StarWind HCA

StarWind HCA

Customer Verified
Top Rated
Score 9.7 out of 10
Top Rated
StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA)

Overview

What is StarWind HCA?

The StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) is a hyper-converged infrastructure solution designed to reduce application downtime on a reasonable budget.
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Recent Reviews

CEO

10 out of 10
June 09, 2022
StarWind Virtual SAN is an amazing product. It replaced HP Lefthand for us. This has saved us thousands of dollars in maintenance costs vs …
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How StarWind HCA Differs From Its Competitors

Services

We went with Starwind's option to use refurbished Dell servers for our StarWind HyperConverged Appliance cluster to save on money, and used our existing VMware licenses. Starwind prepared our StarWind HyperConverged Appliance's with VMware, and configured them to be a high availability cluster for …
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Services

I had to flexibility to choose and customize my hardware build-out, and StarWind took care of all the rest from dealing with the hardware vendors, installing software, and configuration tasks. I pretty much just had to physically mount the servers and make the network connections. StarWind then …
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Services

The appliances came all setup. StarWind software was all setup and VMware was installed and configured. The support engineer logged in and finished the setup. They then migrated our VM's off of our old environment into our new one with a simple vMotion.
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Services

Their support remotely configured our environment. It worked out of the box.
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Services

In prior servers, we used VMware. We were confident in how to use VMware but Starwind uses HyperV. We were dubious to move to HyperV but they walked us through the process and helped us install and setup all the servers with ease and configured the VSAN software without a hitch.
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Services

We took advantage of it, and it was the best choice.
A. They know what we have and are able to support 100%
B. Very quick deployment time we are talking less than a few days
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Services

Unfortunately, StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) is a bit rigid here because we couldn't order our requested components but we were offered substantially better hardware for a bit more budget that offered twice the performance and memory. We decided to go for it because the price was still …
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Services

The team is great at specing, testing, and shipping out everything all in one flow. They provide a white glove setup from start to finish. No company does it better. As soon as you receive your hosts, they contact you for setup. Not the other way around. There is no set it and forget it with the …
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Services

We purchaed Dell rackmount servers through Starwind. Everything came pre-setup and configured with the HCA software. I wouldn't do it any other way. A single conversation, one credit card payment later, and boom! Servers came ready to go. There is something to be said about freeing up "Pre-setup" …
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Services

We worked with StarWind to help design our environment. The host machines came preconfigured with all hardware installed. It required a short hour-long phone call with support to fully implement the solution in our environment. It took all of the guesswork out of the process. I would definitely …
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Services

Other than the StarWind "appliance" there was no additional software. We did have the servers preconfigured with IP addresses, machine names, storage names. It was practically plug and play (I hate that term but here it fits). On top of that the support group walked me through setting up the …
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Services

We moved to StarWind as part of an entire solution. We opted for Supermicro hardware and everything arrived pre installed with our hypervisor of choice. In depth guides came with the kit to tell us what to put where and when it was online, StarWind arranged a call to connect up and complete the …
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Services

We purchased StarWind as a bundle initially and everything was included. We've only had to renew our support plan and they been able to work with us.
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Services

Have not used any custom hardware or service. So, can't speak to this.
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Services

When we initially signed up with StarWind and was going through the configuration with my sales rep at StarWind. He and his engineer stepped me through the process of what we needed for our environment and then asked what additional hardware/software we needed. All this was an easy, low stress …
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Services

Their services are unmatched. They walked us through every step of the process from the sales pitch up to implementation - and beyond. Well beyond.
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Services

We only needed to install the hardware ourselves and then we simply provided them remote access to the machine and they were able to configure everything for us. It was very quick and easy to setup and support was able to provide us details on how the system works. Knowing how painless the setup …
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Services

These services made deployment a breeze. After racking the severs/clusters in two different deployments, we were up and running in less than two hours.
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Services

We received on-boarding assistance that was very well done. We had to rack the appliances ourselves & join them to our domain, but once that was done they were able to connect and configure the storage, CSV, and Failover Cluster. They made it available to receive Hyper-V migrations, so live …
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Services

The implementation process was ridiculously easy. Prior to recommending hardware, StarWind HyperConverged Appliance ran some tests against our previous system to get a benchmark of several performance metrics. We explained our future needs and we selected ah HCA appliance that was appropriate for …
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Services

