back to article NetApp shrinky-dinks ONTAP 9: Will support 4:1 data reduction

NetApp has re-engineered Data ONTAP, its main, FAS array operating system, to make better use of flash storage, and operate across software-only and cloud deployments to form what NetApp calls a data fabric. The upgrade from Data ONTAP v8 is called ONTAP 9, and NetApp says it is a simpler system to operate, claiming it can be …

  1. Vaughn Stewart

    NetApp should clarify the 4:1 claim

    Disclaimer -- Pure Storage employee and former member of NetApp

    I applaud the innovation I'm sure the engineering teams at NetApp have developed. With that said, I'd like to see NetApp elaborate on their 4:1 claims.

    You may recall, NetApp has (and currently) claims Data ONTAP can deliver up to 933:1 data reduction (refer to http://www.netapp.com/us/products/storage-systems/all-flash-fas/all-flash-fas-software.aspx)

    Customers lose when the storage storage industry hides technical details behind marketing claims. The Register should ensure that all vendors disclose the data reduction technologies that comprise their claims, wether they be 4:1 or 933:1.

    Ideally the new 'data compaction' engine (a term that HPE also uses) will allow NetApp to publish results based on data reduction technologies (like dedupe and compression) versus their historic perpensisty to include point in time restores (snapshots) and dynamic provisioning and allocation mechanisms (like thin provisioning, zero removal, pattern removal and unmap) in their over stated data reduction results.

    As data reduction is the new norm in storage, it's time to ensure The vendors speak a common language.

    Nice work NetApp.

    - cheers,

    v

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: NetApp should clarify the 4:1 claim

      Yes, I was wondering if there was going to be any small print associated with that 4:1 claim.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: NetApp should clarify the 4:1 claim

        Including thin provisioning is rediculous.

        1. Roland 2

          Re: NetApp should clarify the 4:1 claim

          > Including thin provisioning is rediculous.

          I think it's fantastic. Allows the customer to upgrade from 4:1 to 400:1 in a second by just thin provisioning more non-existant space.

          Seriously, any vendor claim is legitimate if it documents exactly what ratio can be attributed to what reduction technology. Like Compression 2:1, dedupe 2:1 Thin provisioning:1.5:1 Overall 6:1

          You may then get a quick figure for a given use case. Like database of unique png images, 20% thin provisioned: ratio = 1.2:1

          I'm not sure Pure is much more transparent in that respect.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: NetApp should clarify the 4:1 claim

          So is mistyping ridiculous and propensity...

    2. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

      Re: NetApp should clarify the 4:1 claim

      Yeah, what a load of old bollocks.

      "guaranteed data efficiency reduction of 4:1"

      And what do I get when Netapp cannot meet this? Because I promise you that for at least 5 of my customers there is no way on Jibbers' brown Earth that you're going to get greater than 1.3:1 data efficiency out of their data. It simply is not going to happen.

      I'm really afraid of storage companies "guaranteeing" this sort of thing. Some of my clients might well be sucked in, sink a pile of money they don't really have into a bullshit claim by a "brand name" vendor, and then get screwed when it doesn't work, possibly having to go out of business.

      Thanks, Netapp, you've made a bunch of work for me as I have to go proactively fight your bullshit marketing message. Goddamn it.

  2. dikrek

    Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

    Hi all, Dimitris from Nimble (ex-NetApp).

    Several vendors show a single efficiency number that is nebulous and includes all kinds of stuff, including thin provisioning and snapshots. Diving into the true savings often reveals a much less compelling story.

    It is more appropriate to be able to show what efficiency is coming from where. For instance, this much saving from dedupe, this much from compression, this much from clones, stuff like that.

    A guarantee needs to be clear regarding what precisely is counted in the data reduction.

    I've written a vendor-agnostic article on this subject:

    http://recoverymonkey.org/2016/05/19/the-importance-of-the-effective-capacity-ratio-in-modern-storage-systems/

    Thx

    D

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

      "Hi all, Dimitris from Nimble (ex-NetApp)."

      How could NetApp let such a loyal fanboy go?

