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Dell EMC PowerStore OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

What is Dell EMC PowerStore?

PowerStore 1000T through 9000T models provide organizations with all the benefits of a unified storage platform for block, file and vVol data, while enabling flexible growth with the intelligent scale-up and scale-out capability of appliance clusters. In addition, automated management of resources across the cluster results in superior storage utilization and simplified administration. Designed for the modern data center, PowerStore’s data-centric design with NVMe and hardware-enabled Advanced Data Reduction and 4:1 DRR deliver critical performance and storage efficiency for both traditional and modern applications.

Dell EMC PowerStore is also known as PowerStore.

Dell EMC PowerStore Buyer's Guide

Download the Dell EMC PowerStore Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: October 2021

Dell EMC PowerStore Video

Pricing Advice

What users are saying about Dell EMC PowerStore pricing:
  • "The price is not cheap, but it's worth it for the features you get from the storage. If you can afford it, you are probably buying the best solution that you can have for this virtual environment."
  • "There's still a cap on the upgrade path, where you can consume all the engines within the frame before you have to go to another frame... Normally, we exceed the IOPS on the frames before we can ever exhaust the storage, so anything they can do to help us avoid stranded storage capacity, capacity that we couldn't get to, would be beneficial."
  • "When we compared it with the other solutions, the pricing of PowerStore was equal. The pricing is good."
  • "The price of Dell EMC PowerStore could be better, it is a bit expensive."

Dell EMC PowerStore Reviews

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Maurizio Davini
CTO at Universita' degli Studi di Pisa
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Gives us performance and flexibility, and has completely changed our scientific computation environment

Pros and Cons

  • "Gives us flexibility, performance, and ease of use. It also has some very good compression capabilities. We were looking for a solution that was easy to install in our VMware environment, that was flexible. PowerStore X is a type of a VMware cluster that you install inside your environment. If you have a VMware environment, like we have in production, it's easy to install and use."
  • "Where the system needs to improve is by adding more enterprise features like replication on other sites. We would also like it to be much more aligned with the VMware version. For example, today we have two different versions of VMware ESXi running to keep the PowerStore online. It would be better if the software cycling was faster."

What is our primary use case?

The use case for this solution is based on VMware and that is why we chose PowerStore X. During the first period of the pandemic, we decided to use our VMware infrastructure for HPC workloads. We were looking for high-performance storage that could be inserted inside our VMware environment in an easy way. PowerStore, which had just been announced, seemed like the right solution and so we decided to buy. We have this storage environment inside the virtual HPC.

In our environment we are doing medical analysis related to genomic workloads. The data are acquired remotely from experiments and stored on the PowerStore. The PowerStore is exposed to the user through virtual machines, and the data are analyzed in this environment.

How has it helped my organization?

During the pandemic, we were looking for something that could easily increase our scientific computing capabilities. It was not for something related to our university's enterprise applications. We were looking for something that was easy to provide inside our virtual scientific computation environment. PowerStore was really the best we could buy. And it has changed things completely. Our scientific computations were traditional before, in the sense of NFS or traditional HPC. PowerStore, now, is a key factor for the virtual HPC environment that we have.

Also, the solution's Anytime Upgrade program is a key factor so that we can keep the storage upgraded without any downtime. We have experienced some software upgrades on the system over the last year, and everything has run quite smoothly and we are very happy about that. I expect the Anytime Upgrade program will save us money and it saves time, for sure. It's difficult, in our environment, to estimate how much time this program has saved us because we don't typically track the time we spend. But if you take into account the fact that the upgrade is almost automatic, almost without people intervening, that is the reason we save time. You can schedule an upgrade, so you know when you are upgrading, but you don't need people looking into it. We save the amount of time people would typically have to devote to an upgrade.

We bought the PowerStore for performance and flexibility, and we are 100 percent satisfied with both.

What is most valuable?

  • Flexibility
  • Performance
  • Easy of use

It also has some very good compression capabilities. 

We were looking for a solution that was easy to install in our VMware environment, that was flexible. PowerStore X is a type of a VMware cluster that you install inside your environment. If you have a VMware environment, like we have in production, it's easy to install and use.

It enables us to add compute or capacity independently. We have also deployed some apps on PowerStore, even though the PowerStore we have is not the biggest one you can buy. One of the main characteristics of PowerStore is that it is like another piece of VMware, so you can run applications on top, applications that have direct access to the storage. The ability to add compute or capacity independently is great because it adds more flexibility to our environment. You are not adding only storage, but you're adding some not-so-big computing capability. You have the possibility of adding some virtual machines, running NVMe storage, and that is a real plus for this solution.

