New Dell storage offerings enhance both old IT and new IT

Dell unveils its new SCv2000 entry class array, the PS 6610, a new dense offering for the PS family along with new PS software, and Dell Storage with Microsoft Storage Spaces, which beefs up Dell’s software-defined portfolio.

Alan Atkinson Dell insert

Alan Atkinson, vice president and general manager of Dell Storage

Today, Dell is making several major storage announcements, with new offerings in its SC (Compellent) PS (EqualLogic) and software-defined portfolios.

“The context for these announcements is that traditional storage arrays like the SC and the PS series will co-exist with newer technologies like software-defined storage,” said Alan Atkinson, vice president and general manager of Dell Storage. “At Dell, we are engaging both the new and traditional IT in storage and not looking at them as mutually exclusive.”

The Dell Storage SCv2000 Series takes the Dell Storage Center software and other features from higher-end SC Series arrays and puts them into a new entry level offering.

“The SCv2000 is an entry class array which is both best of breed and extremely disruptive at the price point,” which starts at around $USD 14,000, Atkinson said. “The v in its name is for Value, and we think nothing else at this price point offers nearly the value this product offers. It combines customer demand for a lower priced SC product with the same management capability of the higher end SCs. We have also brought it down to a price point that frankly wasn’t there before.”

The SCv2000 series launches with two 2U and 1 5U enclosure models supported by three expansion options, and tops out at a maximum capacity of 504 TB.

“It has a lot of the features the higher end products have, including RAID tiering, thin provisioning, integrated data protection, flash support and multi-protocol connectivity,” Atkinson said. The granular data protection allows up to 2,000 snapshots and 500 replications.

Dell Storage SCv2000

The 2u SCv2000

Extending the Dell Storage Center software down to this entry-level array lets the SCv2000 Series be managed with the same, single user interface as other SC Series arrays, and makes it easy for customers to scale capacity when needed, with the benefit of no capacity licensing.

“We think small enterprises need a product like this,” Atkinson said. “It offers great performance, scalability and ease of setting up and management. Some SMEs will see it as a standalone installation, but we think others will want it for smaller SANs or virtualization environments or test environments.”

The PS series is Dell’s iSCSI-based, mid-market line which originally came with EqualLogic, and the new Dell Storage PS6610 Series becomes its high-performance, high-capacity element, with 3.5 times the capacity and up to 7 times the performance of the previous generation Dell EqualLogic PS6510 arrays.

“This is our dense offering for the PS family, which customers have been wanting for a long time,” Atkinson said. The combination of 10 Gigabit Ethernet and dense storage lets the PS6610 support half a petabyte of capacity in a single 5U array.

“This is a big step forward, which is ideal for vertical business apps or large repositories,” Atkinson added. Typical use cases would be ERP applications, email storage and SQL databases, and archival storage to support large data repositories such as those required for medical records, financial data and video surveillance.

Dell Storage PS6610 Storage Array

The PS6610

“The PS6610, while enormously improved over the PS6510, will also cost less on a per GB basis than its predecessor,” Atkinson said.

The PS 6610 will also leverage key functionality from the new Dell EqualLogic PS Series Array Software 8.0, which was also part of the announcement.

“This is a big release for us, as 8.0 has lots of new functionality,” Atkinson said.

The new software adds space-saving features, such as compression of snapshots and replicas. It also further supports virtual environments, with advanced VMware vSphere Virtual Volumes integration.

“The VMware Virtual Volumes support allows storage to be managed at the VM level, instead of at a volume level,” Atkinson said.

Existing customers with a valid support contract can download the 8.0 software for free.

Finally, Dell announced the expansion of its Blue Thunder software-defined storage portfolio with Dell Storage with Microsoft Storage Spaces. This is a new Scale-Out File Server solution which has been tested and validated to support Microsoft’s SDS capabilities on Dell’s enterprise-class server and direct attached storage hardware.

“This Microsoft announcement is a big move forward for our software-defined portfolio,” Atkinson said. “It is a particularly powerful solution for private cloud, VDI, SQL and HyperV, which is both easy to consume and easy to deploy.”

The new solution comes in five available configurations, and lets customers start small and scale to more than one petabyte of raw storage as their business needs grow. Dell’s solution support includes performance and capacity sizing, end-to-end fulfillment, deployment and on-going system support.

PowerVault MD3060e Storage Array

Dell Storage with Microsoft Storage Spaces

“A major inhibitor to adoption around software-defined storage has been the large permutations that happen when different software and hardware are combined,” said Travis Vigil, Executive Director, Product Management, Dell Storage. “Customers want rigorous validation of the entire solution stack. This is a very flexible SKU, with support and services as a single SKU, as a true storage solution.”

The Dell Storage SCv2000 Series arrays are available globally as of today. The Dell Storage PS6610 Series arrays, and the Dell EqualLogic PS Series Array Software 8.0 will be available in early Q3. Dell Storage with Microsoft Storage Spaces has planned availability this June.