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Cisco and NetApp All-Flash Converged Infrastructure Removes Constraints for the Modern Enterprise Data Centre

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Today, Cisco and NetApp®, the developers of the FlexPod® converged infrastructure (CI) solution, have seen FlexPod partner and customer enthusiasm grow for the performance, agility and economic benefits of the all-flash data centre.

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FlexPod with All Flash FAS (AFF) accelerates Citrix time-to-market for new software versions and features

Citrix solutions, used by more than 100 million people globally, power business mobility through highly secure, mobile workspaces that provide instant access to apps, desktops, data and communications on any device, over any network and cloud. Like most software companies, Citrix constantly improves and updates its products to deliver value to customers. Citrix wanted to improve efficiency and move further into DevOps by introducing new capabilities for automation. Immediately after installing the FlexPod with AFF, the company noticed a drastic improvement. Testing at scale is consistent, fast, and reliable, and tests no longer need to be extended or repeated. All have contributed to faster time to market for Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop virtualisation solutions.

“We’ve had really good success with NetApp All Flash FAS and the FlexPod infrastructure. We have a higher confidence in our data. We know it works. And we’re going to continue expanding that as fast as possible,” said Satish Sambandham, senior manager, Product Development, at Citrix Systems.

Customers recognise that flash equals speed. But as all-flash array pricing has come down, there’s a growing recognition that flash provides significant management benefits as well, especially when integrated within the simplified operation of a converged infrastructure solution.

“In the daunting economic climate of today’s IT, converged infrastructure can not only simplify users’ experiences and ROI, but also drive partner profitability,” said Mark Peters, Practice Director & Senior Analyst at ESG.

“Cisco and NetApp are jointly enabling their users and partners to more quickly realise the benefits of the specific technologies and expertise that each company contributes to the FlexPod solution.”

“FlexPod with All-Flash FAS is a natural fit for converged infrastructure since it simplifies data management,” said Lee Caswell, vice president, Product, Solutions and Services Marketing at NetApp. “In a world of limited IT skills, the all-flash FlexPod allows users to focus on high impact work and makes storage performance tuning a thing of the past.”

“FlexPod with All-Flash FAS is the type of solution that our customers are looking for in their data centres,” said Mark Melvin, CTO of ePlus. “The performance and economic benefits of flash have fundamentally changed our customers’ business models and design paradigm. FlexPod with All Flash FAS offers a compelling solution to solve many of their data center challenges.”

“Shifting business pressures and operational limitations are pushing our customers to rethink how they build and manage data centre environments,” said Jim Kebert, vice president of Avnet’s NetApp solutions business in the Americas. “Our partnership with NetApp has been about combining their excellence in data management with our industry-leading solutions distribution practices. The announcement today is the perfect opportunity for us to continue our focus around the FSA One Framework and the new FlexPod with All Flash FAS to our customers.”

With the FlexPod Advantage initiative, NetApp and Cisco are enabling partners to help customers accelerate their journey to a modern data centre. The featured solution is the FlexPod with NetApp All Flash FAS storage, Cisco UCS servers with the latest M4 processors and Cisco NEXUS 9K switches with Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI). The solution is ideal for enterprises looking to consolidate mixed workloads and protocols across flash, disk and cloud resources.

Key benefits of the FlexPod platform include:

  • Impressive performance gains: Up to 20X reduction in latency with all flash storage; over 200% faster SQL response times with new server CPUs (See here for more detail)
  • New standards in management agility: Up to 30% reduction in application testing time and over 80% faster provisioning with ACI (See here for more detail)
  • Clear economic value: Over 75% ROI in just 17 months, generating savings for both CapEx and OpEx. Source: Forrester “The Total Economic Impact Of NetApp’s FlexPod Datacenter Platform”

“We believe that FlexPod utilising the latest Cisco UCS servers, Nexus 9K switches, Cisco ACI, and NetApp All-Flash FAS can deliver new levels of performance and create a modern technology foundation to meet the demands of business critical applications,” said Dhritiman Dasgupta, vice president of Product Marketing at Cisco.

The companies also announced FlexPod with Infrastructure Automation.

This new solution utilizes Cisco UCS Mini, NetApp FAS storage, and automation capabilities that radically simplify and accelerate the ordering, delivery, and installation of IT at remote and branch office locations. For details on how FlexPod with Infrastructure Automation can be deployed in less than one hour, visit here.

For more details on the FlexPod with NetApp All Flash FAS and Cisco ACI, visit here.