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IBM SAN Volume Control OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

IBM SAN Volume Control is #6 ranked solution in top Storage Management tools. PeerSpot users give IBM SAN Volume Control an average rating of 9.6 out of 10. IBM SAN Volume Control is most commonly compared to Dell Storage Resource Manager: IBM SAN Volume Control vs Dell Storage Resource Manager.
Buyer's Guide

Download the Storage Management Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: September 2022

What is IBM SAN Volume Control?

Built with IBM Spectrum Virtualize software—part of the IBM Spectrum Storage family—IBM SAN Volume Controller (SVC) is an enterprise-class storage system that helps organizations achieve better data economics by supporting the new large scale workloads that are critical to success. SVC systems can handle the massive volumes of data from mobile and social applications and enable flexible hybrid multicloud deployments and deliver the performance and scalability needed to gain insights from the latest analytics technologies.

IBM SAN Volume Control was previously known as IBM SVC.

IBM SAN Volume Control Video

IBM SAN Volume Control Pricing Advice

What users are saying about IBM SAN Volume Control pricing:
  • "The initial price of IBM SAN Volume Control is steep."
  • "With SAN Volume Controller, we need to license by terabyte."
  • IBM SAN Volume Control Reviews

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    Sales Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    Gives full, easy control over migration and management
    Pros and Cons
    • "With SVC it is very easy to manage and to use for migration, meaning that when we want to move or to keep control of the volume or update a server database, it is very easy. That's why we use it."
    • "They just need to put in the snap volume because now they use what is called a flash copy. This means that you have to take all the volume instead of NetApp which uses their snapshot."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use it to work with a record database and with some specific tools for our customer.

    What is most valuable?

    With SVC it is very easy to manage and to use for migration, meaning that when we want to move or to keep control of the volume or update a server database, it is very easy. That's why we use it.

    What needs improvement?

    If IBM wants want to put SAN Volume Control ahead of their competitors, like NetApp, they just need to put in the snap volume because now they use what is called a flash copy. This means that you have to take all the volume instead of NetApp which uses their snapshot.

    They will have to improve that. Today, it is not so difficult to snap a volume when you have an SSD or NVMe disk, it just takes a few seconds to do it. They should improve the snapshot in the IBM SAN Volume Control.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using IBM SAN Volume Control for two years.

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    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    IBM SAN Volume Control is stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    IBM SAN Volume Control is scalable.

    We have 500 users using it in different positions.

    Today, we have three guys to maintain and manage it, but it is not at full design.

    How are customer service and support?

    We are satisfied with tech support. We have no pending tickets with support or anything like that now. It is really proactive sometimes.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We previously worked with NetApp and sometimes with Oracle Exadata. We switched because it was a little bit complex with commercial rules. Every time they changed we decided to go for something where we know the price. We know how much we can spend tomorrow to increase volume and capacity. It is easy for us to go on the market and to see how much we will spend in the future. With some of those solutions it is so difficult to know that. So it was not only because of the technical aspect that we switched.

    How was the initial setup?

    It was very easy to install and manage.

    Installation and starting the migration for each project depends, because during the project you have to do the training. This means that between the end of installation and the training, you sometimes have two months. During those two months, you have a lot of things to do. Sometimes it takes weeks or months.

    You have, for example the Windows Servers with Office or something like that. It is a different preparation for DevOps.

    What was our ROI?

    The return on investment means that you want to speak about CAPEX or OPEX. In our activity, we are more on an OPEX budget. Today, we can rapidly find the amount that we have to engage if we want more capacity or more units. It is very easy. So there is return on investment when you can stay with one person to just calculate and say, "Okay. We know that for this kind of project we have to spend..."

    When it is easy, you manage better. You know the budget. I do not have to call everybody in the world to negotiate with integrators or other guys. We don't spend our time discussing about the price.

    In the data center, return on investment applies to when your solution is not so high for the crew and all those things are characteristic. It means the number of users in the rack and the coolant to keep the temperature at a very good level. Again, we are seeing that we can do what we want when we want. It's more important.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    With IBM, we can separate the license from storage. That means that you are, for example, with an SSD drive, and you buy an SKU. SSD is one SKU. But if you want another path driver with more capacity, your SKU is 1.4 SKU.

    You have to compare. With the IBM service you do what you want. Meaning that if you want to make a red six or a red five, you do what you want. You have more tools with the license, you have all the tools to be able to manage your solution. Now, they changed their pricing for redemption tools for compression. They changed it directly in the hardware compression on the drive. This is why I can say that we have all the things to manage and to use the solution with the storage license.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We have a lot of cards. For example, we have Exadata. We have cards with HP. We have cards with NetApp and Dell EMC, but we don't have the card with HGS. We have the card for IBM, but they are not our primary partners or supplier. Today, we have the technical experience and that is why we engage with some of them. IBM is for the primary storage but we use Veeam for the backup. We use other things and other software. We have a partnership with Cohesity.

    What other advice do I have?

