July 13, 2024

VNXe – Phenomenal cosmic powers! Itty bitty living space.

When I first saw the VNXe 3100, I was really blown away.

The line from Disney’s Aladdin seemed appropriate.

Phenomenal Cosmic Powers
From both hardware and software perspectives, the VNXe products are packed with goodness.


  • Intel Westmere
  • Maximum drives 48/96 (1 SP/2 SP)
  • 2 or 4 SAS ports
  • 2 or 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • Storage processors 1 or 2
  • System memory 4GB per Storage processor
  • Initially will have 3.5 drives, supporting 2.5″ (25 drive disk enclosures) in the future
  • Active-active when configured with 2 SPs.
  • Vault to flash drive
  • No single point of failure design
  • Everything can be serviced by the customer.


  • Uses an EMC innovation (C4LX & CSX) to virtualize/encapsulate whole kernels & services (See Steve Todd’s post for more info/insight here.)
  • Enhanced Unisphere interface with wizards to make provisioning storage easier with logic coming from VMware/Microsoft best practices in conjunction with EMC best practices (EASY!)
  • Shares features/functions with the larger VNX family
  • EMC Replication Manager can be leveraged for application-integrated local & remote replicas
  • Built-in support for CIFS, NFS & iSCSI

Great hardware and software make the VNXe a killer entry level storage solution.

Itty Bitty Living Space
Now on to the size.

The VNXe line comes as 2 models. The VNXe 3100 and 3300. The 3100 takes up 2U (before expansion) and the 3300 takes up 3U (before expansion). That’s small. Just take a look at them:

The VNXe 3100 (front)
The VNXe 3100 (back)
The VNXe 3300 (front)
The VNXe 3300 (back)

Is it a good deal?
Now take all of that into account… Feature and performance rich hardware and software, coupled with a very small package, and you’ve got a winning combination. Well that is if the price point is decent.

I’m not a sales guy, and I’m not really associated on the monetary end of any equipment, but from what was talked about today, prices start under $10,000 US. That’s a pretty good deal. I’ve worked with arrays from a wide variety of vendors (in my previous life when I didn’t work for EMC), and to get an array with the capabilities of the VNXe line, they were quite a bit more than the VNXe base price.

Where can more information be found on the VNXe products?
Check out these links:

I am employed by EMC as a Sr. vSpecialist, and I really like this new product line. My complete disclaimer can be found in the right hand column.

20 thoughts on “VNXe – Phenomenal cosmic powers! Itty bitty living space.

  1. Craig :
    I think dell equallogic will face serious challenge from EMC now

    Only if you have no clue about EQL or EMC – “starting under $10k” means $9,900 and it does not come with any practical license or storage space. When you add up all the things you get with any EQL box you will end up much higher, it’s almost literally guaranteed by EMC.

    1. From what I understand, the $10K starting price does have a decent amount of functionality. I’m sure more of that information will be made available soon.

      Also, using the VNXe products will provide the ability to very easily upgrade to larger VNX arrays in the future/long term.

  2. Just FYI, we will acquire a vnxe3100 with 12×600 SAS and based software package (now include thin prov., file dedup, nas and san, iscsi, no replication), and it is more likely around 40k for this kind of configuration, incl 3y premium maintenance. I am very surprised reading this kind of stuff on EMC website, I will ask our account manager.

    1. Depending on the configuration, I’m sure there is going to be some differences between the “under $10k” configuration, and what you configure.

      Touch base with your account manager to find the best configuration/price point for your environment.

  3. ok, since we acquire a bundle including some other stuff, I have to correct and say we are around 25k I guess for the storage part. But dual blade, dual SP, also. Premium 3y maintenance.

    Remove an sp and a blade, take the new basic/nosla maintenance, 5 smaller disks, maybe a simpler software, and you get your functional 10k vnxe.

    1. Configurations definitely will affect the bottom line. Being on the technical side, I couldn’t elaborate on pricing.

      With an enhanced Unisphere interface and wizards to accomplish tasks, this is a very easy product to use.

      All the parts are user replaceable. Everything. Makes it really nice when replacing or upgrading components.

      Being flexible, user serviceable, and easily managed, this box stands out.

  4. Hi there,

    did anyone tried the VNXe 3100 ? Can it handle 200 users using exchange, SQL server and VDI ?


    1. There are several different factors to consider when asking a question like that.

      How many drives are going to be in the configuration? The VNXe 3100 will support up to 96 drives, and the VNXe 3300 will support up to 120 drives. More spindles are always better.
      What type of storage connectivity will be used? Gigabit? 10G? Addressing these will also contribute to success.

      Depending on the configuration chosen coupled with the workload, the VNXe could be a viable solution for the requirements you are wanting to fulfill.


    1. That is correct, there is no VNXe SRA for the current version of VMware SRM.

      That does not mean that there will not be a VNXe SRA for VMware SRM in the future.

      Watch this space…

  5. Can you elaborate on the controller fail-over time? I read an article that stated a 2 minute fail-over time.

    “In my tests this process of fail-over took approximately 2 minutes, during which time a file transfer that I was doing was frozen as was all other I/O in the affected VM.”

    Source: http://jpaul.me/?p=3099

    1. I probably can’t elaborate specifically to the failover process for a VNXe, but I’ll see if I can get someone who might.

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