The first and only unified storage array vendor, has long been the hallmark of NetApp. Yet with the acquisitions of Bycast and Engenio it appears NetApp may be abandoning the concept of a unified storage array. Is this true, has NetApp abandoned their position on unified storage?
If you’re a NetApp customer maybe you feel that your NetApp sales representative fudged the truth a bit when they stated that a NetApp FAS array could, ‘meet all of your enterprise data center and cloud computing requirements’.
Did we really move away from our roots? Did our acquisitions silently change the focus of NetApp and invalidate our message around delivering unified storage architectures? As I began thinking about our recent acquisitions they really began to make a lot of sense, and this time answered the unified question for me.
i want to share with you my thought process to see if you come to the same conclusion as I did. I think the correct place to start is by counting the number of NetApp storage array platforms.
Platform 1: NetApp FAS Arrays
This is the mainstay of the NetApp product line, the storage technology most associate NetApp with. FAS are natively multiprotocol enterprise storage arrays, offering RAID-DP, integrated block-level storage efficiencies with integrated data protection, which provide abstracted access to the array in the form of vFilers (just to name a few of the many capabilities).
FAS arrays are available in configurations ranging from the colossal FAS6280 (2.8 PBs of capacity) to the modest FAS2020 (68 TBs of capacity). They run Data Ontap, which is available in two modes.
Data Ontap 7-mode (or classic mode) allows FAS arrays to be deployed as a local two-node cluster, a geographically spanned MetroCluster, and as a remote distributed FlexCache, which enables capabilities like LDVM for VMware.