not match.
No, none at all.
The CS210 is very limited and could not be expanded despite having spare slot’s for drives. But we were able to scale-out two of these to create a larger single unit.
But we have first generation hardware that cannot be upgraded unlike newer systems.
Amazing. Nothing is too much trouble, and they have a wealth of information they can access to help you.
Biggest problem was fitting the arrays into the racks – need to bend the rails (shoe or hammer required). Fixed in the latest models.
Took less than 30 minutes to get up and running and connected to our servers.
Simple – one price for the equipment, one price for the support and maintenance (fixed for 5 years), any updates and improvements and all licences included.
Looked at options from Hitachi, EMC, NetApp and HP.
Make full use of their Pre-Sales engineers, make them your best friend, they will stay with you for the journey and can assist you get the best out of the equipment.
Don’t be frightened of asking Support for help, if you authorise full data collection they can look at a wealth of information on your behalf covering more than the actual storage elements.
Performance, snapshot and replication capability. It’s also nice that they continue to add features at no cost through software updates. Their online portal InfoSight is helpful for tracking assets, health, utilization and other metrics.
Performance – our arrays can handle varying workloads effectively. Snapshot and replication capability – have allowed us to simplify and improve our backup and recovery capabilities. Their online portal InfoSight is helpful for tracking assets, health, utilization and other metrics. It’s also nice that they continue to add features at no cost through software updates.
It would be good to have a built in way to index snapshots so that we’d be able to granularly see what files were in a snapshot and restore at a file level. We’re using an add on product from Commvault to achieve this.
No. The solutions are very scalable. There are multiple ways to upgrade and scale – adding storage shelves, upgrading flash, upgrading processing etc.
Excellent. Proactive alerting. Responsive phone support unlike many other companies. Our local field rep is always willing to help.
Many different SANs.
Quick to set up and configure.
Reasonable pricing compared to other SAN vendors.
EMC, IBM, NetApp.
Give it a try with a POC. This is one of the rare vendors that do what they say they will. Their sales team is very easy to work with.
High-availability, performance, compression, cost to performance ratio and InfoSight. We’ve increased our performance, removing disk-latency errors in our SQL environments, and provide more information with InfoSight. We are seeing 60% compression on our legacy data.
Provides the performance needed to meet business requirements of sub-3 second shipping label generation. Increased disk performance for all VMs, SQL databases, and applications, providing additional load capacity and faster response times.
Small tweaks to the management UI for usability.
CS300 since 2/2015, CS500 since 5/2016. The CS300 was initially purchased to support a project that required high disk performance and met all expectations. A year later, we proceeded with a data center consolidation, replacing our CX4-240s with a single CS500 and an expansion shelf. The data on the CS300 was migrated, seamlessly without downtime, to the CS500. The CS300 was then converted to a fiber channel array to support our legacy environments.
No. We have had zero downtime on both arrays, including through multiple software upgrades.
No. We have not pushed the arrays to their limits, but we did cluster the CS300 and 500 when we migrated the data. The clustering was easy to do and would provide the scaling if we needed. In addition, hardware upgrades provide us another method to increase scale without downtime.
Very good. The support is very knowledge and drive the case to resolution, even if it is not a Nimble issue.
EMC CX4s. Better performance, better cost, reduce rack space/cooling/power. We reduced our disk latency from 12-15ms to 1-2ms.
Straightforward. The most difficult part was connecting the iSCSI to the switches in a HA fashion. Nimble engineers provided great support in the setup. The planning documentation provided by Nimble simplified the setup. The software upgrade was very easy to complete to get the new array up to date.
Licensing is all inclusive, which makes it simple. Pricing on their hybrid arrays are very competitive.
We evaluated Pure Storage and EMC XtremeIO. We found both products could not scale in the way Nimble can, they could not compete on the price to performance ratio, and they could not provide a competitive right-sized solution.
Insure you have your iSCSI network ready. The Nimble agent on the hosts does require a restart. Data migration will depend on your application, our VM hosts were easy, while our SQL databases required planned downtime.
Nimble provides a rock-solid product, scalable with great support.
Great performance and capacity in just 3U. Volume collections with crash-consistent snapshots every 4th hour, without using up too much disk space (thanks to indexing and redirect-on-write).
