The PowerFlex system creates a server-based storage area network (SAN) by combining PowerFlex virtualization with Dell EMC PowerEdge servers. Local storage resources are combined to create a virtual pool of block storage with varying performance tiers. The system architecture enables you to scale from as few as four nodes to over a thousand nodes. In addition, the PowerFlex system provides enterprise-grade data protection, multitenant capabilities, and add-on enterprise features such as quality of service (QoS), thin provisioning, and snapshots.
Dell Technologies offers the PowerFlex system in the following consumption models:
Because PowerFlex Ready Nodes are not included in the SAP HANA HCI certification, they are outside the scope of this guide.
The PowerFlex integrated rack is included in the SAP HANA HCI certification for the PowerFlex HCI solution using VMware vSphere hypervisor and the PowerFlex platform.
The following figure shows the integrated network:
Figure 1. PowerFlex integrated rack, an engineered system with integrated rack-scale network fabric
The PowerFlex appliance offers enhanced lifecycle management and automation using PowerFlex Manager. PowerFlex Manager provides software alerts, monitoring, reporting, and lifecycle management.
The PowerFlex appliance is available with smaller starting configurations than the PowerFlex integrated rack and provides greater network flexibility. The network switch must be in the support list for PowerFlex Manager.