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NetApp Private Storage OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

NetApp Private Storage is #8 ranked solution in top NAS tools. PeerSpot users give NetApp Private Storage an average rating of 8 out of 10. NetApp Private Storage is most commonly compared to Dell EMC PowerScale (Isilon): NetApp Private Storage vs Dell EMC PowerScale (Isilon). The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a computer software company, accounting for 27% of all views.
What is NetApp Private Storage?

NetApp Private Storage (NPS) for Cloud is a family of enterprise storage solutions that lets you use multiple industry-leading clouds and maintain complete control over your data on dedicated storage systems from NetApp.

NetApp Private Storage was previously known as NPS.

Buyer's Guide

Download the NAS Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: January 2022

NetApp Private Storage Customers

ASE IT, Concerto Cloud

NetApp Private Storage Video

Archived NetApp Private Storage Reviews (more than two years old)

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CTO at Dataposit Ltd
Real User
Has many new added features and it can control ingress and egress
Pros and Cons
  • "NetApp has really added a lot of features over the years to improve the product and performance. They can do things now like control ingress. They can control egress."
  • "There may actually be so many features that the end-user gets lost in the volume."

What is our primary use case?

We are moving to using a lot of NFS (Network File System). I normally work with VMware on the private cloud and then I use NetApp on NFS protocol with 10G connectivity.  

Mainly I use it in two ways. I use a lot of hybrid flash storage. Hybrid meaning that you have a little bit of SSD (Solid State Drive) and then at the back, you can use either SATA (Serial ATA [Advanced Technology Attachment]) or SAS (Serial Attached SCSI [Small Computer System Interface]) disk. So I use the hybrid with SAS and SSD, or I just use all SAS.  

What is most valuable?

One of the things I like the most about NetApps is that it is very easy to connect to the cloud and it is cloud-ready. I also really love the fact that they have stuck to their storage operating system for as long as I've been working with them. I started with them using ONTAP 7 and I think we are now on ONTAP 9. The company has not been bought and sold so the product has been stable under management. They have had a vision and a strategy and they have stuck to it. That is very good for me because once I got certified on the product I didn't lose the certification. I just had to recertify once when they made the move from 7-mode to cluster ONTAP. It has just been smooth sailing for me from there.  

Once you understand the NetApp protocol, you can configure it for a small box or you can configure it for the largest box imaginable. The protocol or the method has remained the same and is really backward compatible and that is one of the beauties of NetApps.  

What needs improvement?

I think where NetApp may have missed the boat and created challenges for themselves is that the product is probably one of the most complicated boxes to configure now. Other vendors, by comparison, have really made the effort to simplify configuration. NetApp has not because they want to keep it as a truly unified storage solution. It keeps building out and getting bigger and more complex because of the fact that it is unified. There are many facets of the product that you actually won't even use because so many options are available. Some features still require that you use the command line for configuration and management. You really need to know what you are doing to configure it properly. Things can go awfully wrong if you jump in there without knowing what you are doing. You really need to be certified or you need to take on a consultant to manage the system for you to have a successful deployment.  

There is a level of complexity in configuring this product that people seem to have forgotten in this modern cloud age. Everybody wants everything to be easy, like using Gmail. That is not what NetApp is like and not how it has evolved over time. It could certainly stand to become a little bit more user-friendly and easier to deploy. As it is now, I don't know if most people would like trying to configure it. Because I'm a reseller with a lot of experience, it is good for me. As a user, I know it very well and can customize it to my needs. As someone reselling and consulting for a complex product, other people have to depend on me for my services and this works in my favor as well. There are situations in which customers have tried to deploy the solution themselves without training or a consultant and those customers have a disaster because they just are not ready for the level of complexity.  

NetApp has tried to make the product more user-friendly already by enhancing the GUI, but what ends up happening is that many times there is a disconnect between what you can do in the GUI and what is actually possible using the command line. Eventually, you have to fall back to the command line to make the best use of a feature. They have tried to make shortcuts such as trying to create wizards to simplify the setup and configuration, but these never quite seem work for one reason or another.  

What I'm trying to say is: you can't have your cake and eat it too. If you have a solution that is sophisticated and able to grow with you into the future while retaining backward compatibility, there is going to be complexity. So if you take up NetApp as a solution, you need to be ready for that complexity and be able to embrace it to really make use of the product.  