Our hosting environment (VMware ESX-based) got a nice boost thanks to these products. We were able to decommission a whole rack of old FC SAN arrays (HPE EVA4400) and replace it with just a CS300 (3U). Lower disk latency and a whole lot greater IOPS values as well.
Perhaps more stability to the InfoSight VMVision feature. A couple of times last year, this feature had stop working for us.
Well, Nimble Storage have had some difficulties/interference during this year with their predictive analytics service InfoSight. Read more about it here: https://www.nimblestorage.com/...
(almost) every Nimble array in the world reports back to InfoSight with data and statistics about the VM’s and connected hosts, which InfoSight automatically analyses and presenting it in a neat way for the user. A very good service and a matter affect, recently (the last couple of weeks) it have worked flawlessly, and hopefully this will continue.
One and a half years.
Other than InfoSight VMVision, no.
Magnificent. Quick response and assistance when adding a support case. Even if you create a case at 11:00 PM, or during the weekend, you will get a response shortly after posting the case.
Yes, we were using both older equipment (HPE EVA4400) and newer equipment (HPE 3PAR). The EVA4400 is now decommissioned, thanks to our Nimble array. Greater performance and capacity are the two main reasons that we switched to Nimble.
Very straightforward, no difficulties at all.
Unlike HPE 3PAR, there is no licensing jungle to find your way out of.
No. We got a PoC array delivered to us first, that got us convinced about the product.
If you're currently looking for a new storage solution in your environment, give Nimble Storage a chance. I can promise you, you won't be disappointed.
The most valuable features are ease of administration, stability, performance and customer support.
The SAN’s interface is easy to navigate. The processes to accomplish a task seem to have been constructed using the least number of clicks.
Performance of the SAN has been great due to the software algorithms for flash/spinner data writes/reads.
It reduced the complexity of managing multiple SANs.
The InfoSight continues to improve, but could use some more innovation.
We have used Nimble for 4+ years.
Our SANs have been extremely stable with only a few HDD failures over the past 3 years.
We have had no scalability issues.
Technical support is excellent; always reach skilled techs on first contact. Customer support is always available even with information accessible via documentation.
We previously used EMC. Storage administration was a nightmare in regards to LUN changes.
Setup was straightforward; intuitive.
It’s expensive, but worth it. Not much to say about licenses.
Before choosing this product, I evaluated Dell and EQL.
Take the time to purchase the proper head unit and port speeds.
Availability of our environment has exceeded “five nines”, along with performance being stellar.
Performance, reliability, InfoSight, the ability to upgrade the O/S on the SAN without taking it down, and cost.
Poor performance and reliability would adversely affect my company’s productivity, and thus would increase overall labor costs as people took longer to do their jobs. (Especially if and when critical systems were down due to an outage.) It would also negatively affect employee and customer perception of the quality of IT services.
InfoSight is extremely valuable, because it gives us (IT) a direct understanding of historical performance and capacity trends, including projected utilization based on those trends. This in turn allows us to perform capacity planning before we reach the point where it becomes an issue. Further, some of the information in InfoSight gives us a direct understanding of which of our virtual servers is the most I/O bound. That allows us to investigate the server and mitigate disk traffic through configuration changes at the server level.
Regarding uninterrupted upgrades, one of the biggest problems with upgrading SANs is the fact that (except for Nimble!) you have to take down the SAN to do so. This requires the quiescence of any servers relying on that storage, and thus a service stoppage. While this can be done on a scheduled basis as “scheduled downtime”, the fact that Nimble permits us to upgrade transparently WITHOUT service interruption not only improves perceptions of IT, but it also changes what is normally a multi-hour process into a 30 minute process… saving time and money.
Right now, all Nimble arrays offer data compression to disk, but only the Flash (SSD) arrays offer in-line deduplication. I’d like to see in-line deduplication extended to Nimble non-flash (called “Hybrid”) arrays, even if it’s only the C500 and higher controllers that support it.
While I speak about “five nines”, the truth is we’ve had 100% up-time (no outages, not even planned) for over 3 years.
We have not encountered any scalability issues.
Technical support is extraordinary. Their technical support often helps us with VMware issues and related products when the issue isn’t with their SAN – which is almost always true.
We used NetApp. We switched due to performance and manageability requirements. NetApp was simply an average performer, and managing it was difficult.
The SAN setup itself was simple and easy. The biggest challenge we had was in changing our network to accommodate turning off Spanning Tree Protocol for that segment.
