Sunday, July 01, 2007

3PAR: The Follow-up

Sometime, a blog post touches the nerves and that was the case with my last blog post 3PAR: Reversal of Fortune. I heard from numerous readers including people from Bluearc and 3PAR. Craig Nunes, VP Marketing at 3PAR sent me a detailed email highlighting the reasons why customers are choosing 3PAR.
The success of our products, as you mentioned hearing from several customers, has a lot to do with ease of use. Those who have chosen 3PAR have been able to provision capacity in seconds without preplanning. They have been able to eliminate performance tuning activities because all volumes have access to all resources within this massively parallel system. They have also been able to move data from one storage tier to another or redistribute existing volumes across new resources as they are added to the system in a single command, completely non-disruptively.

That being said, ease of use is only part of it -- efficiency is a also a big part of why customers have deployed 3PAR in their data centers. As you mentioned, Thin Provisioning is getting a great deal of attention and is now moving into large-scale deployments within very conservative companies. But efficient local and remote copy capabilities -- both built on thin copy technology -- are another major reason customers have chosen 3PAR. Organizations have taken substantial advantage of these products, deploying hourly (writeable) snapshots for granular and rapid recovery, and cost-effective tier one remote data replication solutions without the need for vendor professional services.

Finally, our customers have taken great advantage of the scalability of the array. The clustered, modular architecture eliminates the price premiums of the monolithic arrays and scaling complexity of modular array architectures. Our customers start small, with as few as two controllers, yet grow non-disruptively and massively within a single, fully-tiered system. Organizations, especially those with high growth requirements, have chosen to grown within their 3PAR array instead of facing the complexity of managing 5 or 10 or more arrays from other vendors.
Another reader put things more succinctly.
Thin provisioning is great, and is definitely a killer feature, but it's not THE killer feature. I'd say it's one of four things that 3PAR does really well. The combination of those four things in one box, is what differentiates 3PAR from other vendors in the market.
The key claims, Craig made were:
  • Ease of use - Provision capacity without preplanning. Eliminate performance tuning.

  • Efficiency - Thin provisioning. Efficient local and remote copy capabilities.

  • Scalability of array - Clustered modular architecture. Grow non-disruptively and massively within a single fully-tiered system.
I don't have any first-hand experience with 3PAR product. Do you have any experience with them? What is your opinion about 3PAR product and technology? This month, I would like to further look in to 3PAR technology. Any documents, comments, emails and phone calls that help me understand 3PAR better are most welcome.

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