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) with services such as custom hardware and software bundling, installation, and integration makes implementation incredibly simple. Everything is handled by StarWind and deployment is easy. Their incredibly support team is always available to provide any help …
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Services

We requested to use copper / rj45 cat6 cabling for our network cards, instead of fibre. This was costed out in the solution. Unfortunately the servers shipped with fibre network cards which was not what we wanted. However! StarWind quickly rectified this and sent out cat6 rj45 compatible network …
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Services

We ordered the new Dell hosts through StarWind, and they preconfigured everything, then shipped them to us. Implementation was as simple as racking them, connecting the cables as directed, and turning everything on. Once this was done, I added the new hosts to my existing vCenter …
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Awards

Products that are considered exceptional by their customers based on a variety of criteria win TrustRadius awards. Learn more about the types of TrustRadius awards to make the best purchase decision. More about TrustRadius Awards

Reviewer Pros & Cons

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Video Reviews

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Pricing

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What is StarWind HCA?

The StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) is a hyper-converged infrastructure solution designed to reduce application downtime on a reasonable budget.

Entry-level set up fee?

  • No setup fee
For the latest information on pricing, visithttps://www.starwindsoftware.com/starwi…

Offerings

  • Free Trial
  • Free/Freemium Version
  • Premium Consulting / Integration Services

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Alternatives Pricing

What is Azure Stack HCI?

Microsoft offers hyperconverged infrastructure solutions via Azure Stack HCI. Azure Stack HCI provides a variety of preferred hardware solutions for building a hybrid cloud infrastructure, allowing the user to run virtual machines on hyperconverged systems and use Windows Admin Center to connect to…

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Product Demos

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA)
01:06
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Product Details

What is StarWind HCA?

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) is a turnkey hyper-converged platform that merges compute, storage, network, and software into a nuclear 2-node footprint. The solution is designed to simplify HCI management for Enterprise ROBO, SMB & Edge, while offering flexible scalability and powerful performance.

Users can start with two nodes, based on HeartBeat, that can be switchless and function without additional equipment. StarWind HCA is a software-centric architecture that removes the need for proprietary components. StarWind Engineers perform the configuration, testing, migration, and integration for users, free of charge.

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance:

  • allows using 100% of underlying storage performance
  • has no hardware compatibility lists (HCLs)
  • does 2- or 3-way replication + local RAID 5/6/10
  • does VAAI and ODX data offloading
  • includes load balancing and data locality
  • does VM-centric hypervisor-level snapshots, and more.

To minimize CapEx and OpEx further, StarWind ProActive Premium Support (included in every license) substitutes an IT squad for the sake of cluster health assurance. ProActive Support monitors user environments 24/7/365, and uses machine learning to detect abnormal behavior so issues are prevented before they can become a problem.

The vendor presents StarWind HCA as a hyper-converged world enclosed in a tiny “building block” that comes at a reasonable price.

StarWind HCA Video

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA)

StarWind HCA Downloadables

StarWind HCA Competitors

StarWind HCA Technical Details

Deployment TypesOn-premise
Operating SystemsWindows, Linux
Mobile ApplicationNo

Frequently Asked Questions

The StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) is a hyper-converged infrastructure solution designed to reduce application downtime on a reasonable budget.

Scale Computing Platform, Nutanix Cloud Infrastructure, and NetApp HCI are common alternatives for StarWind HCA.

Reviewers rate Availability and Support Rating highest, with a score of 9.7.

The most common users of StarWind HCA are from Mid-sized Companies (51-1,000 employees).
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Comparisons

