Sep 092010

EqualLogic, with its all-inclusive enterprise-class iSCSI SANs virtualized storage arrays, enables IT administrators with the technology and tools to build out affordable and easily manageable business continuity and disaster recovery solutions. With built-in snapshot, replica, clone, and replication features, along with partnerships with industry leading technology partners, EqualLogic simplifies the planning, deployment, and maintenance of an IT infrastructure that ensures that your business is fully protected and always operational.

BC/DR has traditionally been necessary, but too complex and expensive

Disaster recovery beyond backup was not affordable for most organizations when Fibre Channel SANs were the only option. Complex configurations including communication network extension equipment, add-on software, and staff training has been prohibitively expensive. Recent compliance regulations (e.g., HIPAA, Sarbanes-Oxley, and SEC rules) have pressured organizations of all sizes to make more data quickly recoverable for longer periods of time; company files, databases, and e-mail must be restorable for years. And with the proliferation of 24X7 business operations, companies of all sizes are recognizing the requirement to have a complete business continuity and disaster recovery environment to ensure that their IT operations are completely protected against natural and unnatural disasters and outages.

With storage consolidated on EqualLogic PS Series arrays, business continuity and disaster recovery is now affordable, fast, and simple. EqualLogic iSCSI SANs leverage your existing IP based LAN and WAN networking assets and competencies without requiring any add-on software or costly staff training. The PS Series’ Auto-Replication capability, standard in each array, provides point-in-time periodic replication to multiple remote sites. This method, easy to set up and operate, delivers multiple restore points and application-consistent copies that can be restored in minutes.

Check out our Online Dell EqualLogic Pricing to see how EqualLogic brings enterprise class data management services to small and medium sized businesses.

 Posted by at 9:59 pm  Tagged with:
Aug 262010

Ever wonder what all the suffixes on the Dell EqualLogic PS Series arrays mean? For existing customers that have been working with them forever (we’ve been providing EqualLogic solutions for over 5 years now) the migration from the original “E” model made sense. The latest “XVS” spawned this blog post…this is getting a bit confusing!

Here are the prefix summaries for those that are just getting familiar with the units:

“E” – SATA drives running at 7200 RPM
“X” – 10,000 RPM Serial-Attached SCSI (SAS) drives (various capacities exist)
“XV” – 15,000 RPM Serial-Attached SCSI (SAS) drives (various capacities exist)
“S” – Solid-State Drives
“XVS” – SAS and Solid-State hybrid boxes

While most customers choose “E” arrays for more static, less critical data, don’t underestimate their performance. The striping and caching intelligence that is built into the units means you will get outstanding performance regardless of drive type.

 Posted by at 11:26 am  Tagged with:
Jul 272010

Dell has issued a firmware update alert for owners of the following EqualLogic units. Here is the letter directly from Dell.

Dear Valued Customer,

With the release of EqualLogic™ PS Series Firmware Release V4.3.6, a number of potentially serious issues have been resolved. Customers who are using any of the products listed below are strongly urged to upgrade to V4.3.6 or higher at their earliest opportunity:

· EqualLogic™ PS6000, PS6500 or PS400E arrays

· EqualLogic™ PS100 arrays with 750GB disks

· Windows 2008 Clustering Software

V4.3.6 contains a number of important fixes which affect all arrays, and Dell encourages all customers to apply this update. Please refer to the V4.3.6 Fix List for complete details.

Firmware V4.3.6 Download

Other Latest Releases

San HQ V2.0 Download

Hit Kit V3.3.2 Download

For all the latest software releases go to


The firmware and all associated documentation can be obtained at, under Downloads->Firmware.

Once you have logged in, and selected Downloads->Firmware, select the hyperlink for the version of firmware that you wish to download.

Patches appear within the associated firmware page. Please be sure to download and review the Release Notes and instructions for updating storage array firmware, or applying patches as appropriate for your firmware version prior to attempting the firmware upgrade or patch.

Technical Support

Please Contact:
Dell EqualLogic Support

(800) 945-3355(Toll-Free in US and Canada) International Numbers

 Posted by at 3:11 pm  Tagged with:
Mar 072010

Boston Medical did extensive testing before deploying their EqualLogic multi-member platform. Tests included several Fibre Channel arrays (EMC, NetApp and IBM) vs the PS6010XV 10Gb.

Per Brad Blake, Director of IT, Boston Medical

“The performance we saw with the EqualLogic array compared to the others was head and shoulders above the rest.”

“We spend anywhere from $100,000 to $150,000 per year just adding Fibre port capacities so right off the bat I’m able to eliminate that.”

EqualLogic has arrived in the Tier 1 data space.

 Posted by at 12:21 am  Tagged with:
Jan 212010

Some time ago I created a quick powerpoint presentation on how to migrate from an existing standalone server environment with Direct Attach Storage (DAS) to a virtual environment with shared storage. The presentation has now been updated and gives a potential new EqualLogic customer a simple road map for migrating to a new, virtual environment.

Our approach assumes every machine and application that is currently in production is critical, and must remain online as the migration takes place.

This presentation/plan does not talk about features and functions of Dell EqualLogic storage. Those details are best left for specific conversations.

In all, the complete process only includes 4 steps, the fourth of which is optional.

