October 14, 2012, 9:25 PM — NetApp and Cisco this week revealed ExpressPod, a new converged infrastructure for small and medium-sized organizations based on its predecessor, FlexPod.
ExpressPod fills out a mid-sized offering the partnership had been lacking.
ExpressPod, a prepackaged and tested architecture for SMB's includes FlexPod's new storage clustering and RAC capabilities.
ExpressPod integrates Cisco UCS (Unified Computing System) C-Series servers, NetApp FAS2220 or FAS2240 (Fabric-Attached Storage) arrays, and Cisco Nexus 3048 switches with infrastructure management. ExpressPod supports an open ecosystem of management and hypervisors.
The FAS 2220 supports 12 internal drives and up to 144 external SAS expansion slots and has a maximum capacity of 180TB. The FAS2240 supports a maximum of 24 internal hard drives and up to 144 external expansion slots for a maximum capacity of 432TB. The FAS 2220 supports iSCSI, NFS and CIFS, and the FAS 2240 adds Fibre Channel to that mix.
FlexPod also now features support and validation for VMware vSphere on NetApp Data ONTAP 8 operating in Cluster-Mode. User organizations can add nodes to their storage cluster creating large storage pools that span storage devices and can scale almost infinitely, NetApp stated.
The storage pool resources can be dynamically allocated and securely isolated to support multi-tenancy. NetApp storage clustering also enables nondisruptive data migration of hundreds of virtual machines at a time to facilitate load balancing, system maintenance and device upgrades without interrupting the running applications.
In 2010, NetApp announced the first iteration of its pre-configured architecture, FlexPod. That FlexPod model was a pre-configured and certified storage network for user groups of 1,000 to 2,000 people. FlexPod comes with a NetApp FAS3210 midrange array, Cisco's UCS blade server and a Nexus switch and VMware's vSphere platform and vCenter management console.
Last spring, NetApp announced an entry-level FlexPod configuration designed to support from 500 to 1,000 end users.