NetApp FAS Series Review

Double-parity RAID guarantees that our data stays intact

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case is for regular databases and file systems. So far it has been good. The performance is solid, it's robust, availability is solid.

How has it helped my organization?

We're able to keep data for a longer time because we are able to manage it well using the features that NetApp provides. It has also helped us to quickly deploy our test environment and finish all of our testing before we deploy on the customer side or the customer systems. It has really helped in our operations and our productivity.

What is most valuable?

One of the most valuable features offered is double-parity RAID, which guarantees that your data will stay intact. You can experience two disk failures and still be up. Another feature is the deduplication. It saves a lot of space. We're also able to provision storage and monitor which ones are really consuming storage.

What needs improvement?

I want to see the system automatically tier; we call it auto-tiering. When you use data, some of it goes cold. It is not hot data, so the system should automatically move that data to the SATA, while the hot data is kept on tier-one, the SaaS or SSD drives.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is solid. You can go over 3,000 days without a reboot or any downtime. It's so stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is also good. You can scale on the fly, just connect the cables. If you're adding a controller or you're adding big shelves, it's easy to move. It's excellent.

How are customer service and technical support?

I'll give technical support a "good" rating because sometimes it's slow in getting people to respond, other times it's okay.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

When I arrived at the company they were using NetApp, and we are still using NetApp.

When selecting a vendor, I first look at how robust the solution is that they're proposing, and how available they are to answer calls if there are any issues. This is very critical. The robustness of the solution and the availability of the vendor to attend to queries are important components of my selection criteria. After-sales support is also very key.

How was the initial setup?

The initial configuration is very straightforward. You just cable up your system, power up, connect your power cables, connect to the console, boot up the system, do your system configuration, IP configuration, and all the other configurations, and the system is up and good to run.

What other advice do I have?

If I were to advise someone researching NetApp FAS Storage or a similar solution, I would want to understand what they really want. I would advise them to go with NetApp because it's unified storage. It supports both NAS and SAN environments, so whether you're doing block storage or you're doing file storage, it is a good solution. Also, the operating system that it runs is called Data ONTAP, and is cloud-ready, so in the future the file storage that you have can be deployed to the cloud.

I rate this solution a 9.9 out of 10 because it's never failed me so I'm very comfortable with it.

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