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storage savings with dedupe on Netapp FAS2020 vs EMC NX4

Posted on 2010-09-15
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I am looking to see if anyone has experience with these 2 SANs and see what their experiences are with deduplication.

I am setting up a virtual environment that will have 7 virtual servers running on it. It will be using NFS for the VMs. The main server is a mail server with 100 users. There will also be a domain controller, print server, 2 database servers (they are small and only have 2 users on each, so small IO), a internal web server for 50 users with small usage, and a test server. This environment does not have a high load altogether. Due to this I am looking to use dedupe on the production VMs and see how it impacts the performance.

However I am wondering what kind of savings I might see with the different options. I know that NetApp will dedupe on a block level so I would expect to save a good amount of space with the multiple OS's and also in the mail since there will be a lot of duplicated emails and attachments. I am not as familiar with the savings that I will be getting with EMC. First I am assuming that the file level deduplication will not have any affect on the duplicate files in the VMs since it is within a VmDK file.Also I believe that I will not see any compression of the VMDK files? I read on one site where someone tested a similar setup and realized no compression with the VMDKs. Anyone have any ideas if this has changed?

From what I have seen it looks like NetApp will realize a much better space savings in this setup. Does anyone disagree with this and why?
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Question by:ryan80
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robocat earned 2000 total points
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We typically see Netapp deduplication savings in the order of 60% - 80% for VMWare environments. You get the best results by cloning virtual servers or creating the VMs using a template.

NFS is a good way to go because the deduplication savings are actually available to the VMWare hosts. If you use LUNs, you only get space savings on the level of the storage system (e.g. for creating additional LUNs), but the VMWare hosts never see these savings.

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