NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP Review

Easy-to-use GUI and improves our speed to market, but better Active IQ integration would be an improvement

What is our primary use case?

We use this solution to manage all of our NetApp storage.

We have been having good luck with this solution's snapshot copies and thin clones, in terms of operational recovery. We are looking forward to encryption for the snapshots.

Our version does not support inline encryption using SnapMirror, so we're not at that point yet.

With respect to this solution's unified file and block storage access, we only use block-storage and it fits the needs of our customers. We serve internal customer bases, which feed the customers on the outside. For us, it is the right fit.

We don't have anything in the Hyperscaler environment right now. Everything is internal to us.

How has it helped my organization?

This solution has helped us because it is easy to use. The ability to find things in the GUI and being able to restore things has been really simple for us.

The Snapshot copies have helped increase our application development speed, especially in testing because we can blow things up and restore it really quickly. Speed to market is where it really helps.

In terms of the consistency of storage management across clouds, this is something that is critical to us because we have several locations. Each of those locations has the infrastructure in place, including some that are overseas. It has become more and more critical for us to manage those things centrally.

In our case, using this solution has not helped to reduce our data footprint in the cloud. If anything, it's growing.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see better integration with Active IQ. I know they're making strides for that, and some of the tools are being mimicked in Active IQ now so that I can look at the same information. If the footprint looks right and the GUI looks the same to us, it'll be more effective for us down the road in the long-term.

Encryption is very important for us going forward because we sometimes store data out of the country, and sometimes overseas. We are looking forward to more in terms of encryption, including the inline encryption for SnapMirror and things of that nature.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have had no problems with the code levels, or anything else. We get the occasional bugs as everybody does, but the code, overall, has been really good for us.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We haven't hit the upper boundaries of the solution, so I don't think that scalability is going to be a problem for us in the near future.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support has been pretty good. Whenever we open a ticket or a case, they've been really responsive.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup and subsequent upgrades have not been difficult for us.

The documentation and the reference architecture on the NetApp portals are very well defined.

What about the implementation team?

We deployed the solution ourselves.

We did not use the NetApp Cloud Manager during our initial setup.

What other advice do I have?

The speed to market with the encryption has really been a nagging thing for a lot of folks in our industry, so I'm glad to see that they're finally getting around to encrypting things, including the traffic in between SnapMirrors.

NetApp has been around for a long time. They're an established company and there's a lot of big companies using NetApp, so I think that the new stands for itself. When you're comparing it to other companies in the industry, NetApp is one of the leaders.

I would rate this solution a seven out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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