Hitachi Vantara (recently rebranded from Hitachi Data Storage) is an industry leader in data storage solutions. When the factory warranty expires, you are left with 2 options:
- Pay Hitachi Vantara’s lofty price tag
- Obtain 3rd party support
Many maintenance organizations will write SLAs on storage systems they know absolutely nothing about. They are gambling that they will be able to find the expertise and the parts if and when something goes wrong.
In this post, we’ll tell you five crucial points to consider when purchasing third-party support for your Hitachi storage system.
1. Escalation engineers
The reason Hitachi can charge so much for their maintenance: they hold the cards. They have the Level 3 & 4 escalation engineers available at their disposal to handle any issues that arise. If you are considering 3rd party support, it is essential you ask about the availability, and the qualifications of their their specialized engineers.
2. Available Parts
This is a big one with a lot of Hitachi 3rd party support providers: They don’t keep the parts in stock. IT equipment ages like milk. Many 3PM providers do not want to hang on to parts that lose value every day. At the end of the contract, some parts will likely be worthless. It costs a lot of money to maintain a current inventory, and with vendors who can ship parts quickly, many TPM providers would rather risk an out-of-stock situation rather than stock the item themselves. Ensure the maintenance provider inventories the parts for your system.
3 Expertise on your System
If your system is new, cutting edge equipment, ask how much experience their engineers have on your system. Even set up a pre-sales support call to qualify their techs. Most support organizations are amenable to this. Those that aren’t…beware.
4. Forward Stocking Locations
Does the support company offer a forward stocking location near you? If not, check if they would be willing to put spares on site. Either way, you will want likely-to-fail parts like disks or power supplies near your location.
As third party support organizations (industry wide) are not allowed to distribute firmware updates or patches, it is recommended that you obtain the latest firmware/patch from Hitachi before leaving their support.
The convenient and expensive answer is to stick with Hitachi Vantarta maintenance. However, if you have a set budget and other needs to fill, this could a great area to cut costs by buying third party maintenance. We can help keep your system running for years (oftentimes a decade or more) after the warranty expires.
We support all models from the Hitachi Vantara G series family. Give us a call to see how we can help you improve your support and save money!