NetApp straps on serverless taps, cloud cost caps, deduplication stats... and other tat

Storage software updated and benchmark spanked

NetApp has updated its SolidFire Element OS, StorageGRID Webscale, ONTAP, and OnCommand Insight software. These packages, which sit under its Data Fabric umbrella brand, are supposed to unify and manage storage across on-premises kit and public cloud stores.

The headline refresh points are:

  • SolidFire Element OS:
    • SnapMirror integration now supports data movement from Element OS to ONTAP systems for disaster protection, development, analytics, and centralized archiving.
    • New user-defined quality-of-service policies introduced for managing guaranteed performance in SolidFire arrays.
  • StorageGRID Webscale, NetApp's object storage offering:
    • CloudMirror gains the ability to mirror on-premises data in Amazon's AWS S3 storage.
    • Serverless computing using notifications from data services such as Amazon Elastic MapReduce, Rekognition and Elasticsearch, as well as on-premises storage, now enabled.
  • ONTAP v9.3:
    • Adaptive quality-of-service technology added that makes it easier to apply policies and automatically adjust performance levels to changes in workloads.
    • Apparently, an up to 40 per cent increase in performance over earlier ONTAP versions with software optimizations and path parallelization for more IOPS and lower latency.
    • Deduplication optimized.
    • External key management added for NetApp Volume Encryption and multi-factor authentication.
    • Compliance policies enabled for setting legal holds and event-based retention.
  • OnCommand Insight software gains cost monitoring tools for on-premises and public cloud storage:
    • Visibility of spending across departments, lines of business, and applications is now possible.
    • You can control spending behaviors across an organization.
    • And you can, allegedly, lower costs by leveraging the most efficient vendor pricing structure.

The increased deduplication has been incorporated into the NetApp All-Flash Capacity Guarantee, which provides assurance that customers will achieve workload-specific capacity savings or NetApp will make up the difference.

ONTAP's better performance helped in a recent SPEC SFS 2014 software build performance benchmark. SPEC SFS 2014 looks at end-to-end filer performance with four differing workloads: software build, video streaming, database running, and VDI. NetApp recorded the best source-code build score with 520 builds, beating the previous record of 500 set by WekaIO.

Here's a comparison of the benchmark results, summarized in a table:

System Builds ORT MB/s Workload Memory (GB) Total Capacity (TiB) Date
IBM Spectrum Scale 160 1.2.1 1270 SWBUILD 1496 462.6 Apr 26, 2016
IBM Spectrum Scale UCS 240 1.32 1821 SWBUILD 1024 44.1 Feb 14, 2017
NetApp FAS 8200 FlexGroup 520 1.04 4130 SWBUILD 9208 421.7 Sep 26, 2017
Oracle ZFS ZS3-2 240 1.71 1373 SWBUILD 640 20.8 Sep 14, 2016
WekaIO Matrix 500 3.06 3953 SWBUILD 14640 241.76 Jul 10, 2017

This result complements NetApp's recent E-Series benchmark win. IBM and Oracle have some catching up to do.

NetApp also said its Solidfire-based HCI will be generally available in October 2017. We note the E-Series SANtricity software has not been updated. NetApp's Wednesday announcement can be found here. ®

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