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Reviews

(1-2 of 2)
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Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
We settled on StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) as a less expensive alternative to VMWare's more expensive license for vSAN shared storage between our two VMWare hosts, providing full hardware redundancy of everything. The peace of mind knowing that all of our data and VMs are running on two fully redundant hosts is amazing.
  • Fully redundant shared storage (vSAN)
  • Proactive monitoring of all of the hardware
  • 24/7 support
Having an admittedly limited personal experience with only this one implementation, I can't compare any other scenarios to mine. What I can say is their support has been amazing and very proactive, and even though they do not formally provide VMWare support, their expertise and willingness to do what they can when a need arises has been excellent and extremely appreciated, to the point that I haven't had to go to VMWare directly for support since purchasing and migrating everything to the new hosts. One negative aspect with the initial setup was, at the time of our order/deployment, they didn't have a Linux version of their management VMs for VMWare (only for Hyper-V), so I had to use two of my Windows Server licenses for their Windows-Server-based management VMs for the first year, which did put me in a bit of a bind, but, they finally released the Linux versions, and remoted in and quickly and expertly switched them over with very little downtime (we did it over the weekend), and it was completely uneventful.
  • Substantial cost savings over VMWare's vSAN license
  • Massive increase in performance/IOPS compared to our previous hosts
We have had a few times where I was informed they had lost connection, but in all of those cases, it was due to a local network issue. The hosts and StarWinds vSAN have been rock solid.
We have experienced zero downtime hardware-wise since implementing the new hosts with StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) vSAN technology.
We ordered the new Dell hosts through StarWind, and they preconfigured everything, then shipped them to us. Implementation was as simple as racking them, connecting the cables as directed, and turning everything on. Once this was done, I added the new hosts to my existing vCenter server/environment, migrated all of the VMs over to the new hosts, then decommissioned the old hosts. It was extremely painless, and while I didn't need much help with that part, StarWind was right there with me in case anything went wrong.
In our simple two-host environment, StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) won out hands down in cost, and while I had no prior experience with the technology, I have been extremely pleased with the result. I wouldn't hesitate to go with them again in the future, although our current hosts will likely still be going strong for at least another 5-7 years.
1
I'm the IT director and one-man IT support for the company.
1
Knowledge of networks/networking and VMWare vCenter server and host management. It is really quite simple for anyone with a decent general skillset.
  • Full hardware redundancy for both VMWare hosts and all of our data
  • There are none, but our needs are extremely limited, and StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) is doing exactly what we need.
  • Possibly integrating with one of the clouds for backups and/or VM migrations
Because we are extremely satisfied with StarWind HyperConverged Appliance (HCA) in all aspects of our experience
Yes, for the peace of mind, and I don't regret it.
No
One weekend we had a fiber module fail in our ISPs internet router. StarWind support notified me they'd lost connectivity, so I came in and figured out what the problem was and was able to get Cogent out in time to fix it before everyone came in for work on Monday, so there was no downtime that affected business operations.
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
We use StarWind vSAN to support the IT needs across the entire company. It allows us to provide high-performance computing and storage to the business needs (i.e.: VMs, apps, desktops, etc.). It also reduces our IT complexity in hardware and maintenance.
  • High performance storage.
  • Great customer service and support.
  • Simple to deploy.
  • Reduced single points of failure.
  • Documentation.
I would suggest any SMB who hosts their own IT infrastructure and has at least a moderately knowledgeable staff to use StarWind HCA. It is easy to initially set up and has very little daily maintenance.
  • Reduced IT maintenance.
  • Increased infrastructure redundancy.
  • Reduced hardware/rack wiring complexity.
StarWind proactive support gives us "another set of eyes" to watch over our system to catch anything we might miss, especially on something as critical as the compute and storage that runs our business.
No downtime as of yet.
We customized the hardware, but nothing drastic (change CPUs, memory, storage). It was very simple.
We compared against just general servers + SAN solution from Dell. StarWind had fewer single points of failure, reduced hardware, and better performance.
vSphere, Veeam Backup & Replication
45
All.
1
General IT knowledge. General vSphere knowledge. General hardware knowledge.
  • Compute
  • Storage
  • Reduced single points of failure
  • General IT infrastructure needs
  • Disaster Recovery, offsite
Easy to set up, easy to use. Nothing bad I can say about it.
Yes
Dell VRTX all-in-one compute and storage, and prior to that a nodes, network, and SAN system. We replaced primarily because our warranties were expiring although we did want better performance and more resiliency as well.
  • Price
  • Product Usability
Ease of use with good support at a reasonable price.
Wouldn't change anything.
  • Implemented in-house
No
  • None
Very simple, all you need is a day's worth of time to install the hardware, get the vSAN up and running, and start moving over workloads.
Yes. We purchased it to have an extra set of eyes on the infrastructure since we have a small staff and limited time to monitor the HCA/vSAN constantly.
No
Every time. Pre-purchase discussions, customizing the hardware, initial setup, and resolution of issues.
  • Initial setup.
  • Daily usage.
  • Power loss graceful shutdown.
  • Testing.
No
Easy to set up initially and use.
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