What is our primary use case?
The main reason we use NetApp SnapMirror is to try to have a disaster recovery site. We want to have the possibility to do disaster recovery to failover to another site when there is a problem, but also to failover to another site during maintenance, for instance. So if the customers are going to do some maintenance, they can failover to the other site and keep on running.
What needs improvement?
The product itself doesn't have any big issues. What is lacking and what we need to use other products for, is to have active data centers. You need to implement another solution for it, but that is also available from NetApp. So I don't think there is an option to put that into SnapMirror either. It's lacking that functionality but it's available with other solutions from the same vendor.
For how long have I used the solution?
I've been using this solution for more than 20 years now.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
The solution is very stable.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
There are some limitations when it comes to the scalability of the solution, but I don't know where the limitation is. There is often a limitation in the communication line between the sites. Also, a large part of the data is changed because all changes are replicated from one site to the other. So I'll say it's a mathematical issue. The developers should have a communication line that is packed enough to transport all the changes.
How are customer service and technical support?
My understanding is that the technical support is good, but we don't need much support because it's working fine. Since we have been working with the solution for 20 years, we have very good internal competence. So it's very seldom that we have to call support.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
We've used other vendors from time to time, but it is more because of political issues - nothing technical.
How was the initial setup?
The initial setup was quite straightforward. One has to implement one hardware system on two sites and then implement the functionality to mirror between the two sites. It doesn't take very long. So one has to implement and get the one site up and running first, and then implement the second site and get that up and running too. Then one can do the metering between them.
What other advice do I have?
My advice to others would be to do a test run first, to see is the solution does what you want it to do. On a scale from one to ten, I will rate the solution an eight, because it doesn't solve all our issues. But it is easy to implement, easy to set up, and it works.