Virtualization Technology News and Information
Q&A: Discussing the NetApp Partnership with Mirantis

On Monday, Mirantis announced a technology partnership with NetApp. This follows a major storage partnership announced earlier this year with EMC. Clearly Mirantis is very serious about OpenStack in the enterprise and removing barriers to deployment of the open source private cloud software. To find out more information and better understand what they are doing, I spoke with Kamesh Pemmaraju, Mirantis vice president of product marketing. 

VMblog:  Explain if you would a bit more about what Mirantis recently announced.

Kamesh Pemmaraju:  We've partnered with NetApp, officially formalizing a long-term alliance relationship with NetApp to deliver seamless integration, ease-of-use, and agility of Mirantis OpenStack with NetApp's leading-edge storage technologies. Mirantis and NetApp have been collaborators in the OpenStack community for almost four years and deploying joint solutions for telco and enterprise customers. This latest joint integration effort delivers resilience-at-scale and production-grade stability of the most recent Mirantis OpenStack 7.0 distribution with best of breed storage portfolio from NetApp.  As part of this announcement, we are delivering the following:

  • A reference architecture to promote best practices for using NetApp storage on OpenStack to ensure high-availability, performance, and production-grade deployments
  • Validated NetApp drivers with Mirantis OpenStack to ensure interoperability and smooth customer experience
  • Fuel plugin to enable automated discovery, configuration, and deployment of Mirantis OpenStack clusters with NetApp CDOT, E Series, and 7-mode storage systems.

VMblog:  Mirantis has announced reference architecture solutions / integrations now with the two leading storage vendors, EMC and NetApp.  What are the unique challenges that enterprises encounter around OpenStack cloud project in integrating their enterprise storage solutions?

Pemmaraju:  The Mirantis "Pure-Play" approach means we expand the idea of "No lock-in" to the next level by providing a broad ecosystem of storage partners validated through the "Mirantis Unlocked" partner program - an open, transparent process for plugging into Mirantis OpenStack through standard and open API's. For our customers, this offers lots of meaningful choice to meet the storage requirements of their enterprise workloads. For our partners, this is a way to participate and profit from OpenStack's (and cloud's) disruptive future.

OpenStack is a popular choice for enterprises and service providers interested in building flexible and open cloud infrastructure; however new generation software-defined and scale-out storage solutions built on so-called "commodity" components aren't necessarily mature enough or reliable enough to meet the stringent SLA, stability, and performance needs of mission-critical enterprise workloads.

These reference architectures we have developed with EMC and NetApp are not meant for lab projects or proof-of-concept for people to have an opportunity to play with immature and unproven technologies. They are designed for production deployments with technologies from established market leaders in this space.

VMblog:  The engineering work behind the EMC and NetApp integrations, how does that pay off in real life for your customers?

Pemmaraju:  By working with multiple storage leaders in the space, we enable our customers to:

  • Mix and match mature and battle-tested storage technologies (OpenStack allows for multiple storage backends through the Cinder component);
  • Provide them the ability to leverage their existing investments in their favorite storage vendor technologies;
  • Allow them to deploy both traditional and cloud-native applications on OpenStack;
  • Offer them choice of the best data protection, scalability and performance capabilities above-and-beyond what is commonly available through the use of lowest common denominator components.

Each integration brings its own benefits based on the unique value proposition and differentiation that our partners bring to the table. For example with this NetApp integration and reference architecture, an OpenStack deployment can scale on demand without losing flexibility, security, performance, or manageability. VMs can be deployed in a highly accelerated manner from the storage array. Applications can operate within secure tenants that span the entire hardware, network, and storage stack.

For the full details on this, check out the Mirantis NetApp partner page and the blog.


As always, I appreciate the insight and opportunity given to me by Kamesh Pemmaraju, Mirantis vice president of product marketing.

Published Monday, October 12, 2015 4:39 PM by David Marshall
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