NetApp FAS2050 - documentation kit

Mfg.Part: DOC-2050-C | CDW Part: 1298382 | UNSPSC: 55101516
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NetApp FAS2050 - documentation kit
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This NetApp FAS2050 system provides a powerful range of technologies and features based on Data ONTAP to help increase storage utilization and the efficiency of your system and storage administrators.
NetApp FAS2050 - documentation kit is rated4.62 out of5 by26.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from We can add additional heads with the same IOPS, but we need better documentation for customers to understand automation of APIs.Valuable FeaturesThe flexibility to use in OpenStack with multiple data types, Cinder, Swift, etc.Improvements to My OrganizationFeasibility to use multiple protocols to talk to device, be it direct attached or Cinder/Swift, and the ability to use it as storage behind guest instances on cloud (commonly known as boot-from-disk).Room for ImprovementWhen speaking with the NetApp CEO, we told him that we need better documentation for customers to understand automation of APIs. We want it all there and robust. Boot-from-disk allows me to use disk from Netapp, and understand how to set that up should be documented so I can teach my staff how to do that.Use of SolutionWe've been using NetApp products for 15 years.Stability IssuesNo issues encountered.Scalability IssuesAs we continue forward, we can add additional heads with same IOPS.Customer Service and Technical SupportI've never had to call tech support, but we’ve had them call us to tell us we were about to have a problem.Initial SetupIt was very straightforward with OpenStack, very well-documented, and supported. I wasn’t an OpenStack admin when I started, so the ease of use was critical to me. Straight from the horizon dashboard from OpenStack and I was up and running in 15 minutesOther Advice* Define use cases because we’ve come across where we didn’t do so correctly, and we had to go back and re-architect everything. This was our failure.* Really engage with NetApp to understand how you use the nuances of things like the APIs.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2015-10-22T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You can run a smaller aggregate with SSDs in the flash pool.What is most valuable?It takes your standard IOPS in your drives and it gives you much greater performance out of that aggregate. You can run a smaller aggregate with SSD ( https://www.itcentralstation.com/categories/ssd )s in the flash pool, and it'll give you the IOPS of many more spindles. What it does is it brings your SATA disks aggregate up to the SAS speed, depending upon how many spindles you're running, and your SAS aggregates perform much better.How has it helped my organization?We had an IOPS problem earlier. We were running Citrix ( https://www.itcentralstation.com/vendors/citrix ) and we were having boot storms. Part of the problem was the aggregates that we had were too small. The boot storm would basically fill up the NVRAM. It was unable to write to disk because the disks were running full. The problem was solved by going to flash pools. It was great.What needs improvement?I have not given the FAS ( https://www.itcentralstation.com/products/netapp-all-flash-fas ) a perfect rating because the All Flash Array is probably going to beat it down, in terms of performance.I would give it a perfect rating if there wasn’t any ceiling. When you have some systems and you increase your disk IOPS by adding either All Flash Array or you add a flash pool, sometimes you move the bottleneck; you move the bottleneck up to the CPU. We did have that problem briefly. That was solved by basically moving some of the workload. That happened one time and we fixed it.By moving to cluster mode, it's going to be a lot easier to move the workload. We are moving in that direction. We're doing the first assessment and planning right now.What do I think about the stability of the solution?We do not have any stability problems, whatsoever.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?NetApp aggregates are scalable ( https://www.itcentralstation.com/products/netapp-all-flash-fas/by_topic/scalability_issues ). You can keep adding shelves.How is customer service and technical support?Technical support ( https://www.itcentralstation.com/products/netapp-all-flash-fas/by_topic/technical_support ) is very good. I've never had a problem.Usually the problem is being able to hear them in our data center. :)Which solutions did we use previously?I did not previously use a different solution. When I started working with the county, they already had the NetApp FAS.What other advice do I have?Go with NetApp; I haven't had a problem with it.The most important criteria for me when selecting a vendor to work with are reliability and, for technical support, being there.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2016-11-24T00:00:00-05:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Resilient storage but latency and IOPS could be betterWhat is our primary use case?We use it for storage and it has performed fine, but now we need to upgrade.What is most valuable?We like its resilience. It's reliable storage.What needs improvement?I would like to see less latency and higher IOPS.For how long have I used the solution?More than five years.What do I think about the stability of the solution?Stability is very good.