This is an excerpt describing Dell Compellent’s move from older PCI-X to PCI-E and its impact on customers. This was a response to a customer’s concern about having to upgrade their Compellent gear. Although Compellent has a good story on minimizing “forklift” upgrades, there comes a point when technology must be refreshed. Does anyone out there still use 5.25″ floppies?

Comment by Bob Fine, Dell Compellent Marketing:

“Full disclosure – I work for Dell Compellent. I manage the Compellent product marketing team. There are two macro level transitions here – the industry wide transition away from PCI-X to PCI-e and the transition from SATA to SAS.

We do offer a variety of ways for our customers to avoid forklift upgrades as much as possible. In the case of SATA technology, the industry has shifted away from SATA to SAS. This isn’t a Compellent decision, but across the entire drive industry. Compellent delayed the end of life long past when drive shipments ended. We still provide Copilot support for SATA, although the drives and enclosures are no longer available for upgrades or new orders.

For many of our customers, they can use a PCI-e SAS card in their existing controller and leverage this new drive technology and avoid a forklift upgrade that some vendors require. Unfortunately our older controllers only have PCI-X interfaces, and PCI-X SAS interface cards are not available from our vendors as part of the industry transition away from PCI-X.

A key Compellent advantage is that by moving to the latest controller will allow use of all your existing Fibre channel enclosures and drives along with SAS, something that most competitors do not support.

I’d welcome the opportunity to discuss this further offline from the blog.

- Bob Fine”

Our take: Having been involved with hundreds of enterprise storage projects over 20+ years there is one truism in data storage. Every piece of storage hardware will eventually need to be replaced, so plan on a periodic refresh. I once worked on a Fed Gov project that had a 70-year data retention policy. Although extreme, the requirement forced us to build into our design the ability to migrate forward (i.e. refresh) data from older media to newer. That meant we could not tie our applications to a specific locations and/or mount points. Locations are best kept in a database that can be revised over time.

I appreciate Bob’s response and it is obviously a sincere effort to explain the need for a refresh. The only problem I have is when a marketing team with no real applicable technology experience makes claims it cannot back up.

  • Share/Bookmark
© 2012 Federal Appliance 4Compellent is not affiliated with Dell Corp.
Federal Appliance is a Dell Preferred Partner
Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha