VxFlex integrated systems combine Dell EMC PowerEdge servers using VxFlex OS to create a software-defined SAN. VxFlex integrated systems, which include the VxFlex appliance and VxFlex integrated rack, are fully supported and configured to customer specifications.
Customers have several configuration options—from high-capacity hard drives or solid-state drives (SSDs) to newer storage technologies such as Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) or Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) flash. With these options, customers can create storage tiers that match their capacity and performance requirements. Complementary to storage tiering is the ability to use Quality of Service (QoS) settings. With QoS, customers can define maximum IOPS, maximum IOPS per GB, maximum bandwidth, and maximum bandwidth per GB.
VxFlex OS virtualization software supports data compression, which saves valuable storage space on SSDs. Compression is not enabled by default; rather, it must be specified when a volume is created. If a volume does not support compression, then thin provisioning is used by default. Thin provisioning is a technology that reserves storage space by allocating only space that is used, enabling more efficient use of storage.
VxFlex Manager software controls VxFlex integrated systems, managing the node and switch hardware, including firmware, BIOS, and health. It maintains compliance with a Release Certification Matrix to ensure a proper operating configuration. VxFlex Manager automates and simplifies management of the VxFlex storage. The dashboard provides a health and history summary of the VxFlex integrated system. From the dashboard, an administrator can easily monitor server, storage, and services utilization. The resources screen provides a view into VxFlex nodes, VxFlex OS gateways, and hypervisor clusters. For a quick video overview, see VxFlex Manager on YouTube.
Big Data is best positioned on a storage platform that offers scalability. With VxFlex integrated systems, the architecture can scale from four nodes up to thousands of nodes. This scalability provides more granular sizing in that the IT organization can start small, with a minimal investment, and add nodes and racks over time. Each additional node adds more capacity and performance to the VxFlex integrated system.