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NetApp to bring V2 HCI to Africa in October

By , ITWeb
Africa , 17 Oct 2017

NetApp to bring V2 HCI to Africa in October

During the NetApp Insight conference held earlier this month, the storage and data management firm revealed that it would launch its hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) - a computing and storage platform expressly designed for enterprise-scale applications - before the end of October.

NetApp's Country Manager, Morne Bekker, who also looks after the SADC region, said the technology would reach Africa during its worldwide rollout, scheduled for 27 October.

"We've gone through the pre-releases, which targeted selected countries a couple of months ago. We've gone through the process, in terms of the logistical side of things and it's now available, configurable, and priced locally, and it's ready for shipment," said Bekker.

He believes the technology will help meet Africa's ongoing skills shortage and scarcity of IT resources, which he says results in increased expense and complexity.

"If we put an HCI stack down that is easily manageable, a lot of it is self-healing and it becomes very easy for organisations to actually maintain their infrastructure and their solutions."

"From that point of view, customers will typically look for something that is easy to use, easy to maintain, easy to support and its uniform across multiple sights, so it makes life easy. That's obviously the thing and they're not limited, they can use this enterprise-class across a multitude of applications and they can scale and have a quality of service and guaranteed performance on an application level," he added.

According to the 2016 State of Hyper Converged Infrastructure Market report by Actual Tech Media, hyper-converged infrastructure adoption has increased significantly and continues to accelerate. "Those planning to deploy the technology plan to do so far sooner than those that had such plans in 2015."

Bekker added, "Version one from our competitors has been there, people would argue that we are a little behind on our HCI platform. We argue differently to say we've looked at it, we've understood what it's about and what customers really want, listened to the needs, requirements and the shortcomings of version one and we've built on top of that."

According to the NetApp leader, the technology will allow customers to use enterprise-class HCI stack where they can do "proper enterprise-class workloads on, and it's not just very specific to that, but a particular workload, so you can scale across the entire organisation, which is very different to version one of HCI."

Gartner estimates that by 2019, approximately 30% of the global storage array capacity installed in enterprise data centres will be deployed on software-defined storage (SDS) or hyper-converged integrated system (HCIS) architectures based on x86 hardware systems, up from less than 5% in 2016. "Twenty percent of mission-critical applications currently deployed on three-tier IT infrastructure will transition to HCISs by 2020."

The market research company says the hyper-convergence is disrupting the integrated system market, with major system vendors joining the growing number of start-ups (some of which are now mature).

"I&O leaders should still recognise a role for solutions based on SANs and either blades or rack servers, depending on workload requirements," Gartner states.

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