As someone who could rightly be considered an expert in the solution, even I can't keep up with the number of features that they have right now. They have so much stuff in there that it is like they have got too many features. Certainly, they do not have too few. Someone coming to the product for the first time could get lost in the options.

As far as what I would like added, this is almost impossible to answer. This is already such a feature-rich storage solution already. It is full features — more than anyone knows. So the challenge for the end-user is how to keep up with what is already there and know how to use something if it is valuable to them. For me, I'm happy with the features that it has and I know what works for me. 

Maybe along the lines of features, what they need is a little bit more research into what users need and a little bit more marketing to make sure that those features will be well-understood and well-used. I think that is one of their biggest challenges. They do not really need to add more features. They need to get end-users to use the features that are already there and to only add things that provide high utility. It would be a good goal to present any new feature in an easy-to-use way.  

So they need to work on making users understand what features are meant to do and how to use them. Once users understand the purpose of a feature, they can provide training programs that make sure users are able to successfully implement the feature. Many times they will come out with some new feature and sometimes it may not be well prepared. The wizards sometimes don't quite work. Sometimes a feature disappears because they just take it out. When you come to understand that NetApp is a company of engineers and computer scientists, the soft side of the marketing and the training is not really their focus. The capability and capacity are the focus and things can get complex in trying to use any of the wonderful features that they have.  

Just as an example, I had one instance with a client where they were using a wizard for setting up something called ONTAP Select. It turned out that the NetApp team hadn't tested the networking vigorously. When the client ran the wizard the test used temporary IPs. When the client ran a test before deployment, there was an IP conflict and the test failed. The client thought had tested correctly and they thought that they had found a problem. Because the test failed, obviously they thought they should not go ahead and deploy. But the reality of the situation was that if you just go ahead and deploy the feature to production, it works. It took me two weeks to convince this client what the issue was and to go ahead with the deployment.  

But this is an example of where NetApp was trying to help with a wizard. They hadn't quite thought it all the way through and completed the development. I don't want to criticize NetApp because I'm a huge NetApp fan. The way of the world now is that the end-users are doing the testing, not the manufacturer. Because manufacturers are trying to be very aggressive and bring out a feature-rich product and beat their competition, they create some challenges for the end-users. They try to do too much in too little time in order to go out to market first. They skimp on testing and this is when mistakes happen, things do not get fully developed, and problems occur.  

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using NetApp Private Storage since 2011, so I've been using it for almost nine years.  

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This product is stable. But one thing you have to monitor is congestion in the storage. You have to be a bit careful when it gets to be close to capacity. When it is at capacity — which happens a lot to us, unfortunately — the results can be catastrophic. It actually would not be so bad — and might actually be better — if the system would just shut down. But sometimes when it gets full, you can get into a bad situation with data loss or corruption if you are not careful.  

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability of the product is brilliant. You can scale it vertically and you can scale it horizontally. In terms of storage software, NetApp scalability is the best out there by far.  

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is wonderful when you get through to the right people. In our part of the world, the company is regretfully not physically present. Everything for support in our case is online or it goes through email and Webex. By comparison, some other product vendors actually have a physical presence here, which is nicer for the end-users. NetApp does not have a presence in this country.  

Even though the actual technical support you receive is very good, I have noticed a decrease in the quality of the support services. Technical support which used to be brilliant before is less so now. But of course — and I think this is really something happening with every vendor — they just do not perform quite as they used to in the past because they are trying to cut costs. Every vendor is really trying to scale back on exposure with technical support to stay competitive in other ways.  

It is a little discouraging that you really need to fight a bit to get technical support going on an issue. You really need to convince the first level of support that you have an actual issue that requires the assistance of an engineer. The guy you talk to at first will not be a technician who is going to help you. He is screening the issues before pushing it on to the next level of support.  

Many times I find myself working with older products at client sites. Working in my part of the world, people don't have money to invest much in upgrades. As a result, all some of them have is an ancient box and an ancient version of NetApp.  

There is support that they can get that will cost them. If they pay for the support — and most of these companies cannot afford to pay for it — that support is sometimes still difficult to get because of the newer screening practices.  

What I do like about support is that the process is simple and clear. You send in an email to request help with an issue and then you go through the rigamarole where the first level of support where they try to prove that it is not a real issue. The first level is completely useless for the consumer. When you get through that to the second level of support, then the process moves fast and you get a resolution. 