      Or - are you smarter than I thought and resigned.....?

      1. dikrek
        Coat

        Re: Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

        Oh, I resigned all right. Far too many bad decisions one after another. Far too much management fluff. Out of respect for my former colleagues I will not elaborate further. The market will show whether cancelling an extremely promising product like FlashRay and buying SolidFire instead was the correct decision, for example.

        I had my pick of vendors to join and I joined Nimble. And it wasn't about the highest bidder or anything crass like that. I like having purpose and making a difference. And the products are amazing.

        InfoSight is far, far more than Nimble markets it as, and the Nimble AFA systems have more innovation in them than several competitors combined, again under marketed.

        Exciting times ahead!

        Thx

        D

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

          Hi Dimitris, here's my experience with NetApp:

          "I may not be a good manager, but I'd like to think I'm a good leader..."

          -> These skills and character traits are complementary. I've heard above line 3 times in my life and all 3 "managers" turned out to be duds. This line is a lame excuse. A company can only absorb so many leaders without management skills...

          "I don't know much about storage, but I've worked in the channel before and we sold xyz..."

          -> Go back to the pub where you can do less damage to the company....

          "I'm not technical but it's all about relationships anyway...."

          -> No it's not. You need to know your shit before you can built relationships. The "high-tech" industry is not for you with that attitude. Even in sales.

          "We size the solution based on what the customer is willing to pay, otherwise they'll go to our competitor..."

          -> There go NetApp's core values....

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

          Disclaimer - Ex-NetApp Employee

          I think every company has its own set of challenges like we all have in our families and life.

          I'm not saying this because I want to join back NetApp but because they are still trying.

          As Dave Hitz said in the latest TFD, everyone takes decisions some great some not so great.

          I think I will still give NetApp its due respect to bounce back. I see some places people have written NetApp-off the competition. One thing I have learnt from Sports is 'Every Day is a Fresh Start'.

          1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

            Re: Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

            Trying is not succeeding. And Netapp isn't actually changing the culture of the company...and it was the "I have a hammer, and all the world's a nail" culture that was the problem to begin with!

            Netapp lashes out at criticism - especially valid criticism - and actively promotes the concept of its own infallibility and manifest destiny. This is why it fails. Until it can solve these cultural issues, it will continue to fail. No matter who is in the driver's seat.

    3. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

      Re: Beware of what is being included in the data reduction ratio

      Dude, you went to Nimble? When did this happen? Hope the new company is treating you well.

      It's nice to see you coming around and realizing what I've been saying for some time: that Netapp makes stupid decisions and if they keep it up they're going to piss away all their quality staff, their customers, and their developer ecosystem (such as it is). I.E. they need to shape up or they're fucked.

      Cheers!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The upgrade from Data ONTAP v8 is called ONTAP 9, and NetApp says it is a simpler system to operate, claiming it can be deployed and serving data in as few as 10 minutes."

    Netapp PS now charge by the minute.... Say a1000$ per minutes makes 10.000$ for a simple deplyment.

    1. ZenaB

      The recent 8.x versions have introduced far simpler upgrades - no more of this step by step CLI stuff, it's now give it the new version and click go, pretty much!

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Numbers....

    It's a bit sad when NetApp tries to impress with numbers ...

    - 10 minute to deploy

    - 4:1 data reduction

    - x % more performance

    They clearly target inexperienced customers that are easily impressed with such claims.

    Its also a desperate move to get some PR.

    NetApps real strategy is hoping that competitors go out of business faster than NetApp does....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      10 minutes to deploy...

      but they left out it takes 50 hours a week to manage and days to troubleshoot.

      Some things don't change...in this case it's most.

      Still good ol' Clustered ONTAP

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ontap 9 - 8 Mode - c Mode

    Just to be pedantic... I bet the customers are queuing up to be the guinea pig. Just like they did with FlashRay.

    Fun aside - calling it Ontap 9 is the smartest thing I've seen NetApp do since inventing snapshots.

    It doesn't matter if Ontap 9 is just as half baked as 8, but getting rid of that cDOT / cMode nonsense will probably slow down the damage their marketing team has done.

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