NetApp Launches Midtier Storage System, FC Switch

The state-of-the-art Fibre Channel switch, when used in combination with NetApp SAN environments, simplifies installation and operation for non-IT users, the company says.

NetApp had a busy day March 5, announcing the worldwide launch of a new Cisco Systems switch designed for its own storage area networks and a new midrange SAN or network-attached storage system that can also be used as a virtualization platform.

Ciscos MDS 9124 Multilayer Fabric Switch for NetApp SANs, designed to be coupled with low-end NetApp FAS200- and midrange FAS3000-series systems, is capable of delivering cost-effective, advanced enterprise-level functionality to meet the data-management demands of small and midsized enterprise users, Network Appliance Vice President of Product Management Patrick Rogers told eWEEK.

When the MDS 9124, a 24-port Fibre Channel SAN switch, is deployed with NetApp SANs, the combination provides users with high data availability and high-end security in a "pay as you grow" port pricing model, Rogers said, in Sunnyvale, Calif.

"Because these parts are all modular in design, its relatively easy to expand a system and pay only for the functionality you need," Rogers said.

/zimages/2/28571.gifClick here to read about a support agreement between NetApp and Riverbed regarding the protection of distributed data.

The switch and the new SAN, with its 64-bit architecture, work with virtually all existing storage networks, including those from IBM, EMC, Hitachi Data Systems, and Hewlett-Packard, he said.

Major enterprise features, such as snapshots and cloning, are included in the SAN package. The switch also has a point-and-click wizard to simplify the SANs setup and management for non-IT admins, Rogers said. The MDS 9124 is compatible with the entire family of Cisco MDS 9000 switches and NetApp storage systems and is easy to deploy, requiring minimal configuration and no special training, he said.

Pricing for the MDS 9124 was unavailable from NetApp at the time of publication. For more details on the switch, go here.

NetApps newest midrange system, the FAS3040

Rogers said NetApps newest midtier-aimed storage system, the FAS3040, fits right between the entry-level FAS200 and the high-end FAS6000 systems in the NetApp product catalog.

"In a number of benchmark studies, the FAS 3040 was clearly superior to competitors, such as EMCs Celerra NS80G, in throughput and response-time performance, among other factors," Rogers said. Those results are documented on the NetApp Web site.

The FAS3040 is a versatile storage system that can be used for many purposes, Rogers said. "We expect it to be well received in large and medium-size enterprises in which it will be deployed in data center environments with databases, e-mail and other business applications. The FAS3040 will also be used in engineering environments with technical applications," he added.

Key features include scalability to 252 drives & 126TB capacity; storage tiering with FC and SATA (Serial ATA) drives; 64-bit controller architecture with high-bandwidth I/O design; integrated remote management; and integrated 4G Fibre Channel Optional 10G Ethernet.

The FAS3040, which is available now, starts at a list price of $83,000 in North America for a system with 2TB of raw storage capacity, Rogers said.

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Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...