In addition, PowerStore's built-in intelligence for helping to simplify IT operations is incredible. When we approached PowerStore, we had an idea that it was a normative platform, but we were impressed by the capability of the solution. It's probably one of the best pieces of storage that we have installed here.

What needs improvement?

Where the system needs to improve is by adding more enterprise features like replication on other sites. We would also like it to be much more aligned with the VMware version. For example, today we have two different versions of VMware ESXi running to keep the PowerStore online. It would be better if the software cycling was faster.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using Dell EMC PowerStore for almost a year. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's a stable solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

PowerStore is the latest and the best technology available. The design for scalability of the solution is perfect. It's something that can grow vertically and horizontally, by design. Of course, it's NVMe storage, so it's not cheap. You can expand the solution using less expensive storage upgrades in the PowerStore, so it's very good. By design, it's a wonderful machine. Of course, if you want to go all-NVMe, you have to be able to afford it.

How are customer service and technical support?

Dell EMC's customer and technical support are the best in the market, for sure. We have almost all the Dell EMC solutions here, so we know the support very well and it is absolutely the best in the market.

How was the initial setup?

The installation was quite smooth and easy. After one week, everything was up and running.

What about the implementation team?

The installation was done by Dell EMC people and us, together. Our experience with them was incredible, as usual. We have several types of Dell EMC storage here, so we know their abilities. Everything was smooth.

What was our ROI?

ROI was a key factor for us, for this infrastructure. We have seen ROI in that we have been able to give our researchers an environment that they didn't have before. It has been a complete success. It's a completely new environment. We didn't have anything similar before. Every cent spent has been worth it.

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

The price is not cheap, but it's worth it for the features you get from the storage. If you can afford it, you are probably buying the best solution that you can have for this virtual environment.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

For this environment, PowerStore was almost unique when we chose it, so we did not evaluate other solutions.

What other advice do I have?

We weren't concerned that PowerStore is a relatively new platform. We were not inserting it in an enterprise environment. We were inserting it in a scientific computing environment, which is where we tend to install all the latest technologies. It was not a problem.

If you have a production VMware environment, the platform is no longer new and is probably the most flexible performance storage system that you can buy today.

We are not using the solution's load balancing at the moment but it's something that we are looking into. We use PowerStore's built-in VMware hypervisor to run VMs and virtualized applications, but we are not using it at the edge. We know that is one of the capabilities of this kind of solution, but we are using it in our central computing facility.

We experienced some small issues, but the virtual machine was new. But our choice was a good one. The machine is easy to use, the performance is there, and we are happy.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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BC
Chief Information Officer at a computer software company with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
VMware integration was a big factor for us, and we have benefited from the advanced dedupe, compression, and replication

Pros and Cons

  • "The administration tools take advantage of machine learning and make recommendations to the admins, and that makes the administration easier."

    What is our primary use case?

    We do a lot of cloning of databases for either troubleshooting or to stage and prepare implementation. We are a SaaS provider in the real estate industry and we're either using the PowerStore to help expedite things in our development environment, or we're using it to help troubleshoot any problems that we have.

    We have north of 13 petabytes of storage in our environment.

    How has it helped my organization?

    PowerStore has enabled us to add additional storage to that we hadn't planned on, which allows us to defer the purchase of some additional storage.

    We've really improved the amount of storage that we're able to effectively utilize because of its better deduping. It has about a 50 percent better dedupe rate, with its intelligence, than we had been previously getting. Overall, we've benefited from the dedupe, compression, and replication, the advanced technology, of this frame. It's all better than what we had in the previous generation of XtremIO appliances, and above what we were getting in the Dell EMC Unitys.

    What is most valuable?

    My guys have told me that the administration tools take advantage of machine learning and make recommendations to the admins, and that makes the administration easier.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We've been using Dell EMC PowerStore for about six months.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We've had no issues with the machines since turning them on.

    The machine supports "six nines" of availability. Anything they could do to push it closer to "seven nines" of availability would be extremely beneficial.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    It scales both horizontally and vertically.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    The support has been phenomenal.

