Need some good Dell storage - entry level - shared for ESX hosts

Good Dell shared storage?

I have four hosts that need shared storage between them.  All the hosts are Dell so I prefer Dell storage.   Entry level...say 30TB at the most using some existing 3.5 inch SAS drives.

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Bryant SchaperCommented:
So are thinking a DELL/EMC product or just a JBOD device, 30TB is not a huge storage appliance, but you are going to have to consider your performance as well, how many iops?
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
crp0499CEOAuthor Commented:
Dell EMC.  I just can't handle the "just a bunch of disks" thing.  :)  We run about 20 VMs - more to come - and at some point we will have VDI, but not right now.  I'm hoping for something in the 20K range since we have the disks already.
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crp0499CEOAuthor Commented:
Paul, we need to be sure it supports shared storage.  Four hosts accessing it and being able to share that storage.
Bryant SchaperCommented:
Having the disks will probably not work, most vendors want you to buy disks for their solutions.

That said, you need to get more data.  Are you running ESXi or Hyper-V?  Take a look at Dell LiveOptics so you can get some insight into performance.  20VMs could be anything from really low iops to insane iops if they are busy SQL servers.  LiveOptics can help get you a baseline and we can go from there.
You have a MD1200 so you can swap the interface modules out for MD3200 or MD3200i controllers, then it becomes a MD3200. Note the data format is different so you still need to backup and restore. The MD3200 has 4 SAS ports per controller to support up to 4 hosts, note it is shared storage even though Dell mis-refer to it as DAS. You would need SAS HBAs as you can't connect a SAS based SAN to PERCs.

Alternatively a MD3200 complete and you can use the MD1200 as expansion.

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Dell Equallogic - you don't specify a budget....

(that's iSCSI)
crp0499CEOAuthor Commented:
Andy, I like your idea.  Do I just contact Dell and let them know?

20K Andrew.
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
Both of MD and Unity are shares storage.  The PowerVault can do SAS or iSCSI and the Unity is the refreshed VNX platform
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
I don't care for the Equallogic if you're going to use snapshots, if I recall it's still copy on write method and you'll wind up using double the space for a single snapshot. If you're going that route the Unity is a better platform (depending on price)
Hmm, 6 months warranty left on the MD1200 and disks? If so you may be obliged to buy the controllers from Dell - at three times the price of refurbished ones. Dell sales support can probably check that out for you. If warranty is expired there's no need to tell Dell of course.

Forgot to mention that the MD3400 also uses MD1200 as disk expansion, will cost a lot more though.
Bryant SchaperCommented:
I hope the Unity is better, we are configuring our 450F in 45 minutes...We are coming off of and VNX 5200
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Call Dell and Ask them for a Quotation.
crp0499CEOAuthor Commented:
I love this site.  I feel like I went to the lunch room, threw out a question and got awesome answers!
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
I've done a lot of EMC and Dell, for smaller environments doing a bit of Nimble Storage, the units cost less, support dedupe/compression, provide better visibility (infosight) and typically cost less than the Unity.  Worked out deal to get a comparable unit to the Unity with a Nimble HF40 that ran half of what EMC is quoting.
Dell equalLogic is end of sale! Hurray! Finally! You won't find EqualLogic on the landing page for storage, and I heard from my Dell rep that it has been killed. I have yet to see anything in writing.

I don't know if Dell EMC still has the MD3K line available. There's the PowerVault ME4, and their SC (Compellent) line of entry to mid range storage.

There generally aren't systems that will accept your existing disks and be suitable for VDI later. VDI just doesn't fit onto low end arrays due to their IO profile.

I wouldn't tie myself to Dell EMC storage just because you have Dell EMC servers. I used EqualLogic storage with my Dell servers just fine before Dell bought EqualLogic. My HPE Nimble arrays work fantastic with my Dell servers over both Cisco and Dell S series switches. I highly recommend you look at the HPE Nimble offerings.
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
I'm actually attaching a HPE Nimble to a VXRail build because the vSAN config doesn't grow well since you need to have the same nodes down to the firmware which will not be available after a few years.  HPE MSA is decent as well and is in line with the PowerVault MD Series.  The Compellent line old in the tooth as well, the tiering it does requires a good bit of flash and is not dynamic in the sense of read flash option, it takes time to move between the different tiers.
crp0499CEOAuthor Commented:
We went with the 3200
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