I'd say I'd give NetApp tech support a B-plus in my more recent experience with them.  

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

There are a number of products that I am familiar with that are in the same family of products as NetApp. I've used DMT (Database Management Tool). I've used Dell EMC Unity and I have experience with several EMC products. I'm using more than one solution concurrently because I'm a reseller, so I have to have knowledge of a range of products to meet clients' needs.  

I have customers who use Unity. I have customers with EMC storage. It is the VNX* series that includes VNXe. I've also had some customers using the basic HP solutions in the P2000 series. I've also had the opportunity to work with HPE 3PAR. So I've used all of those to some extent and they are the basic line I use to supply to my customers. I have not switched from any of them and continue to work with them based on client needs and what exists already on client sites.  

How was the initial setup?

This product is probably one of the most complex to set up on the market. There are so many options and possibilities and ways to go about deployment that the variations are essentially infinite.

What other advice do I have?

My advice for those who are considering using NetApps Private Storage is to get yourself trained on the solution. It is worth it because the architecture does not change very often and certification and skills will be valid for a long time. I would say they should get a reseller — of course, they have to pay that person to do the implementation — and then after about six months, take training to enhance their knowledge of the product. When you complete the training you will be good for a long time after that.  

The NetApp company is stable. They are not going to sell out or be bought. They have created the product in such a way that somehow it is available for less now than the original cost and it is ten years later. That alone is amazing.  

The biggest lesson I have learned from using NetApp Private Storage is that the most important thing is to properly evaluate the requirements for the setup. For example, you want to make sure you have 70% free space if you want to use data searches. Do not push the recommended maximums, especially when it comes to capacity. Another thing I would say is you should make sure you get the maximum performance from your storage space and drives. NetApp has a good storage operating system. The performance is fast. Taking advantage of compression, software acceleration, and flash are just some of the tricks for making the solution go faster and perform better. But you should be careful, again, not to go far above the performance maximums at any time. Of course, you have to size correctly or else you could find yourself in big trouble.  

NetApp has really added a lot of features over the years to improve the product and performance. They can do things now like control ingress. They can control egress. These were things that you never imagined or you never thought were going to be possible before but they can do it now. I think what happens is that sometimes there are so many new features on NetApp that it becomes a challenge in terms of knowing how to use them correctly.  

I think that is where the training comes in as an important factor. The user communities are also very important because they help you to stay on top of things. Participating there and watching trends in the discussion will help keep you informed. The storage operating system is the same as before, but other users' experience with a new add-in can help you understand how to use it and how you can configure it. There are so many new features that appear that sometimes you don't have any idea they are even there and discussion boards can help you understand what is trending and why.  

On a scale from one to ten where one is the worst and ten is the best, I would rate this product as a nine out of ten.  

Really, I sell only NetApp because I know it and its really good and very predictable.  

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:
Cloud Solutions Account Manager at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
It gave us a platform which could clearly arrange all our files and volumes
Pros and Cons
  • "It gave us a platform which could clearly arrange all our files and volumes."
  • "I would like to have the Active-Active feature. Some competitors already have it. I would like NetApp to add it to stay competitive."

What is our primary use case?

The primary use case is to maintain the marketing division's info. 

The storage is rather small. It is holding about 10 terabytes of storage.

It has performed great in the six years that we have had it.

How has it helped my organization?

We were having a very hard time managing our data and backing it up for our marketing division. The data was coming in with people making calls, campaigns, and gathering leads, so everything was in chaos. 

We feel that NetApp gave us a platform (base) which could clearly arrange all our files and volumes. We put everything on a virtual shelf, which then made it easy to work with.

From when we were upgrading and gathering information for our new campaign, it took about three hours, then we started to work with the storage. This took approximately another two hours or less.

What is most valuable?

Mirroring and Snapsnots. Snapshots are very robust. Snapsnots will always work and you can dive into them and receive information. There are a lot of other storage companies that have this feature, but we feel that the NetApp Snapshot feature is the best.

What needs improvement?

I would like to have the Active-Active feature. Some competitors, like Nutanix, already have it. I would like NetApp to add it to stay competitive.

