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  • Lab Validation Report NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1

    Efficient, Flexible, Scale-out NAS and SAN Storage

    By Tony Palmer, Sr. ESG Lab Analyst

    June 2012 © 2011, Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

  • Lab Validation: NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1 2

    © 2011, Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

    Contents

    Introduction .................................................................................................................................................. 3 Background ............................................................................................................................................................... 3

    Source: Enterprise Strategy Group, 2011. .................................................................................................... 3 NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1 ........................................................................................................................................... 4

    ESG Lab Validation ........................................................................................................................................ 6 Getting Started – Operational Efficiency .................................................................................................................. 6 Enterprise Nondisruptive Operations ..................................................................................................................... 11 On-demand Flexibility and Performance Optimization .......................................................................................... 14

    ESG Lab Validation Highlights ..................................................................................................................... 17

    Issues to Consider ....................................................................................................................................... 17

    The Bigger Truth ......................................................................................................................................... 18

    Appendix ..................................................................................................................................................... 19

    All trademark names are property of their respective companies. Information contained in this publication has been obtained by sources The Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) considers to be reliable but is not warranted by ESG. This publication may contain opinions of ESG, which are subject to change from time to time. This publication is copyrighted by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. Any reproduction or redistribution of this publication, in whole or in part, whether in hard-copy format, electronically, or otherwise to persons not authorized to receive it, without the express consent of the Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc., is in violation of U.S. Copyright law and will be subject to an action for civil damages and, if applicable, criminal prosecution. Should you have any questions, please contact ESG Client Relations at (508) 482.0188.

    ESG Lab Reports

    The goal of ESG Lab reports is to educate IT professionals about emerging technologies and products in the storage, data management and information security industries. ESG Lab reports are not meant to replace the evaluation process that should be conducted before making purchasing decisions, but rather to provide insight into these emerging technologies. Our objective is to go over some of the more valuable feature/functions of products, show how they can be used to solve real customer problems and identify any areas needing improvement. ESG Lab's expert third-party perspective is based on our own hands-on testing as well as on interviews with customers who use these products in production environments. This ESG Lab report was sponsored by NetApp.

  • Lab Validation: NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1 3

    © 2011, Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

    Introduction

    This ESG Lab Validation report explores how NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1 operating in Cluster Mode can help organizations create a highly efficient, flexible, and scalable data storage environment that supports a shared IT infrastructure foundation for nondisruptive operations, operational flexibility and efficiency, and on-demand IT services.

    Background

    The demands on and for storage are increasing rapidly. The challenge to effectively control how vast amounts of data are created, stored, and accessed is intensifying. To address data growth without interrupting business operations, rapid deployment of storage and IT resources to meet increasing demand becomes a function of scalability. The amount of data businesses need to store is skyrocketing, which drives corresponding growth in overall data storage costs in the form of storage systems, floor space, power, cooling, and the people required to manage it all. With IT under constant pressure to find ways to reduce costs, taking a long hard look at the storage environment makes sense. Managing data growth was cited as a top priority by one quarter of those IT managers surveyed in ESG’s 2011 spending intentions survey, making it the number two priority for IT managers and only slightly behind increasing the use of server virtualization.1

    Figure 1. Top IT Priorities

    Source: Enterprise Strategy Group, 2011.

    IT is starting to feel the pressure of the sheer amount of data it has to store. “Spreadsheet management systems” cannot track what data lives on which LUNs when there are tens or hundreds of thousands of LUNs in the networked storage environment. Separate storage growth forecasts based on block and file protocols are not useful when, at the end of the day, all anyone wants is storage capacity to use when and where they need it. What’s more, standalone silos with sub-50% utilization rates create too much waste in terms of management, floor space, power, and cooling.

    1 Source: ESG Research Report, 2011 IT Spending Intentions Survey, January 2011.

    18%

    19%

    20%

    21%

    21%

    22%

    23%

    24%

    24%

    30%

    0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35%

    Regulatory compliance initiatives

    Large-scale desktop/laptop PC refresh

    Business continuity/disaster recovery programs

    Data center consolidation

    Desktop virtualization

    Improve data backup and recovery

    Major application deployments or upgrades

    Information security initiatives

    Manage data growth

    Increase use of server virtualization

    Which of the following would you consider to be your organization’s most important IT priorities over the next 12-18 months? (Percent of respondents,

    N=611, ten responses accepted)

    http://www.netapp.com/ http://www.enterprisestrategygroup.com/2011/01/2011-it-spending-intentions-survey/

  • Lab Validation: NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1 4

    © 2011, Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

    Server virtualization is also driving more complexity in the storage environment—disk LUNs need to be mapped to virtual machines and administrators need to carefully monitor how many virtual systems are sharing a single LUN if they are to avoid performance bottlenecks.

    NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1

    NetApp is addressing these challenges with its Data ONTAP 8.1, designed to deliver an on-demand, highly efficient, flexible, and scalable single storage operating system to help users manage data, application, and scale-out storage infrastructure growth. Data ONTAP 8.1 operating in Cluster Mode takes multiple NetApp storage systems and creates a massively scalable unified storage platform to provide increased operational flexibility and efficiency with a goal of eliminating planned and unplanned downtime for both enterprise and service-oriented infrastructures.

    Figure 2. NetApp Data ONTAP 8.1

    Data ONTAP 8.1 provides scale-out storage that scales to petabytes of capacity and gigabytes per second of throughput using any combination of NetApp FAS or V-Series storage systems, configured in pairs for high availability. With Data ONTAP 8.1, NetApp provides a host of enterprise class capabilities that help storage administrators effectively manage their increasingly large and complex storage environments.

     Always-on Scalability, Availability, and Resource Balancing. As storage nodes are added to the system, all physical resources—CPUs, cache memory, network IO bandwidth, and disk IO bandwidth—can be easily kept in balance. Data ONTAP 8.1 systems enable users to add storage (Up to 11 PB in a four node cluster, up to 50 PB in a 24 node cluster) and move data between storage controllers and tiers of storage without disrupting users and applications. This enables administrators to increase capacity while balancing workloads, and can reduce or eliminate storage IO hot spots without the need to remount shares, modify client settings, or stop running applications.

     Unified Storage Efficiency. NetApp provides storage efficiency technologies for production