All – VxRail continues to cook! The 3.5 release came out on June 9th, and is getting fast pickup.
Customer, field, and partner feedback on VxRail has been awesome. One of the main things that we know is critical is to listen, learn and iterating, and I want to say THANK YOU to the team behind the offer for doing exactly that!
What’s new? A lot!
- Dense, all flash configurations + use of the 3D TLC NAND – total of 76TB raw in 2U. VxRail is a mighty mouse - a 64-node all-flash cluster delivers 1,792 cores and 1,216 TB of raw storage, making it the industry’s most powerful HCIA to date to maximize performance and scale for applications that demand low latency.
- VxRail is proudly “powered by VSAN”. VSAN 6.2 is in the Ghent release, and our goal from now on is to keep VxRail in lock-step with vSphere/VSAN release schedules. VSAN 6.2 brings a ton of goodness, including Dedupe, Compression, Erasure Coding.
- Storage QoS – at the VM and VMDK level.
- Single node scaling (this is a big deal – previously you needed to start at 1 appliance, 4 nodes, and increment in appliance aka 4 node steps). You can also start smaller (the VxRail 60 appliance is shipping).
- Continued VxRail Manager evolution. My own estimate, I think we’re now at the point where 80% of the code in VxRail manager is net new. We’re not stopping here – and have big plans.
- Data Protection Suite for VMware bundling – the best way to protect your information (Backup and recovery, Continuous data protection, Monitoring and analysis, and rich search capabilities).
- Add storage capacity easily
- Improved flexibility around licensing – previously we included vSphere standard in the non-VLP appliance licensing, we found that people wanted this unbundled, and let them bring any license they wanted. Some really wanted vSphere Enterprise, and we can now do pretty well any config.
- Horizon bundles and specific licensing models – and a lot more on this to come!
- Support for Metro Stretched Cluster use cases.
To date – 90% of the wins have come through our channel partners, unassisted. VxRail is a simple, easy to buy, easy to sell, easy to use and easy to get value offer.
We asked ESG to quantify the experience to see how easy it was to use – answer below (and it’s even easier now!)
EMCers (including the VCE specialists) can get all the content at the VxRail enablement center right here: https://www.emc.com/auth/rpage/ec-for-vce-vxrail.htm. Our Partners have access to a mirror here: Partner Portal. On those sites, you can find sizing and configuration tools, competitive information, customer examples and more. You’ll also find interactive demo tools (one is here)
Why are customers choosing VxRail? Pretty simple actually:
Imagine… If a customer is using vSphere, why wouldn’t they:
- Pick the only HCI which is an extension of their standard?
- Pick the only HCI that is jointly engineered with VMware?
- Pick the only HCI that has single support with VMware (seriously, does any customer want to get in the middle of a multi-vendor fight when they need support?)
- Pick the highest performing HCI?
- Pick the most cost effective HCI?
- Pick the only HCI that is optimized for all-flash (when clearly we’ve crossed the inversion point)?
- Pick the only HCI that integrates with the leading backup storage = Data Domain and the DPS suite for VMware?
If you’re a vSphere customer – look at the list above, and make VxRail something you evaluate.
If you’re NOT using vSphere (or are scaling past 64 nodes) then VxRail is NOT the Hyper-converged Appliance for you (and check out VxRack).
Where are we going next (and fast!)?
- Rapidly accelerated and improved hardware supply chain. While the value is in software, the hardware supply chain matters for the offer. Demand exceeded supply for a large part of May, we’re now catching up (good problem to have!) VxRail will have the best HCIA hardware out there, bar none.
- Start even smaller (getting down to 3, then 2 node minimums from the 4 of today) – VxRail scales bigger than any HCIA out there (and VxRack goes even further!) with these it will also start smaller.
- Expanded hardware configurations – while the 2U4N form factor is the right place to stop – we will rapidly expand to 1U1N (ridiculously small starting $$) and 2U1N (great for very storage dense, or GPU VDI use cases) form factors.
- … And a little further out, leveraging NVMe and NGNVM, the Purley generation refresh, next-gen vSphere and VSAN, and “linking” VxRail with it’s bigger sibling (VxRack SDDC) – stay tuned!
It’s now been a grand total of 118 days that VxRail has been on the market. It’s still early days.
The combined EMC/VMware team and I have a ton of respect for our competitors – many of whom have been at this longer than we have.
That all said – watch out, competition.
We are on a path to well exceed our product goal which is to be the revenue and customer count leader hands down by the end of 2017.
Two data points doesn’t make a trend, so it’s far too early to call it – but I will make an observation: the VxRail growth rate is faster than even XtremIO, and we know how that translated into the AFA battles of 2015 and 2016.
We’ll see where we end 2016 Q2 with VxRail (in the end, only results speak), but we may hit our customer goal FAR, FAR earlier than we aimed for…