Dell Storage Forum 2011 – Storage and Social Media

I spent the a couple of days hanging out with Greg Knieriemen, Christina Weil and Gina Rosenthal at Dell Storage Forum 2011 last week.  The main driver was meeting people and doing Infosmack Live.

It was a lot of fun meeting many new faces and talking to Dell product and executive teams.  There were a number of things I was impressed with.  The first is that Dell is doing very well at is fostering a community.  The conference was small and Gina along with her team did awesome at pulling things together.  There was a lot of accessibility and comparatively more so than I had experienced with other vendors.

I got to do the Silicon Angle TV thing again and it was a blast.  John McArthur and Cali Lewis interviewed me about Cloud in general.  I spent a bit of time talking about Joyent and the things I’m seeing in both public and private cloud.  You can see the spot here.

Dell is doing well is not letting innovation with their acquisitions die.  That was evident in their FS7500 NAS release which integrates Exanet with their Equalogic arrays.  True to form, it’s easy to use just as Equalogic has been in the past.  I’m sure Dell will integrate this with their Compellent storage as well.  This will suit the markets Dell serves very well.  The other big theme was fluid data which continues the theme that data should be able to federate between storage platforms.  It will be interesting to see how this comes to market.

There are still some challenges in front of Dell though like selling all of their storage lines in a single sales motion instead of being fragmented.  They also need to ensure that Dell partners don’t cut out Compellent partners from their relationships with customers.

I spent 15 or so minutes talking to Michael Dell while we were at the Infosmack Live event.  The things that I tried to impress is that they need to keep innovating.  I also mentioned that they should offer a full stack play similar to Vblock, Flexpod or HP Matrix.  I know they’ve known about this for a long time but there still isn’t a Dell answer and there should be.

Overall it was great to be a part of the event and I felt like Dell wasn’t languishing even if you look at IDC numbers.  Now it’s up to them to execute.  Hats off to all the Dell people who pulled off a nice intimate conference!  It was wonderful to meet everyone.


  1. Pingback: Dell Storage Forum – the big fat review post | Storage according to a dixie chick
  2. Matt Vogt

    Was great to meet you, Ed.

    Dig the points about community. I think the purchase of EqualLogic and Compellent really upped that as they each have two very enthusiastic customer bases and are doing an excellent job in getting them all to talk about it and with each other.

  3. edsai

    Matt, likewise. It was great to meet you and looking forward to our Conference Breakfast Club w/ Gina, Christina, Kelly and Greg. I agree with getting the two customer bases together. If anything is true, it’s that Dell did well in uniting the groups and creating an intimate atmosphere for things to mesh.

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