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Clouds and Big Data – Setting the foundations for innovation


In 1992, NetApp created Data ONTAP, which has been the innovation platform driving the success of NetApp and our customers for the last twenty years. When it was launched, it effectively created the marketplace for enterprise class NAS and provided high-performance storage for chip design and technical computing. Most of the internet companies that launched the consumer driven Cloud computing revolution built their business using ONTAP. In 1998, NetApp built multi-tenant capabilities into ONTAP with its vfiler technology and in 2008 this became the foundation of Telstra’s “Omnipresence” Private Cloud infrastructure, years before Cloud hit the hype-cycle

A decade after ONTAP was launched, NetApp created the first Unified Storage Array, an approach which has taken followers in the storage industry almost 10 years to replicate. Those competitors are about to be left behind again as NetApp sets the agenda for the next decade of innovation; Agile Data Infrastructure will be the foundation for shared virtualised infrastructure in both public, private and hybrid Clouds.

But while Cloud and virtualisation are popular infrastructures, there is also a growing class of applications that doesn’t need the advanced data management capabilities that ONTAP provides. Collectively known as “Big Data”, these applications are focused on providing business insights from very large datasets through the use of extreme IT engineering. While the value is in the specific application, they all have one thing in common: they need lots of data, and they need it as fast as they can get it. This is where NetApp’s new E-Series solutions come in.

E-Series has a lineage of performance leadership supporting the world’s most demanding and complex computing environments.  The strengths of these products line up with the key requirements for supporting NetApp’s Big Data Strategy, which is focused on three areas: Analytics, Bandwidth and Content. 

There are two systems in the E-Series family; the E5400 and E2600. While these systems have their differences, overall both deliver on the same set of core values of performance, density, reliability, availability, and serviceability. 

E-Series systems are well suited for the following workloads:

  • University or research laboratory deploying a high performance computer based on Lustre
  • Government agency ingesting large amounts of video from UAVs, satellites or other sensors
  • Media and entertainment account developing a high ingest workflow of over 5Gb/s
  • Oil and gas account requiring multiple Gb/s reads and writes for processing seismic data
  • Large-scale video surveillance deployments
  • Large enterprise building a content repository of over 500TB

The E-Series arrays can be purchased as a part of a pre-integrated solution rack which includes servers, networking, storage and software, or the E-5400 can be purchased as separate component for integration into your existing IT infrastructure. These solutions can be ordered today from NetApp and our selected channel partners. For more information, head to the Big Data landing page at

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