Over the weekend my family and I went shopping at Costco. We go there to get a good bargain (though there have been times that I've spent so much money to save money that I thought I was going to go broke).
Now let me talk to you about a bargain in IBM storage. In the picture above you can see a person that I've worked with a long time, Mike Smithyman. Mike used to bring customers to the briefing center where I work on multiple occasions. His current role is working for NetApp, dedicated to the IBM relationship, specifically in the area of DS3500 and DS5000. I had the good fortune to see Mike in action at Edge2012 in the solutions area showing off the remarkable DCS3700 device, which IBM resells from NetApp. You can see from this IBM site that it is positioned as a midrange disk system, along with the Storwize V7000 and DS5000 families. The really cool thing about this product is the extreme density - 60 SAS drives in just 4U of rack space.
Aside from the savings in floor space, there's another, more subtle, benefit. If you need some bulk storage to virtualize behind a Storwize V7000, this would be a great choice. Why? Because of the licensing structure of the V7000. Virtualization is charged by drawer. Most drawers hold anywhere between 16 (EXP5000) and 24 (DS3500) drives. Suppose I need somewhere around 60-70 drives worth of data, and I want it virtualized behind a V7000. I could use 4 drawers of EXP5000 behind a DS5100 (64 drives total), or 3 drawers of DS3500 (technically the EXP2524, 72 drives total) - or one drawer of DCS3700. I'd suggest paying for one virtualization license rather than 3 or 4 would be a net savings. In other words, you'd be getting a bargain. Now shopping at IBM may not be as much fun as shopping at Costco, but the savings add up just the same!