FC/SAS versus SATA

I have always been told by Netapp that they strongly only advise using FC or SAS drives in production systems and only to use SATA disks in archiving and non business critical environments.

Does anybody know whether this is still Netapp's policy today?

More and more customers indicate to want to use SATA disks in primary production environments because as they see it, there is little or no evidence to be found which indicates this to be a fundamental error. They also repeat info found on harddisk manufacturer sites which state that SATA disks can be used for business critical uses. (according to those sites, SAS and FC disks are for Mission critical data environments what ever that might mean.)

"And seeing the high quality products which Netapp supplies, surely you can not be talking about replacing more than 2 to 3 sata disks per year?" is another of their comments.

So what should our standard advise be..... FC for production environments?  Why? Only for speed?

If we also indicate reliability, customers now want to see proof or address this by pointing at Raid -DP, Snapmirror DR setups, MetroCluster (stretched).

Anybody got any ideas or feelings on this subject?



Re: FC/SAS versus SATA

Hi Mark,

I personally think SATA drives are a perfectly feasible option in saome cases - e.g. for file shares with moderate performance requirement (a handful of users, rare access, etc.)

This surely comes from some NetApp slides if memory serves correct: "RAID-DP makes it possible to use SATA drives in a production environment" (the rationale behind is RAID-DP can sustain double disk fauilure)


Re: FC/SAS versus SATA

Yes I too do not think there are too many reasons why not to deploy SATA disks in a production environment.

Customers bypass performance issues by adding more spindles, sighting their oppinion that this still makes the proposal cheaper than with a lesser number of FC/SAS disks.

But what is Netapp's current official statement on this subject?? I can not find it....