back to article We're not on the Gartner Magic Quadrant? Just imagine our concern, says HDS

Facing up to exclusion from Gartner’s all-flash array Magic Quadrant, Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) has come out fighting. HDS ships an all-flash array (AFA) in the form of Hitachi Accelerated Flash Modules inside its VSP array, thus gaining access to all its VSP data management features. Yet this falls foul of Gartner’s AFA …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Does anyone really care? Seriously? I am in charge of recommending and purchasing in our company and any time a supplier mentions the "Gartner Magic Quadrant" I roll my eyes?".

    I am quite capable of doing my own basic research and defining my own needs and seem to be more likely to choose a supplier who doesn't mention that "magic" term over one that does.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I'll assume you're not an American then.

      In the US, you choose what to buy strictly from the MQ list, for the simple reason that nobody got sacked for buying IBM/MQ (delete as appropriate).

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'll assume you're not an American then.

        I find it hard to understand why anyone would listen to Gartner. One place I worked asked when they should use RDBMS X instead of Y. The Gartner guy said that Y couldn't do more than 100 TPS, which was a bit odd given that our production version of Y was doing 800 TPS.

        I've heard so many complaints from people who say that most of their magic quadrant advice is wrong that I wonder how they can stay in business.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'll assume you're not an American then.

        What does "American" have to do with it?

        as an American, I respectfully point out that all corners of the globe, America included, are capable of both innovation and idiocy.

        here in the colonies, there is plenty of consumption of Gartner MQ,

        There is also plenty of consumption of non-MQ,

        In fact, here in the colonies, the majority of the hyper-datacenter growth and consumption and innovation (often open source, often applied to build competing hardware solutions) is happening. and gentle reminder open source is enjoyed by everyone (american or otherwise).

        cheers Mate

    2. Grenou

      My neighbour works for Gartner, he is a first class idiot, so is his company :-(

  2. RedneckMother


    Gartner reminds me of a cart pulling a horse. I make no descisions based on their opinions.

    1. Levente Szileszky

      Re: proverb?

      Not only I never cared about it but actually never heard of anyone in my tier (decision-maker) giving a flying frog about it. It's one of those services that were created by marketing people, serves marketing people, run by marketing people - in short it exists only to give marketing people a job, it means nothing else, serves no purpose for anyone else.

  3. Dave Hilling

    I usually buy something in spite of where it is on Gartner's stuff, not because of it. Our needs and our requirements dictate our purchases.

  4. Cipher

    I can't believe so many pay so much attention to Gartner. Like the folks above me, there is no substitute for doing your homework. Not mention possible conflicts of interest that may exist with their ratings...

  5. Tom 35

    "serious long-term damage to Gartner’s reputation"

    You can cool something to below absolute zero?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just to add to what has already been said. Seriously, who gives a flying one what is on Gartner's MQ? Anyone bringing it up in serious discussion immediately goes in my 'clueless' file.

  7. Nate Amsden

    it's bullshit like this

    that made HP feel forced to make the 3PAR 7450 and the new badly named 7200 All flash versions not able to support disks(when there is nothing technically preventing them from supporting disks) to appease these sorts of people because there are a lot of folks out there that put stock in what Gartner says.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: it's bullshit like this

      I believe NetApp has done something similar, by taking a perfectly good FAS configured with all SSDs and redefined it as a distinct product in other to meet the meaningless requirements to appear in this meaningless report.

    2. vdthemyk

      Re: it's bullshit like this


      NetApp EF540

      There are others, but this concept is not a new one. The AFA market is still solidifying (pun intended) itself and the leaders in the quadrant are actually strong leaders in the industry thus far. I personally also like Solid Fire although my company doesn't sell it yet. IBM needs dedupe to compete with Pure and xTremIO. And we have already heard about the Cisco Invicta issues...

      But if you're looking for an AFA, look to Pure, EMC, or IBM. Regardless of ranking, these are the clear leaders.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Company Size

    I've worked for large companies (Global ones with tens of thousands of staff) and smaller ones (30 staff). Big companies do really care what Gartner says - particularly CTOs and CIOs who have generally lost their technical mojo and believe what these clowns have to say. Smaller companies do their own paper research (no Gartner budget) and seek advice online.

    What some people don't realise is that vendors have to pay Gartner to review their products - and companies pay to read Gartner evaluations / get access to consultants. Gartner can't lose and generally they don't care - the comment "They might be two exclusions that Gartner lives to regret." is very unlikely to come true.

  9. Simon 61

    But HDS thinks AFAs are a 'flash' in the pan...

