It is very user friendly. Someone in my position needs to be able to bring up and shut down the system quickly, efficiently, and shut it down if there's a power outage quickly and efficiently without having trouble. It also supports VMware, which is what we use; but we use the NetApp as our only filer.
Improvements to My Organization:
I am trying to understand it more, so I can employ it better during high tense situations.
I have been able to manage the system easily myself since we got NetApp four years ago.
Room for Improvement:
The Ilom's graceful shutdown feature is no longer there in the version that I have. I believe I'm using 7.0.x, using the FAS 2040 and also the FAS 2020. I don't know where to say it needs improvement because I'm just not that versed in it yet.
It is excellent in terms of stability. I've had no issues during the last six years that I've had NetApp. Just recently, on one system that's been out and had a lot of controversy about, we had a filer fail on us. We were able to get a filer the following day. It was excellent.
For what we do, I can have up to close to 120,000 separate widgets running simultaneously and delivering data to other systems; and everything works, no problem. I am currently trying to find out where we’re moving ahead from here.
Technical support is excellent.
I was involved in building it. I found it a little bit grueling to get my certification to build it, but I really can't speak to the NetApp filer documentation. The documentation that we use for it is different from what NetApp uses.
Other Solutions Considered:
I didn't evaluate anything. That is done in the organization at higher levels than I am. I know that NetApp won the contract again, so they must be doing something right because we’re not going to give a contract to anybody for a bad product. Right now, I'm concentrating on our collapse-down strategy in which we're taking multiple systems and putting them all on one system. That's why I'm here. I'm curious to see how it's going to impact the filer: whether the filer is going to need to expand; whether we're going to be migrating to a new filer; and so on.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.