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NetApp FAS2500 series: Technical overview

The NetApp FAS2500 series includes the FAS2554, FAS2552 and FAS2520. The NAS systems support hybrid flash setups for environments with mid-tier network storage needs.

The NetApp FAS2500 series is a NAS platform designed to fill midrange storage needs. The FAS2500 has three models:...

the FAS2554, FAS2552 and FAS2520, and they are all available with one or two controllers. The series also supports a hybrid flash configuration that combines the performance of flash-based solid-state drives (SSDs) with the large capacity and low cost of mechanical hard disk drives (HDDs).

NAS scalability for the NetApp FAS2500 series is organized into high-availability (HA) pairs consisting of one to two nodes.

The FAS2520 has a maximum raw capacity of 504 TB per HA pair and fits up to 84 drives, of which 12 are internal. It supports HDDs in capacities up to 6 TB, and it supports SSDs in capacities of 200 GB, 400 GB, 800 GB and 1.6 TB. Self-encrypting drive (SED) HDDs in capacities of 900 GB and 4 TB are also supported. There is a maximum system memory of 18 GB or 36 GB, depending on whether the single- or dual-controller version is chosen.

The FAS2520 does not support NetApp's multiprotocol Unified Target Adapter (UTA) 2. The UTA 2 interconnect carries combined support for 16 Gbps Fibre Channel and Fibre Channel over Ethernet, as well as 10 Gbps Ethernet (GigE). The product can have four to eight 10 GigE Base-T ports, two to four 1 GigE ports, and two to four 6 Gbps Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) ports, depending on the controller version chosen. NAS scalability extends to four nodes or two HA pairs. A NAS setup with this configuration has a maximum raw capacity of 1 PB and fits up to 168 drives.

NAS scalability for the NetApp FAS2500 series is organized into high-availability pairs consisting of one to two nodes.

The FAS2552 has a maximum raw capacity of 749 TB per HA pair and fits up to 144 drives, of which 24 are internal. It supports HDDs in capacities of 600 GB, 900 GB and 1.2 TB, and SSDs in capacities of 200 GB, 400 GB, 800 GB and 1.6 TB. It also fits 900 GB SED HDDs and 800 GB SED SSDs. There is a maximum memory of 18 GB or 36 GB, depending on the controller configuration used. The FAS2552 can support four to eight UTA 2 ports, two to four 6 Gbps SAS ports, and two to four 1 GigE ports. It does not have any 10 GigE Base-T ports. The FAS2552 can be scaled to eight nodes -- four HA pairs -- for a maximum raw capacity of 3 PB and maximum drive quantity of 576 drives.

The FAS2554 has a maximum raw capacity of 864 TB per HA pair, fitting up to 144 drives, of which 24 are internal. It fits 2 TB, 3 TB, 4 TB and 6 TB HDDs, as well as 200 GB and 400 GB SSDs. It supports 4 TB SED HDDs. It can have a maximum memory of 18 GB or 36 GB, depending on the controller configuration used. The product has four to eight UTA 2 ports, two to four 6 Gbps SAS ports, and two to four 1 GigE ports. It does not have any 10 GigE Base-T ports. The FAS2554 can be scaled to eight nodes -- four HA pairs -- for a maximum capacity of 3.5 PB and 576 drives.

All three NetApp FAS2500 series products support RAID 1, RAID 4, RAID 6 and the non-standard double-parity RAID configuration. They also support up to 16 TB of storage for Flash Pool, a caching offering that performs automated storage tiering. Flash Pool is included in the Data Ontap operating system -- which also has deduplication and compression -- and does not require additional licensing. All the products have FlexVol thin provisioning software and System Setup, which performs setup and management functionality. Additional software can be purchased as part of a Premium Bundle.

The NetApp FAS2500 series has a highly variable pricing structure that varies based on the setup options chosen. However, a fully configured, two-node FAS2554 using all SSDs can cost as much as $275,000. The price drops drastically -- to less than $100,000 -- if the array is set up with HDDs instead of SSDs. NetApp has an online support site and a dedicated phone line.

Next Steps

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This was last published in November 2015

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