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NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS) Valuable Features

Daniel Rúnar  Friðþjófsson - PeerSpot reviewer
Storage Administrator at Sensa ehf.

NetApp Snapshots are one of its best features. 

Its multi-tenant purpose: You can have one method for many customers with no interaction to one another. 

The simplicity of making it work correctly is the most loved feature of it all.

AFF definitely helps simplify data management with unified data services across NAS environments.

The ONTAP system, when you know how it works, is really simple and intuitive. 

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MohanReddy - PeerSpot reviewer
Sr. Technology Architect at a pharma/biotech company with 10,001+ employees

AFF is user-friendly. A person who has no experience with NetApp can handle it comfortably. Regarding features, SnapMirror is one we depend on right now. It helps us provide snapshots to the customers on request. There are many scenarios in which we might take snapshots in various daily use cases. We trigger the snapshots, which gives us a sense of security because we know we have this technology in place if something happens.

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HM
Senior Consultant at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees

The most valuable feature is its ability to handle high-intensity read and write operations. It works very well in terms of this.

We recently started using the volume encryption feature, which is helpful because there are some federal projects that require data at rest to be encrypted.

SnapMirror is another feature that we use, but we don't have MetroCluster set up. SnapMirror is used for replication across multiple geographical data centers. In these locations, we have products and we are exploring how to minimize the bandwidth while improving DR capabilities. With respect to the DR, we don't use the AFF in secondary nodes.

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Buyer's Guide
NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
July 2022
Learn what your peers think about NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS). Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: July 2022.
621,703 professionals have used our research since 2012.
RA
Director, IT Infrastructure Services at a university with 1,001-5,000 employees

We found its Snapshots to be quite valuable. They allow us to restore data, in a timely fashion, that has accidentally been overwritten, modified, or deleted. That is the biggest feature. 

In terms of the footprint, it is far more efficient. It has smaller, higher-capacity drives than our older unit. In terms of space, power, and cooling, it has simplified things.

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MD
AWS Solutions Architect at a pharma/biotech company with 10,001+ employees

I have found the following features of NetApp AFF most valuable: Snapshot, snap clone, deduplication, and compaction. 

These features help with data protection. We host an exchange, so protecting our data and workloads is of prime importance.

This solution helps accelerate demanding enterprise applications. VMware workloads, the database, and Oracle Solaris are hosted on AFF, which means that our primary priority workloads are on AFF and that the secondary ones are on FAS. That includes the SAN national cloud.

Initiating Snapshot is not time consuming, and it is not tedious. That's the reason why FlexClone and FlexCache help us with our protection care strategy.

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Pedro Paz - PeerSpot reviewer
System Engineer at Eni Energies et Services

We wanted the replication and SnapMirror and those types of features in case an event occurs. That way, we have a proper system so that we can recover the data properly. One of the main features that we love about the system is the ability to create snapshots. NetApp makes a lot of snapshots in a short space of time.

Also, the speed of data recovery with NetApp, at the time we need it, is an important feature that we love.

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Swann Adjemian - PeerSpot reviewer
Director of the Projects Department at ALPIX

The most valuable features are 

  • performance
  • storage efficiency, due to the compression and deduplication.

We use StorageGrid in two ways. The first usage is stand-alone to provide S3 object storage. And the second use case is to use FabricPool, the NetApp technology that moves a snapshot from the AFF to AWS. It's a very good solution because AFF is SSD technology, meaning the storage is expensive. It's very helpful to have the ability to move cold data, like a snapshot, out of the SSD.

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SJ
AIX and Storage Specialist at a computer software company with 1,001-5,000 employees

The deduplication is the most valuable feature. When you have multiple systems with almost the same data, the deduplication helps save on capacity. It is why the box can be overprovisioned. This is very useful in the case where immediate space is required for an application or teams. It also provides good efficiency when provisioning deduplication compression. These efficiencies are very useful compared to other products.

AFF has helped simplify data management with unified data infrastructure (UDI) across SAN and NAS environments. This is very important. Nowadays, UDI is gaining market share for NetApp. 

Its virtualization knowledge is very useful. Also, the Active IQ technology of NetApp is very useful, which uses AI to give suggestions to customers.

The ONTAP data management software has simplified our clients' operations to an extent. The auto support feature gives unique notifications, which simplifies the management. Plus, there have been enhancements in the GUI compared to previous versions, which has simplified things. 

We use synchronous replication with SnapMirror. We can failover and failback very easily. We can failover the site to another, which is good.

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JG
Vice President Data Protection Strategy at a computer software company with 1,001-5,000 employees

We like the fact that we also use it and therefore can tell our clients about it from an actual user perspective, not just a sales perspective. 

