FreeNAS Certified Server for vmware?

I have looked at iXsystems to supply me with a FreeNAS certified server and my plan is to use it for VMware shared storage via iscsi.   I have 15 VMs with one exchange server and one SQL server.  

It looks like a pretty good system but I wanted to see if any experts had experience with FreeNAS and VMware.  Unfortunately I am trying to find another solution for our production environment as QNAP devices I am using today have not been very stable in my experience.  

It is a freenas 1U certified system
32 gb ECC RAM
x4 1TB Samsung 850 pro series SSD
Dual GigE NIC
Intel Quad Core Xeon E3 3.30Ghz
5 year warranty for hardware diagnostics and replacement
Setup in a raid 10 or g mirror in the ZFS world...

I don't know a whole lot about freeNas so I am worried that I may be in over my head but at the same time if it works well this may be a terrific upgrade from what we are running now.
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IKtechAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
iXsystems are very new, to the certification table, it's not a well known brand in use.

Have you considered Thecus, Qnap, Drobo or Synology, popular names in this arena, if you are on a budget.
IKtechAuthor Commented:
I am using qnap right now... I have researched synology too and I am waiting for a response from a sales rep now.

Thecus is a new one for me, i'll take a look and see.  Thanks!!
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
I would NOT recommend  iXsystems to my clients.

What is your budget?

and why do you need a SAN ?

Do you have more than one ESXi host server ?

vMotion, HA, DRS Licenses ?

How do you currently backup ?
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IKtechAuthor Commented:
essentials plus license
I am currently trying to setup vdp and or replication
two hosts running 5.5 esxi one vcenter server.

I wanted shared storage to utilize HA...

budget is tight... 4 to 5 k at most.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Okay, remember with *ANY* Backup solution, you will want to backup onto something else other than your SAN!

You may want to consider a HP MSA/P2000 Series SAN, iSCSI or SAS attached (these are faster than a SAN and/or iSCSI).
DavidPresidentCommented:
When using VMWare, you don't look for a server qualified with any particular O/S.   You look for a server on the HCL list for VMWare.    If your server is on the VMWare HCL, then you are OK.  If not, shop elsewhere.
IKtechAuthor Commented:
those SAN devices look too expensive... Once you buy the drives to go with it anyways.  That's why I was looking at the different NAS models...
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Most of the budget devices I listed, you purchase without disks!

£5k GBP purchases a small HP P2000 series, depends on how much storage you require.

and what are you going to backup to with VDP, another NAS ?

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IKtechAuthor Commented:
I have 1tb of local storage on each host and I also have the qnap devices I can use for backups...
IKtechAuthor Commented:
Thanks!
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