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By Karen Forster, Director, Server and Tools Marketing, Microsoft

June 11, 2013

 

Great strategic relationships are built on an alignment of vision. “When it comes to giving customers the benefits of the cloud—and its potential for simpler, more cost-effective storage—Microsoft and NetApp are aligned in a vision of providing automation, flexibility, and control to support datacenter scalability and manageability,” said Chris Phillips, Partner Director PM, Windows Server. “One key area of collaboration has been around Microsoft’s Cloud OS vision and NetApp’s clustered Data ONTAP 8.2, with built-in support for SMB 3.0 and ODX.”

 

The Cloud OS is Microsoft’s groundbreaking, comprehensive vision for a consistent approach to infrastructure on premises and in the private and public cloud. Windows Server 2012 and System Center 2012 are at the heart of the Cloud OS, which is advancing at lightning speed, as witnessed by last week’s announcement of the upcoming R2 releases of these products. The 2012 wave of products brought industry-leading advances in virtualization, such as Hyper-V Network Virtualization, and in storage with such capabilities as Windows Offloaded Data Transfer (ODX) and SMB 3.0 (for details on Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V storage performance with SMB 3.0, check out NetApp's TR-4175). Windows Server 2012 R2 and System Center 2012 R2 are poised to take the Cloud OS to the next level.

 

As Microsoft’s innovation accelerates, the company recognizes the importance of strategic alliances with industry innovators such as NetApp with its Data ONTAP. Windows Server Hyper-V, SMB 3.0 and ODX are important components to the workloads for clustered Data ONTAP 8.2.

 

These all aim to address customers’ need to extend the potential of virtualization beyond virtual machines (VMs) to increase IT agility and to easily migrate VMs across the datacenter and even across cloud sites. For example, Clustered Data ONTAP 8.2 supports ODX.  This file storage and data transfer technology enables the storage subsystem—rather than the host—to perform file copy operations. This helps speed up file copies and helps improve system utilization. With NetApp’s Clustered Data ONTAP and ODX, you can accelerate all file copy operations by using deduplication and SIS-Clone functionality

 

The importance of these capabilities becomes evident when you consider facts such as the following: More than 50 percent of storage is connected to virtualized servers, and this figure is increasing as customers ramp up deployment of Windows Server 2012. With Windows Server 2012 and SMB 3.0, customers can now deploy Hyper-V on NAS, SAN, or both with clustered Data ONTAP 8.2 storage. This simplifies management and produces performance that is nearly equivalent to SAN performance—which has traditionally been reserved for enterprise applications. As customers increase their virtualization usage and take advantage of cloud technology, Microsoft and NetApp are helping them achieve a new level of agility and storage efficiency.

 

A key differentiator for NetApp has been its deep integration with System Center 2012, which allows management of heterogeneous hypervisor environments that are found in most enterprise datacenters. In addition, NetApp ad developed thousands of PowerShell cmdlts that enable exceptional management and automation.

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NetApp’s work with Microsoft to give customers the benefit of our strategic relationship is one reason why Microsoft has recently named NetApp Server Platform Partner of the Year. Our long history of alliance and innovation will continue to give our mutual customers an efficient, flexible, and reliable IT foundation for delivering business-critical services.

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