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By Jeff O’Neal


In my last post, I examined the requirements for cloud storage infrastructure. Now I want to start talking about the specific NetApp technologies that can address those requirements. (I’ll follow the same order as in my requirements post.) This time I’ll talk about MultiStore for secure multi-tenancy and NetApp management capabilities including SANscreen. In later posts, I’ll cover Data Motion and Always-On Infrastructure, storage efficiency, and more.


Secure Multi-Tenancy

In the traditional approach to IT infrastructure ensuring the highest level of data isolation and security means independent storage hardware, but obviously that doesn’t make sense for the cloud. Still, cloud security must be as tight as possible without sacrificing efficiency. NetApp MultiStore software lets you create multiple, separate and completely private, virtual storage controllers (vFiler units) on a single storage system, so you can share storage without compromising privacy or data security.


Conceptual representation of how MultiStore helps to create isolated containers in a virtualized storage environment.


MultiStore is an embedded feature of Data ONTAP that was first introduced in 2002; over 22,000 licenses have been sold. Fortune 1000 service providers and enterprise customers have deployed MultiStore to virtualize their storage array. With MultiStore, storage can be provisioned, moved, and protected based on the boundaries you define; virtual storage controllers allow you to apply policies appropriate to each container, which could correspond to a particular application or client of a cloud service. Tenants can have the ability to perform management functions within the limits created by each vFiler, and you can use FlexShare in conjunction with MultiStore to give some tenant workloads priority over other tenant workloads on the same storage. For my information, please refer to the January 2010Tech OnTap article here.


Service Automation and Management

NetApp has a suite of management products to simplify storage operations. By automating all tasks associated with storage we help you manage more capacity with fewer resources, increasing the efficiency of your team.


Policy-based automation maps end-user requirements to specific levels of service within your cloud. Once you establish your policies, a new storage consumer (a new application, a business unit, etc.) can request and receive storage and automatically get the right level of data protection and/or other data management services without manual intervention. Through API and web services, NetApp data management solutions can be integrated into cloud orchestration systems to create end-to-end cloud management solutions.


Self-service operations make it possible for the users or consumers of cloud services to perform common operations for themselves without the assistance of a storage administrator. For instance, the NetApp SnapManager suite of products makes it simple for the users of popular applications to perform file or data recoveries as necessary.


NetApp SANscreen provides real-time, end-to-end visibility across your entire storage environment (not just NetApp storage) with automatic mapping of storage infrastructure elements to business services, plus monitoring and alerting on availability, performance, or policy problems. SANscreen also provide metering, capacity management, and other functions. By automatically correlating your end-to-end storage infrastructure against cloud services, SANscreen allows you to monitor service level agreements, meter usage for chargeback, and manage capacity for optimal utilization.


Screenshot showing the ability of NetApp SANscreen to report on capacity usage for chargeback or other purposes.


In my next post I’ll talk about NetApp Data Motion and creating always-on infrastructure.


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