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

    We replaced an older, high-performance storage device that was very expensive. With PowerStore, we were able to achieve the IOPS, and we were also able to get a data compression rate significantly above what we had expected. We were able to retire that older, very expensive piece of storage by bringing in the PowerStore. It's been faster and cheaper than we had expected, per terabyte.

    Another reason that we were after this machine was PowerStore's VMware integration. We're a very large VMware customer. Some 98 percent  of our workload runs on VMware.

    How was the initial setup?

    The setup was very straightforward. We bought it with the setup from Dell EMC support. We bought it, they shipped it, and a Dell EMC engineer coordinated with my storage engineer. We set it up and then did the data migration. On these particular frames, we needed very little help. It all went very seamlessly.

    We had a couple of data center engineers involved, as well as a couple of storage admins, and a storage architect.

    Our storage administrators took very limited training to get up to speed on the machines.

    What about the implementation team?

    Dell EMC was involved and the experience was very good. They showed up when they were supposed to, all the pre-work was done. They did the post-work, and there were no concerns from our team.

    What was our ROI?

    We exceeded the business case of the device that we had. We were able to add more workloads to the environment than the business case allowed, and we are still migrating more. So our cost per IOP and our cost per gigabyte have been substantially lower than our business case.

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

    We did a very competitive analysis on the pricing and compared it against the tradeoffs of the other storage products that we had previously bought, and we found PowerStore to be favorable on a cost-per-compute basis.

    There's still a cap on the upgrade path, where you can consume all the engines within the frame before you have to go to another frame. I would like more flexibility to increase the number of engines on the frames. Normally, we exceed the IOPS on the frames before we can ever exhaust the storage, so anything they can do to help us avoid stranded storage capacity, capacity that we couldn't get to, would be beneficial.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We've looked at several other solution environments, including Pure, HPE, as well as Violin and a couple of the other vendors that rate high in industry reviews. For us, with our large dependence on VMware, if we can get a cost-competitive solution from Dell EMC, with their ability to support VMware, we end up with a whole lot less finger-pointing in the mix.

    You can add compute or capacity independently, meaning it has greater capabilities than the Unitys that we had been targeting for our non-SaaS environment, and it has performed admirably.

    What other advice do I have?

    Clearly test out the workloads and don't necessarily be afraid because it's a new device. Work with Dell EMC to get a great contractual solution that will protect you with the new technology. This new technology does perform. It's a great performance machine.

    Although it's a relatively new platform, I was fairly confident in Dell EMC technology's support for the environment and in the performance that we had had with other machines. I felt there was very little risk in the migration to this solution, and we were really excited about the improved capabilities.

    In terms of PowerStore's built-in VMware hypervisor, we really haven't used it at the edge, although I can see its capabilities there. As a SaaS provider, we generally provide in the center. For the targeted workload that we have, it's performing substantially better than we had expected within our business case.

    We're very happy with the machine. It has multiple CPUs per storage frame, which is better than the predecessor machine, and there is a RAM increase as well. We got what was advertised and even a little bit better than what was advertised.

    We've been very excited by the capabilities of the appliance, to the point that the person who runs the infrastructure for me is now looking for a proposal to consolidate all of our non-VMAX work on PowerStores. The performance and the administration of the machine have been great and we're looking at how we can get additional returns on this targeted workload.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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    Learn what your peers think about Dell EMC PowerStore. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: October 2021.
    540,884 professionals have used our research since 2012.
    Duco Rob
    Founder and CEO at Desktoptowork
    Real User
    Top 10
    Machine learning and automation work well, and inline deduplication enables us to host more data

    Pros and Cons

    • "The way you're able to manage all your PowerStores as one solution is very good for us. PowerStore enables you to federate or cluster multiple appliances with automated load balancing. In terms of management, it's helpful that we can do it from a single interface where we're able to manage multiple PowerStores. When you have multiple PowerStores it works intelligently by running the workloads based on the needs of the infrastructure."
    • "The setup process could be improved. We had some issues regarding configuration and the time it took to do things. It wasn't specifically the people we worked with, but more the process and how it's done. They can work on that."

    What is our primary use case?

    We were in need of a new enterprise storage solution for our virtual machines. We use it for primary systems and processes, so for us it's very important.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The built-in intelligence adapts quickly to changing workload requirements. It works as we expected it to work. It doesn't give you a view into how it's doing it because it's doing it in the backend, but up until now, every process has been working perfectly fine.

    The biggest benefit is that we have an enterprise storage solution we can rely on. It does simplify storage operations. It's easy to manage.

