Stepping Up to the Plate for Mid-Tier Storage

It’s not uncommon to use baseball metaphors to describe business success and how they compete. And since it’s the start of the new baseball season – let’s do it.  Innovative ideas, talented people, courage to change, and lofty goals are a lot like what it takes to field a winning baseball team.  There’s a lot of similarity between a winning baseball team assembled for fans and building out innovative business solutions for customers. And as businesses swing for the “technology” fences, they also need to learn to handle the curveballs thrown at them like market shifts, technology changes, global economics, and customer trends.

Even with the love of the game in mind, mid-tier companies struggle with having the same needs for business agility and efficiency to address a growing set of application and virtualization needs as larger enterprise organizations – but with IT budgets that are just a fraction of their enterprise peers.

There’s a growing need for mid-tier IT organizations to reduce risk, be agile, and simplify and automate operations – and all while keeping costs down. Up to now, no vendor has batted a thousand on delivering all of this in a single solution – especially with storage.

These IT departments struggle with storage from a number of standpoints, including management complexity, inflexible deployment options, data growth, and a lack of affordable flash storage options. As resources become even more constrained, and IT budgets generally remaining flat, IT has had to handle servers, storage, networking, data protection, virtualization and more.  Gone are the days of having a dedicated admin focused only on storage. Let’s face it, in mid-tier businesses; IT personnel are being transformed into generalists forced into ‘playing’ many technology positions to stay competitively viable.

When IT decides to make a storage purchase, they need that storage to last.  The tools must be modern, easy to understand, easy to use, and leverage the latest technology that helps simplify and automate tasks.  At the same time, the systems they purchase must be affordable, deliver the best TCO throughout the life of the array and be flexible enough to be repurposed for a variety of different workloads. This is a lot to ask from a single mid-tier storage array, tasked with running important business applications. And the competitors have either struck out or taken a rain check on much of this.

Why Not Modernize and Simplify the Field with EMC Unity™
EMC continues to hit primary storage innovation out of the park with the exciting announcement of our new mid-tier All-Flash storage solution calledUnity Logo Silver Unity – that is catching the competition unaware. Unity’s All-Flash design delivers high performance with the ultimate in storage simplicity and value. It’s setting the standard for today’s winning businesses that require speed, agility, and efficiency. Unity’s All-Flash design is based on four main attributes – Simple. Modern, Flexible, and Affordable – and will prove that there is a better way to store, manage, and protect critical business data.

First up is SIMPLICITY.
Unity raises the bar on simplicity in the industry in the way it simplifies the entire lifecycle of storage management from setup to provisioning to troubleshooting – and we’ve got the box scores to prove it. Unity is 100% unified and sets up in minutes (no tools needed and just 6 cables) and is easy to navigate with the intuitive, secure, and responsive Unisphere management interface. The HTML5 based Unisphere is built with the modern-day data center administrator in mind with robust visualizations to provide an easier way to manage storage arrays. You don’t need to be a storage guru to
use these systems. And if that’s not enough, Unity comes with all-inclusive software packaging making it much easier to order and a single consolidated sizing tool that integrates into the order process helping you accurately configure systems. But simplicity doesn’t end there. Unity includes a SaaS cloud management solution called CloudIQ and a built-in Proactive Assist internet-enabled portal for self-service and dial-home support – all where we help customers find (sometimes before they do) and resolve issues faster.
Unity dashboard

Next up in the order is MODERN.
Unity’s All-Flash design is based on modern technologies familiar and expected by IT and packed with modern features like integrated copy data management, built in controller-based encryption, unified snapshots and replication, scalable 64-bit file system, QoS, cloud tiering, integrations with VMware and Microsoft, latest flash technologies, and a full RESTful API. All of this is delivered in a full block and file unified environment with VVol support in a single 2U enclosure.  And let’s not forget that Unity supports the modern EMC data protection platforms like Data Domain and Data Protection Suite.  Unity Dashboard 2

Batting in the 3rd hole is FLEXIBLE.
Recognizing that customers have different financial and operational requirements, Unity is designed for deployment flexibility to handle a broad range of application workloads (standalone, mixed, and virtual) and budgets, from the virtual offering of UnityVSA to purpose built Unity systems. The purpose-built Unity arrays can be configured as an All-Flash system with only solid state drives, or as a Hybrid array with a mix of solid state and spinning media to deliver the best on both performance and economics. Unity-based converged systems will also be available as VCE Vblock and Vxblock 350 systems. And by the way, all these options share one unified Linux operating environment that connects them all together.
Unity Glamour Shot

And hitting clean-up is AFFORDABLE.
Unity All-Flash and Hybrid systems are very affordable with an architecture optimized for the best combination of performance, density, and cost. Unity delivers All-Flash at an incredibly low entry level price all in a 2U unified form factor that saves space, power, money, and time. Unity is EMC’s way of letting IT know that they will never have to overspend on storage again – especially Flash storage. Customers can even get started for free with the Unity virtual storage appliance Community Edition. And the Unity All-Flash value and TCO gets even better with EMC’s Xpect More program with lifetime maintenance price, flash endurance protection, and a 3 year money back warranty.

It’s a New Season for Mid-Tier Storage Possibilities
The great thing about life (and business) and a new baseball season, is that we’re allowed the opportunity to refresh our aspirations and assumptions that lead us to achieve new possibilities. Whether it’s the hope of winning the World Series by hitting a walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth or helping businesses to victory with inspired technology designed to refresh their own ideals and possibilities for their customers – we should always be able to appreciate the moment. That moment is here with Unity. What wasn’t possible before – is now through simple, modern, flexible, and affordable. Unity Family

EMC has remained a consistent leader in the midrange storage market for a long time for a reason, largely based on our relentless alignment with customer needs and how they are changing all the time. And Unity is another shining example of how EMC has listened to the market to be able to build solutions that will directly meet and EVEN MORE importantly – hit it out of the park for IT.

Touch all the bases with Unity and learn more: or EMC Store

About the Author: Joe Catalanotti

Joe Catalanotti is a Product Marketing Manager for Dell EMC Midrange and Entry Storage that focuses on bringing industry leading solutions Dell EMC Unity and SC Series to a global market. Joe has over 25 years experience in product and channel marketing with storage technologies, asset management software, and CAD/CAM solutions. Joe has been instrumental in the development and execution of marketing content, launch planning, and other facets of product and marketing lifecycles including authoring white papers and speaking. Joe holds a BS degree in Industrial Engineering and Management from Northeastern University as well as a degree in Architectural Engineering from Wentworth Institute of Technology.