No one has a price-to-earnings ratio that NetApp has, everyone's is inflated. NetApp's is below market, NetApp pays a two and a half percent dividend, NetApp stock has doubled in the past 12 months. NetApp's largest customer is probably the federal government, which uses more than 50% of NetApp, from my understanding, if you subtract cloud, although I'm not privy to understand how much cloud the federal government uses that is actually NetApp under the covers.

The fact of the matter is, if you need the top-selling, performing, file serving appliance to deliver your files to your end-users, NetApp pretty much invented the technology. While no one really can take credit for serving files, NetApp has been doing it for more than 25 years. They do it better than anyone. They have utilities around that. They can do three things that their competition can do with multiple different solutions. I'm sure there are some obscure things that they do in vertical markets that their competition does better, however, I'm not going to comment on radiology or genetics or things of that. They do a lot of things, yet, not like a Swiss army knife. They do a lot of things and are the best of breed of products put together.

Other manufacturers claim simplicity. In fact, frankly, they do have an advantage in that regard, however, they don't have the functionality. If you were to compare one of those products to NetApp, head to head from a feature perspective, NetApp would wind up in the top 10.

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AH
Systems Management Engineer at a legal firm with 201-500 employees

AFF gives us a number of really valuable features. It ranges from a full flash to all-flash product. So, the speed and resources that we get from AFFs is just unparalleled in storage environments. Also, we utilize all the OCR features that AFF gives and has built into its ONTAP environment, like dedupe, snapshotting, data compression, and the number of the other things. 

Using System Manager for green management or command line interface, we have a single point for managing the cluster. It is much easier to manage. It is very seamless. The product is robust and solid.

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NK
Sr. System Engineer at a government with 10,001+ employees

The typical snapshots are one of the benefits. Also, in addition to the NetApp MetroCluster, we also have two eight-node HA clusters. And the solution makes our work easier.

NetApp AFF has also helped to reduce support issues such as performance tuning and troubleshooting, and that's true even though we are quite self-sufficient in our knowledge of our clusters and of NetApp in general.

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Chuck Custard - PeerSpot reviewer
Exec Director - Global IT Infrastructure at a manufacturing company with 1,001-5,000 employees

The benefits of being on AFF are the

  • phenomenal speed at which we're able to ingest data and index it
  • the IOPS.
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JM
Network Storage Engineer at a computer software company with 10,001+ employees

The performance is outstanding when it's all Flash. That's the biggest bang for the buck that we get.

And everything that we use on NetApp that can back up with the NetApp tools—SnapCenter, SnapDrive, and SnapManager—makes our local and our offsite backup very simple and very easy to do.

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MB
Senior Storage Administrator at a manufacturing company with 10,001+ employees

Performance-wise, NetApp is very good. 

The NetApp FlexVol feature is helpful because we can copy large amounts of data in minutes as well as include data quickly. That is definitely one of its plus points as well as it being all-flash. 

It simplifies data management for NAS environments with its ease of management, ease of share creation, and Active IQ feature. These features are good overall. It helps us manage data quickly and sufficiently. Also, compression features, like dedupe, give us a good ratio.

We are using ONTAP 9, which has simplified our operations.

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GR
System Administrator at a leisure / travel company with 1,001-5,000 employees

The speed of data retrieval is the most valuable feature. We mostly use it for our SAP database and we are getting good IO from the hard drive.

Also, NetApp AFF helps simplify data management with unified data services across SAN and NAS environments.

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BS
IT Manager at a wholesaler/distributor with 201-500 employees

The product suffices and works.

The product is scalable.

The stability has been very good over the years. 

Technical support has been okay.

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Angel Barra Madrigal - PeerSpot reviewer
Consultor and Co-founder at OS4IT

The cloning and snapshot features are the most valuable. With snapshot backup, we can clone a big database in minutes. We take a lot of snapshots for clients in different environments.

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Bob Mulders - PeerSpot reviewer
Head of Infrastructure, Network & Security Management at Vos Logistics N.V.

Every storage platform is a good product.

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MO
Consulting Manager at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees

MetroCluster functions, SnapMirror functionality, and ease-of-use are the most valuable functions for us.

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LN
Solutions Consultant at a financial services firm with 5,001-10,000 employees

I like some basic features like Snapshot, FlexClone, and advanced features such as SnapMirror, and SnapVault. They also recently enhanced the market with Cloud Volumes ONTAP. I think that NetApp is a very good product.

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Sarith Sasidharan - PeerSpot reviewer
System Administrator at a government with 201-500 employees

It has a good interface. Its configuration and flexibility are also good.

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Buyer's Guide
NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS)
July 2022
Learn what your peers think about NetApp AFF (All Flash FAS). Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: July 2022.
621,703 professionals have used our research since 2012.