NetApp Keystone Flex Subscription, Powered by Equinix

BrandPost By NetApp
Jun 28, 2021
Technology Industry

Maintain performance and control with cloud data adjacency.

NetApp® and Equinix® have been hybrid cloud innovators for over a decade—ever since they joined forces to launch NetApp Private Storage (NPS), one of the first enterprise hybrid cloud solutions for private storage. Since then, the partnership has launched a series of innovative, high-performance, and cost-effective data management solutions.

The benefits of cloud adjacency

When you operate a hybrid multicloud environment, the big question is where to store your data—on-premises or in the cloud. Our joint solutions house data on private, dedicated NetApp storage adjacent to, but apart from, public clouds. This “next to the cloud” approach gives our customers complete control over their data, plus proximity to services from the public clouds. Add dedicated high-speed connections, and you get the lowest latency (

This approach also makes it easier for enterprises to move or relocate data across NetApp-based infrastructures—including private, public, and hybrid clouds—for complete control and ownership of data. Organizations can change the mix of public and private cloud resources to meet dynamic workload and business needs. For example, a company may decide to run an analytics application on Google Cloud Platform (GCP), use Azure for cloud backup, and run its production database via a local data center. And placing data at the edge, located in an Equinix International Business Exchange (IBX®) data center next to the clouds, gives the analytics and database apps low-latency access to the data they need.

Introducing our newest shared offering

In 2020, we launched NetApp® KeystoneTM Flex Subscription, our on-premises storage-as-a-service offering with hybrid cloud capabilities. Flex Subscription is a subscription-based, pay-as-you-grow service that simplifies the way you manage and purchase storage as your data needs change. Based on customer demand for more deployment options, we integrated Flex Subscription with Platform Equinix®—the largest, most-trusted platform for your digital infrastructure. You can create hybrid multicloud architectures by locating data next to leading public clouds and networks, which is especially valuable for customers wanting deployment flexibility across the globe.

This shared service offering combines data storage, colocation (space, power, and cooling) and interconnection services under a single monthly bill. And as with NPS, locating Flex Subscription in an Equinix IBX makes it easy to connect to industry-leading clouds through Equinix FabricTM—putting data at the edge of your private cloud, as close as possible to the public clouds.

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Storage is only one part of the enterprise infrastructure. We are working to integrate native Equinix infrastructure services including Equinix Metal™ – an automated, interconnected, and secure bare metal-as-a-service offering – with NetApp Keystone Flex Subscription for a full stack solution – all delivered as a service.

How cloud adjacency supports industry innovation

From extending the data center to flexible computing, database, and analytic services, the cloud adjacency model supports leading-edge innovation across industries.

  • Automotive. From vehicle design to manufacturing, today’s automotive sector runs on data. Developing and deploying advanced driver assistance and autonomous vehicle systems requires the ability to collect, store, and manage massive amounts of data, high-performance computing capacity, and advanced learning frameworks. It also demands real-time, in-vehicle processing of local rules and events—all of it supported by cloud-adjacent storage services.
  • Semiconductor chip manufacturing. Electronic design automation (EDA) workflows are used in design and analysis of integrated circuits, circuit boards, and semiconductor chips. On the EDA front end, massively parallel register-transfer level simulations can involve up to a million metadata-heavy small files. On the back end, large physical and manufacturing files invoke heavy processing demands. Cloud adjacency supports the performance requirements (including latency, IOPs, and throughput) of highly parallel, frequently bursty EDA workflows.
  • Healthcare and life sciences. Despite regulatory hurdles, healthcare and life sciences providers are adopting public clouds for their scalability and flexibility. Proper planning can minimize overhead and security headaches for industry IT departments adopting multiple public clouds. And cloud-based solutions can accelerate time to insight for important applications including clinical genomic sequencing, drug design, and cancer research.
  • Media and entertainment. Video and animation production generate giant files that must move among studios, editors, and rendering processes throughout the production process. Keeping these assets in a centralized cloud repository makes it far easier to apply digital tools and processes without slowing collaboration or slowing workflows with costly delays.
  • Financial services. To combat increasing competition and evolving customer expectations, traditional banks are fast-tracking digital transformation, in part, fueled by the cloud. Yet financial services institutions face significant barriers to public cloud adoption, including regulatory requirements and data privacy, security, and egress costs. Cloud data adjacency can help quell many of the associated challenges.

Worldwide coverage

Equinix owns and operates a network of 220+ IBX® data centers in 63 major metro areas around the world.

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Together, NetApp and Equinix present an optimized, cost-effective storage option that makes the cloud truly composable. Our storage-as-a-service offering, NetApp Keystone Flex Subscription, gives you even more tools to simplify hybrid cloud operations and support your momentum. To learn more, visit the Flex Subscription webpage.