If you evaluate a SAN based on total cost of ownership, you have to consider the cost to the company for down time and maintenance windows, among other things. Their price structure for purchase and pricing for maintenance is excellent. Just as importantly, there are no “additional software modules” to buy at an added price. You get everything up front.
From a price/performance perspective, Nimble simply can’t be beat. From a TCO perspective, the stability alone pays for itself.
We evaluated offerings from IBM, HP, EMC, and a number of smaller vendors, such as AppAssure.
Be prepared for your staff to want to abandon all other SAN’s you may have in place. Make sure your network and network switches are capable of handling the performance, because it would be a shame to buy something so incredibly fast only to choke it down on the Ethernet side of things.
Originally posted https://www.juku.it/en/nimble-storage-all-flash-late-but-right/
Nimble has finally launched its new All Flash Array: Predictive Flash Array. It took too long but, now that it’s out, it can’t be said they didn’t get it right!
Nimble-Storage-AFA-4up-rackAll-Flash is table stake now. Don’t have it? …well then, you can’t play!
That’s the real problem. All-Flash still counts for a relatively small percentage of overall primary storage sales but, again, it is an option that customers want to have in every new project.
It is true that prices are continuing to fall, and somewhere down the line your next primary storage system could most likely be an AFA, and that goes for smaller enterprises too.
Nimble has been pressured a lot lately because of the absence of such a product in its lineup. But at least now they have a good array… ready to compete with all other AFAs, with interesting features and some good news coming for existing users of hybrid systems too.
Why it’s right
Pressdeck2The product looks very dense compared to the competition. Nimble has also adopted an interesting disk tray design that can host both 2,5″ and 3,5″ drives and the performance output positions them in the right spot in terms of balancing between performance and capacity (we are talking about 2PB usable capacity and 300K IOPS for the single system, up to 8.2PB and 1.2M IOPS for a scale-out cluster of 4 nodes and 16RU). I actually don’t have an independent benchmark, but one of their customers who has been included in Nimble’s beta program, told me that the numbers measured in the field are aligned to what Nimble says in its slides.
It’s interesting to note that the NimlbeOS remains exactly the same for both hybrid and AFA systems. And new features introduced today (like Deduplication for example) will be available on old (hybrid) systems too. And this is probably one of the reasons why it took so long to bring the AFA to the market.
Another characteristic of Nimble’s new array that I really loved today is the scale-out capability of the product. Nothing new really, and not because of scale-out itself, but because you can mix different system types in the same cluster. It doesn’t mean that it is safe to span data volumes between different types of arrays, but it will be of help for transparent data migrations (especially if you have no success with functionalities like VMware storage vMotion). To be fair, this feature is not unique to Nimble in the market but again, it could be very useful in some environments.
PressdeckNimble’s offer is also aligned with the competition when it comes to support, with a 7-year warranty on Flash Drives and other good support program characteristics. Again, not unique but great for end users.
But flash is just flash
From my POV, a primary storage vendor must have an All-flash array today (and not only), but this is not the differentiator. Not anymore!
Again, if we go through any single spec of this system and compare it to others in the market, I’m sure we will find that some could be better, others could be worse… the differentiation lies elsewhere.
Looking at Nimble now, as far as I’m concerned the differentiator is in its Cloud-based analytics tool: InfoSight.
This tool, thanks to the great amount of sensors continuously collected and the big data applications at the backend, puts the end user in the position of knowing what’s really going on with his/her storage system at any time, suggesting actions and helping the sys admin in his/her day to day job.
This kind of help could contribute to driving down TCO while increasing system uptime, especially for small and mid-size organizations where resources are often constrained and sysadmins are forced to cover every aspect of infrastructure support.
Nimble is investing a lot in this area, InfoSight is being continuously improved and the company is also looking at how to implement new features aimed at taking a deeper look at all infrastructure components and up in the stack, into the applications!
Closing the circle
The message is quite simple here: Congratulations Nimble for finally introducing your AFA to the market… and thank you for doing it in the right way (without disrupting compatibility with other products and by adding more and more features to InfoSight and for your existing hybrid customers). But that’s it, Flash is no longer the differentiator and even more important, basic specs don’t make a huge difference either. You simply have to have an AFA to play and start a conversation with end users today (even if the project will probably end up with the implementation of hybrid arrays…)
All the good now happens in the upper layers: software, efficiency, sophisticated data services, QoS, integration, analytics and so on (which is not a cotracticion to what I wrote above!). I also think that all primary vendors should look much more carefully at secondary storage and cloud integration. Something that is still not happening… but that will be the next differentiator.
