NetApp SnapCenter Pros and Cons

NetApp SnapCenter Pros

Aaron Isaacson
Storage Administrator at a aerospace/defense firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
The way that it interconnects with VMware is really handy, because you can go right into your vSphere client, where you spend a lot of the day anyway, right-click on one of the VMs where you have backups running for however long, and you can restore either some files or restore the entire thing.
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Ivo Dissel
Senior Systems Administrator at a healthcare company with 5,001-10,000 employees
A feature that stands out is cloning databases. If you have a SQL database and it's huge, like one terabyte, the classical SQL way would be to do a backup-restore to create a clone of your database for test purposes. With SnapCenter now, we can clone a database but through the Snapshot technology, which means if you right-click and you click Clone, the one terabyte database is there instantly.
The backup process finishes very quickly.
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Christian Gruetzner
Architect, Storage Services at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
The most valuable feature is that it's centralized. In the old SnapManager days, we had software for each server. Now, with a centralized system, we're able to manage all systems remotely, and all agents remotely, and update them remotely. That's a huge benefit for us.
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Manuel Maurer
ICT System Engineer at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
The centralized GUI is the best feature, that there is only one webpage where we can see the states of all the backup jobs. We can see all the tasks that are running and we can quickly see if one fails; if they are running or have any issues. We have all that in one place.
It's integrated with VMware vCenter. You can also see the backups there and you can do a restore completely out of vCenter.
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Engineer1785
Engineer at a non-profit with 201-500 employees
The backup features are the most valuable because they allow the DBAs to replace SnapManager for Oracle (SMO), which is going away, and to do cloning as well. We can also clone to different servers and have the actual backup clone mounted on different servers. And we can split easily too.
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SysEngineer3401
Senior Systems Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
The central pane view is the most valuable feature. You have one console where you can monitor all your jobs, as opposed to going to different vCenters.
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Matthieu Devulder
Support Manager at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
What is very handy for our clients is the consolidated view. They have a dashboard with everything, through a single pane of glass. This is what they really need because, within seconds, they can have a good overview and see if there are any errors or any issues.
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Rostislav Pilka
Senior Systems Engineer at Our Space Appliances
We have been very satisfied with the technical support's help. Their knowledge level is great. For a noncritical question, they will get back to us within a day.
The main advantage is its fast backup and restore.
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Keith Alioto
Lead Storage Engineer at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
Being able to add everything in as resource groups is a valuable feature... Having all the SQL servers put into specific buckets, based on their year of release - 2008, 2012, 2014 - allows us to get almost immediate backups that are easily seen and reported on.
The reporting feature has been particularly beneficial to upper management... When you do manual backups, you do not get the benefit of seeing successes and failures and how often you have to do restores. With SnapCenter, you get all of that.
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StorageA7b81
Storage Administrator at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
I like the instant backups and recovery feature that SnapCenter provides within NetApp storage systems.
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NetApp SnapCenter Cons

Aaron Isaacson
Storage Administrator at a aerospace/defense firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
There is one area that needs improvement and that's in the alerting. When you set up your SMTP alerts, it only has - and I don't understand why - the ability to send an anonymous SMTP. It doesn't do basic authentication, which frustrated me for a while until I figured out that I'm not missing something. It's just not there.
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Ivo Dissel
Senior Systems Administrator at a healthcare company with 5,001-10,000 employees
I feel a little bit that during the whole process of putting this software into production we were like a beta program. It was full of bugs... For example, we had a problem with truncating our Exchange log files... It has improved over time.
The GUI is still so-so. I' don't use the GUI that often anymore because it's really slow, refreshing disks, refreshing hosts, and you have to click a lot.
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Christian Gruetzner
Architect, Storage Services at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
We have hundreds of servers and systems and hundreds of customers and they're separated in a multi-tenancy way in NetApp SVM. Right now, the problem is that it always scan all SVMs. If I backup Customer A, it scans all SVMs, or tries to scan all SVMs, if there is a backup relationship on the storage. But it doesn't have the permissions, so we run into timeouts or the backup just takes too long. They're fixing that in the upcoming release...
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Manuel Maurer
ICT System Engineer at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
When you have role-based access, for example, it's a bit of a problem that the person who creates the backup job is the owner of it. We are struggling a bit with this, that everyone has the same view and the same permissions in there.
If it was possible to create backups on non-NetApp storage, that would be helpful.
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Engineer1785
Engineer at a non-profit with 201-500 employees
The DBAs are comparing it to SMO but it doesn't have a lot of the functionalities that SMO has.
My major issue is when I upgrade. I have to touch every last client that I have in SnapCenter, and right now I have 60... They said that in another release that will get better, but right now it's not better and I've had to do this three times.
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SysEngineer3401
Senior Systems Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
We tend to have a lot of Hyper-V... so now we have two management consoles and we would ideally like to leverage SnapCenter to include Hyper-V.
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Matthieu Devulder
Support Manager at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
What I did witness lately are issues with some Microsoft KBs, the updates. But it happened only once, and not on a major platform, it was on a small one.
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Rostislav Pilka
Senior Systems Engineer at Our Space Appliances
Some of the minor functionalities from SnapManager did not transfer over to SnapCenter. These should be added in future releases.
The Microsoft environment is its biggest disadvantage due to the central management of all the actions. Because the SnapCenter server is where we deploy everything, it also affects the Microsoft environment, which can cause many difficulties when resolving issues like Windows update problems.
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Keith Alioto
Lead Storage Engineer at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
The documentation could be a little bit better so that we could handle more of the troubleshooting ourselves, rather than having to go through support.
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StorageA7b81
Storage Administrator at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
I would like to see replication support between systems. Right now, it's kind of limited. We manage them separately from the storage system interface, not from SnapCenter. It would be nice if it was integrated into SnapCenter.
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