Cloud File Systems with NetApp Cloud Volumes Service

March 28, 2019 – Businesses have been shifting more and more of their business-critical workloads and applications to the public cloud for various reasons including reliability, security, flexibility, lower costs, scalability and more. Although companies are transitioning towards the public cloud to take advantage of these benefits, many companies employ custom datacenter solutions with third-party vendors to fulfill their needs. These companies may want to stick to these solutions when they move into the cloud. One solution in particular is high performance file services using NetApp’s technology in the public cloud.

What Are File Storage Services?

Over the last few decades, access to data has become more and more critical among organizations and has driven the industry to develop solutions to increase accessibility to data. Network attached storage and file storage services were created to solve these very problems. Much of the data that an application or server needs access to, like content repositories or media stores, may reside in a centrally managed storage system, while user home directories may also be stored here. These file systems can be hierarchical storage systems for modifying, creating, deleting, reading or writing files. The data living in these systems can then be accessed through shared file systems via a network connection over the NFS or CIFS/SMB protocols. File storage services simplify the process of configuring and managing a file system. Not all file storage services are the same and many third-party solutions can complement the native services in the public cloud, such as NetApp’s Cloud Volumes Service.

What Is NetApp Cloud Volumes Service?

NetApp Cloud Volumes Service (NetApp CVS) is an exciting new service offering that NetApp has released for Amazon AWS and other public cloud providers. The offering is NetApp’s own fully managed shared file service for organizations looking for reliability and high performance within the public cloud. Internally, when using CVS to create volumes, it’s actually using NetApp equipment that is managed and maintained in the cloud datacenters. Essentially, you are utilizing the service for your cloud environment while still using the same NetApp technology as if it were in your own on-premise datacenter.

NetApp CVS is a great alternative for those organizations looking to benefit from the cloud and serves many use cases like file services, enterprise applications, databases and more in the public cloud. Coupled with NetApp Cloud Sync, an organization can rapidly synchronize data between their on-premise source and their NetApp CVS target, making the transition quicker and easier. NetApp CVS also employs three service tiers for varied performance to appeal to different use cases, as well as the flexibility to scale the volume capacity on the go.

How Does NetApp Cloud Volumes Service Add Value?

NetApp has been known as one of the leaders in the data storage industry for years. With the company’s continued innovation into the cloud, it brings a lot of experience and features to the table, such as having the ability to scale the performance of the volumes up and down as needed. For example, during a particular period like the holidays, when online demand increases, you can increase the IOPS performance as well as the volume capacity to support the demand. When the online shopping season comes to an end, you can easily scale the performance back down to save costs. This is one of the great benefits of cloud technology.

NetApp CVS can also fit into your organization if you are using AWS as a secondary site for your workloads. If you already use NetApp on-premise for NFS or SMB and want quick and secure synchronization between the two sites, you can use NetApp Cloud Sync. Cloud Sync can be used to efficiently and cost effectively synchronize the data between your on-premise NetApp and the CVS volumes supporting your AWS workloads.

A Reliable File System Solution

NetApp Cloud Volumes Service is an exciting new technology and serves many needs for organizations shifting into the cloud. As businesses consider migrating their workloads to the cloud, the question of high-performance and scalable file systems will come up. For organizations looking for a mature, tried and tested file system solution for the cloud, NetApp Cloud Volumes Service should be considered.

Additional Resources on NetApp Cloud Volumes Service:

Reza Sheikh is a Cloud Engineer at Groupware Technology.

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