Flash storage plays an important role in enterprise datacenter market in India: NetApp interview

NetApp provides network storage solutions that enable virtualization, cloud computing and storage efficiency in enterprises.

In an interaction with Infotech Lead, Santosh D’ Souza, director Systems Engineer, NetApp, shares the latest trends prevailing the data center market in India.

What are your tips and solutions to enterprise CIOs to improve ROI from data center deployments?

As IT has steadily become a business enabler, enterprises should not only be looking to optimize IT environments for cost efficiencies, but also seek agility, flexibility and faster provisioning in their IT architecture. They should be seeking technologies that scale out seamlessly as the business grows. Finally, today’s enterprise never sleeps – the era of frequent planned IT maintenance windows is over. They should therefore look to deploy an architecture that facilitates non-disruptive operations.

What are your challenges in growing business in the data center space?

NetApp’s long term vision for the data center has driven the company’s roadmap and will continue to deliver new capabilities which increase the value of a shared virtual infrastructure, while continuing to provide solutions for applications and workloads that demand dedicated resources. The company is relentlessly focused on delivering differentiated and innovative technologies and architectures that are future ready as well as industry leading. Data Center customers have steadily rewarded this vision and its outcome in terms of products, solutions and converged infrastructure.

Which are the main industry verticals that are deploying data centers?

Service Providers whose datacenters were hitherto delivering voice, data, managed hosting, co-location and IT enabled services are now deploying additional datacenters to provide cloud based services, or to provide existing services to a new set of off-shore customers. Large Enterprises in the Banking, Retail and Manufacturing sectors whose datacenters can no longer cope with the tremendous growth their businesses experienced in the past decade have begun to add real estate space to their existing data centers or have elected to build completely new, next generation data centers.

What are the latest trends in data center space?

As per a report by Nasscom on Datacenters, India is emerging as the fastest growing datacenter services market in the Asia Pacific region. The Indian IT infrastructure market (comprising servers, storage, and network equipment) reached USD 2.2 billion in 2012. This market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.5 percent to reach USD 3 billion in 2016.

Growth is being driven by ongoing datacenter consolidation and modernization. Indian organizations are shifting from a distributed IT set up to a more manageable and efficient centralized model leading to consolidation of branches and remote IT resources into fewer, but larger datacenters.

While a number of IT trends are resulting in the transformation of today’s datacenters, the use of flash storage has begun to play an important role in the enterprise market in India. New Flash technologies have developed in many forms and have achieved high reliability and extreme performance at impressively low latency.

Besides, Software Defined Datacenter architectures are increasingly prominent in redefining IT frameworks as they redefine compute, storage, security and networking, while extending cloud computing. Every fundamental infrastructure component in a data center can be provisioned, operated, and managed through an API. Clustered storage is driving increased adoption as it helps to scale the data infrastructures out (horizontally) as opposed to exclusively scaling them up (vertically), while delivering enterprise class performance, reliability and serviceability.

In the coming years, we expect mobility, social media, and cloud computing adoption to significantly influence the demand for datacenters and transform the way the datacenters will be designed, operated, and managed.

Santosh D’ Souza_Netapp

What are your new data center offerings?

Optimal management of data and the ever increasing need for rich data services dominate today’s IT strategies. NetApp is relentlessly focused on delivering differentiated and innovative technologies and architectures that achieve these objectives. Over the last couple of years, NetApp has continued to enhance and expand our technology offerings.

NetApp’s flagship storage operating system – Clustered Data ONTAP – cuts through the performance, availability, and efficiency limits of traditional hardware silos, empowering IT to non-disruptively align the storage infrastructure with changing business and application demands. It helps the Software defined datacenter to achieve scalability, flexibility, and performance.  Clustered Data ONTAP is the first storage and data management solution that makes the promise of Software Defined Storage attainable today.

While NetApp has offered Flash based products since 2009, we launched an All Flash Array, the NetApp EF540, earlier this year, to provide high bandwidth, low latency characteristics in a dense form factor. We will continue to deliver significant enhancements in the Flash space, with products planned to ship over the next 6-9 months.

Our converged infrastructure solution, the FlexPod, delivering along with technology partners a comprehensive and converged compute, storage and network platform with a host of validated designs around enterprise applications continues to be popular: the FlexPod is acknowledged as the industry leading Converged Infrastructure solution.

Rajani Baburajan

[email protected]

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