NetApp moves into high-end storage

Network Appliance has moved into high-end storage with the launch of a new line of storage arrays geared for large enterprise applications and data consolidation.

NetApp is targeting its new FAS6000 systems against EMC's high-end Symmterix DMX and Hitachi Data Systems' Lightning arrays. The systems could concurrently support hundreds of applications based on SAN and NAS, and both Fibre Channel and SATA drives, NetApp officials said.

NetApp was offering two flavours of the new system: the FAS6030, which would replace its FAS980 and could scale to about 420TB; and the FAS6070, which scaled to 500TB, officials said.

The storage vendor will also expand its software and services offerings to help storage administrators ease growing complexity in the data centre.

"NetApp has built a legacy around ease of use and simplicity, they're known for their NAS being simple to deploy and manage, and now they're looking to extend this into the data centre," IDC analyst, Brad Nisbet, said.

NetApp's Manageability Software suite, geared to improve data availability, productivity and storage utilisation, now includes tools for applications, servers, data and storage. NetApp also expanded its services offerings with the launch of its Rapid Deployment Services for Storage Implementation for NetApp systems in NAS and SAN environments.

NetApp storage rival, EMC, is also making an effort to expand its software and services offerings, both in-house and by acquiring services providers. EMC's CEO, Joe Tucci, said recently the company plans to buy several regional service providers this year. NetApp said it would enhance its services in-house and through partnerships, rather than taking the acquisition route.

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