Upstart tops NAS vendors


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In previous surveys, we've found technical support from third-party vendors to be as good as or better than the manufacturer's support. In this NAS survey, that wasn't the case. Both BlueArc (6.25) and NetApp (6.44) had their lowest scores in the section for the statement "Vendor's third-party partners are knowledgeable."

Even when scores were relatively lower, users can take comfort in the apparent fact that it's hard to go too far wrong with any of these products or suppliers. The market perception that NAS is easy to implement and manage was validated in our 2007 survey.

Products included in the survey

The following products were included in the Diogenes Labs-Storage magazine Quality Award II for NAS survey.

BlueArc Corp. Titan SiliconServer, EMC Corp. Celerra, Exanet Inc. ExaStore EX200FC/EX400FC/EX600FC*, Fujitsu Eternus NR1000 F500*, Hewlett-Packard (HP) Co. StorageWorks Enterprise File Services (EFS), Hitachi Data Systems Corp. Lightning/NAS Blade for TagmaStore USP and Network Controller* , Network Appliance (NetApp) Inc. FAS900/FAS3000, Panasas Inc. ActiveScale Storage Cluster*, Silicon Graphics Inc. (SGI) InfiniteStorage NAS 2000/3000*, Sun Microsystems Inc. StorEdge 5310 NAS appliance/StorageTek 5320

Dell Inc. PowerVault

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7xxN storage server, EMC NS Series, Exanet ExaStore EX200S/EX400S/EX600S*, Fujitsu Eternus NR1000 F200/F300*, HP ProLiant DL series server, IBM Corp. System Storage N5000 series*, Isilon Systems Inc. Isilon IQ*, NetApp FAS200, SGI InfiniteStorage NAS 330*, Sun StorEdge 5210 NAS appliance*

*Didn't receive a sufficient number of responses to be included in the survey results.

About the survey
The Diogenes Labs-Storage magazine Quality Award II for NAS is the fifth installment in our annual series of survey-based service and reliability awards. The Quality Awards identify products that have proven their quality and reliability in actual use. The results are derived from a survey of qualified Storage readers, assessing products in five categories: sales-force competence, product features, initial product quality, product reliability and technical support. Products were rated on a 1.0-8.0 scale, where 8.0 is the most favorable possible score.

In total, the survey generated 396 valid responses (compared to 387 in 2006 ). Users rated 846 systems this year, substantially more than the 523 systems evaluated a year ago. The survey has a 5% margin of error with a 95% confidence factor. Forty-five percent of respondents evaluated two or more systems. The most frequently evaluated systems were Network Appliance (NetApp) FAS900/3000 (141), EMC Corp. Celerra (131), EMC NS Series (124) and NetApp FAS200 (74).

The demographics of our respondents were fairly balanced, but leaned somewhat toward smaller organizations. The largest group of respondents was from organizations with less than $50 million in revenue, but the second largest group had more than $10 billion in revenue. IT services was the most represented industry, followed by financial services, manufacturing and government. Thirty-six percent of those surveyed were storage managers or storage administrators, while 8% were CIOs or CTOs.

This was first published in June 2007

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