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?I'm satisfied with the scalability.Which solutions did we use previously?We did our research and, at the time, NetApp was what we chose. Our most important criterion when selecting a vendor is reliability. The price is, obviously, always an issue but reliability and the quality of the product are most important.How was the initial setup?The initial setup was very, very straightforward.What other advice do I have?If you need reliability, definitely go for NetApp.I rate it at seven out of 10 because it has been very reliable but not very good when it comes to IOPS and latency.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-08-06T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very easy to expand disks and manage CIFSWhat is our primary use case?Enterprise Storage for:* Block and file* SQL Server LUNs* Exchange LUNs* VM Storage.Backup of above via Snap products.How has it helped my organization?* Rock solid reliability* Easy to use* Very easy to expand disks and manage CIFS.* It has been over seven years with no outages.What is most valuable?* SnapManagers for SQL* Exchange and Oracle* SnapMirror for DR* CIFS management for shares/permissionsWhat needs improvement?* Add wizards for newer, inexperienced users.* More modern GUI, not that it's bad.* ONTAP upgrades need to be much easier.For how long have I used the solution?More than five years.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-03-25T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It's added benefits are thin provisioning, compressioning, and dedupe, which help with capacity utilization.Valuable FeaturesBeing able to run any flavor of files and block storage. It's easier to manage, and we’re looking to phase out legacy systems and to go with FAS.Improvements to My OrganizationIt's easy to manage regardless of how you’re utilizing platform. It’s a Swiss army knife of capabilities. Flexible platform and software features are added benefits (thin provisioning, compressioning, dedupe), which help with capacity utilization. Still get a lot of return even if going with best-practices application.Room for ImprovementMake sure there’s current centralized virtual desktops. I get caught in the upgrade matrix quite a bit, which is an indication that it hasn’t been tested. Need more currency in IMT.Stability IssuesIt's solid, with occasional issues that surface, but are quickly resolved. No one’s software is perfect.Scalability IssuesIt’s good, but you have to do a lot of homework to scale horizontally and vertically. You need to have sales and engineering to expend effort to do that homework.Customer Service and Technical SupportWe've frequently used it, and the quality will depend on which level of support you purchased. Premium support, I have no complaints as we get the right person who’s knoweldgable. Higher level guys take great deal of personal ownership over issues. I used their support as benchmark for our organization.Initial SetupIt's easy. The more planning you do, the easier it gets.Other AdviceThe monitoring is key, and you must keep track of what’s going on. Be sure to use auto-support and have strong monitoring scenario in place.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2015-10-22T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Provides ease of use and robust Snapshot functionality, but pricing is relatively highWhat is our primary use case?It is used as filer, for centralized file sharing. You use it, for example, for network drives from your Windows file.Performance is very good. It's reasonably fast, probably not the fastest.How has it helped my organization?What the customers, the end-users, like is they can rely on the Snapshot technology so they can do their restores themselves.What is most valuable?* Ease of use* Robust Snapshot functionality* You can use it in two datacenters with SnapMirror-ing.It has a very good implementation of the Active Directory services, so implementation into a Windows network is easy.What needs improvement?One thing that was missing for quite some time was the support for flash, of solid state disks, that has now improved. Another issue is the price which, compared to competitors, is quite high. The reason for switching to a different manufacturer is mostly because of the high price that NetApp has for the product.What do I think about the stability of the solution?The stability is good.