We all know the famous Ben Franklin quote, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes.” However, several things can be said for certain about storage efficiency when you deploy NetApp® flash. Let’s start with the debate over the cost of flash.

Flash Is Expensive. True or False?

Flash storage has been around for a few years now, and it’s well understood that it delivers 10x to 20x faster performance than HDDs. However, some people still think it’s expensive when they consider the upfront acquisition cost only. And this way of thinking has become a significant barrier to flash adoption, even though the blazing speed of flash is appealing.


Fortunately, flash storage offers plenty of ways to reduce TCO and accelerate business revenue that make the investment well worth it. The significantly higher performance drives up productivity and customer satisfaction, speeds time to market, and reduces IT support costs by eliminating performance tuning and troubleshooting. At the same time, the higher capacity per drive in flash, such as 15TB SSDs, has exceeded the limit of SAS and SATA drives, combined with data reduction technologies in flash, making it possible to shrink your storage footprint by almost 20x, while cutting power and cooling costs by 10x. All of these benefits result in dramatic TCO reductions in the data center. Industry analysts point out that you can reach a 6-month payback period with your flash investment. We have seen customers like Shanghai FESCO Cloud and Mercy Technology Services gaining these incredible benefits by deploying NetApp® flash.


NetApp All-Flash Guarantee

Part of this huge reduction in data center costs comes from the storage efficiency delivered by flash storage. Data reduction technologies such as inline compression and inline deduplication make it possible to get 5x to 10x space savings as compared with HDD storage, which requires careful performance sizing for using these technologies. In some cases, HDD storage doesn’t support these technologies at all. But the amount of savings really depends on your workload type and dataset. It’s hard to predict what kind of space savings you will actually get before deployment, especially if the data you’re going to host on the all-flash system doesn’t exist yet. Some all-flash vendors are touting their storage efficiency numbers with nothing much to back them up. Wouldn’t it be nice to have guaranteed storage savings that eliminate the risk? Enter NetApp all-flash storage solutions that deliver guaranteed workload-specific storage efficiency, so you can have peace of mind in moving to flash.


NetApp has been a leader in storage efficiency since the HDD era. With the rapid move to flash storage in recent years, the company is leading the innovations in data reduction technologies in flash storage as well. Inline compression and inline deduplication deliver the industry’s leading storage efficiency in All Flash FAS and SolidFire® all-flash systems. NetApp AFF systems also support an innovative inline data compaction technology that offers increased space savings when working together with compression—up to twice as much space savings as provided by compression alone.


So how does the NetApp guarantee work? We guarantee workload-specific effective capacity based on the types of data you want to put on either our AFF A-series or SolidFire all-flash systems. For certain VDI type of workloads, this guaranteed data capacity reduction can be up to 6:1. The guarantee is based solely on data reduction technologies like compression, deduplication, and compaction; it doesn’t require snapshots or calculate thinly provisioned space as space savings, as many of our competitors do. When the customer provides workload and capacity information, NetApp calculates the specific guaranteed efficiency ratio by using intelligent sizing tools. This means that the quoted effective capacity is guaranteed. If your effective capacity does not meet the guaranteed level within 180 days of your storage system purchase, NetApp will make up the difference for free. 

Embrace Flash with Peace of Mind

When taking into consideration the storage efficiencies that come with flash storage, it is possible that SSDs cost less than HDDs in terms of $/GB of effective capacity. Imagine a modern data center that takes a fraction of the space, delivers 20x the performance, requires a third of the support staff, saves tons of money on energy bills, and for all these great benefits even costs less to own. Are you ready to take advantage of the industry’s best storage efficiency guarantee for a risk-free transition to flash?


Learn more about the NetApp All-Flash Guarantee

Ling Wang

Ling Is a product marketing manager at NetApp who has been driving flash adoption for the enterprise storage market with NetApp’s All Flash FAS (AFF) products. Ling has been working in the high-tech industry for nearly 20 years with marketing and technical expertise across a broad range of areas including enterprise storage and data management, semiconductors, wireless networking technology, embedded systems and telecommunications.

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