Infinidat Blog

Infinidat’s InfiniBox - What’s the Big Deal? A Better Business Model! - Part 2

Infinidat’s InfiniBox - What’s the Big Deal? A better product! - Part 1

As mentioned in Part 1, I’ve come to learn that there are three things that differentiate Infinidat’s InfinBox from all the alternative Enterprise Storage offerings in the market while providing greater customer value:

1.) A better product
2.) A better business model
3.) A better vision for the future

In this blog, we’ll examine some of Infinidat’s business practices, how they are different, and how they can help you.

2) Infinidat Has a Better Business Model

Beginning in the mid-1990s, most storage vendors started to introduce a flurry of new storage-related software features. Unfortunately for users, what accompanied all these new features was typically additional software license costs and the complexity of managing each of these independent features and their respective licenses. Realizing that most users hated having to deal with this extra cost and complexity, to give credit where it is due, IBM XIV pioneered the business concept of including all the software features as standard and included with a storage system. Some other newer storage vendors have since followed this more customer-friendly model too, but incredibly, most of the traditional legacy storage vendors still cling to their old complex business models.

Infinidat provides ALL software features as standard and included. As an existing InfiniBox customer, as new features are introduced, you get them at no additional cost through an online non-disruptive code update.

These features currently include:

  • Neural Cache - our patented AI/ML intelligent caching software
  • InfiniSnap - virtually infinite time-stamp based snapshots that don’t impact performance and can be read/write or immutable
  • Asynchronous Replication - to a remote InfiniBox with an RPO as low as 4 seconds
  • Synchronous Replication - to another InfiniBox with 0 RPO, low RTO, and potentially less than 1mSec of added latency for roundtrip I/O
  • Active-Active Replication - for two-site business continuance with 0 RPO at 0 RTO
  • InfiniRAID - our 14+2 data RAID that is independent of the hardware devices
  • Non-Disruptive Migration from existing InfiniBox systems to new InfiniBox systems
  • Encryption - using self-encrypting drives, integrated key management plus integrations with selected external key managers, with no performance penalty
  • Data Reduction - LZ4 data compression algorithm that runs inline with no performance impact
  • InfiniVerse - a secure, cloud-based SaaS platform for monitoring, reporting, and predictive analytics
  • InfiniMetrics - running on VMware, a robust performance and capacity management tool
  • Native FC, iSCSI, NFS, and SMB support, or native Mainframe FICON support
  • Host PowerTools - server integration running native on the host or on VMware
  • Integrations for Kubernetes, OpenStack, and plug-ins for other key ecosystems and partner software stacks

Plus, you are assigned a Technical Advisor that is there for you 7 x 24 to assist in any and all support aspects relating to InfiniBox.

Infinidat can offer you Capacity On Demand (COD) to keep your costs low and your productivity high. This is how it works:

  • You take delivery of an InfiniBox pre-configured at full capacity (up to 4.1PB  protected or usable currently)
  • You only pay for the storage capacity that you initially need
  • When you need more capacity, you simply access more and pay for what you use 
  • No calls to support for another license
  • No long waits for new hardware
  • No scheduling headaches. 
  • You can purchase a minimum initial capacity, and then purchase additional storage as needed in increments of 10TB

Our Capacity On Demand program was just a starting point. To give Pure Storage some well-deserved credit, a few years ago they were the first in the industry to introduce a new business model for technology procurement that appeals to many customers with their Evergreen™ program. Last year, they expanded their program with Evergreen Storage Services (ES2).

A mutual competitor - Dell EMC - seems to take issue with Pure’s Evergreen model, despite not appearing to have a similar technology-enabled OpEx program for customers themselves. We respectfully disagree with Dell EMC’s assertion that Pure’s Evergreen is “A Marketing Solution to Engineering Problems” because it helps Pure customers avoid architectural obsolescence which in turn can help organizations delay or avoid issuing RFPs. It seems particularly ironic that Dell EMC is accusing Pure of Marketing vs. Engineering, based upon any scrutiny of the details of Dell’s Future-Proof Loyalty Program. Like Pure, Infinidat understands that a good business model is enabled by the product architecture, and not the other way around.

Anyone can learn from a good business model, but sometimes it can also be improved. While you will be the judge, we think that we’ve improved upon what Pure started, with our InfiniBox FLX Program.

Here are some of the main features of the InfiniBox FLX program:

  • It’s an all-inclusive subscription model based on OpEx, not CapEx
    Infinidat conducts a rigorous analysis of your current and future capacity and performance requirements in order to configure your InfiniBox FLX solution. All hardware, software licenses, warranties, monitoring, and support are covered in an all-inclusive subscription agreement.
     
  • A complete technology refresh available every three years
    Completely refresh your entire InfiniBox FLX System non-disruptively with the latest hardware and software every three years without downtime, migration risk, or additional cost. Not just the controllers, but everything, including the media. We’re effectively providing all-new hardware included as part of the subscription, every three years, forever. And the new system can be expected to be higher-performance than the previous system, not merely a “comparable” performance model. We believe that this is a unique advantage with great value.
     
  • Pay-as-you-go scalability
    InfiniBox FLX enables you to pay as you go for just what you actually need, up and down, with monthly charges based on the average of daily provisioned capacity. If you are anticipating significant growth or variability in data consumption, InfiniBox FLX offers the flexibility and agility to only pay for the capacity you use, as you need it.
     
  • Risk mitigation and cost avoidance
    Non-disruptive data migration between InfiniBox FLX systems, today and in the future, enables you to minimize or eliminate the risk associated with storage upgrades, reconfigurations, and migrations while providing continuous operation.
     
  • 100% Data Availability Guarantee
    Infinidat is able to provide a 100% data availability guarantee. Any data unavailability that impacts your business is remedied with a credit towards the next monthly invoice for the entire affected system.

InfiniBox FLX is sort of like having the benefits of a public cloud except:

  • Without the latency and variable costs
  • With more control and smaller security exposures
  • With higher performance and availability
  • With greater flexibility

With Capacity On Demand we make it as easy as possible for you to never pay for more than what you need, and to get what you need when you need it. With InfiniBox FLX, we manage the storage, so that you can manage the data. Your entry costs will be lower than with conventional CapEx models, your TCO will be lower compared to all competitors, and your operations will be simpler and easier to manage. And all software functionality is always included, without the cost and complexity of separate licenses.

Up next in Part 3 we’ll take a look at Infinidat’s vision for the future, how we’ve built the foundation for it that you can deploy today, and how it will uniquely help you.

For more information, please visit our main web page, or contact us directly, or contact your Infinidat business partner. 

To see what Infinidat’s customers have to say about their experience, and to compare Infinidat with your current storage vendor, please check out Gartner Peer Insights.

About Ken Steinhardt

Ken Steinhardt serves as Field CTO at Infinidat. He has held many different roles in the IT industry over the last 45 years, having started as a mainframe applications programmer and systems analyst, part-time when he was still in high school. After receiving his BS degree in Computer Science from WPI, Ken was at Digital Equipment Corporation for 16 years, EMC Corporation for 20 years, and most recently joining Infinidat from Pure Storage. His longest-tenured role was as EMC's Vice President of Enterprise Storage & CTO for Global Product Sales.