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Dell EMC Isilon F800: Product Overview and Insight

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See the full list of 8 Best Enterprise NAS Devices

Bottom line:

Dell EMC, as a leading scale-out NAS vendor, offers a top solution with this unit. The unit has latency less than 1 ms. It is is geared to support I/O-intensive unstructured data workloads. It does this using a modular architecture that can handle a wide variety of workloads using flash, disk, and the cloud, all from a single file system architecture. In sum, it's a top-notch unit.

There is no doubt that the Isilon F800 delivers impressive performance numbers. Pricing, though, may be an issue for some, as buyers are paying for a substantial sum for performance and capacity. Unfortunately, the company refused to disclose these exact numbers. 

Company description:

As a member of the Dell Technologies family of businesses, Dell EMC is a private company providing infrastructure for organizations protect information. This includes hybrid cloud and big data solutions incorporating converged infrastructure, servers, storage, and cybersecurity technologies. Dell EMC was formed in 2016, bringing together Dell (founded 1984) and EMC (founded 1979).

Product description:

Dell EMC Isilon F800 All-Flash scale-out NAS storage combines performance and scalability. Available in several configurations, the Isilon F800 delivers up to 250,000 IOPS and 15 GB/s bandwidth per chassis. 

Powered by the Dell EMC Isilon OneFS operating system, Isilon F800 solutions can scale performance to 9M IOPS and 540 GB/s of aggregate throughput in a single Isilon cluster. With the Isilon F800, storage capacity scales from 96 TB to 924 TB in a single 4U chassis to 33 PB in a single Isilon cluster. Isilon F800 All-Flash scale-out NAS storage can be combined with other Isilon products, including Isilon Hybrid and Isilon Archive scale-out NAS platforms, into a single cluster that provides automated storage tiering and integration to a choice of public and private cloud services.

Key features:

  • With an ultra-dense, modular architecture that provides four Isilon nodes within a 4U chassis.
  • Isilon F800 all-flash supports all major protocols and data access methods including NFS, SMB, HDFS, HTTP, and FTP. This allows consolidation and support of a wide range of file applications and workloads onto a single Isilon cluster.
  • Isilon CloudPools software offers a policy-based, automated tiering option to integrate with a choice of public and private cloud services.
  • 256 GB of memory per node.
  • Intel Xeon Processor E5-2697A v4.

RAID/Data Protection features:

Isilon F800 all-flash storage offers N+1 through N+4 redundancy. Isilon also offers a choice of enterprise data backup and disaster recovery options. Isilon F800 all-flash offers robust security options including FIPS 140-2 level 2 self-encrypting drives, role-based access control (RBAC), secure access zones, SEC 17a-4 compliant WORM data immutability, and integrated file system auditing support.

Storage Saving Features:

Isilon scale-out storage delivers up to 80 percent storage utilization. Isilon SmartDedupe data deduplication software further reduces raw storage requirements by up to 35%.

Data Management features:

  • All Isilon nodes run the same Isilon OneFS operating system to deliver a scale-out NAS solution with a single namespace and single volume architecture.
  • Isilon offers policy-based, automated tiering to optimize storage resources, lower costs and integrate with a choice of public and private cloud services.
  • With native support for HDFS, Isilon F800 solutions support data analytics technologies to gain insight without the need to move data or invest in a separate storage infrastructure.

Implementation:

After you rack the chassis, the setup of the F800 nodes can be completed in an hour or so. You provision and size your cluster with the number of nodes that deliver the performance and capacity needed. You can add nodes to an existing cluster in about a minute. Once a new node is added, a background Isilon AutoBalance job spreads the data across all the nodes balancing the storage for performance and capacity.

“The EMC Isilon rollout was straightforward,” said a CTO in the media industry.

Technical Support:

Support services have been integrated under the Dell EMC ProSupport brand to deliver more consistent support services. There are several layers of support:

ProSupport:

  • Remote 24x7 technical support -- phone, chat and online
  • Automated issue detection and case creation
  • Self-service case initiation and management
  • Operating Environment Software and OS support

ProSupport Plus:

Proactive and predictive support that improves the performance and stability of your critical systems. It includes everything in ProSupport, plus the addition of:

  • A designated Technology Service Manager (TSM) who knows the customer environment
  • Priority access to ProSupport Plus engineers for faster resolution
  • Personalized assessments and recommendations
  • On-demand support and utilization reports
  • Systems Maintenance guidance
  • Predictive analysis for issue prevention and optimization
  • Proactive monitoring, issue detection, notification and automated case creation

“We have had strong support from Dell EMC over many years and the easy scale out of the product makes it a great fit for medical research,” said a CTO in the medical industry.

Most users were happy with support, but a few noted some deterioration in service quality and timeliness since the Dell merger.

Capacity:

Isilon F800 all-flash scales storage capacity from 96 TB to 924 TB in a single 4U chassis and up to 33 PB in a single Isilon cluster. Each Isilon F800 chassis houses 60 SSDs with a capacity choice of 1.6 TB, 3.2 TB or 15.4 TB per drive.

Performance:

Isilon F800 all-flash delivers up to 250,000 IOPS and 15 GB/sec aggregate throughput in a single chassis configuration and scales to 9M IOPS and 540 GB/s of aggregate throughput in a single Isilon cluster.

Markets and use cases:

  • Isilon F800 All-Flash scale-out NAS is targeted for demanding file applications and workloads. Typical use cases include:
  • Digital media: broadcast, 4K workflows, real-time streaming, rendering, and post-production
  • Electronic Design Automation: Design, simulation, verification, and analysis of electronic and mechanical systems, design for manufacturability
  • Life Sciences: DNA and RNA sequencing, genomics, and large-scale microscopy environments
  • Isilon has over 9,000 customers across all industries and verticals.

Delivery:

Appliance. It consists of 4 nodes in a 4U chassis. An Isilon cluster can consist of up to 144 nodes.

Pricing:

Just under $200k.

Product

Dell EMC Isilon F800

Capacity

Up to 924 TB

IOPS/rpm

250k

Throughput

15 GB/s

Delivery

Appliance

Media

SSD

Price

Just under $200,00 for 48 TB

Differentiator

Leader in File and Object

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