Dell EMC VNX Control Station Series B - Secondary - control processor

Mfg.Part: NS-CSB2 | CDW Part: 2263923 | UNSPSC: 43222634
Product Details
  • Secondary
  • Control processor
  • 1U
  • rack-mountable
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Dell EMC VNX Control Station Series B - Secondary - control processor
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Product Overview

Main Features
  • Secondary
  • Control processor
  • 1U
  • rack-mountable
The Control Station is a self-contained server, and is used in unified and file configurations. The Control Station provides administrative access to the blades; it also monitors the blades and facilitates failover in the event of a blade runtime issue. The Control Station provides network communication to each storage processor.
Dell EMC VNX Control Station Series B - Secondary - control processor is rated4.28 out of5 by18.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It Was Ill-Equipped To Handle Our Environment Though Tiering Does Allow Dynamic Data Allocation Among Disk TypesWhat is most valuable?Tiering, because it allows your data to dynamically move among different disk types based on demand in the last 24 hours. This removes the manual work to keep data in certain disk types.How has it helped my organization?We actually stopped using the VNX as it was ill-equipped to handle our environment with the way EMC spec’d it out. I do not recommend the Gen 1 VNX to anyone in this day and age. It’s outdated technology and a newer far less expensive array can more than adequately handle 99% of the tasks better than the VNX architecture.What needs improvement?EMC could have made the effort to spec the device appropriately. Instead, they low-balled the config in 2011 to make the price tag look alluring. Then, less than 12 months in, we needed to spend 35% of the cost of the entire array to put enough disks in the array to make it both perform and contain enough capacity, which only lasted until mid-2013. The device had multiple issues from 2013 – 2016 and numerous support calls to no avail, until I told them they would lose our business if they couldn’t identify the issue.They finally spilled the beans, years after all of the issues, that the device was not spec’d appropriately for our environment. If they would have been honest about it, instead of cheaping out the config to make the solution appear appealing, this could have been avoided.The competitor’s product was more expensive but would have destroyed the VNX’s capabilities. All they cared about was the sale.For how long have I used the solution?Six years.What do I think about the stability of the solution?Yes, there were many performance issues due to the storage pool latency being averaging more than 7ms, causing user-side impacts; spikes all the way to 256ms, array-wide. All issues surround the original EMC config, and poor architecture in their attempt to add disks to fix their own issue. It caused us three years of production-level issues including downtime to key servers.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?Yes, this solution is sensitive to scalability in the sense that you require certain proportions of all three tiers of disk if you enable Auto-Tiering. This resulted in performance issues with the mid-tier having insufficient capacity. The array was thrashing to attempt to use 7200 RPM SATA disks in the lowest tier since they had the capacity. This was disastrous and EMC would not even acknowledge the issue until they forced us to prove it.How is customer service and technical support?Two out of 10 for overall technical support. Simple hardware issues like failed drives were promptly dealt with, but performance issues were treated like mysteries even by tier 2 support and engineers. This went on for over three years. We had to use our own team to prove to them, with their own tools, what the issue was in the NAR files.Which solutions did we use previously?HPE EVA. End-of-life standard lifecycle replacement.How was the initial setup?EMC made it overly complex, and miswired the B fabric on our fibre channel. We fixed it a year later, after it caused an outage. To be clear, this was a paid-for EMC install engineer. Mistakes happen, but costing a company in downtime is not acceptable.What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?Ask thrice, not once, not twice… Ensure it is spec’d for your needs for performance and capacity. Ensure you have the appropriate suites purchased up front, and always buy the warranty for all years up front, or EMC will gouge you on years four and five. The $75,000 in support we would have pain in year four for a maxed out VNX 5300, let us simply pay for a chunk of a next-gen, all flash array and solve all issues for latency and performance as well as capacity.Which other solutions did I evaluate?Yes, first-gen HPE 3PAR and IBM.What other advice do I have?Stay away, it’s old technology now. Look at newer arrays and features.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-08-14T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It has a good, high-level of storage along with Auto TieringWhat is most valuable?* Auto Tiering* It has a good, high-level of storage.How has it helped my organization?With integration, you can compress, and reduce the load of your Oracle DB, in relation to HCC.What needs improvement?Main business applications run on it.For how long have I used the solution?For about five years.What do I think about the stability of the solution?No.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?Not in this case, but it has its limits based on the model you chose.How is customer service and technical support?The specialist are a 10 out of 10. Unfortunately to reach them, it could cost you hours on the phone.Which solutions did we use previously?I am a consultant. Customers change solutions all the time because of reliability, relationships, and costs.How was the initial setup?It was easy. Just know the protocol (what to turn on first and what IP address to connect to).What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?Oracle is never the cheaper solution. Compared to others, it is always among the most expensive.Which other solutions did I evaluate?Yes, it was compared with EMC VMAX and Dell Compellent.What other advice do I have?Upon implementation, use the guide from the official manual, and if they have access to the EIS.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-09-14T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Multi-tiering helps use storage efficientlyHow has it helped my organization?We have all the information residing on the same hardware, the same storage. So if the servers go down, we have already secured the data in the storage.What is most valuable?Multi-tiering, because it positively affects the efficiency of the storage space.What needs improvement?The next release is the Unity storage. That is the new family. Many of the features that are included in the Unity have improved over the VNX features. The VNX is a little bit old. What would help would be if the VNX had embedded encryption. That would be great.For how long have I used the solution?Three to five years.What do I think about the stability of the solution?It's really stable. We haven't had any issue such as data unavailability or data loss.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?The scalability is average because the storage has some hardware limitations and, obviously, operating system limitations. So the scalability is a little bit limited. But that has been improved in the new storage family called Unity.How is customer service and technical support?We do use technical support and it is always good.How was the initial setup?The initial setup was simple and really fast.Which other solutions did I evaluate?When we compared it with other products, the performance and the security were the advantages that this storage gives us.What other advice do I have?When selecting a vendor there are many criteria we look at but those that come to mind are scalability, security, resilience.I think it's a good solution. It has many benefits, features that are of interest for many customers.With the new system, the Unity, many of the deficiencies of the VNX were solved. But the VNX offers features and stability that other products don't. It's really reliable.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-05-24T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It's got some great features, such as fast caching and RecoverPoint, but it's expensive.Valuable Features:* Fast VP* Fast cache* Snap clone* Snap shot* RecoverPoint* SAN copy* Mirror copy* Access LogixUse of Solution:I have worked on CLARiiON and all series of VNX.Implementation Team:I implemented and performed the migration myself.Cost and Licensing Advice:EMC pricing is too expensive, like the Apple brand iPhone in the cellphone market.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2015-06-30T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The stability of the hardware is good, but the administrative console needs some improvementWhat is our primary use case?The stability of the hardware, and its ability of manage millions of IOPS, provides great comfort to system administrators, IT managers and CIOs.How has it helped my organization?With respect to high I/O load during peak business hour and stable replication (remote site mirror), VNC has improved very well. The user is facing less "Administratively Fracture" or "System Fracture", as when using their previous system.What is most valuable?The implementation of both block and file system storage in a single GUI provides is better situated than most other storages.What needs improvement?The device is nicely planned and user-friendly, but the administrative console (Navisphere/Unisphere) needs some improvement, especially on their Java-based GUI. The updated version of Java is not compatible. Also, the interface is delayed on updating its status (of snapshot).For how long have I used the solution?Less than one year.What do I think about the stability of the solution?No issues.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?No issues.Which solutions did we use previously?Before using EMC VNX, EMC CLARiiON had been used.What about the implementation team?I would rate the implementation team as a seven out of 10.What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?Reducing dependency on JavaServer Pages (JSP) could improve the administrative overhead.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-02-27T00:00:00-05:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Can combine drives of different types into a virtual Storage Pool.How has it helped my organization?By utilizing the Storage Pools feature of the VNX, our organization can provide the required performance without having to over-invest in storage for data that doesn't require expensive drives.What is most valuable?One of the best features of the VNX is the ability to combine drives of different types into a virtual Storage Pool. By combining small but fast flash drives, SAS drives, and high-capacity but slower NL-SAS drives, the VNX can intelligently move data to the different tiers of storage based on usage. This maximizes performance and investment by making sure commonly accessed data is stored in flash, while rarely-accessed data can be sent to the NL-SAS drives.What needs improvement?The management software used for the VNX is Unicenter. While it is an improvement over Navicenter, used in older EMC SANs, it still feels outdated in comparison to other SAN management software. Reporting is clunky and requires data collection to files, which then have to be retrieved and uploaded to a third-party site for processing before finally downloading the report.What do I think about the stability of the solution?There were never any stability problems thanks to fully redundant storage processors, power supplies, and hot spare drives.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?We did purchase additional shelves of drives a few years after the initial purchase. Again, with the support of EMC technical services, the hardware was added to the VNX without downtime or disruption. The Storage Pools allow for dynamic addition of new drives.How is customer service and technical support?Customer Service:Customer service is top-notch with a dedicated sales and technical resource who are familiar with your environment and spend a lot of time understanding your business needs.Technical Support:EMC technical support is top notch when utilizing the ESRS appliance which sends critical alerts directly to EMC. Failed drives were replaced without any input on my end, sometimes before I became aware of the failure. Support can also remote in and perform code upgrades.Which solutions did we use previously?Previous to the VNX, we were using an EMC CX-80 SAN. The reason for switching was to stay on a supported platform.How was the initial setup?The initial setup involves completing a pre-install survey, which the installer needs to properly configure the settings (IP addresses, DNS, NTP, etc.). The questions are easy to understand.What about the implementation team?The initial hardware setup and configuration was completed by on-site technicians from EMC. They were fully trained and certified on the VNX and had completed dozens of similar installations.What was our ROI?We calculated our ROI to three years and the planned life of the VNX is six years. We are currently in the process of migrating to a new EMC XtremIO SAN, which will have an even shorter ROI.What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?While EMC tends to be on the expensive side, the stability and support of their products are top-notch and I feel are worth the cost.Which other solutions did I evaluate?When we evaluated SANs, we also looked at solutions by IBM. Our familiarity and relationship with EMC weighed heavily with our choice.