ONTAP Hardware

V-Series Direct Connect to backend EMC/Clariion storage


Hi Everyone,

I have a question regarding connecting a V3220 to a Clariion CX4-120. The IMT says that direct connect is no longer supported. That much is understood. However, when I was originally researching this configuration the only document I could even find from NetApp about V-Series connecting to EMC is the: "V-Series Systems Implementation Guide for EMC Clariion Storage" which was written back in 2009. My question is; is there any reason direct connect technically wouldn't work with the latest DOT software (8.1.X/8.2.X)?

In the "V-Series Systems Implementation Guide for EMC Clariion Storage" document, on P18 - 19, it clearly lays out how to direct connect a V-Series to a Clariion so I know at one time this was supported. To bolster support for my question:

- The Flare version I'm using ( is currently supported in the IMT.

- On p4 of the "V-Series Systems Implementation Guide for EMC Clariion Storage" document. it says the CX4-120 is supported. So even though this document is older, direct attach was supported with this EMC model at the time the document was written.

- The solution is a straight 4Gb FC (NetApp initiator) -to- 4Gb FC (EMC target) connection; meaning there will not be a speed mismatch issue.

- How would the V-Series know it wasn't attached to a FC switch, and why would it care as long as it can see its targets?

- Lastly, the CX4 will never be used for anything other than backend disk for the V-Series because we will have migrated all the data off to another FAS. Then we will rebuild the raid groups and LUNs (per NetApp best practices) just for the V-Series to be used as a DR/SnapMirror target.

When I was architecting the solution I took my cues from this document (as it was the only thing I could find) and now I'm somewhat in a bind. My dilemma is we don't currently have an FC switch. The CX4 is running on iSCSI today. But we bought EMC FC cards to insert into the CX after the data migrations happen, so we could then rebuild the raid-groups/LUNs and present them over FC to the V-Series. I say "I'm somewhat in a bind" because I have a last resort option but I don't want to go there unless I have exhausted all other options.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.




Hi Kevin,

It is not supported.  It doesn't matter if it works: it isn't tested, and isn't supported.  Switches are required.  This has been the case since the 3210/3240/3270 were released in November 2010.

Current information is always in the IMT, or with the DataONTAP documentation on support.netapp.com.  There is also a good amount of info on the communities site, as most questions have been asked before.  And we have TR-3461, the V-Series Best Practices Guide  (updated 1-2 times a year), as well as the V-Series Sales and Technical FAQ.


- Dan