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Love to VMAX

It may come as a surprise to some people, especially reading this but I quite like the Symmetrix (VMAX) as a platform. Sure it is long in the tooth or in marketing speak ‘a mature platform’ and it is a bit arcane at times; Symmetrix Administrators seem at times to want to talk a different language and use acronyms when a simple word might do but it’s rock solid.

Unfortunately EMC see it as a cash-cow and have pushed it when at times better fits in their own product set would suit a customer better. This means that many resent it and like to hold it up as an example of all that is wrong with EMC. I certainly have done in the past.

And it might end up being the most undersold and under-rated product; the product pushed into the marketing niche that is Enterprise Storage. Yet it could be so much more.

I think that there is a huge market for it in the data-centres of the future; more so than EMC’s other ‘legacy’ array in VNX. For many years, I thought that EMC should drop the Symmetrix and build up the Clariion (VNX) but I see now that I was wrong; EMC need to drop the Clariion and shrink down the Symmetrix. They need to produce a lower-end Symmetrix which can scale-out block much in the way that Isilon can scale out file. Actually a smaller Isilon would be a good idea too; a three node cluster that could fit into three or four U; presenting 20-40 terabytes.

In fact, for those customers who want it; perhaps a true VNX replacement utilising the Virtual Versions of  the Symmetrix and Isilon might be the way to go but only if there is a seamless way to scale out.

I guess this will never happen apart from in the labs of the mad hackers because EMC will continue to price the Symmetrix at a premium price…which is a pity really.

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