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While reading this review you may think for a moment that my perspective is negative, but it is not. We bought into TrueNAS at it's very earliest inception. I was looking for a high performing solution for our virtual environment on a shoestring budget. I am also a proponent of companies that are built upon open source products. So the TrueNAS storage system was a good fit. Their original product was built on top of Supermicro hardware. I've bought nothing but Supermicro for over 10 years so this also seemed a good fit. But, the truth is we ran into issues only a few months in after receiving and installing our TrueNAS. We had various hardware issues that spanned over several years. It was a struggle and in all honesty there were times I thought it was time to move on to other products. Introducing iXsystems support team. This is why I stuck it out with their product. Their support team was always available and never gave up on working through the problems. I'm not going to go into granular detail about each of the various issues we had over the years and how their support handled each one, but there wasn't anything they wouldn't do or try to assist us in getting through the problems we were having, at their expense. I've worked with Tier one product lines that had frustratingly outsourced support or would rather hold the customer accountable than themselves. This was not my experience with iXsystems. This is why I am still using the TrueNAS product today. We are now on their new hardware HA platform and it has been solid in both stability and performance. Regardless of the newfound stability in their new product line, I sleep well at night knowing that the iXsystems outstanding support team is a phone call away.
@ Cardiff University
If you listen to podcasts such as BSD Now (and if not, why not??), have hung around conferences or chatted with anyone that's been around open source for a while and iX are mentioned, you'll have heard tell of the magnitude of things they do for the community and the care they put into every aspect of their business..phrases such as 'white glove treatment', 'pre-sales engineers that are truly knowledgeable', 'experts in hardware and software' and 'attention to detail' will be heard, but its not until you actually go through the process with iX that you realise how, regardless of intent, you've likely subconsciously logged those phrases as 'standard marketing fluff' over the years and completely under appreciated their depth and value! I'm delighted to say that by working with Thomas and his colleagues I've had the opportunity to discover how things really should be done - nothing is too much trouble and there is no pressure to make snap decisions or complete within some arbitrary time frame; International shipping and taxes - no problem ;O) And the best bit (ok, this may be personal preference, but i doubt it lol) - thanks to the awesome (and i really mean that...its not a word we use on this side of the pond that often!) people in marketing - after hearing that there wasn’t really enough stickers and flashing horns to spread around..THEY SENT MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! would your vendor have thought of that?? ;O)
We were looking at storage systems for a backup project at work, and in the course of our search, we came across iXsystems. We were looking at some of the "big name" storage vendors, but immediately liked working with the iXsystems guys because they weren't the typical computer salesmen that are so typical of most vendors. We were looking at the TrueNAS units, and between the ability to test it out and get familiar with it using the FreeNAS software, as well as the unparalleled pre-sales support we received, we decided to go with the TrueNAS solution.
When we received the units, we ran into some of the typical issues that you get with any new system install, but the tech support that we received was flawless, with quick response and easy solutions to the issues we found. Just like FreeNAS, the more I use TrueNAS, the more I like it.. Coming from a background where I was using storage systems from many of the big names, the TrueNAS systems are wonderful to work with, giving you real power and flexibility on top of the fantastic ZFS filesystem. Plus, I think the blue bezels look really cool in the datacenter, although some of my coworkers wish it was basic black.
We used a variety of OEMs from large (Dell) to small shops before settling on iX 7 years ago. Right away they distinguished themselves with excellent service, deep OS knowledge, a will-do-whatever-it-takes attitude towards solving problems and also towards building things to meet our demanding, precise and sometimes unusual expectations. I am an IT Director for a company in the financial industry. My company makes quick decisions and changes of direction to meet new goals and iX has always been great about dealing with our changing requirements and dealing with large orders that need to be filled asap. We have thousands of machines and they have really been exemplary in dealing with some of the issues of scale that we've had to grapple. We've had unusual memory, motherboard, bios and other problems that originated upstream from them and they've helped advocate for us and and navigate the sometimes byzantine process of dealing with Intel, SuperMicro, and other vendors that don't like to immediately own up to manufacturing or design problems with their products. Of all the companies we do business with, iX stands out as the one we trust the most and can rely on to meet the needs of a core part of our business.
@ Probe Information Services Inc.
I was in the market for a network storage unit and was looking at those "other" NAS devices when I happened to come across iXsystems. Looking at their offerings it looked like they had just what I needed and more. When I called I talked to Kevin and he worked with me to design the best "bang for the buck" that would fit our needs and budget. What we ended up with wasn't one the very nice high end systems (enterprise) that they sell, which I would've loved to have, but I needed some compromise because of price. He was able to put together a great system that fit my budget. I was very impressed by the customer service and no pressure sales. I now have a great NAS unit with quality parts and features that those other guys don't have. I do all maintenance remote and the remote console is great. It has been online for 5 months with no issues. Rock Solid! If I do have problems, I know I can call them anytime. I will always come back to iXsystems for al l of my Storage needs from now on. Im glad I found them. I cant wait to get another one.
@ Clarksville-Montgomery County School System
I started using iXsystems, TrueNAS in October of 2013. I had always known about FreeNAS and used it personally for home use as a, iSCSI, CIFS, and FTP solution. I started working for the school system in Clarksville TN, and was tasked with finding some new storage options for both file servers, iSCSI SAN storage, and security recording storage for IP network cameras. That is when I found iXsystems TrueNas was the Enterprise version of the FreeNAS that I had been using. TrueNAS iXsystems was able to provide us with all our storage needs, with better quality hardware, more storage space, and superior performance over other vender storage options. We are currently running 35 TrueNas servers three of our servers are dedicated as iSCSI storage devices that provide iSCSI volumes for 85 virtual machines on 9 ESXI hosts. We also have 15 security camera servers, and two network storage devices for backing up are apple servers and several rsync’s from other file servers. I am very pleased with our iXsystems sales representative, and the iXsystems support team. I highly recommend iXsystems to anyone looking for a high performance storage option at the right price. Thank You iXsystems keep up the good work!
After looking tirelessly for a home NAS system that would suit my needs i finally came across iXsystems. (i was looking for a 4 bay diskless with at least 8 gigs of ECC ram) Looked into their FreeNAS Mini and it has been the only desktop NAS on the market that i have found that will support enough memory to run my ZFS Pool smoothly. Every other brand i looked at either would not support enough memory or if it did it was only rack mountable, not desktop
So i called in to inquire about the FreeNAS Mini and after talking with the rep I can honestly say that i am not even considering purchasing a pre-built server from anywhere else. i have not come across another brand with hardware comparable to iXsystems and i dont think anyone could make FreeNAS more easily and readily available than the FreeNAS Mini does.
If you are a fan of Open Source software and enjoy the scalability and ease of use FreeNAS offers then I would have to say that iXsystems is for you and they will go above and beyond your expectations as they have mine.
@ ControlCam, LLC
In our line of work we deal with well over 100 TBs of data during the course of any given year. Prior to purchasing a custom FreeNAS server from iX Systems, we were building our own ZFS-based storage, with less than stellar (read: sad) performance results. I cannot give iX Systems enough kudos regarding our recent server purchase. The hardware build quality is just fantastic and the performance blows all of our custom-built existing storage servers out of the water. The time from shipping box to in-the-rack and on-the-network was less than 30 minutes. This was easily the fastest and most pain-free installation I've ever done. FreeNAS is also working out exceedingly well for our needs. For the first time since we've started our operations we've got our workstations operating on data directly on the storage server using zvols exported over iSCSI. FreeNAS makes the complicated seem easy, and my production team couldn't be happier with the workflow change! Especially since they don't have to shuffle physical volumes around the office anymore. I used to dread deploying a new storage server. Now I can't wait to buy the next one.
@ Grubhub Seamless
I recently purchased an individual Workstation, the Apollo II, from IX Systems for Personal use. My Sales Account Manager, Thomas P., was very helpful in tailoring a solution for my needs.
While definitely not just a 'click and buy' process, I was pleasantly surprised to understand all the testing and verification done by IX's Engineering Team prior to shipping out a product. This alone would give me confidence in recommending any of their solutions to my Enterprise Work Environment, but it doesn't just stop there:
The Hardware, Components, and Build-Quality are well-sourced, and the PC-BSD Desktop Operating System is simply "Miles Beyond" anything else out there, period.
The system is remarkably well-engineered, quiet, and runs
surprisingly cool. Having seen many similar Workstations with comparable System Specifications run much hotter and noisier under much lower load, it is evident that a lot of testing goes into the pure Physics and overall makeup of an IX Systems Product.
I simply cannot recommend anyone purchase from anyone other than IX Systems, even if it means saving a few extra dollars. The Mileage, Quality, and Enterprise-Level Support truly make for a complete package.
We purchased a TrueNAS Pro-HA from iXSystems. The sales experience beforehand was great: Kevin possessed a deep knowledge of their products, and was able to configure a complete system that both met our requirements and fit our budget. We couldn't find a ZFS HA cluster elsewhere that was anywhere near our price point; a system with this level of hardware/software integration and support from Oracle or a Nexenta partner would have greatly exceeded our budget. TrueNAS appliances are preconfigured and tested before they're shipped. During the pre-configuration conference call, I had a question about the configuration of virtual network interface shared by both nodes in the HA cluster, and was impressed when one of the support people put me on hold while he asked the developer who wrote the code. Support has been responsive to our questions since receiving the system: they set up a WebEx session to assist us with configuration issues, and escalated an NFS user-interface issue we encountered to the developers.
IX Systems has been an excellent resource for my company as we've struggled with commoditizing storage.
Storage growth has exploded over the last few years. Working in a backup environment we've leveraged the best in class applications to allow for deduplication and high speed data ingest. However; as a managed service provider our cost was directly tied to storage. With the high cost of SAN infrastructure we were quickly pricing ourselves out of the market.
Kevin Le at IX Systems helped us realize the cost of unnecessary SAN features. Working with him we were able to get a true understanding of our requirements. With our backup software doing the heavy lifting; he was able to help us right size a NAS infrastructure at a fraction of expected costs.
Bottom line. IX Systems was able to keep our costs low enough to allow us to remain competitive as a managed service provider in the data backup / archive / recovery space.
As a personal rather than corporate customer of the IX Systems Mini I have never felt that I was a 2nd class citizen or that my business wasn't valued as much as any other customer. From sale to fixing an unfortunate component issue IX systems impressed at every level and stage. An intermittent and difficult to reproduce problem was not questioned and the prompt replacement part has performed flawlessly. I am one who judges most closely when things go wrong and IX excelled in all aspects. I would not hesitate to recommend IX to ANYONE looking for NAS for personal or corporate use. Their products perform as advertised and are easy to use for the novice while offering convenient access to advanced features for the NAS/ZFS expert. Their people are friendly, professional, patient, and a pleasure to work with. There is a vibrant public community actively supported by IX and an immense asset.
@ Ezekiel Motta
I recently learnt about FreeBSD, PCBSD and OpenBSD. Soon thereafter I decided to take the plunge and opt for a BSD desktop. I was advised to purchase a thinkpad given its relative hardware friendliness to BSD. As I investigated further it became evident that there were software-hardare quirks with thinkpad too. I did not want to spend money on a product that was not 100% functionally compatible. That is why i contacted iXsystems. They promptly took on the challenge and offered me a deal i could not refuse: a brilliant workstation with outstanding specs (Xeon processor, SSD etc) for a very reasonable price. Thomas Pham, an outstanding iXman, was extremely professional and helpful. Earlier, I contacted with other members of the iX team. All equally professional and dedicated to the consumer satisfaction. One word describes their service: good old American professionalism and service.