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-03-23T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Archives data to be placed in NL-SAS disks where IOPS is not in demand.How has it helped my organization?A hybrid, tiered storage such as VNX:* Enables data where IOPS is critical to be placed in SSDs* Archives data to be placed in NL-SAS disks where IOPS is not in demandWhat is most valuable?It is very stable, even during multiple power failures.What needs improvement?EMC VNX needs to support bigger SSDs. Next generation EMC Unity will do this.What do I think about the stability of the solution?We have not had stability issues.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?We have had some scalability issues. Scalability options are limited due to the supported SSDs.How is customer service and technical support?Technical support gets a rating of 5/5.Which solutions did we use previously?Previously, we had CLARiiON. VNX was the next technological shift.How was the initial setup?VNX was very easy to set up. Guides are available on the EMC site.What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?The initial pricing and licensing are reasonable. Yearly EMC is more expensive.Which other solutions did I evaluate?We looked at IBM V7000 and others.What other advice do I have?Go through EMC best practices for proper disk sizing and allocation.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-03-22T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from FAST Cache & FAST ?Pool are key components for usWhat is most valuable?FAST Cache & FAST Pool are very useful and similar to the SDS solution on a single storage system.What needs improvement?Source deduplication and compression will improve the TCO of these storage systems.For how long have I used the solution?About five years.What do I think about the stability of the solution?The product is rather stable.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?Yes, we have had issues. The system is limited by the number of enclosures.How is customer service and technical support?The best tech support we've had has been from EMC.Which solutions did we use previously?We've moved from the EMC CLARiiON CX4 series to EMC VNX.How was the initial setup?Not very complicated, mostly straightforward.Which other solutions did I evaluate?IBM, NetApp.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-11-26T00:00:00-05:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It's easy to use and integrate, but they need to make major changes to the file services.Valuable FeaturesIt's easy to use, and integrate, I'm not storage-centric, as I just integrate storage along with other things. I can go in there and follow instructions to complete the job. I know all products are different, especially how they’re all clustered differently. For me, I don’t care because not looking at raw data or specifications (e.g. how many SSDs, how tiered), I just follow instructions for the virtualization aspect.Improvements to My OrganizationIt’s one of the better industry-accepted names and standards. Not necessarily cheap, but for me it’s all about familiarity. I've worked with this type of storage for many years.Room for ImprovementMake major changes to the file services, Celera, do something like a lite version. It used to be more solid product before unifying Clarion and Celera.Stability IssuesIt’s very stable in all the years I've worked with it. I know it’s stable and the support is there.Scalability IssuesIt’s definitely scalable. VNX to large SAN with SDD to all with extra storage for VDI, they’re all hugely scalable. You can keep adding blocks of storage for different tiers, as well as sites of storage, with other products (replicated with backups).Customer Service and Technical SupportAll experiences with tech support have been positive. It was never problem with product itself, mostly configuration issue caused by the integrator or client. They worked through it.Initial SetupI was always second fiddle as there was always a network person and virtualization person and a storage person. It's always straightforward in terms of everyone following plan and working together. The end result is always the operational system being delivered.Other Solutions Considered* NetApp* DellResearch stuff that’s been proven, and what you can afford.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2015-10-31T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It allows us to consolidate our storage for better efficiencyWhat is most valuable?* FAST auto-tiering is a great feature.* FAST cache is very good for performance.* The unified ability allows us to have a cost effective SAN and NAS storage combined on our smaller sites.How has it helped my organization?Unified VNX allows us to consolidate our storage for better efficiency.What needs improvement?It is not the easiest product to implement and manage, especially on the NAS side, but that is now fixed in its successor product from Dell EMC called Unity.For how long have I used the solution?Over six years.What do I think about the stability of the solution?The stability is rock solid.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?There are upper limits, but these are rarely reached depending upon the VNX model being used.How is customer service and technical support?Dell EMC support is good, but expensive.Which solutions did we use previously?We have standardised on VNX, and now on the Unity successor product, having moved away from NetApp and EVA, which were not as reliable or as flexible.How was the initial setup?Setup can be complex for the inexperienced storage administrator, especially on the NAS side. However, with training and/or experience, the VNX product is flexible and manageable.What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?VNX is not the cheapest in the market for SAN. But for NAS and SAN, the product is cost effective. I recommend that new purchases look to the successor product of Dell EMC Unity for the best pricing. For licensing, make sure you request Data at Rest Encryption (D@RE), if needed, as this is not bundled as standard.Which other solutions did I evaluate?HPE Nimble is a good competing product, especially as it now has the backing of HPE. However, Nimble is a point solution as it is SAN only. If you wanted to add NAS to a Nimble, you could use VMware and UnityVSA, but those are extract costs.What other advice do I have?VNX remains a great product. However, it is being superseded by the Dell EMC Unity product, which offers better pricing, All-Flash offerings, and a true Unity storage pool for maximum efficiency and flexibility.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-10-30T00:00:00-04:00