Solid State Technology Key To Dell-EqualLogic PS6000 Launch

Dell-EqualLogic storage arrays

"With the new EqualLogic PS6000 series, Dell has delivered platform and information management advancements that allow our customers to meet growing storage needs in a simple and cost-effective way," said Darren Thomas, vice president and general manager, Enterprise Storage, Dell. "Features such as solid state disks, all-inclusive monitoring tools like SAN Headquarters and seamless integration with prior SAN generations are differentiating Dell from the other storage vendors and delivering on our promise of simple, capable, affordable storage."

The PS6000 series will include five models: the PS6000E, PS6500E, PS6000X, PS6000XV and PS6000S, with the PS6000S including solid state drives. Potential customers can expect to find enhanced support for Microsoft Exchange and SQL through Hyper-V Smart technology.

The starting price on the PS6000 series of storage arrays is $17,000, but list price doesn't include the solid state technology. Solid state technology will cost customers $25,000.

The PS6000 series of SANs will be sold through Dell's channel partners.

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It is not surprising to one partner that Dell's entry-level price for the PS6000 excludes the bells and whistles that customers will really need to offer a fully functional storage array to customers.

"The entry-level price point is attractive to customers," said a source familiar with Dell's storage strategy. "The thing about that unit, though, is that it is not fully redundant to be used in a production environment. Entry level can get you going, but customers will want one that's fully populated, which brings the price up. We typically quote customers somewhere around $30,000 and then come in under that."

The addition of a solid state drive to a SAN device is exciting for Brad Matheson, managing partner and CIO of Acumen IT, a Greenville, S.C.-based solution provider. The read-write times on SSDs are "tremendous," he said.

"It'll be interesting to see actual performance of the unit because I've never seen a solid state SAN before," said Matheson.

According to Dell, the Dell-EqualLogic PS6000 series performs up to 91 percent faster for sequential write workloads and 29 percent faster for sequential read workloads over previous generations of the SAN.

Customers can also expect to begin monitoring storage devices with SAN Headquarters to the PS6000 series, a dashboard that monitors the performance and events for multiple storage devices. Customers under an active warranty or service agreement will receive SAN Headquarters at no additional charge.