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InfoSight Review: How Nimble Storage Is Turning The OEM Support Model On Its Head

By | Nimble, Review, Storage | No Comments

All storage OEMs have some kind of “call home” feature. Upon a hardware or software failure, there is usually an alert sent simultaneously to the OEM and the customer. A support ticket is logged and either a part or engineer is dispatched to fulfill the SLA.

Most OEMs also collect performance statistics on weekly intervals and provide either a portal or a reporting mechanism to view historical data, see trending, etc. Customers can then correlate that data and use it as a mechanism to drive forecasting in the environment around the future needs in their IT organization.

How about an easy-to-interpret and read dashboard view vs. a raw data dump to a text file?

What if this data was available in real-time? How would that affect my organization? What if I didn’t have to rely on my internal resources to interpret that data? How about an easy-to-interpret and read dashboard view vs. a raw data dump to a text file? How much time could I return to the business? Can this really boost the productivity of my staff?

The answer is an emphatic yes.

Let me explain why all of the above is so beneficial for today’s enterprise and why it’s such a departure from what I consider the “status quo” of traditional support models found elsewhere.

Let’s face it, IT operators are expected to do more. Time is the most valuable resource. The day of the one-trick pony is drawing to a close. The trend I see with my customers is that that they are responsible for more than one platform and are also expected to complete their expanded duties in the same amount of time. This doesn’t leave a lot of time to develop deep expertise in one skill set, let alone two or three.

Nimble InfoSight: The Benefits

Nimble steps in here by providing:

  • Easy-to-read and interpret graphical dashboards that are cloud-based, using a web front end. No Java!
  • Real-time performance monitoring and reporting. A daily summary is a huge value add here as most admins are only logging in to the controllers for care and feeding tasks (i.e. provisioning storage.)
  • Predictive upgrade modeling based on real-time analytics of performance data.
  • Executive summaries, capacity planning, trending and forecasting. Did I mention that this is a web front end and not bolt-on software to the standard management interface?

The bottom line is that Nimble’s InfoSight is an all-encompassing holistic reporting and forecasting engine that is a zero-cost add on to your Nimble storage array.

Most other OEMs charge extra for software that offers the same foundational idea of “reporting” that does not equal what I’d call a Web 2.0 caliber solution. I would argue, from a business perspective, that InfoSight offers more overall value to the enterprise from the top-down than increasing the speed of xyz application.

From a business perspective, InfoSight offers more overall value to the enterprise from the top-down than increasing the speed of xyz application.

Although the application of the technology, where it fits better, or why it’s faster has its place; I find it can be a somewhat one-dimensional conversation. I believe that overall value should be abstracted through a larger lens of how the entire solution benefits your organization as a whole.

Think big. Make you workplace better, faster, stronger! InfoSight keeps you working smarter, not harder.

Photo credit: Phil Hilfiker via Flickr

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