DCIG, LLC Announces Insider’s Guide to $50K and Under Converged Infrastructure Systems

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Latest Buyer’s Guide Focuses on Emerging Category of Systems Designed to Bring All Infrastructure Needs Together Into a Single SKU for a “Datacenter in a Box” Experience

As organizations find themselves constrained by IT budgets or staff shortfalls, the need for a “datacenter in a box” grows with each new gigabyte of data that needs to be stored. Luckily, converged infrastructure solutions offer the full scope of hardware and software that an organization needs that are bundled and sold as a single SKU. Originally targeted towards small to mid-sized businesses, converged infrastructures are finding their way into enterprise environments as well. Future growth projections have led to high expectations for converged infrastructures in the coming years.

Converged infrastructures package multiple technologies together in a single unit to include compute, storage and networking, along with a bundle of software for automation, management and orchestration. Organizations that choose to implement converged infrastructures often see them provide benefits like affording their IT department with a smoother implementation workflow; providing native backup and recovery options; and offering replication from a converged to a non-converged infrastructure.

“Enterprise organizations with satellite or remote offices need a consistent, consolidated IT implementation that can be easily managed and maintained remotely, and converged infrastructures are becoming the go-to solution for these use cases,” said Jerome Wendt, president and lead analyst, DCIG, LLC. “As storage and data center needs have exploded, organizations are looking for ways to make their IT staff more efficient, and converged infrastructures can offer them a boost in productivity. We are excited that our $50K and Under Converged Infrastructure Buyer’s Guide will help end organizations quickly and effectively identify a cost-effective solution to alleviate stress on their growing IT needs.”

For the inaugural $50K and Under Converged Infrastructure Buyer’s Guide, DCIG, LLC evaluated 10 offerings from six companies. After an initial questionnaire of more than 80 questions was completed, participating companies’ capabilities were assessed from the questionnaire and from information available in the public domain. Solutions were then evaluated for 100 features and weighted after conversations with end-users. After scores were compiled, solutions were assessed and ranked either “Best-in-Class,” “Recommended,” “Excellent,” “Good,” and “Basic” across functionality and capability relative to the overall market landscape.

The intent for this Buyer’s Guide, as with all DCIG Buyer’s Guides, is to provide an “at-a-glance” comparison from which end users can select the most appropriate solution for their existing needs. This Buyer’s Guide also provides perspective on how solutions from less well known converged infrastructure providers compare against established and better known brands.

The DCIG 2014-15 $50K and Under Converged Infrastructure Buyer’s Guide evaluates the following solutions (in alphabetical order):

  •     Pivot3 vSTAC Data Appliance
  •     Pivot3 vSTAC Edge Appliance
  •     Pivot3 vSTAC R2S Appliance
  •     Pivot3 vSTAC R2S P Cubed Appliance
  •     Pivot3 vSTAC Watch R2
  •     Quanta CB220
  •     Riverbed Granite Core/Edge
  •     Scale Computing HC3 Hyperconvergence
  •     Simplivity Omnicube CN-2000
  •     Zenith Infotec TigerCloud.

The Pivot3 vSTAC R2S P Cubed Appliance & Pivot3 vSTAC R2S Appliance shared the Best-in-Class ranking among converged infrastructures evaluated in this Buyer’s Guide. Both products scoring at the top in this Buyer’s Guide showed an innate flexibility in a highly competitive space. The Pivot3 models assembled all the pieces necessary for organizations to expect them to remain near the top in this space. In comparison to their counterparts, the Pivot3 models stood out in the following ways:
●    Represented the best balance of strengths across all the scoring categories
●    Included the most robust set of features and functions across all of the products reviewed
●    The virtualization integration as it pertains to data protection, disaster recovery and especially its ability to enable seamless migration into and out of the infrastructure was unsurpassed by all other models that DCIG reviewed

Other features that organizations will find useful on the Pivot3 models include:
●    Unique layers of storage efficiencies that the Pivot3 models offer for backup data and replicated. data sets. Those features include compression, deduplication and WAN optimization across all of the previously mentioned data sets.
●    The intellectual property developed internally by Pivot3 demonstrates the deep understanding that Pivot3 has of this market segment and its adherence to excellence.

The DCIG 2014-15 Converged Infrastructure Buyer’s Guide achieves the following objectives:
●    Evaluates converged infrastructure solutions with a starting list price of $US50,000 or less
●    Provides an objective, third party evaluation of converged infrastructures that weights, scores and ranks their features from an end user’s viewpoint
●    Includes recommendations on how to best use this Buyer’s Guide
●    Scores and ranks the features on each converged infrastructure based upon criteria that matter most to end users so they can quickly know which products are the most appropriate for them to use and under what conditions
●    Provides data sheets for 10 converged infrastructures from six (6) different providers so end users can do quick comparisons of the features that are supported and not supported on each product
●    Provides insight into which features on a converged infrastructure will result in improved performance
●    Gives any organization the ability to request competitive bids from different providers of converged infrastructures that are apples-to-apples comparisons

“Converged infrastructures technology is largely on the front end of its growth curve, but this space in the industry does indicate an emerging trend,” said Wendt. “Converged infrastructures are complete, ready-to-go solutions that combine compute, storage, networking and virtualization software into validated configurations. Because everything that is needed is already tested, organizations can move on application deployments much more quickly than they could through implementing each piece individually, in turn making their business more nimble to respond to other needs and opportunities.”

Disclosure and Methodology
DCIG identified six companies that provide converged infrastructure solutions. Each model had to meet the following criteria:

  •     List price of $US50,000 or less.
  •     Hypervisor support is a required feature.
  •     Supports at least one (1) hypervisor (XEN, Hyper-V, VMware, KVM, etc).
  •     Provides compute and storage in the same infrastructure solution. The infrastructures must have separate compute and storage nodes or combine compute and storage in the same node.
  •     Can cluster/federate a minimum of two nodes together.
  •     Supports a centralized management and reporting structure.
  •     Provides data protection and replication thru existing software features. Enables local backup and remote replication of VMs, datastores or both.
  •     Supports various types of disk drives to include SAS, SATA and SSD.
  •     Sufficient information available to DCIG to make meaningful decisions.
  •     Survey must be completed by November 8, 2013.

In every case the participating vendor had the opportunity to review and respond to the survey and the information regarding its product(s) displayed on the data sheets included in this Buyer’s Guide. Converged infrastructure solutions were then included in this Buyer’s Guide based upon their starting price point.

The DCIG 2014-15 $50K and Under Converged Infrastructure Buyer’s Guides is available immediately and may be downloaded for no charge with registration at the following website: http://dcigbuyersguides.com/.

DCIG Blog: http://www.dcig.com

About DCIG
DCIG is a group of analysts with IT industry expertise who provide informed, insightful, third party analysis and commentary on IT technology. DCIG independently develops and licenses access to DCIG Buyer’s Guides and IBG. DCIG also develops sponsored content in the form of blog entries, case studies, head-to-head product reports, special reports and white papers. More information is available at http://www.dcig.com.

Media contact:
Jim Nash


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