Currently there's no deduplication, and I would like to see that. Also, it's still slower than flash storage.
The VDI is supposed to be smooth, but we still saw a little delay in typing and performing general work even though we didn’t put much load into it.
The controls are built into the unit, and I wouldn’t hesitate to scale it.
The tech support is great. Within a few minutes of pulling drives, someone calls or emails right away to check up.
It was very simple and fast. It only took three hours, including racking, to set everything up.
All the features are included in Nimble, so there's no need to pay for features later on.
We were looking for a VDI solution that gave the same performance as a desktop/laptop. We tested PureStorage and ExtremIO, but chose to do a PoC with Nimble because others who were already using it were so positive about it.
If you're not using it for VDI, it's also good for general storage.
The organization is now able to take advantage of the benefits offered by virtualization such as vMotion. The storage is now able to support the required IOPs for all of our applications.
I haven't come across any so far.
I've used it for 10 months.
No issues encountered.
The product has been extremely stable so far.
We have not yet had the need to scale.
Prior to this, we were using storage on our servers.
It was very straightforward. The initial setup can be completed in less than hour as long as all of the network configurations have been completed.
It was in-house.
Price is comparable to other vendors’ products in the same class. The licensing is extremely easy to understand compared to some of the other vendors. Nimble doesn’t require separate licenses for each feature that they offer.
Nimble offers solid products, are very easy to implement, and offer great performance.
Originally posted at https://www.freeitdata.com/
Over the last 15 years, the storage industry has primarily been dominated (market share) by six companies, EMC, NetApp, IBM, Hitachi Data Systems (HDS), HP and Dell. In 2013, these six companies made up approximately 85% of all storage sold in the United States.
The remaining 15% of the storage market is made up of all the other storage manufacturers. Needless to say, it is a very crowded 15%. For as many new products that are introduced into the market each year, just as many disappear. However, a few of the very best have found ways to grow. Innovators like Nimble Storage, Pure Storage, Tintri, Simplivity, Tegile and the like are most commonly referred to hybrid storage, all flash storage, or hyper-converged products. All these technologies are considered disruptive storage technologies to what the Tier 1 storage providers have been offering. These organizations are pushing known boundaries and finding new ways to innovate, store and protect data.
In addition to being true innovators these companies manufacture products that are easy to implement, easy to use and affordable. These companies are doing things differently based on the ever-changing Information Technology eco-system. These disruptive technologies have evolved to fit the changes in virtualization, utilize improvements in flash technology, feature faster CPUs with more cores, and feature new software/GUI innovations. How?... They have figured out, that by developing better software capable of running on commodity hardware, they can provide a better end-user experience at a drastically reduced cost. Even with the use of commodity hardware, they still provide up to five 9’s of availability through redundancy in the infrastructure.
Nimble Storage Graphical User Interface
These companies are also providing new methods of data protection, replication, inline de-duplication, in-line compression, and encryption. They allow tighter integration with virtualization hyper-visors and application software. Because the innovation is in the software, these companies are able to more quickly improve capability and provide features to adapt to the changes in the technology eco-system.
Arguably the x86 server manufactures were blindsided by how much virtualization was going to affect their servers business. At this point x86 servers have become utility devices, which are fairly inexpensive, when you look at 25-75 virtual guest servers are running on what used to be a physical box only a few short years ago. These emerging storage technologies are starting to do the same thing. It is possible that the legacy storage vendors could find themselves in the same position as the x86 server manufactures as more and more development goes into virtualization of storage and placing data on commodity infrastructure.
Well, 12 years ago VMware was emerging as a disruptive technology. Now VMWare is the standard for virtualization. VMWare could quickly become a disruptive technology again, with Virtual SAN (VSAN). I predict over the next 5 years, we will see even more consolidation of storage vendors, as newer and better ways to store data are developed and the traditional SAN that we know today will be drastically different. It is quite possible that Object Based Storage and the use of data protection via replicas will overtake the traditional and very antiquated RAID technology solutions and fundamentally changes how we store, manage, search and protect data.
