Like an on-ramp to an expressway, the FlexPod® converged infrastructure solution from NetApp and Cisco is an on-ramp to the public cloud. FlexPod is already a converged infrastructure standard, but what connects FlexPod to the public cloud?

 

A lesser known fact about the FlexPod standard is that it also integrates advanced cloud services (backup, synchronization, disaster recovery, tiering) with the only hybrid multicloud converged infrastructure stack that uses a data fabric powered by NetApp® technology. This data fabric is an architecture and a set of data services that give you consistent capabilities across your choice of endpoints, spanning on-premises environments, edge workloads, and multiple public cloud environments.

 

These words don’t mean vague future possibilities or promises or beta implementation. The FlexPod platform can be part of your hybrid cloud strategy today.

What Is the FlexPod Platform?

Your first question might be, “Where can I go to learn what a FlexPod platform is?”

You can start here: FlexPod  is astandardized converged infrastructure solution from NetApp and Cisco. FlexPod, like electricity, is standardized across all your data center workloads. The FlexPod standard can handle both your large, mission-critical applications and your edge workloads.

 

Exciting innovations like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) or electronic health records (EHRs) plug into the same industry-leading standardized components. For example, they can plug into NetApp AFF and FAS arrays, Cisco Unified Computing System (Cisco UCS) servers, and Cisco Nexus and MDS switches.

 

FlexPod is constantly evolving and becoming more innovative. We have added new Cisco Validated Designs (CVDs) and NetApp Verified Architectures (NVAs) to the FlexPod family of 170+ standard solutions. Your system can achieve high performance of modern enterprise applications that run even the largest and most complex mission-critical workloads, like VMware, Oracle Real Application Clusters (RAC), Microsoft SQL Server, and SAP.

 

What Value Does FlexPod Provide?

Now that you know what FlexPod is, your second question might be about the value that you gain from it. FlexPod delivers significant business value in helping you modernize your data center. A recent IDC survey* of numerous FlexPod customers of all sizes revealed the specifics of this value. These survey results are further proof from FlexPod customers of the platform’s superior overall value proposition and business benefits, including:

 

  • 65% more time spent on innovation and new projects instead of on data management
  • 61% improvement in application performance
  • 60% decrease in the number of unplanned downtime incidents
  • 34% decrease in data center floor space required
  • 29% reduction in power and cooling usage
  • 24% savings in software capital expenditures

What Is a Data Fabric?

Your third question might be, “What is a NetApp powered data fabric in a FlexPod context?”

 

FlexPod uses NetApp ONTAP® based storage arrays. The data fabric is a part of ONTAP. To accelerate your digital transformation, a data fabric that’s powered by NetApp ONTAP simplifies and integrates data management across the cloud and your on-premises environment. This data fabric delivers consistent and integrated hybrid cloud data services, so you get optimal data visibility and insights, data access and control, and data protection and security.

 

You can also use Cisco CloudCenter with FlexPod to securely deploy and manage your applications in multiple data center, private cloud, and public cloud environments. This software solution helps you modernize and automate your data center, or you can add public cloud application deployment to your service offerings.

 

In other words, the “Flex” in “FlexPod” now extends to the public cloud. So you can have the same data services and management for your on-premises FlexPod platform and your hybrid cloud.

Can I Learn More at NetApp Insight?

And you might have a fourth question: “At the NetApp Insight conference, how can I learn more about FlexPod and its ability to be an on-ramp to the hybrid cloud?”

 

And the answer is to visit the NetApp or Cisco booths, watch FlexPod demonstrations, and attend FlexPod breakout sessions.

 

NetApp Insight 2019 is a global event for NetApp customers and partners. At NetApp Insight, the data fabric will be one of the many NetApp powered technologies on display. As a current or prospective customer, you can learn how to build a data fabric for a multicloud world—a world that absolutely includes FlexPod.

 

And if you’re an IT or cloud professional, developer, or partner, you can take a deep dive into NetApp solutions at NetApp Insight. You can see how others deploy NetApp technology to transform their business and to harness the power of hybrid multicloud infrastructure.

 

FlexPod is the optimal on-premises vehicle for your on-ramp to the hybrid and public cloud. FlexPod is an integral part of the NetApp business and is a full-fledged member of the data fabric delivered by NetApp. That’s why FlexPod will have a large presence at NetApp Insight.

 

If you’re going to attend NetApp Insight, you will have many avenues to learn more about the FlexPod platform. Take advantage of these FlexPod learning opportunities at NetApp Insight:

 

  • See FlexPod hardware firsthand in the Enterprise Applications and Private Cloud booths.
  • Watch a FlexPod demonstration in the Cisco booth and in the Enterprise Applications areas.
  • Attend FlexPod breakout sessions:
    • 1247-2, Automate FlexPod Operations and Simplify Management with Converged Systems Advisor
    • 1260-1, Are You Up to Date with All the FlexPod Innovations?
    • 1262-1, FlexPod Managed Services for AI
    • 1263-1, Accelerate and Innovate Healthcare IT Service Delivery with FlexPod Solutions
    • 1321-1, NetApp HCI, CI, and ONTAP: The Better-Together Story with the NetApp Data Fabric
  • Customer Presented Session:
    • 2010-1, Outscale: Design and Run Your Own Cloud with TINA On-Premise, the FlexPod Based Cloud Solution
  • Attend Pavilion Theater sessions:
    • 4017-1, Automate Lifecycle Management of FlexPod Converged Infrastructure
    • 4022-1, Triple Performance with Half the Resources Using Memory-Accelerated FlexPod
  • Reserve your spot for these sessions today and add them to your calendar. Sessions are filling up fast!

We look forward to meeting you at NetApp Insight. Be sure to stop by the Cisco booth and the NetApp booth to learn more about how the converged infrastructure standard FlexPod can become the on-ramp to your hybrid cloud strategy.

 

In the meantime, to get more information about FlexPod, please visit:

 

*Survey done by IDC for Cisco and NetApp

Bruno Messina

Bruno Messina joined NetApp in 2018 and works in product marketing for FlexPod. His previous experience includes a career in product marketing of UCS servers for Cisco Systems and Solaris server marketing and competitive analysis at both Oracle and Sun Microsystems, where he joined in 2000. Bruno spent ten years in various roles of competitive analysis and product management at Sun Microsystems, leading analysis in both the workgroup and enterprise servers. Prior to Sun Microsystems, Bruno spent time finishing his MBA education and worked for two years at Cadence working on product marketing for both board-level and board timing tools. Bruno holds both a BSEE and MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y..