When EMC Corp. rolled out a VNX and VNXe storage height this year, it shone a splendid light on unified storage systems and strong a foe with NetApp.
NetApp and EMC aren’t a usually vendors to offer one storage — many vital vendors have systems that support mixed protocols — though NetApp’s FAS and EMC’s VNX are a many talked about. They’re also a many scrutinized and offer as a models that many people impute to when they plead what is and isn’t loyal about unified storage platforms.
Unified storage systems concede one-box entrance to both retard and record storage, typically over Fibre Channel (FC) or Ethernet networks. NetApp initial offering multiprotocol storage in 2002 when it combined SAN or retard capability to a NAS filer platform. All NetApp FAS systems from entrance turn to craving support record storage around CIFS and NFS and retard storage over Fibre Channel and iSCSI.
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What’s subsequent for unified storage?
EMC joined a midrange Clariion SAN and Celerra NAS platforms into a VNX. EMC has a apart craving SAN Symmetrix family though a VNX put a dual largest pure-play storage complement vendors into a head-to-head conflict with systems that cover many of a altogether information storage market.
Let’s take a demeanour underneath a hood to see how a NetApp and EMC one storage products compare.
NetApp FAS series
NetApp’s FAS beam from a FAS2020 with 68 hoop drives to a FAS6280 with 1,440 drives. Each complement comes with NetApp’s Data Ontap 8.0 handling complement (OS) that includes all NetApp’s modernized information services, including compression, information deduplication, disaster liberation and image capabilities.
The FAS2000 array includes a 2U 2020, a 2U 2040 and a 4U 2050 targeted during mid-sized companies, remote and bend offices, and vast craving departments. The series’ limit upheld drives operation from 68 to 136 SAS, FC or SATA drives, and includes dual PCI Express (PCIe) enlargement slots.
NetApp’s FAS3100 array are all 6U framework with 8 PCIe enlargement slots and 64-bit controller architectures. They’re targeted during craving applications and technical computing. The 3100 line supports between 420 and 840 SAS, FC and SATA drives. The FAS3200 product line facilities a far-reaching operation of speeds and feeds. Each 3200 product includes
four PCIe enlargement slots; in addition, a 3240 and 3270 can supplement 8 some-more PCIe enlargement slots for larger I/O capabilities. Without a additional enlargement slots, any section is a 3U form-factor and supports from 240 to 960 drives.
NetApp’s largest FAS product line is a 6200 for vast enterprises. The 6210 is a singular 6U section with dual controllers, 48 GB of RAM, a 3 TB Flash Cache, 8 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) connectors and 8 PCIe enlargement slots. It binds adult to 1,200 drives. The 6240 and 6280 are any dual-enclosure 12U units, reason adult to 1,440 drives and embody 8 10 GbE connectors and 24 PCIe enlargement slots. The 6240 comes with 96 GB of RAM and 6 TB Flash Cache. The 6280 has 192 GB of RAM and an 8 TB Flash Cache.
NetApp also has a V-Series, that virtualizes storage from other vendors, including EMC, to supplement record capability.
The EMC VNX product line comes in 3 flavors: VNXe for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), VNX for mid-sized organizations and enterprises, and a VNX Series Gateway (VG) that yield NAS capability for EMC SANs. All a products in a VNXe, VNX and VG product lines use EMC’s Unisphere one government software.
Both a VNXe3100 and VNXe3300 embody adult to dual block-storage processors, record deduplication, compression, skinny provisioning, and snapshots. The 2U VNXe3100 binds from 6 to a limit of 96 SAS or Nearline-SAS (NL-SAS) drives. The 3U VNXe3300 includes adult to 120 SAS or NL-SAS drives. All a VNX array products support Flash, SAS and NL-SAS drives, as good as dual retard storage processors, practical provisioning and EMC’s SAN Copy information duplicating technology. The VNX5100 includes adult to 75 drives, a VNX5300 binds adult to 125 drives and a VNX5500 binds adult to 250 drives; a VNX5700 binds adult to 500 drives, while a VNX7500 binds adult to 1,000 drives.
The VNX Series Gateway yield record entrance to existent VNX, Symmetrix and Clariion storage systems. Both a VNX VG2 and VG8 support record deduplication and compression, practical provisioning and EMC’s SnapSure image technology. The VNX VG2 supports adult to dual X-blades and 256 TB of sum serviceable capacity. The VG8 supports adult to 8 X-blades and 1.8 PB of serviceable capacity. While NetApp’s FAS systems run DataOntap, VNX runs a Clariion Flare and Celerra DART handling systems nonetheless EMC hasn’t spelled out accurately how a dual OSes co-exist in one box.