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?For the use cases I have had so far, scalability has been sufficient. But I don't know where the limits are. If you go into hundreds of millions of objects, you will probably see limits. Also, performance-wise, it's probably not the fastest solution on the market.How is customer service and technical support?For the simple NetApp filer solution, we didn't have to use support. But for more complicated setups, MetroCluster for example, we had to call support.I would rate technical support at eight out of 10. Support is responsive, and we could then solve our issues. It took some time. It's not the perfect support that you would get with, say, Pure or Nimble, where they collect telemetry data - they always know what's going on with the system. I think with NetApp that's not possible.Which solutions did we use previously?Reasons for choosing NetApp include that it's probably the most solid, robust, and easy-to-implement solution.Which other solutions did I evaluate?For file servers, one alternative is Microsoft using standard Microsoft Windows Servers. Another solution is Huawei OceanStor; with the latest, version 5, they support mouse functionality.What other advice do I have?My most important criteria when selecting a vendor are to see that it has good market share already established, or that it has a robust roadmap with interesting products in the future, or that I have had a solid feeling with different products from same manufacturer.If I were only rating the NetApp solution without considering the price, I would probably give it nine or 10 out of 10. If the rating includes the price, it's more like a seven.If you're aiming for the easiest solution which will work, more or less, out-of-the-box and has lots of features, I would definitely recommend NetApp. If you're also bound by budget restraints, you should probably look at other vendors.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-04-10T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It provides us with redundancy and security, which is important because we hold a lot of customer information that must be secure and reliable.What is most valuable?* Redundancy* Snap mirroring* Home-drive capability, which looks at a user name and gives the correct rights to folderHow has it helped my organization?* Rendundancy* SecurityWe hold a lot of information for our customers, so the information has to be secure and reliable.What needs improvement?I'm not sure, because every time I’ve gone to them, they’ve said “yes, we can do that.”What do I think about the stability of the solution?I sleep well at night because of its redundancy. I hardly even know when it has a bad drive. The Call Home capability sends a message automatically if there's a bad drive to NetApp who then sends a new drive.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?Amazing how scalable it is. As a comparison, we looked at EMC vBlock as well, and if you want to upgrade, you have to use a forklift. With FAS, you just put in new shelves or heads.How is customer service and technical support?They’re extremely technical. Everyone I’ve talked to has been very knowledgeable, and I can’t say anything bad.How was the initial setup?It was complex. There's a lot to do, but I had their assistance and went through everything step by step. So while complex, it was also simple.What other advice do I have?One thing that burned me, is that it surprised me how much overhead it uses, like 30% right off the top. So don’t forget the overhead. It’s not usable space, but that percentage is coming down. It all has to do with deduplication.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-06-14T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from It provides very good storage High Availability and data protection. The thing we'd like to see the most is the possibility of pairing LAN/SAN ports from different nodes.Valuable FeaturesWhat impressed me the most about these systems are their excellent reliability, ease of administering (both in GUI and command line), and their very good documentation that is easy to access and understand. It provides very good storage, High Availability, and data protection by employing the use of two separate storage controllers that can take over each other's role as soon as any of them goes down. The technology has been improved even more after the introduction of the cluster cDot ONTAP OS.Improvements to My OrganizationNetApp systems are a good choice if you want a versatile unified system that's also capable of delivering performance. Our company has been using NetApp filers both as file sharing solutions (CIFS over LAN) and also as block storage (LUNs) for VMware ESXi hosts.Since we switched to the newer 2552 models, we now benefit from better data protection and improved storage capacity thanks to the clustered Data ONTAP OS.Room for ImprovementThe thing we'd like to see the most is the possibility of pairing LAN/SAN ports from different nodes. Currently, the systems only provide pairing (and thus redundancy) only at same-node level. Also, it wouldn't hurt having this sort of cross-functionality when it comes to choosing disks for aggregate structures. Right now, you can't integrate in the same storage aggregate disks from different shelves.Use of SolutionI've had the chance to work a lot with NetApp FAS 2552 series and also have some experience with older models such as 2050, 2040, 3240 and 2240. I think it's a pretty reliable unified storage solution. The FAS 2552 model, especially, offers good performance and excellent reliability. My experience with similar storage systems is, currently, somewhat limited however.My company has been using NetApp for a few years now, over four I think, and I have come into contact with this technology for over a year.Deployment IssuesWhen it comes to deployment we had our share of issues. Some of these issues are to blame on the vendor's lack of experience with the new models and ONTAP versions, but sometimes the systems themselves were faulty.Stability IssuesThe most recent issue we had involves a LAN card that couldn't be set