NetApp is on a journey. Today we announced exciting new milestones on that journey, but here I want to share some of the intimate details of the most major transformation NetApp has undergone as a company.

 

Very broadly, it comes down to this: We are more focused than ever on putting our customers first. That’s not a novel concept, though. It’s something every business should do. What matters is not just saying “we put our customers first,” but explicitly defining how we do that.

 

So here it is: At NetApp, we put our customers first by creating technologies that enable them to focus intently on their most strategic asset — their data. Our entire purpose has shifted to empowering our customers to change the world with data.

 

Why data? Because digital is transforming business as we know it. 67% of CEOs in the Global 2000 are putting digital transformation at the center of their growth and profitability strategies. And data — as I am sure you’ve heard before – is the lifeblood needed to compete in this newly transformed and rewired world.

 

But there is pressure. Pressure to use this wealth of data; to apply it to create new value across the entire organization; to do so with limited time and budget.

 

Adding to that complexity, your data is out there. It is distributed, dynamic, and diverse — and it is overwhelmingly difficult to manage.

 

To thrive as a business today is to become data-centric. This is no small undertaking.

 

This week at Insight 2017 we’re talking about an impressive amount of new technology, in NetApp® ONTAP® 9.3, NetApp Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI), SolidFire Element® OS 10, StorageGRID Webscale 11, OnCommand Insight®, and more. … this is a lot of products whose names, together, can sound like a lot of noise. Here I will share NetApp’s vision of a differentiated Data Fabric strategy that weaves it all together to unleash the power of data to achieve a new competitive advantage.

 

The NetApp Data Fabric enables businesses and their people to do three primary things.

1) Harness the Power of the Hybrid Cloud

The cloud offers flexibility, new services, and a nearly infinite range of compute and storage resources. We bring those capabilities within reach of our customers, whether that’s through providing native cloud interfaces on our all-flash arrays, offering monthly subscription purchasing across our portfolio, or providing unique SaaS-based capabilities.

 

What’s new:

  • Powering NFS in Azure with ONTAP. NetApp ONTAP is the world’s #1 branded storage operating system.*
  • OnCommand® Insight updates. Cost awareness and accountability for your hybrid cloud infrastructure.
  • Cloud Control for Office 365 updates. Now Office 365 customers who are looking to protect their Exchange, SharePoint, and OneDrive data can choose among multiple storage domains including AWS S3, Azure Blob, and NetApp StorageGRID (for on premises) to store their business-critical data. The addition of new AWS data centers expands the reach of Cloud Control for Microsoft Office 365 expansion, which now covers North America, Europe, and APAC. Now European O365 customers can access the NetApp Cloud Control for Microsoft Office 365 service from this AWS European region to realize lower latency and faster response times.
  • AltaVault updates. With support for Microsoft Azure archive storage, you can select hot, cool, or cold storage according to your data protection needs. Additionally, we have an integrated backup solution that includes AltaVault, Veritas Backup Exec, and Microsoft Azure via CDW.

We are reaching for the cloud — and we’re doing it quickly.

2) Build a Next-Generation Data Center

As companies move from traditional infrastructure to the next-generation data center, they have more options than ever before.

 

NetApp’s next-generation data center portfolio is designed for companies that are building an orchestrated environment that enables consuming IT as a service. We’ve targeted private clouds, modern applications, and DevOps environments to provide programmable infrastructures that are simple (no storage administrator needed), deployed in minutes, and managed through open APIs. They can be partitioned by application and can load balance and scale automatically.

 

  • SolidFire Element OS 10 powers SolidFire® all-flash arrays, NetApp HCI and FlexPod® SF, enabling customers to consume agile storage in a manner that best aligns with their business goals. Its on-demand scaling, API-driven automation, and assured performance  help customers simplify storage consumption and optimize the management of their data center. New features in Element OS 10 include a disaster recovery solution based on SnapMirror® replication that provides native data movement between Element based and ONTAP based storage systems, user-defined QoS policies that simplify management of guarantee storage performance, and improved reporting for OnCommand Insight.
  • StorageGRID Webscale 11. The tightest integration and operation with Amazon Web Services (AWS) available. Users can implement hybrid cloud data pipelines with AWS, instantly mirror their on-premises data with Amazon S3 by using StorageGRID Webscale CloudMirror technology​, and efficiently use serverless computing data services such as EMR, Rekognition, Elastic Search – even with on-premises storage.​

3. Modernize Storage through Data Management

We’re helping our customers accelerate applications with leading flash performance and application integrations, while leveraging the power of our hybrid cloud capabilities to extend data centers.

 

  • ONTAP 9 achieved a new world record for the SPEC SFS®2014_swbuild benchmark with the ONTAP 9 powered FAS8200 hybrid-flash system. This benchmark shows NetApp delivers the greatest number of builds, highest performance (IOPS) and the fastest overall response time for demanding engineering and design workloads.
  • ONTAP 9.3, the newest ONTAP version, further increases performance, efficiency and security.
    • Improve performance by 40% for All Flash FAS systems with new data path optimizations and assure application performance with adaptive Quality of Service that automatically modifies QoS parameters as workloads grow or shrink.
    • Improve storage efficiency by 30% with deduplication optimizations.
    • Improve security with support for external key management of NetApp Volume Encryption.

All of these technologies work together to make up part of the Data Fabric that will help NetApp customers unleash data to its full potential.

 

I’m talking about consistent and integrated data management services and applications for data visibility and insights, data access and control, and data protection and security. ​ Together, these technologies will accelerate digital transformation and allow your business to address its highest imperatives.

 

The power of that transformation is a new competitive advantage that will rule in a #datadriven world. We’re making sure our customers are in the lead.

 

We hope you leave Insight 2017 feeling empowered to change the world with data. If you can’t join us in person, follow the discussions to see what the coming months hold for NetApp customers.

 

* Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker Q2 2017 – October 2014 (Open Networked Disk Storage System revenue).

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Adam Fore