Quality Awards V: Compellent regains top midrange arrays spot


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The fifth edition of our service and reliability survey for midrange arrays shows that users of midrange storage systems are pretty darned satisfied with their purchases.

Midrange storage array vendors seem to be doing a lot of things right. On our latest Quality Awards survey of midrange arrays, all of the finalists scored so well that it's hard to find fault with any of their product lines. This is the fifth time we've canvassed users about the service and reliability of their midrange storage arrays, and these users showed the highest level of satisfaction with this product class to date. With a record overall score of 7.12 for midrange systems, Compellent Technologies Inc. has regained the crown that Dell Inc. snagged in our previous survey.

Compellent's win was earned with a consistent performance, garnering the top scores in all five of our rating categories -- sales-force competence, initial product quality, product features, product reliability and technical support. In winning all of the categories, the company's Storage Center products picked up ratings greater than 7.00 in four of them; the ratings range from 1.00 to 8.00.

Midrange might

But even with such an excellent showing, Compellent must still share at least of little of the Quality Awards spotlight. While not seriously challenging Compellent's overall score of 7.12, all eight finalists finished with overall scores higher than 6.00 -- the first time that

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has happened for midrange arrays and a rarity for any Quality Awards survey.

About the survey

The Storage magazine/SearchStorage.com Quality Awards are designed to identify and recognize products that have proven their quality and reliability in actual use. Results are derived from a survey of qualified readers who assess products in five main categories: sales-force competence, initial product quality, product features, product reliability and technical support. Our methodology incorporates statistically valid polling that eliminates market share as a factor. Indeed, our objective is to identify the most reliable products on the market regardless of vendor name, reputation or size. Products are rated on a scale of 1.00 to 8.00, where 8.00 is the best score. A total of 315 respondents provided 497 midrange storage array evaluations.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co. rode its EVA and P4000 lines to a strong second-place finish, scoring an overall 6.73, with Hitachi Data Systems just a shade behind at 6.67. But a strong 1-2-3 finish isn't the end of the story, as the rest of the group was bunched closely behind the leaders with ratings ranging from NetApp's 6.59 to Oracle Corp.'s (Sun) 6.38. Five of the eight vendors had scores higher than the winning overall score in our last survey.

Products in the survey

The following vendors and midrange array model lines were included in the Quality Awards survey. The number of responses for the finalists are included in parentheses after the product names.

  • 3PAR InServ E200 or F200/F400*
  • Atrato Inc. Velocity 1000 (V1000)*
  • BlueArc Corp. Titan 2000/3000 Series, Mercury*
  • Compellent Technologies Inc. Storage Center (14)
  • DataDirect Networks Inc. S2A Series*
  • Dell Inc. CX Series or Dell EqualLogic PS Series (47)
  • EMC Corp. Clariion CX Series (110)
  • Fujitsu Eternus DX400 Series*
  • Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co. StorageWorks EVA Series and P4000 Series (76)
  • Hitachi Data Systems Universal Storage Platform (USP) VM or AMS Series (35)
  • IBM DS4000/DS5000/DS6000 (74)
  • NetApp FAS200/FAS900/FAS2000 (69)
  • NEC Corp. D3/D4/D8 Series*
  • Oracle Corp. Sun 6000/7000 Series (35)
  • Pillar Data Systems Axiom 300/500/600*
  • SGI InfiniteStorage 4000/5000/6000 Series*
  • Xiotech Corp. Magnitude 3D or Emprise*

* Received too few responses to be included among finalists.

This was first published in September 2010

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