Storage Consolidation Plan – Migrate to VMWare in 4 Steps (PDF)

Storage Consolidation Plan – Migrate to VMWare in 4 Steps (powerpoint)

Feed back is welcome!

 Posted by at 11:49 am  Tagged with:
Dec 232009

Dell just announced the availability of their new 10Gb EqualLogic arrays; PS6010E, PS6010X, PS6010XV, PS6510E and PS6510X. Unlike the standard 1Gb 6000 and 6500 series which include four (4) 1Gb ports per controller, the new boxes boast two (2) 10GbE ports on each controller providing tremendous I/O capacity. Having a smaller number of larger pipes means more performance while using fewer switch connections – a win-win.

PS6010E pricing and PS6010X pricing has been loaded in our self-service pricing portal so help yourself!

 Posted by at 4:20 pm  Tagged with:
Jul 012009

It was only a couple of months ago when the Dell EqualLogic PS6000 replaced the PS5000 as the new EqualLogic flagship. We were excited to see Dell moving upstream with a faster controller and more connection speed, but we felt something was missing. Many potential customers wanted to get on board the EqualLogic train but could not afford it.

Until now.

Dell just announced the release of the PS4000 which fits nicely in the Small-Medium sized business niche. Remaining true to EqualLogic’s tradition of waiting until a product was ready before announcing it, the PS4000 hit the ground running. Quite honestly, we got more than we could have hoped for.

The PS4000 comes with the same enterprise SAN features built directly into the firmware; the only difference is a revved up controller on the PS6000 and a higher number of supported attributes. I thought a side-by-side comparison might help those that are familiar with the PS Series (either the original PS100 et al or the PS5000).

PS4000 PS6000 (PS5000)
equallogic_ps4000e_back equallogic_ps6000e_back
GbE Connections 2 Per Controller 4 Per Controller
Members Per Group 2 12
Volumes 256 1024
Snapshots/Replicas 2,048 10,000
Snapshots Per Volume 128 512
Volumes For Replication 32 192
Replicas Per Volume 128 512
Replication Partners 16 16

Here’s an interesting point. Although you cannot have more than 2 PS4000s in a Group, if you add a single PS6000 to the group the limits disappear and there are no restrictions. Site to site replication implies 2 groups.

 Posted by at 3:59 pm  Tagged with:
Jun 052009

Dealing with rapid data growth is one of the most pressing issues facing IT organizations today. Whether it’s at the corporate datacenter, branch office facilities or disaster recovery sites, the Storage Area Networks (SANs) that support the business-critical applications are growing and need to be monitored in a simple manner. For ongoing operations planning, trend analysis and troubleshooting, IT managers require SAN monitoring tools that can provide them centralized access to detailed performance and event data, reporting and intelligent alerts.

For managers of Dell EqualLogic storage, the answer is SAN Headquarters (SAN HQ). SAN HQ uses Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) to collect performance, alarm and health status data from dozens of PS Series Groups that could be spread at multiple locations the world.

The EqualLogic PS Series has automated, real-time load balancing across drives, RAID sets, connections, cache and controllers for optimized performance and resource utilization. SAN HQ complements this virtualized architecture by providing IT managers a new level of insight into performance and capacity trends across their EqualLogic storage infrastructure.

Read the full description here

 Posted by at 12:11 am  Tagged with:
Apr 302009

Dell recently announced that the PS5000 series was end-of-life as of April 22. Of course, the push was convenient given April 30 was their end of quarter. Nothing like an end-of-life deadline to drive in last minute deals!

Well, it turns out there a few more PS5000s lying around than they thought so the product line has a bit more life left. We are now hearing that June is most likely the phase out period. The good news is that the PS6000, which also includes the new solid-state iscsi model, is quickly taking the 5000’s place with an additional Gb connection and Gig of cache per controller.

So, until sometime in June…”PS5000, Get your PS5000s here while they last!” I’ll have a coke with mine.

 Posted by at 9:41 pm  Tagged with:
Mar 242009

For all those IT professionals out there fed up with Technology Obsolescence, this post is for you. Having been in enterprise IT as both a provider and consumer, there is nothing more frustrating than being forced to get rid of perfectly good equipment because it is no longer supported or because something better is now available. Nowhere does this play out more often than data storage.

As mentioned in a previous post Frame vs. Frameless, there several well documented issues with traditional storage systems. We should have added Planned Obsolescence to the list of shortcomings of Frame based systems. As new drives technology marches forward the controllers that feed those drives fall further back until they will no longer work.

Now the good news. You don’t have to take it anymore! Stop replacing those disk drives!

EqualLogic is on the verge of releasing it’s newest array dubbed, quite modestly, the PS6000. With few details until the official launch later this month, all we can say for sure is this: The 2009 Model will work right out of the box with the 2002 Model (their first year). The shiny new PS6000 will boot up and melt right into an existing storage pool without even taking your servers down.

The Peer Storage Operating System “glues” the arrays together virtually under a single Group IP address. You no longer have to burn up your spring-time weekends by coming to work to stand-up a new array, create LUNs, migrate data and then stay on call to make sure you didn’t forget something. Older equipment that formerly was decommissioned to the EZ-Shredder can continue to add extra spindles, and speed, to the data set.

Isn’t virtual fun…and earth friendly!

 Posted by at 11:04 am  Tagged with: