InfoWorld review: Dell EqualLogic iSCSI SAN kicks it to 10G

Dell's EqualLogic PS6010XV 10G iSCSI array delivers big time performance, offering an easier and lower cost option to Fibre Channel

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The tool installs on a server and communicates with the storage arrays via SNMP, gathering information on just about every aspect of the array, from network and disk I/O to overall array health. You can view IOps on a global or per-disk level, in addition to deep statistics like average disk queue depth.

The application is laid out well, and it's very simple to drill down to the data you're looking for, and just as simple to export it as a CSV file to be imported into any number of other applications. There's also a report creation engine that allows you to select any number of monitored items to be included in an attractive PDF generated by the utility. One of the handy predefined reports is a top 10 list that shows information such as the leading volumes by capacity, IOps, snapshots, and so forth. The predefined reports include configuration, capacity, replication, performance, host connection, and a hardware and firmware informational report. And you can choose from several different report templates.

The information gathered by SAN HQ is available for as long as the tool has been running and can easily show trends in usage. Overall, SAN HQ provides a great view into the workings of an EqualLogic storage infrastructure of any size.

EqualLogic has always seemed to be ahead of the curve in iSCSI storage, and the company's arrays provide a significant level of reliability, manageability, and performance. They're definitely not the cheapest iSCSI solutions out there, but they're a very good fit for those infrastructures that want to leverage the lower cost of iSCSI against significant performance needs.

If your storage needs surpass what Gigabit Ethernet can deliver, but you don't want to bite the expensive Fibre Channel bullet, check out the PS6010XV. With two 10G Ethernet interfaces, fully redundant controllers, blazing performance, and low latency, it offers performance on par with that of some Fibre Channel arrays but with a lower cost and simpler implementation.

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