Technology renewals and disruption are causing major headaches for CIOs who are unsure where to place their operating budgets. This is, according to Westcon-Comstor, particularly problematic when it comes to storage infrastructure purchases, but it’s a problem it feels customers can address with NetApp Advance.
“Infrastructure modernisation is a term used in almost every conversation. But the bottom line is that it can’t be viewed as an option. It is a necessity,” says Daniel Thenga, NetApp and SolarWinds Architecture Manager and Business Unit Manager, Comstor Southern Africa. “Market disruption is a huge problem for customers navigating inflation, budget cuts, limited CapEx, skills shortages, and sustainability mandates. This makes it even more difficult for a business to future-proof their tech investments, of which storage remains a key part.”
Working with NetApp, Westcon-Comstor assists partners in guiding customer decisions around solutions that offer clients the right performance, at the right price, with the lowest carbon footprint, and that can scale regardless of the future, which is where the distributor suggests using NetApp Advance.
NetApp Advance is a portfolio of programs and guarantees that go hand-in-hand with the vendor’s NetApp AFF and FAS systems, including its new capacity flash AFF C-Series. The Storage Lifecycle Program (SLP) is central to this offering, following a ‘buy once and get IT technology that evolves with you’ model. The program centres on:
- More accessible, more straightforward, and faster upgrade cycles when purchasing a NetApp AFF or FAS system with the SLP option. The solutions are upgradeable indefinitely with non-disruptive refreshes of storage controllers every three years at no additional cost.
- Trade-in capacity that limits investment risk and will future-proof storage purchases when acquiring additional capacity and trading in existing SLP-covered storage media for a 100% capacity credit.
- VIP services and AI-powered analytics provide insights into the performance of storage systems through proactive monitoring, full-stack visibility, and actionable insights.
- A simplified software experience through continual software updates and access to new ONTAP capabilities and advancements as soon as they become available.
“With NetApp Advance, NetApp has also factored in that most clients will undergo some form of cloud journey if they aren’t already. This is supported through its Cloud Advantage program, which allows a customer to swap an on-premises controller refresh for cloud services or hybrid cloud storage as a service with NetApp Keystone. This is optionality never really seen before, as your purchase follows your plans without creating a legacy problem,” adds Daniel.
Within the NetApp Advance program, there is also a storage efficiency guarantee. NetApp offers a guaranteed storage efficiency of 4:1 for SAN workloads and 1.5:1 for NAS workloads on its ONTAP AFF systems. This is essential for African businesses looking to improve energy usage, and reduce energy costs while trying to become more sustainable.
Right-sizing and tiering are also simplified as users can automate the movement of infrequently used data to more cost-efficient object storage without refactoring applications. NetApp’s storage is also natively available on AWS, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud, allowing clients to tier to a cloud of choice or from high-performance all-flash to hybrid-flash/HDD systems.
“NetApp Advance is not a crystal ball, but it’s a bold move by a company in recognising the challenges facing CIOs when needing to upgrade or refresh technology, or even when they need to pivot their tech model to a more modernised approach,” concludes Daniel.