Taking the First Steps in Lowering TCO through Consolidation

Those of you who have been tasked with purchasing storage for your IT organization know that it is not a simple task.  There is a balancing act that needs to takes place between the needs of the business units along with their different business objectives and storage requirements.  In most cases a single storage solution will not work.  Instead IT is challenged with having to maintain multiple storage systems. These days the gauntlet has been thrown down and IT is being asked to do more with less.

In order to find the right investment the IT purchaser should ask themselves the following questions about each storage solution they investigate:

  • Will this improve security and risk management?
  • What will the return on investment be?
  • Will our business processes improve?
  • Will this there be a reduction in operating expenditures?
  • Will this help to improve regulatory compliance?

It is also very important that as you chose a solution that the financial vision is shared by both IT and business management.  The final goal is to have the investment reduce costs while contributing success to the business.

What is the solution?

There are several options out there.  However, analysts from the Enterprise Strategy Group studied the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and business impact of such mixed workload storage consolidation on EMC’s XtremIO. They modeled a mid-sized software development company with $54M in annual revenue. The analysis compared the storage-related costs that could be expected when deploying siloed storage arrays to meet business requirements with those that could be expected to be paid if the company chose to deploy a consolidated solution on a single XtremIO X-Brick (Figure 1). ESG Lab also analyzed some of the additional economic business advantages that would be realized when deploying XtremIO instead of a traditional storage system. All assumptions of XtremIO business benefits used in the model were validated for accuracy through real-world XtremIO customer testimonials.


The findings have been very enlightening. The study shows that consolidating traditional storage deployments dedicated for production, development, test, and VDI operations with XtremIO resulted in 3.8x lower 5-year total cost of storage ownership, with an average annual storage TCO savings of $561K (Figure 2). In fact, traditional storage’s TCA (total cost of acquisition) alone was same as XtremIO’s TCO over the period of study!


This included:

  • 5.8X Lower Administrative Costs – achieved via a simple intuitive hardware and management interface design, streamlined operations that save time and steps, fewer systems to maintain, and more importantly the ability to optimize the creation and administration of development, test and production copies of data. This included:
    • 98% less time planning for growth and resource optimization
    • 68% less time monitoring and consolidating reports
    • 68% less daily task system management time
    • 67% less time planning application deployment and optimization
    • 71% less time managing backups
    • 79% less time servicing and installing components
    • 88% less time managing copies of data (MAJOR TASK OF DEVELOPMENT ORGANIZATION)
  • 6.0X Lower Power and Cooling Costs – Consolidating with XtremIO requires far less hardware thanks to intelligent design and great space efficiencies. XtremIO requires fewer controllers, enclosures, and disks while providing far lower latency operations.
  • 2.2X Lower Support and Maintenance– Fewer systems to keep hardware and software support and maintenance contracts on. All features of XtremIO are included in the purchase price and nothing in the array is separately licensed.  Furthermore, XtremIO’s Xpect More program keeps maintenance costs flat for seven years.
  • 2.5X Lower Cost of Acquisition – The ability to consolidate workloads space efficiently with almost no impact to performance means that a single 20TB XtremIO X-Brick can consolidate the operations of 5 separate storage systems with dedicated functions.

But it doesn’t end there…

It’s not just about the Total Cost of Storage Ownership; ESG Lab’s analysis echoed the sentiments of XtremIO customers that storage consolidation with XtremIO can impact the bottom line of the business in many ways, e.g. shortened development time for new products. When all things considered, the payback period could be as low as 4.1 months. Figure 3 summarizes the results of the 5-year ESG Lab analysis.


You don’t have to take my word for it.  You can get the EMC XtremIO TCO study here for the thorough analysis conducted by ESG.   You can also visit the EMC XtremIO community to read my full blog.

About the Author: Chhandomay Mandal

Dr. Chhandomay Mandal is the Director of Solutions Marketing at Dell Technologies. He leads solutions across artificial intelligence, analytics, business applications, VDI and HPC as well as industry-specific solutions for healthcare, media & entertainment, semiconductors and smart manufacturing. Prior to his current role, he led Dell’s all-flash storage solutions marketing efforts for desktop virtualization, server virtualization and private cloud. Dr. Mandal has been awarded 13 patents. He has a PhD from University of Florida, MBA from Indiana University, and BTech from Indian Institute of Technology.