NetApp Wednesday unveiled the FAS8000 appliance, a new scale-out storage system with a storage virtualization option that, together, will simplify the company's product line by replacing three other product families.
The new FAS8000 is the industry's first enterprise storage system to combine SAN and NAS capabilities with the ability to virtualize the storage found in third-party storage arrays, said Mark Welke, senior director of product marketing at NetApp, Sunnyvale, Calif.
The FAS8000 combines NetApp's scale-out enterprise storage with data center best practices based on NetApp's new Clustered Data ONTAP architecture, Welke said.
With the introduction of the FAS8000 family, which is coming to market with three models, NetApp is also on the way to ending production of the FAS6000 enterprise and FAS3000 midrange line of unified SAN/NAS appliances, Welke said. The FAS2000 will remain NetApp's entry-level storage solution offering.
The FAS8000 family offers twice the performance of the outgoing lines due to the adoption of Intel Sandy Bridge processors combined with the ability to address more memory and more processor cores, Welke said.
"All these allow us to also expand flash storage capacity," he said. "You'll be able to add up to three times the amount of flash as before."
The FAS8000 also includes new converged adapters in NetApp's Unified Target Adapter family featuring both 10-Gbit Ethernet and 16-Gbit Fibre Channel in the same adapter, Welke said. "We're the first to offer this combination," he said.
The FAS8000 is a good consolidation move for NetApp, said John Woodall, vice president of engineering at Integrated Archive Systems (IAS), a Palo Alto, Calif.-based solution provider and longtime NetApp partner.
"If you look at it from a Clustered Data ONTAP perspective, you can build a storage infrastructure from standard data blocks," Woodall said. "NetApp has always been about providing customers with a single platform that can be managed with a single skill set. Now they're going even further. A customer can now use Fibre Channel over Ethernet with Cisco UCS servers, or Fibre Channel to work with Cisco or Brocade storage fabrics."
The FAS8000 appliances will be supported by Cisco, which partners with NetApp in developing FlexPod reference architectures.
NetApp also unveiled its FlexArray virtualization software, which has the capabilities of NetApp's V-series virtualization appliances.
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