Commonalities embody single-pane-of-glass management
NetApp and EMC also yield single-pane-of-glass storage management for their one solutions. Analysts contend a singular government interface is one of a categorical attributes that creates a loyal one system.
“Whenever people speak about multiprotocol, a initial things they consider about is government beyond and coherence of function opposite a protocols,” pronounced Ashish Nadkarni, a comparison researcher and consultant during Taneja Group. “Am we going to be sitting around with 5 interfaces all utilizing opposite earthy components of a same system?”
EMC’s Unisphere supports a VNXe and VNX product lines, as good as EMC’s Clariion, Celerra products and RecoverPoint/SE riposte product. Unisphere’s singular sign-on web interface works in both earthy and practical environments and plugs into an existent sourroundings though modification.
NetApp’s OnCommand government program includes System Manager for singular storage systems and Operations Manager for mixed NetApp systems. OnCommand controls, automates and analyzes storage infrastructure. NetApp also provides Virtual Storage Console (VSC) plug-ins for handling FAS systems within VMware Inc.’s vCenter government platform.
“We’re not ruin focussed on carrying administrators come to a console to conduct storage,” pronounced Chris Cummings, NetApp’s clamp boss of product and solutions marketing.
When EMC launched a VNX family, NetApp executives pronounced it wasn’t a loyal one storage height since it runs a Celerra and Clariion program stacks alone on a Intel Corp. Xeon quad-core processors. But Taneja Group’s Nadkarni pronounced that‘s not most of an emanate for customers. “NetApp started from a singular formula basement and branched out into other areas,” he said. “EMC is now started from a other side and is entrance to a converged solution. From a customer’s
prospective, it’s not that applicable anymore.”
Different philosophies on storage tiering
EMC and NetApp also take a opposite proceed to storage tiering opposite their product lines.
EMC leverages solid-state drives (SSDs) and Fully Automated Storage Tiering (FAST) program for programmed tiering while NetApp creates what it calls a practical storage layer.
FAST is policy-based, application-aware program that moves information between SSDs, Fibre Channel and SATA drives. It moves frequently used information to higher-performing drives, such as SSDs and FC drives, according to user-defined policies. FAST can run programmed or in user-approval mode; it works during a sub-LUN turn by relocating volumes opposite disks.
“Automated tiering is a pivotal capability to concede business to not usually boldly accommodate their opening needs though to do so in a cost-effective manner,” pronounced Jon Siegal, executive of product selling for EMC’s one storage division.
While EMC’s proceed to tiering is a normal one taken by storage vendors, NetApp approaches it differently. NetApp’s practical storage tiering does not use tiering program as EMC and others do. NetApp has a Flash Cache PCIe-based solid-state storage device that speeds opening on specific applications, such as information warehousing. It also supports SSDs in a array as other storage vendors do, though recommends that usually for business who need all reads and writes to be quick instead of rise opening on specific applications.
NetApp’s Cummings pronounced Flash Cache identifies prohibited information during a retard turn in real-time and uses a practical storage tier to pierce additional resources to support that data. He pronounced that avoids carrying to pierce information around, that could emanate intensity backup and record deletion problems.
“We demeanour during this practical storage tier and contend it’s simpler, cheaper and we don’t run into these forms of problems,” Cummings said.
Clustering one storage
Unified storage systems haven’t been famous for their clustering and high-availability capabilities. NetApp allows we to cluster your multiprotocol complement in pairs regulating a tellurian namespace during doing for business continuity, opening needs and bucket balancing, while a VNX array can run in a two-node mode.
The NetApp clusters can be distant geographically depending on your networking capabilities. During doing we prove either we wish to scale adult your complement or scale it out with clusters. Then we conclude your clusters. “So we can scale it adult or scale it out,” Cummings said. “Running scale out in a one [system] is going to supplement a garland some-more value to customers.”
The VNX array can run with dual nodes for mirroring. EMC’s Siegal pronounced a VNX family is built as a scale-up design for now, and forked business to EMC’s new Isilon Systems Inc. merger for a scale-out model.
While EMC’s and NetApp’s formula bottom and auto-tiering technologies are considerably different, conjunction has been proven to be improved than a other.
“Don’t worry about bursting those hairs,” pronounced Greg Schulz, owner and comparison researcher during StorageIO Group. “Focus on your needs when selecting a multiprotocol system. How is a performance? How is it managed? How’s a availability?” He advises people deliberation a systems to review a record differences to their specific needs to confirm that approach to go.
This was initial published in Jul 2011
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