Reliant Technology - What EOL Means For Your EMC EquipmentWith so many different acronyms floating around for product lifecycle milestones, it is easy to get confused. Not to mention that different manufacturers use different end of life terminology. This makes it all the more complicated to understand the lifecycle of the equipment within your data center.

Today, we will be focusing on the end of life milestones for one brand in particular - EMC - and what these milestones mean for you. But first, let’s review what these terms mean.

EMC Product Lifecycle Milestones

General Availability

General Availability (GA) is the date that the product came on the market for the general public. This date will exclude any advance releases such as those for product review purposes. Why should you care about the GA date? EMC’s product lifecycle for products is usually around 3 years after it’s GA date. You can mark your calendars and start prepping before the official EOL date is even released.

End of Life

End of Life (EOL), from EMC’s perspective means that the equipment has “reached the end of its useful lifespan.” EMC will then stop selling and marketing the hardware. EOL announcements can coincide with the release of new technology. One example was the release of the VNX series. The VNX release meant the discontinuation of CLARiiON and Celerra arrays.

End of Life doesn’t mean that the equipment has reached the end of its useful lifespan from the customer’s perspective. Instead, EOL begins the countdown for when the equipment goes End of Service Life. Which has important implications for the end user.

End of Service Life

End of Service Life (EOSL), for end users, is the date of most concern. This is when support, either primary or extended, is no longer offered by EMC.

What Do You Do About End of Life (EOL)?

When your EMC equipment goes EOL, there are two main areas that need consideration:

1. Purchasing Considerations

Organizations may have different ideas or policies around purchasing equipment that is EOL or nearing its EOL date. Once equipment goes EOL, there are great deals - especially on the preowned market. The only concern for EOL equipment would be the ability to continue support and get spare parts. But, the preowned market has access to all the spare parts you will need for EOL EMC systems. And third-party support can maintain systems at prices up to 70% off EMC’s support price tag. So, from a purchasing perspective, EMC’s EOL timeframe doesn’t mean anything for you.

2. Support Considerations

EOL is not a concern for equipment for equipment already in the data center. The only thing to make note of with equipment’s EOL date is the EOSL date that will be just around the corner. From the vendor’s perspective, EOSL means that you either have to upgrade to a new system or find other support options. Shelling out the big bucks for a new system is not always within the IT budget. Considering other support options is the best course of action.

Even before EOSL, the benefits of support from EMC deplete. Once equipment is EOL, EMC no longer offers OS patches and updates. The benefits of having an expensive EMC support contract are few and far between. Instead, you can find a third-party support vendor for your EOL EMC equipment that can offer the same (or better!) level of support as EMC, but at a fraction of the cost!

Now What?

Here’s the first thing to remember. When your EMC hardware goes EOL (and even EOSL), it's important to know you have plenty of affordable options at your fingertips. You just need to know what they are and how they benefit you.

To learn when EMC equipment is going EOL or EOSL, check out our EMC End of Life and End-of-Support Matrix. This will tell you all the dates you need to know for your EMC hardware.

Want to know more about EOL EMC equipment or support? As the World’s #1 Reseller of Certified Pre-Owned Storage Hardware & Support, Reliant Technology can give you the best options for your EMC equipment at the lowest prices. For more information about EMC and End of Life, reach out to one of our EMC Storage and Support Specialists or call 1.877.227.0828.