    Interesting that HDS are getting upset about not being on the MQ, whether you hold any store by the MQ or not, when their CTO openly espouses the view that all-flash arrays will go away and that disk is king...

    If the rest of HDS agreed with Hu then they shouldn't be bothered that the SSA MQ even exists, let alone be upset about being left at home and not being allowed to join in the fun. If not, then maybe Hu needs to get with the program and see that disk IS dead and flash IS king

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    To potentially disrupt, or not disrupt...

    Potentially disruptive = initially bleeding edge = likely outage = very likely business losses = almost definite job losses

    The mainstream vendors aren't late to the game, they've just started the second half a little slow, they've always been in the game.

    Personally I think there is some value in Gartner reports, even if you need to take them with a pinch of salt, as they look from multiple perspectives I wouldn't necessarily think of.

    However, as many have commented, look at your own requirements, the impact of known versus new (because TCO is just as much about management as anything else), whether that extra special feature that no one else has is really going to make a significant (and positive) difference, and so on.

    One last thought from me, the only reason to have a separate AFA MQ and including any of the mainstream vendors who have constructed an AFA version that I can see is to say who's got the FASTEST device. The very old and frankly irrelevant "who's fastest?" debate.

    Yawn. My speed requirement is "Fast enough to meet my business needs at the right TCO" I'll say that again, "Business Needs and TCO", same as it was pre-flash / SSD, same as it will be with the next big disruptive thing.

  11. TechYogJosh

    Gartner MQ?

    I wonder why people take pride in not following Gartner's MQ? May be its an ego push that something which a lot of people (ye may be outside your "decision circle") value, you don't give flying frog (whatever that means). If you make decisions based on random bias and predisposition than research, good luck to you. One can always question the research method and neutrality etc., at the same time not giving them any attention is not something useful either. May be this is time for lowly-paid lowly-value and derided procurement people to feel good about their pathetic existence. See I don't follow what Gartner says. Ye, big deal.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Gartner is useless. I am a technology buyer at my firm (run the storage group), and never once in my career relied on anything these clowns have to say.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gartner's lost a lot of what remains of its shredded reputation here

    What it should have used as a definition:

    can the product run in a practical way without the use of spinning drives?

    if the answer is yes, it's an all-flash array.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Gartner's lost a lot of what remains of its shredded reputation here

      Agree, that is why they should not have included SSD arrays as all Flash arrays. If SSD is Flash, then almost literally every array can be 'all Flash'. It is crazy to say that HP has a general pupose array that can be configured as all SSD, but HDS supports more than one configuration... so they are not all Flash... but if they changed their purchasing model, with zero technical changes, then they have an all Flash array. They should have only considered memory connected Flash, NAND... which basically means IBM FlashSystem and sometimes Violin.

      This is like cloud. It is defined so loosely that everyone and everything is cloud.

  14. PaulPMeehan


    Disclaimer: I work for HDS in the VMware solutions space. However this is my own personal opinion.

    It is great to see so many people who do their homework and pay limited attention to these reports. In certain instances (Email archiving) I have found their report to be a reasonably accurate representation of the marketplace.

    One thing I do think is a pity is that HDS is not the most aggressive in terms of marketing. In fact we're probably the opposite. But in the case of Flash we have come up with a very different, unique approach which is to embed each Flash module FMD with it's own CPU, and also make them up to 3.2TB in size, so you don't need to worry about dedupe/metadata. The reason: so they perform as you scale. And they are not SSD - they are proper flash modules that offer very low latency. It's an engineered approach to ensure we don't see write cliffs or reach scalability limits. Some prefer to acquire technology/companies and be done with it. The point for me is that having considered this problem in detail, and having engineered an original solution, being excluded from these pigeon holes of being an AFA / hybrid can prevent some people who don't do their homework from seeing that in this case, we have made sure not to just stuff SSDs into an array which won't perform and can't scale.

    Also it is possible to achieve extremely low latency for very large workloads with 2-3% capacity of a pool being provided by these FMDs so it's a good all round solution. But maybe some will never know ?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    SSD is not next gen Flash

    SSD is not the same as next gen, NAND based Flash. SSD has all of the drive form factor latency as HDD... it is a modern media forced into a legacy form factor. Gartner should have only included NAND Flash directly connected to the bus as an all-Flash array. The problem would have been that basically only IBM uses real memory style Flash. Everyone else uses the same SSDs that have been around for years. They can't have a magic quad with only IBM on it though, EMC would have lost it on them.... although IBM is the all Flash market share leader. It does make it a non-category though, because if SSD equals all Flash then everyone has an all Flash array and has for years.

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