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NetApp Improves Storage Efficiency in Virtualized Environments

NetApp Ushers in Next Wave of Data Center Transformation

NetApp announced new products and capabilities as part of the NetApp Manageability Software Family to enable customers to transform their data center architectures. This announcement was driven by NetApp storage innovations for virtualized servers that will help customers improve their IT infrastructure and processes. Enterprise customers are undergoing data center transformations to enhance IT flexibility and efficiency as server virtualization moves into broader deployment. To enable this transformation, NetApp is providing customers a proven storage platform for virtualized environments to achieve increased service levels, higher asset utilization, and greater data center power, space, and cooling efficiencies.

"NetApp will be a major catalyst in enabling customers to capitalize on the next generation of data center infrastructure," said Jay Kidd, chief marketing officer at NetApp. "Today we have established a lead in delivering virtualization solutions and services that help customers transform their current IT architectures and amplify the impact that IT operations have on their business. Combining VMware's full data center virtualization solutions with NetApp's networked storage solutions is dramatically improving data management and providing customers a path to creating a transparent infrastructure."

"Our research indicates that IT departments are continually challenged to do more with less, making it increasingly difficult to manage infrastructure complexity while at the same time meet service level agreements and increase staff productivity," said Roger Cox, Research VP, Gartner. "Customers are looking for an architectural approach that will deliver near instant response to business unit requests, automate the most labor intensive tasks, and scale infrastructure transparently over time."

This news further strengthens NetApp's unified data management platform with the following new innovative software solutions to drive customers' data center transformation:

  • SnapManager for Virtual Infrastructure -- SnapManager for Virtual Infrastructure enables customers to protect their VMware environments with automated data protection and recovery of their virtual machines. SnapManager for Virtual Infrastructure reduces human error and increases server utilization for application workloads by eliminating the interruptions and performance impact caused by traditional server-hosted backups and restores.
  • SnapManager Compatibility with VMware Virtualization Software -- All Windows-based SnapManager products are now compatible with VMware virtualization software, providing customers the ability to manage data within virtual machines and take full advantage of the application-specific data management capabilities provided by NetApp's SnapManager products. Versions are available for Exchange, SQL, SharePoint, and Oracle. By extending SnapManager capabilities to virtual infrastructures, customers now have common data management tools for both their virtualized and physical server environments. These innovative products will also help accelerate deployment of existing Windows applications into new virtual server environments.
  • Provisioning Manager -- Provisioning Manager provides policy-based automation to speed up existing provisioning processes, improve capacity utilization, and reduce human error that results in data loss. As a result, storage administrators can eliminate the complex series of manual steps normally associated with provisioning storage in both virtual and physical server environments. This simplifies training for IT staff and liberates these valuable personnel to work on more strategic IT priorities

"Virtualization is helping thousands of enterprises reduce complexity and improve management of their data centers," said Parag Patel, vice president, alliances at VMware. "NetApp's new SnapManager for Virtual Infrastructure leverages VMware virtualization for improved management and automation, including virtual machine backup, restoration, replication, and disaster recovery. Together, VMware and NetApp are helping customers transform their IT infrastructures and increase productivity to better respond to their changing business needs."

"VMware and NetApp give us the best of both worlds, running virtual applications and storing the images of virtual machines on NetApp hardware," said Ed Grassie, director of Technology and Infrastructure with BBM Canada, which provides broadcast measurement and consumer behavior data to Canadian broadcasters, advertisers, and agencies. "NetApp solutions supply the data storage power while VMware virtualization software enables us to distribute data and processing the way that we want. NetApp enables us to protect our data with immediate mirroring to remote systems to support disaster recovery. This provides extra time so we can either deliver the data earlier to customers or recover from other issues or problems along the way."

Significant enhancements to NetApp's Protection Manager provide seamless protection of virtualized environments. In addition, updates to NetApp's Data ONTAP operating system extend deduplication benefits to customers with NetApp V-Series and MultiStore systems. Furthermore, Data ONTAP SMI-S Agent, which conforms to the SNIA Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S), is now available to support the entire line of NetApp FAS systems and NetApp V-Series virtualized storage systems. These enhancements extend customers' ability to meet increasingly diverse storage and data management requirements with a single, familiar, easy-to-use data management platform.

NetApp Improves Storage Efficiency in Virtualized Environments
NetApp's high-performance storage solutions were specifically developed to transform data center technology into a competitive business advantage. As a result, many NetApp customers are realizing significant storage efficiency savings as part of their data center transformation. In a recent study by Oliver Wyman, Making Green IT a Reality:

Customer Perspectives on the Impact of Storage Vendor Decisions on Power, Cooling, & Space in Enterprise Data Centers (http://www.netapp.com/library/ar/ar1054.pdf), customers using NetApp, EMC CLARiiON, and HP EVA systems concluded that innovative NetApp technologies such as deduplication, thin provisioning, RAID-DP(TM), FlexVol(R), and Snapshot(TM) dramatically reduce the amount of power, cooling, and space needed in their data centers. Customers found that NetApp requires 50% less raw storage and rack space and uses 51% less power and heat load per usable terabyte.

"Our biggest challenge was controlling our data growth while at the same time meeting customer service levels," said Chris Rima, supervisor, IT Systems, Information Services, with Tucson Electric Power. "We undertook an ambitious project to virtualize our IT infrastructure and we needed a storage system that would deliver data protection for our rapidly growing virtual storage environment. NetApp delivered fast, cost-effective backup and restore of our virtual machines and enabled us to quadruple our storage capacity without increasing administrative headcount, saving at least $2 million over a three to five year period. Most importantly, we have streamlined operations and significantly improved client satisfaction by reducing backup and recovery time, reducing time required to provision new servers or roll back test and development environments, thus shortening lead time for new applications and improving availability and performance of server-based applications through the integrated use of NetApp and VMware technologies."

New Virtualization Professional Services

In addition to the new product news, NetApp announced the following new virtualization professional services to accelerate customers' data center transformation:

  • Virtualization Assessment -- Provides customers with guidance on how to start benefiting from a virtualized platform
  • Virtualization Architecture Planning -- Helps customers design the most efficient server and storage infrastructure for their unique environment and business needs
  • Server & Storage Virtualization Services -- Guides customers as they build the optimal server platform based on VMware virtualization software and a set of turnkey service offerings

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SYS-CON's Virtualization News Desk trawls the news sources of the world for the latest details of virtualization technologies, products, and market trends, and provides breaking news updates from the Virtualization Conference & Expo.

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