Their global sales process needs improvement. The flow of the process needs improvement in countries like Israel. They need to be ready to make new partnerships, even swallow other new companies in the storage field that have been in business with software only. Hardware does not matter anymore.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability is excellent. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is impressive. It is very easy to scale out. I would rate the scalability as a nine out of 10.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support team's response was very effective. We were having issues with volume or a disk due to an error. It was a Saturday and a support representative called me that night and told me, "Listen, this is the error. You need to do this and that." In about three minutes or less, the issue was resolved. Therefore, we feel the support is excellent.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We were using HPE 3PAR. We did not having the feeling that this was a serious solution. 

How was the initial setup?

I was not involved in the initial setup.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We found ourselves looking at what we wanted to do with cloud and how we would like to build it, then maintain it, etc. We decided on two competitors: EMC and NetApp. We made the decision to go with NetApp, which has proven itself over many years as the right decision.

On our shortlist, we had HPE 3PAR, EMC, NetApp, an IBM storage solution, and another storage by Dell. We chose NetApp because we saw the innovation. We saw they are making it possible to install new features and get better results from those features.

What other advice do I have?

If you are in the process of acquiring a new storage solution, you have to first understand not the technical side of the platform, but the human side. You have to dive in and know many levels of the type of support, sales, management, etc. Then, move on and research the technology.

Most important criteria when selecting a vendor: innovative.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner.
Find out what your peers are saying about NetApp, Buurst, Dell EMC and others in NAS. Updated: January 2022.
564,143 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Sr. Account Manager at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
We get our data faster and it's very reliable - we don't go down

What is our primary use case?

We use it for our company storage and the performance has been outstanding.

How has it helped my organization?

We get our data faster and it's very reliable; we don't go down.

What is most valuable?

Speed Reliability

For how long have I used the solution?

Three to five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Stability has been outstanding.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability is very good.

How is customer service and technical support?

Technical support is very good.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The price could be lower.

What other advice do I have?

Our most important criteria when selecting a vendor are reputation reliability technology.…

What is our primary use case?

We use it for our company storage and the performance has been outstanding.

How has it helped my organization?

We get our data faster and it's very reliable; we don't go down.

What is most valuable?

  • Speed
  • Reliability

    For how long have I used the solution?

    Three to five years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Stability has been outstanding.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Scalability is very good.

    How is customer service and technical support?

    Technical support is very good.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The price could be lower.

    What other advice do I have?

    Our most important criteria when selecting a vendor are

    • reputation
    • reliability
    • technology.

    My advice would be to take a look at this solution.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    it_user750708
    Storage Admin at a manufacturing company with 5,001-10,000 employees
    Vendor
    Gives us full control over security, we can add shelves, upgrade heads, and perfectly scalable
    Pros and Cons
    • "As opposed to cloud, we have full control over security, use, who uses it. We own a number of different companies, so we can partition however we want."
    • "We had to write a number of custom tools or scripts ourselves to use it as a staging area between our on-premises datacenter and our cloud installation."

    What is most valuable?

    Certainly the cost. It's something that we own. We negotiate whatever deal we can get on the type of storage that it is, but it's totally under our control, as opposed to putting it out in the cloud. We like that.

    How has it helped my organization?

    As opposed to cloud, we have full control over security, use, who uses it. We own a number of different companies, so we can partition however we want. There are no privacy concerns or separation-of-data concerns. Our European subsidiaries sometimes reject putting personal data out in a US cloud. So, this works great, private is great.

    What needs improvement?

    We had to write a number of custom tools or scripts ourselves to use it as a staging area between our on-premises datacenter and our cloud installation. If they had a better set of tools to allow us to migrate data through, more easily, rather than writing when to get it to here and when to get it to the next step. More transparent, or as a transfer type capability; might be useful if they have those kind of capabilities.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Fine. So far its been working great.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Like any other NetApp storage, we can add shelves or upgrade the heads or whatever we need to do. It's perfectly scalable.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Most of the time, very good. Certainly, for break-fix type problems they're great. If I have a really in-depth question, sometimes it's a number of layers of phone trees and getting down to the right support people. But in general, it's pretty good.

    Getting to the right people for the really intricate questions is a little difficult but you would sort of expect that. It's not like the average guy answering the phones is going to be able to answer some incredibility complicated question.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We phased out IBM storage we used to have. In consultation with our NetApp tech team, they strongly urged us to consider this solution. They very much encouraged, explained the benefits, and we went over the use cases ourselves. But it was a no-brainer in the end.

