NetApp, VMware build on NVMe-oF, multi-cloud support, and more

NetApp and VMware on Monday outlined how they’ve been working together to improve the performance and availability of their customers’ virtualized and containerized workloads.

Specifically, the two said they are adding depth and breadth to their existing partnership with co-engineered multi-cloud certification, improved Kubernetes application development and deployment, and enhanced access to vVols using NVMe-oF along with a new integration to use NFS 4.1 with virtual machines and ONTAP storage.

A statement from VMware CEO Raghu Raghuram reads: “At this stage it’s clear: multi-cloud is the model we’re going to rely on for many years to come. It is the de facto operating model for the digital era, giving customers the freedom required to build, deploy, and manage applications in the way that best suits their business requirements.”

A twin statement from NetApp CEO George Kurian said: “By delivering powerful new solutions that help companies optimize their virtual data centers, modernize their applications, and provide cost-efficient, enterprise-class data management services to VMware Cloud, we can meet customers anywhere they are on their cloud journey.”

The two are said to be working together to certify and support VMware Cloud and NetApp Cloud Services on the world’s largest three public cloud providers. The pair said this will help customers “seamlessly migrate, extend, or protect” enterprise workloads and files right into the cloud from their on-premises equipment with “reduced cost and risk.”

NetApp and VMware have also, we’re told, created new certification and support for accessing vVols via NVMe-oF with “enhanced block storage flash performance and more granular VM storage management over multiple types of network transports.”

This includes a “new integration to enhance the availability and security of running virtualized workloads across NFS 4.1 environments.” This version of NFS provides better security, performance, and interoperability compared to version 3, we’re told.

Finally, customers using VMware Tanzu and ONTAP-based storage arrays to manage Kubernetes environments can “now simplify and accelerate new modern application development and deployment alongside traditional virtualized workloads using enterprise-scale, high-performance and protected solutions that are jointly validated and supported.”

This is good stuff, giving the soon-to-be-Broadcom-owned VMware great access to NetApp’s ONTAP customers as they tick four boxes: multi-cloud, NVMe-oF, NFS 4.1, and containerization. For NetApp, as its strategists look at a less-Dell-influenced VMware, this gives it a set of good messages to pump into the VMware customer base. 

SAP provided a third-party angle on this.  Ozren Kopajtic, VP Global Cloud Services at the European software giant, said: “NetApp and VMware deliver the scalable, high-performance foundation of SAP’s global public cloud platform, supporting nearly 30 petabytes of information across tens of thousands of virtual volumes and virtual machines, and running one of the largest global deployments of VMware and NetApp technologies.”

It occurs to Blocks & Files that NetApp has a terrific CloudOps business. Could that be used with VMware compute? Specifically, customers can use Spot to get the right (lower cost) NetApp storage instances with its cloud cost brokerage capability. Could you also use Spot to get the right compute instances for VMware and lower your compute costs that way?

VMware’s Narayan Bharadwaj, veep of cloud solutions, said: “That’s a thought. No, not yet. I think, these are points of discussion in our in our collaboration stream as we continue our joint engineering approach.”