Pure Storage vSphere Web Client
There will probably always be a need for the traditional storage methods, but as we have seen, that segment will continue to shrink as virtualization and storage innovation continue to change our IT landscape.
I have a long list that I have shared with Nimble development team and am working with them on this.
I've been using it for four months.
There were some problems.
No issues encountered.
No issues encountered.
They're great. Just amazing.Technical Support:
It depends, but we have a personal route to the right personnel.
We did, and we switched due to the latency, technology, and cost.
It's very simple but requires you to be accurate, but this is how it is for any product..
We did it in-house.
This was large POC track and the others were -
Plan, plan, plan, plan and plan again.
The SSD caching and the snapshots within the array are unlike any other product I've ever worked with. Restoring VM's is VERY simple.
The SSD caching ensures VM performance is top notch 24/7 regardless of how much I/O the VM requires.
I'd love to be able to put larger spindles into the unit, but I get that that is how they make their money, by selling you a larger unit.
I've used it for five years.
We ran into some blue screen issues when using Hyper-V, however, with VMware it works perfectly.
None so far.
It's hard for Nimble to compare with the largest EMC stuff, but, I'm not entirely sure that they're after that segment of EMC's market.
It's top notch.Technical Support:
It's top notch.
We used to push Dell/Equallogic stuff, but the limited performance and lack of value caused us to look elsewhere.
The setup is by far the most straightforward setup I have ever worked with in the SAN space.
My first unit was a demo unit that we used internally and setup on our own. Now we're a reseller of Nimble.
In terms of value, it's immediate. All VM's instantly noticed a drastic performance increase over the old Dell stuff.
From one perspective they're pricey for what the hardware/software is, but they're definitely worth it if you're in a high IOPS environment. In fact they're a very cost effective solution when pinned against the competitors.
Everything from NetApp, EMC, Dell/Equallogic, and even QNAP. It's really no contest when you learn about the architecture in detail.
Definitely have a sales engineer give you a demo/explanation of the technology.
The vCenter integration is very good. I can not only see what each of my iSCSI presentations look like from a performance standpoint, I can see the snapshots, I can shrink, grow, modify, or delete them as well. In addition to that, InfoSight is a great tool to look at the "big picture" when planning what you want to do next with your Nimble Storage.
The visibility and power of the vCenter integration allows me to troubleshoot, diagnose and rectify most issues before anyone notices. I can also deploy new virtual machines much more quickly because I don’t have to bounce between different tools to do it.
Honestly, the only thing that could really get better is the price. Although, the price on these units isn’t too bad at all.
I've used it for 11 months.
There have been no stability issues on our Nimble Storage arrays thus far (we have five of them). Nimble is VERY specific about testing to the extent that if a release of the software has a known major bug, they won’t release it for your array (or at least they haven’t so far).
Each one of our arrays can connect to four storage shelves. That gives us the possibility of around 240TB per array with the h90T storage shelves. In addition to that, you can federate Nimble Storage arrays as well.
Customer service most certainly gets a 10/10. Not only do they resolve my issues when I call them in, but with InfoSight they also watch my storage for me and alert me to potential issues that may be upcoming. An example would be the one time I had a bad power supply, and they had one on the way to me before I called it in.Technical Support:
Technical support also gets 10/10. See above.
We used HP EVA Fiber Channel SANS before. The HP EVA SANS were starting to show their age and were very expensive to run and maintain. In addition to that, they didn’t perform as well as the current day machines.
It was straightforward looking back. At the time it seemed difficult, but it was almost all networking and VMware work. It seemed difficult because we weren’t used to iSCSI. It’s really not that much different from Fiber Channel when you really look at it.
When we deployed this we were totally new to an iSCSI environment. We actually called in some professional services. They did such a good job, I’m relatively confident that I could deploy a Nimble Storage array on my own.
We implemented our first array with a Nimble engineer onsite. Our second array was done via a vendor. Both experiences were excellent.
We couldn’t be happier with our ROI on this product. It has made managing both storage and VMware simpler and more efficient.
The tendency when spending the kind of money you have to spend on storage is to get the minimum you need. I’d suggest that you think in terms of purchasing something you can grow into instead. We made the decision to purchase CS240 units. If I had it to do over I would have purchased a 400 (which today would be a CS500).
We looked at
Nimble Storage array is a good buy no matter which way you slice it. I’m thinking it fits into anything but the large enterprise arena and they are making progress on that with some of their offerings.