    Initially, we made the switch because of cost. IBM is expensive. We originally split off from another sister company which was all IBM, so we inherited that from them. It wasn't like we truly chose IBM.

    How was the initial setup?

    Easy, having done it before. I've done other NetApp installs. Very simple.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    When it came time to replace, we evaluated EMC, NetApp, IBM again and chose NetApp and have not regretted it. It has been a very good decision.

    The evaluation of NPS in our organization included me, my German counterpart and a few others, our DBAs, our VMware guys, the infrastructure team, the datacenter team. Approval for the purchase was all the way up to our CIO. Our particular company purchases, up to that big, have to go up to that high. It was the management chain up to the CIO.

    What other advice do I have?

    Currently we have it just at our own datacenter but we intend to set up at an edge of cloud, an Equinix datacenter and use private storage there to backup. We will use it as a staging area between us on-prem and the cloud. It will be really useful for being an in-between and also for disaster recovery and other purposes like that.

    In our company, not only was there no internal resistance to using the cloud before we deployed the NPS solution, but as a matter of fact it was the other way around. They were very much in favor. Once we explained the use cases they said, "Yeah, that's a good idea." They didn't have too much resistance.

    The most important criteria when selecting a vendor to work with:

    • Are they really a partner with us?
    • Can we count on them?

    We are a merger-acquisition type company so, if we have a big acquisition, can they help us scale up for that? Can they help us migrate whatever vendor they're using because this is now our standard. We will migrate our new company into NetApp. The ease of being able to do that with NetApp is very good.

    The only reason why I wouldn't go any higher than nine out of 10 for NPS is the lack of some of those tools I mentioned earlier, being able to use it in certain ways. Other than using it as your own private NetApp and creating your own tools to make it work the way you want. If they had a software suite that would help with that, it might push it to a 10.

    If I were advising a colleague who is looking at this kind of solution, I would just challenge them to compare the support structure, the cost structure, the various options that they have for private storage. NetApp has a very good selection for different size companies. Certainly, they could run it up against any competitors they like, but I think they'll find NetApp is a very good choice.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    it_user750537
    Network Administrator at Universidade Feevale
    Real User
    Disaster recovery, security, simple to administer, and provides alerts about your storage
    Pros and Cons
    • "Disaster recovery. And I like the security very much. I think they have the needed options for security. Can manage NPS using the same tools and process that we use today."
    • "I think that it should work better with Microsoft solutions, more integrated with Microsoft. We also need integrated NAS and block storage."

    What is most valuable?

    Disaster recovery. And I like the security very much. I think they have the needed options for security. Can manage NPS using the same tools and process that we use today.

    It's easy to set it up, it's easy to manage because you have a GUI that is very simple to administrate, to do a lot of tasks. I think this is another point that is very important, you have good tools, easy tools to administrate your storage and can change anything and be alerted about some issue in your storage wherever you are.

    How has it helped my organization?

    I think it is too early to think about that because we are just starting to use it from now.

    What needs improvement?

    I think that it should work better with Microsoft solutions, more integrated with Microsoft. We also need integrated NAS and block storage.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Very stable. I think that it is very good.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    They have the scalability that we need, that we ask for. I think it is a very, very good solution. They have a lot of scalability.

    How is customer service and technical support?

    We have a contract for implementation from NetApp. Technical support is so, so good. They have done a lot of support that we need, and it's good.

    How was the initial setup?

    I think because I have a lot of skill in setup of other solutions, I think that is not easy and not difficult. I don't think it's something that can be improved to be easier.

    What other advice do I have?

    For us, the primary use case for NetApp Private Storage is backup in the cloud, in the future. For us there hasn't been internal resistance to using the cloud. We are growing and starting to use cloud solutions but slowly. We will grow a little bit for a year, cloud solutions, software on the cloud. We are new to NetApp, we are starting to use the NetApp strategy. We are using cloud solutions from NetApp but I think to use in the future.

    I gave it a nine out of 10 because of the pricing. Lower pricing would make it a 10.

    Take a look at this solution's performance; also their integration, that this solution can be used for NAS and block into the same box. For me, it's very important because the volume that you have to choose to start out, you can grow to the inside, you cannot have some kind of space to one kind in another.

    It's very flexible.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.