on the correct bandwidth setting. In consequence, the vendor had to replace one of the node's motherboard.Scalability IssuesThere have been no issues with scaling it, other than during the actual deployment of new devices.Customer Service and Technical SupportIf you buy NetApp systems from third-party vendors, then you would be surprised that their technicians aren't exactly up to date with the latest ONTAP versions. NetApp releases new versions (with great improvements) so often that it's hard for some vendors to stay up to date with their technical knowledge base.However, when it comes to technical support from NetApp directly, they tend to have a very competent team and the reaction time is pretty decent. Perhaps their biggest strong point in this chapter is their public knowledge base which helps you solve on your own most of issues you can encounter with configuring and administering.Initial SetupAll I can say is that if you take your time and study the NetApp documentation, you shouldn't have any issue, provided the initial setup was done properly by the vendor technician.Implementation TeamInitial setup is usually performed by NetApp or the third-party vendor from whom you purchased the devices. Our experience with third-party vendors isn't the best due to reasons stated above. All other configuration and administration is done in-house.Pricing, Setup Cost and LicensingWhen it comes to software licensing, I think that NetApp promotes a very fair system. Basically you only pay for the features you need (eg.: Cluster Mode, SnapMirror, SnapVault, etc.).Other AdviceThe best advice I can offer is to try and purchase it directly from NetApp in order to have a better chance of having a successful initial configuration from the first try. Also, make sure you purchase the system with a General Availability OS version as Release Candidate ones tend to be bugged.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2016-02-21T00:00:00-05:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Snapshots lets us revert accidental deletes quickly and easily, and although we had an outage when batteries were bad, it was a known defect and our fault for knowing this was an issue.Valuable FeaturesSnapshot, because so much of it is on our end-user storage, our users often delete things they’re not supposed to. Having snapshots to revert these deletes quickly and easily is very valuable.Improvements to My OrganizationOur greatest advantage with it is ease of use, flexibility, and reliability.Room for ImprovementKnowing what’s coming down the pipe, NetApp is headed in the right direction. In their five year roadmap, it provides what I need it to do.Stability IssuesIt's extraordinarily stable. We had one outage one-and-a-half years ago when batteries were bad, but that was a known defect on that particular model. However, that was our fault for knowing this was an issue. We've had two outages in 10 years due to something other than operator’s error.Scalability IssuesIncredibly scalable. Not even touching what it could do. Between scale up and scale out, we’re not even close to reaching its highest potential. We have a four node NAS with the potential for 24 nodes.Customer Service and Technical SupportIt's fantastic.Initial SetupOnce you’ve done one, it seems very intuitive. However, the first time seems very complicated.Other AdviceOf all storage technologies I work on, it’s the easiest to learn and one of the most powerful. But you need to spend your time taking classes before digging in too deep. Get educated.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2015-10-29T00:00:00-04:00
Rated 5 out of 5 by from We are an online hotel reservations company, so if our website goes down we lose money at a very high rate per minute. It has been many years since we have had an outage due to storage because of FAS.Valuable Features* Reliability* Snapshots* Ease of tooling* Integration with our systems* It's multiprotocolImprovements to My OrganizationWe are an online hotel reservations company, so if our website goes down we lose money at a very high rate per minute. It has been many years since we have had an outage due to storage because of FAS.Room for ImprovementThe performance needs to be improved. Due to the performance issues, we're moving to NetApp Flash FAS as it provides almost infinite performance.Use of SolutionWe've used it for nine years.Deployment IssuesWe've had no issues with deployment.Stability IssuesThe stability is excellent.Scalability IssuesIt's scaled well for us.Customer Service and Technical SupportIt takes a long time to resolve most cases. It requires an extensive amount of troubleshooting and tends to be very time consuming on our end in terms of collecting data for the engineers to work on.Initial SetupIt's straightforward. I'd say, though, that it's medium complexity because it is not done in one day.Implementation TeamWe used a mixed team of in-house and vendor personnel.ROII wouldn't know how to begin to calculate it.Other Solutions ConsideredThat was a long time before I joined the company.Other AdviceDo your research on clustered Data ONTAP as it is a very complicated product, much more complicated than the previous version.Disclaimer: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:I used to work for NetApp as a consultant.
Date published: 2015-12-11T00:00:00-05:00