    In the few months that we have used it, the performance has been great.

    What is most valuable?

    The way you're able to manage all your PowerStores as one solution is very good for us. PowerStore enables you to federate or cluster multiple appliances with automated load balancing. In terms of management, it's helpful that we can do it from a single interface where we're able to manage multiple PowerStores. When you have multiple PowerStores, it works intelligently by running the workloads based on the needs of the infrastructure.

    The solution's machine learning and automation work well when it comes to optimizing resources. It does inline deduplication which means that the net the amount of storage you have available is bigger. It can do all kinds of optimization in the system itself and that works very well.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have been using Dell EMC PowerStore for about three months.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The most valuable features of PowerStore are its scale up and scale out. We are able to scale up if we need more space or more power in the current PowerStore setup, but we can also scale out if we want to put in an extra one beside it or in another data center.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Technical support for Compellent was a lot better because for Dell EMC the PowerStore is a new solution and they don't have a lot of people here in the Netherlands with the right knowledge to work on it.

    Having said that, I don't have many concerns that it's a new solution. Other people do have concerns about that, but I believe in the knowledge of Dell EMC. Also, it's not 100 percent new. It's based on another hardware system, so I have no concerns.

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

    Before, we were on Dell EMC Compellent hardware, and that was based on a tiering principle whereby we used quick and slower storage. We had more and more issues with that because it was a little bit outdated, around five years old. We were looking for a new solution to house our infrastructure.

    How was the initial setup?

    The setup process could be improved. We had some issues regarding configuration and the time it took to do things. It wasn't specifically the people we worked with, but more the process and how it's done. They can work on that.

    I'm not satisfied with the process they used to do the setup and the timeframe within which everything was done. For example, there were things which we needed to do together with Dell EMC. There were three meetings for doing three specific things, but we could have done them in one meeting. That's why the duration, from the moment we bought the hardware until we were able to use it, was two or three months. We had expected that we would be able to use the hardware quicker. But because of the implementation process, it took us longer than we wanted.

    What was our ROI?

    Three months is too soon for us to see ROI.

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

    When we compared it with the other solutions, the pricing of PowerStore was equal. The pricing is good.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I don't know what the names were because I was not 100 percent involved in the selection process, but there were two other vendors we looked at.

    One of the main differences was the way they do inline deduplication. In the backend, PowerStore does all kinds of smart things. The result is that with less physical storage being used, we are able to host more data. Also the fact that PowerStore is completely NVMe-based means performance is great, thanks to the technical architecture.

    What other advice do I have?

    The solution enables you to add compute and capacity independently, although in our environment we cannot add compute. We are able to add storage and that works, although we have not done so because we have only been working with PowerStore for three months and haven't needed any extra capacity yet.

    Only three people work with PowerStore in our company, and they are all system administrators.

    I'm happy with the choice we made. I can recommend PowerStore because the technical architecture is based on NVMe. They have a good USP. There are other vendors who also have NVME-only systems, but I still recommend PowerStore.

    Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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    SO
    Co-Founder at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
    Real User
    Scalable, reliable, and straightforward installation

    What is our primary use case?

    We are a cloud service provider and we use Dell EMC PowerStore for the storage.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using Dell EMC PowerStore for approximately one year.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We have found the solution very stable and we like it very much.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Dell EMC PowerStore is scalable. There are many users using this solution and we have over 50 customers.

    How are customer service and support?

    I did not contact Dell support for this Dell EMC PowerStore solution but I have contacted them before for other solutions. I am typically happy with Dell's support.

    How was the initial setup?

    The solution is easy to install.

    What about

    What is our primary use case?

    We are a cloud service provider and we use Dell EMC PowerStore for the storage.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using Dell EMC PowerStore for approximately one year.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We have found the solution very stable and we like it very much.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Dell EMC PowerStore is scalable.

    There are many users using this solution and we have over 50 customers.

    How are customer service and support?

    I did not contact Dell support for this Dell EMC PowerStore solution but I have contacted them before for other solutions. I am typically happy with Dell's support.

    How was the initial setup?

    The solution is easy to install.

    What about the implementation team?

    We have a team of four engineers that do the implementation and maintenance of the solution.

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

    The price of Dell EMC PowerStore could be better, it is a bit expensive.

    What other advice do I have?

    I would recommend this solution to others.

    I rate Dell EMC PowerStore a nine out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud
    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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