Dell Tech VxFlex changes to PowerFlex with a bit more muscle

Dell Tech VxFlex changes to PowerFlex with a bit more muscle

By Cobus Smit – 24 June 2020

I recently did a blog about VxFlex and if you want to recap please read it here or a blog in Jan about some updates on VxFlex, read it here. It boils down to the ScaleIO that EMC bought a few years ago for its software-defined storage solution. Let us see VxFlex changes to PowerFlex, at this stage they changed it a lot and added great features with combining it with their new Power naming convention. I love the fact that Dell Technologies moves at a rapid pace and stays ahead of the curve, unlike vendors like IBM who kind of missed the bus and HPE who try hard but are too dependent on others…

Again this boils down to PowerFlex appliance or PowerFlex Rack.

If we look at some of their new names below we will see a new strategy to make it a bit simpler:

  • PowerFlex scale-out SDS – “The new bad boy SDS Solution we discuss
  • PowerEdge server portfolio – “old school Dell servers – Powerfull 🙂 server range and you cannot go wrong here!
  • PowerOne autonomous infrastructure – “Freakin awesome private cloud HCI solution with all Dell hardware replacing the older Vblock and VxBlock by removing Cisco out of the mix
  • PowerVault entry-level storage – “Just another shitty entry-level storage array
  • PowerProtect data protection – “Their backup and data protection solutions like Avamar, Networker, Recoverpoint, etc.. Nice but can be complicated”
  • PowerMax high-end primary storage “Awesome high-end storage – probably the best!
  • PowerStore mid-range primary storage – “Lots here but they are removing all and focusing on Powerstore – read here about it. Also very nice!
  • PowerSwitch networking – “Good for them to move away from Cisco as well.
  • PowerScale unstructured storage“Old school Isilon file and storage revamp

What is PowerFlex?

PowerFlex is a software-only solution that uses your existing servers local drives, turns it into block storage, and uses local network to create a virtual SAN that has all the benefits of external storage.

The PowerFlex software is lightweight and the components are installed on the application servers and communicate via a standard LAN to handle the application I/O requests sent to PowerFlex block volumes. An efficient decentralized block I/O flow, combined with a distributed, sliced volume layout, results in a massively parallel I/O system that can scale up to thousands of nodes.

PowerFlex is designed and implemented with enterprise-grade resilience. Furthermore, the software features an efficient distributed self-healing process that overcomes media and server failures, without requiring administrator involvement.

Dynamic and elastic, PowerFlex enables administrators to add or remove servers and capacity without scheduling downtime. The software immediately responds to the changes, re-balancing the storage distribution, and achieving a layout that optimally suits the new configuration.

Because PowerFlex is hardware agnostic, the software works efficiently with various types of disks, including magnetic (HDD) and solid-state disks (SSD), flash PCI Express (PCIe) cards, networks, and hosts.

PowerFlex can easily be installed in an existing infrastructure.

How do you as a customer get started with PowerFlex?

  1. Contact Dell Technologies
  2. Assemble your hardware according to your requirements for your environment.
  3. Connect and configure the network.
  4. Install the Operating System and prerequisites for PowerFlex.
  5. Deploy PowerFlex. Refer to the Deployment Guide for step by step deployment procedures.
  6. Allocate volumes and map them to hosts.
  7. Begin using PowerFlex storage.

Conclusion

Again this is a great solution and can run any workload, you can add physical servers and any flavor of virtualization to the mix. If you need more then you can scale like a google cloud-like size with this. You can start small and scale to whatever you want. Well done Dell Tech – Good product here! The only issue I can find is when I type PowerFlex in google I get the picture below:

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