    On a scale of one to ten, I would give IBM SAN Volume Control a 10.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Slav Trifonov - PeerSpot reviewer
    Head of Database Administration, SAN and Storage Infrastructure at United Bulgarian Bank AD
    Real User
    Top 20
    Easily configurable, and easy to upgrade, manipulate, and add new storage
    Pros and Cons
    • "The solution is easy to use, easily configurable, and easy to upgrade, manipulate, and add new storage."
    • "I would like to see the usage of virtualized storage boxes improved. I'd like to see this feature fixed, especially for SVC controller, and to be able to hold more storage."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use this solution mainly for Hyper-V infrastructure and for Oracle Real Application Clusters. We use it in our infrastructure environment because we are a bank. We are the final customer.

    We upgraded our IVC controls in December 2021. The solution is deployed on-premises. We also have our own data centers on-premises. Our machine can see there are disks in both data centers, because it's a high availability environment. We have 5 to 10 people using this solution but many more clients. Customers are using applications which are running on them.

    What is most valuable?

    The solution is easy to use, easily configurable, and easy to upgrade, manipulate, and add new storage.

    What needs improvement?

    Currently, we are trying to improve our SAN infrastructure to go from SAN-based directors. We are trying to upgrade and go on generation seven, which supports the VME protocol for some communication. Currently, we are on generation five, and we want to go to the next generation.

    Generation seven is a great benefit with monitoring and following workflows easily to resolve problems on our fibre channel.

    I would like to see the usage of virtualized storage boxes improved. I'd like to see this feature fixed, especially for SVC controller, and to be able to hold more storage.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Whenever the virtual environment grows, it has to implement some of those controllers. Also, activity between data centers should be provided with a kind of capacity input. So, for appliances like that, the number should be extended in order to serve all traffic.

    It's very complex. Storage works directly with our fibre channel and infrastructure should also improve continuously following the modern products and technology solutions.

    We have plans to increase usage. We also are going to buy more storage because the company should be provisioned every three years with correct budgeting and correct planning.

    How are customer service and support?

    Technical support is great.They are in some kind of transition, and they outsource some activities, but they are still good specialists.

    How was the initial setup?

    Setup was straightforward.

    What about the implementation team?

    We used IBM support for implementation.

    What other advice do I have?

    I would rate this solution 10 out of 10.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
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    Kudzanayi Manjera - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Services Engineer at KENAC COMPUTER SYSTEMS
    Real User
    Top 5Leaderboard
    Useful copy services, beneficial performance metrics, and responsive support
    Pros and Cons
    • "The most valuable features of IBM SAN Volume Control are the copy services, performance metrics, and analysis. Additionally, they have upgraded and introduced visual volumes."
    • "IBM SAN Volume Control could improve by better integrations with other vendor systems. IBM SAN Volume Control can store the environment and are able to integrate with Veeam, but I don't know if they can integrate as well with SVC or other vendors' systems."

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable features of IBM SAN Volume Control are the copy services, performance metrics, and analysis. Additionally, they have upgraded and introduced visual volumes.

    What needs improvement?

    IBM SAN Volume Control could improve by better integrations with other vendor systems. IBM SAN Volume Control can store the environment and are able to integrate with Veeam, but I don't know if they can integrate as well with SVC or other vendors' systems. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using IBM SAN Volume Control for approximately six years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    IBM SAN Volume Control is highly stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability of IBM SAN Volume Control is good. I have approximately four IO groups in operation.

    How are customer service and support?

    The technical support from IBM SAN Volume Control is very good. We have been dealing with IBM for quite some time and their response times according to the priority of the case, it's within scope.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I have not used other solutions prior to IBM SAN Volume Control.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup of IBM SAN Volume Control is straightforward. To have everything set up, such as the hardware and connectivity correctly, takes approximately half a day to complete.

    What was our ROI?

    We have seen a return on investment over the years. IBM SAN Volume Control is worth the money.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The initial price of IBM SAN Volume Control is steep. 

    What other advice do I have?

    IBM SAN Volume Control is useful and it eliminates a lot of that mid-work that needs to be done. If we have a separate storage subsystem all over the place, this solution is good. You do not need extensive knowledge to use the solution.

    I rate IBM SAN Volume Control a nine out of ten.

    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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    PeerSpot user
    Storage and Backups Manager at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
    MSP
    Top 5Leaderboard
    An reliable solution with an outstanding virtualization layer
    Pros and Cons
    • "The virtualization layer has been great."
    • "IBM support can be very slow."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use SAN Volume Controller with our systems in the SAP HANA environment and for another cloud suite — VMware. We have replication between two data centers for synchronous replication.

    What is most valuable?

    The virtualization layer has been great. We have SAN Volume Controller, and below that, we can use any kind of storage. That's perfect for us because if we run out of storage, we can add more storage from any of our vendors.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    IBM support can be very slow. Sometimes they take a lot of time to solve a problem; this is an issue with IBM. There are a lot of small companies here in Mexico that don't have many engineers, they can't afford to be waiting around for a response. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    I think the licensing could be improved. With other solutions, you don't need a separate license for storage. With SAN Volume Controller, we need to license by terabyte. With our other products, we license by the box.

    What other advice do I have?

    Overall, on a scale from one to ten, I would give this solution a rating of nine.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
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