Over the past year I have been to a number of VMUGs (VMware User Group) meetings and have sat in on some of the NetApp sessions on their clustered Data ONTAP release. NetApp have also realized that the demand is there for scale-out, and they have introduced their very own unified scale-out storage solution called clustered Data ONTAP. Basically, this allows you to take a bunch of different NetApp storage array models and cluster them together to provide a single, unified and virtualized share storage pool. Using clustered Data ONTAP 8.2, NetApp customers can now increase scalability using a scale-out rather than a scale-up approach. Let’s look at clustered Data ONTAP and some of the new features it brings in more detail.
Clustered ONTAP can scale both vertically and horizontally via the addition of nodes and/or additional storage to the cluster.
As you can imagine from NetApp clustered Data ONTAP has the full range of data services ranging from data replication, thin provisioning, snapshots and cloning through to deduplication and compression.
The SVM or Storage Virtual Machine functionality enables
Quality of Service
One final point to make is the new Quality of Service (QoS) feature introduced in clustered Data ONTAP 8.2. QoS allows you to limit the amount of I/O sent to an SVM, a volume, a LUN, or a file. The I/O can be limited either by the number of operations or the raw throughout and can be dynamically changed on-the-fly. I need to make further inquiries into how this QoS feature inter-operates with VMware’s Storage I/O Control feature, and indeed Storage DRS. A discussion for another time perhaps.
As I didn’t have a clustered ONTAP 8.2 system at my disposal, much of this information was provided by Joel Kaufman of NetApp. Thank you Joel. Information in this post has also leveraged the contents of the NetApp Clustered Data ONTAP TR-3982 white paper by Charlotte Brooks. Much greater detail around clustered Data ONTAP 8.2 can be found in that collateral.