First off, we love and support open source software. When looking at storage solutions, it's no surprise FreeNAS was at the top of the list. iXsystems is the developer of the later versions of FreeNAS so when looking at storage solutions, look no further. These people know what they're doing. They offer everything from single FreeNAS appliances enterprise solutions for data warehouses along with incredible knowledge, experience and support. Any configuration you want can be done and they'll personally work with you to make sure your needs are met with the best product. I've never worked with FreeNAS before, but the web UI was really simple and easy to use. It didn't take long to get the servers integrated with our infrastructure at all. We have had zero problems with stability and would definitely buy again.
After 20 years in Enterprise Operations, you learn to marvel ZFS's simplicity and reliability!!! even some of the big boys like NetApp (WAFL) simulated some of ZFS's functionality. i give iX great credit for adopting FreeNAS and continuing its development path. FreeNAS/TrueNAS is a hidden trove that most companies do not know about yet, but soon enough it will give all other over-priced storage vendors a run for their money! further more for all the devOPS out-there, you cant ask for anything more beautiful than unix/linux based storage systems that can integrate seamlessly with whatever type of configuration management systems you may already have rather than writing a bunch of API's to talk to propitiatory storage systems! lastly i would like to thank "Kevin Le" for his dedication & professionalism in working with us!
I've bought a bunch of gear from iX. Everything for a little 1U short-depth machine for my home router, to edge servers for our CDN and even 4U 120 TB storage servers for our video libraries. With their configuration worksheet, I can easily specify all of the configuration I need, down to the BIOS settings. This means I can configure the server and have it shipped directly to the data center, instead of having to configure it my self or pay for remote hands. When we bought the server with 30 harddrives, we expected to spend an hour putting in 120 tiny screws to mount the drives into the caddies. When we opened the box and it was already done, we swore to never buy from anyone else ever again.
We love iX for the following reasons:
- They build systems to spec, and we sometimes do have somewhat special requests.
- They're very up-front with what they can and cannot do, and what they're willing and not willing to do. (I.e. they voiced concern when we requested a rather convoluted and risky field-upgrade)
- They know the SuperMicro line of hardware very well, and will offer good suggestions for improvement upon our initial requests
- When given rather vague descriptions of what we want, they will come back with good concrete suggestions on what to get
- We have no complaints about support, and it does seem that while others offer "better support options on paper", iX delivers
- iX is always quick to get back to us
@ Karuk Tribe
iXsystems has great products and great solutions that won't break the bank. Their TrueNAS stuff is unbelievable and if you are on a budget may I recommend the FreeNAS offerings. If you try the FreeNAS offerings it is best to take the 4 or 5 classes and take great notes or use some sort of video capture and record your class as there are a million ever changing parameters in the 50 different ways you can setup a FreeNAS box. My FreeNAS box is an iSCSI share using RAID10 for 20 large HDDs and for cache we deployed 960GB fast SSD. If you have questions just call Kevin at iXsystems and he will answer your inquiry or send you to someone who can better answer your questions.
My experience with ixSystems has been nothing short of stellar. I hate giving 5 starts but honestly
couldn't find anything to fault these guys on. I spent months researching a NAS/SAN solution. I finally purchased a FREENAS ISCSI SAN running on ixSystem hardware. It has all the features and flexibility that I required. I have a corporate level central storage system with all the horsepower I need for a much lower cost than the other vendors. I'm running a full Windows 2012 domain in a VMware virtual environment and haven't even come close to hitting the performance boundaries yet.
The sales team was knowledgeable and helpful, the support team has been super, the solution is awesome, the price is great. What else can I say?
@ BlueCloud Consultants
BlueCloud Consultants has been working with Kevin Le and iXsystems for several years and multiple implementations. They simply continue to raise the bar. Their support throughout the process is unparalleled. The quoting process is effortless and fast. Their communication throughout build and delivery is stellar. They truly understand the needs of their clients and go above and beyond to serve those needs throughout the process. iXsystems’ support for open source projects makes them an ideal fit for our business model. System performance is unmatched, period! iXsystems is not only a vendor, but a true partner, and a key and valued part of our portfolio. The only reason they get five stars across the board, is because we can’t give them six!