Why Choose NetApp-SolidFire All-Flash Storage?

Posted by Dustin Smith, Chief Technologist
November 2, 2016

With the ever-changing data requirements that today’s data centers require and the need for fast deployment of applications to support business needs, NetApp’s acquisition of SolidFire earlier this year puts it in a leadership position when it comes to storage. Standalone applications, virtualized applications, and cloud infrastructures are all supported with SolidFire all flash arrays. When the acquisition was announced, we blogged about five ways that SolidFire delivers data center benefits. To recap, they were:

1. Scale-out. Add capacity and performance for new business needs by:

  • Deploying 10s of Terabytes to multiple Petabytes of storage
  • Scaling without disruption, downtime, or data migrations
  • Seamlessly mixing nodes in the same cluster

2. Guaranteed performance. Control utilization and performance independent of capacity by:

  • Guaranteeing performance to every application volume
  • Managing performance in real time
  • Gaining granular performance control with QoS settings

3. Automated management. Respond to changing business needs with simple on-the-fly adjustments, such as:

  • Provisioning instantly and balance loads automatically
  • Automating any storage task with a comprehensive API
  • Upgrading regularly and without disruption

4. Data assurance. Self-healing data protection allows you to:

  • Ensure data and performance availability regardless of system condition or application activity
  • Safeguard data with strong, 256-bit encryption
  • Protect data thanks to real-time replication and integrated backup/recovery

5. Global efficiencies. Always-on deduplication, compression, and thin provisioning reduces storage, space and power costs, allows you to:

  • Increase effective memory utilization with inline compression
  • Distribute data automatically
  • Eliminate performance impact as data is written

A recent Gartner report placed NetApp in the leadership quadrant for solid-state arrays, giving the company high marks for being able to address ‘next-generation distributed applications, and to target the cloud service provider and enterprise private cloud market segments.’ Let’s elaborate a little on a couple of the benefits above:

  • Scaling. The clustered architecture with SolidFire enables linear scale out of capacity and performance as more nodes are added to the system. This gives not only scale-out, but predictability as well. You can scale to 3.4 PBs of capacity and 7.5M guaranteed IOPS.
  • Data Assurance. SolidFire uses a RAID-less approach, instead relying on a share free architecture. Since each node is a fully functioning unit, the overhead costs of shared controllers do not exist. The SolidFire Helix takes advantage of this distributed architecture by providing ‘an exact copy of all the data in the cluster.’ This makes any rebuilding due to a failure quick and easy. This not only reduces the wear and tear on the drives, but increases the efficiency and integrity of the data itself.

With NetApp SolidFire all flash storage, organizations can better consolidate applications and workloads onto an agile, predictable, automated storage infrastructure. Check out the SolidFire datasheet (PDF) for additional details. 

About Dustin Smith Throughout his twenty-year career, Dustin Smith has specialized in designing enterprise architectural solutions. As the Chief Technologist, Dustin is responsible for the strategic direction of aligning the company’s growing consulting services with the client challenges he finds in the field, and he works closely with his regional architects to design new programs to address these issues.

Filed Under: Data Storage

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