When deploying a NetApp ONTAP Select cluster in a production environment, you can license the node storage by using the capacity tiers or capacity pools licensing model. In addition to the licensing model, you also need to select a license offering or capacity level. The license offering is independent of the licensing model and determines the size of the ONTAP Select virtual machines, as well as the available storage options and features.
Overview of licensing for production deployments
The following figure is a conceptual overview of the licensing process that presents the flow of decisions and dependencies from top to bottom. With an actual deployment, these decisions and the related tasks can be performed independently or in parallel. For this discussion, some of the administration details, such as acquiring and uploading a license file to Deploy, have been omitted.
First, you choose a licensing model, which determines how the storage is licensed. When using capacity tiers, each ONTAP Select node is individually licensed to use a specific maximum capacity. With capacity pools, a shared pool is licensed instead, and the nodes dynamically lease capacity from the pool as needed. See Using Capacity Pools Storage Licensing with ONTAP Select for more information.
Along with the licensing model, you also need to select the license offering. This determines the allowable size of the ONTAP Select virtual machines with three predefined instance types. The license offerings also define the storage options, including the following:
- Hard disk drives (HDD) versus solid-state drives (SSD)
- Hardware versus software RAID
- Direct-attached storage (DAS) versus external storage (vNAS)
In addition to the instance type and storage options, other features might be available, depending on the license offering you choose. Finally, before deploying an ONTAP Select cluster, you need to make sure that each hypervisor host meets the minimum hardware requirements for the virtual machine instance type and storage options you have selected.
Now that we’ve outlined the licensing process and dependencies at a high level, let’s look at some of the details.
License offering levels
ONTAP Select provides license offerings at three different levels. The license offering you choose entitles you to the capabilities and features of that level and all lower levels. The following table summarizes the offerings.
Note: Depending on the version of ONTAP Select you are using, there might be restrictions related to hardware RAID and vNAS with the Premium XL license and the large instance type. For the latest information, review the release notes and other documentation at the ONTAP Select product library.
Minimum hardware requirements for each instance type
You must make sure that each hypervisor host meets the minimum hardware requirements for the virtual machine instance type you choose. The following table summarizes the requirements for the three instance types.
Possible deployment scenarios
Here are a few hypothetical deployment scenarios that illustrate how ONTAP Select licensing works.
Can I use hardware RAID with the Premium license?
Yes. The Premium license supports both hardware and software RAID. You can choose the RAID type that is appropriate for your deployment environment.
Can I use a small instance type with a Premium XL license?
Yes. Each license level supports the capabilities and features of that level and all lower licensing levels. When using a Premium XL license, you can choose the small, medium, or large instance type.
Can I use SSDs with a Standard license?
No. The Standard license only supports HDD drives. If you want to use SSDs, you’ll need to upgrade to the Premium or Premium XL license offering.
Get started now!
To learn more about the ONTAP Select licensing offerings, begin by reviewing the “License” and “Plan” sections at NetApp Documentation: ONTAP Select. You can also explore evaluation licensing as well as the administrative steps needed to acquire and apply licenses.