So yesterday the deal closed to formalise the NetApp acquisition of SolidFire. Big huzzah for everyone involved - NetApp gets some awesome new people and tech, and SolidFire get access to NetApp’s powerhouse channel and sales team! Win/Win.
The usual refuseniks over at El Reg (and other sites), predominantly in the dreaded comments threads, seem to think this is a terrible idea, and that NetApp will just bundle it into ONTAP and kill the product.
That would be the worst idea since Cisco’s purchase of Whiptail (and the less said about that the better). SolidFire have some of the smartest engineers, evangelists, and marketing people in the industry, and it would be madness to kill the product by not letting them do what they do best - innovate.
Think about how well SolidFire’s architecture and value proposition ties into the wider Data Fabric message that NetApp is betting the company on. That Service Provider vertical that SolidFire have a huge footprint in? I bet £10 to a pint of flat lager that soon enough that’ll be the missing piece in the puzzle to allow seamless data mobility between all the platforms NetApp are targeting. #Flash2Disk2Cloud and all that…
The SolidFire acquisition, for me, gives NetApp the strongest flash portfolio in the industry. Let’s look:
- The EF-Series - lightning quick, low latency storage perfect for the application owners who don’t need deep integration with the storage.
- The All-Flash FAS - enterprise-grade features and application integration across flash, disk, and cloud resources.
- And now we have SolidFire - distributed, scale out, self healing architecture with extensive integration into cloud frameworks such as OpenStack and VMware.
And all of these architectures will soon be (if they’re not already) be tied together, along with the public cloud hyperscalers, into the Data Fabric. Very exciting times if you’re into cloud and data mobility.
For anyone interested in learning more about SolidFire, here’s a series of resources you might find useful:
- SolidFire presenting at Storage Field Day 5
- ‘SolidFire for the NetApp Guy’ - by Andy Roberts
- A SolidFire 101 from Michael Cade
I’m looking forward to getting into the SolidFire London offices in a couple of weeks for a good look at the technology for myself, and to working closely with it in the future.