The current FlexPod solution consists of a Cisco UCS server platform and a Cisco network infrastructure combined with a NetApp FAS32xx or 62xx storage solution. It’s a great solution but it is quite expensive for smaller companies running smaller workloads. The sizing was based on the US definition of enterprise and Small and Medium Business (SMB) which is too large compared to European standards.
The components which can make the FlexPod solution costly for smaller companies are the storage and network components of the solution, NetApp FAS32xx or 62xx storage and Nexus 5000 switches.
NetApp and Cisco have now addressed the first issue and added the NetApp FAS2240 to the FlexPod solution stack. In the past the NetApp FAS2000 series wasn’t suitable for FlexPod because it lacked 10Gb ethernet support which is required in a FlexPod solution. But with the introduction of the NetApp FAS2240 this limitation was dropped but that’s not enough to use the FAS2240 in a FlexPod solution. A new component must first be tested in combination with all other components and if the new component is suitable, new validated designs must be developed which include the NetApp FAS2240.
Besides that, in the past FlexPod could only be build on Cisco UCS blade servers. The new entry-level FlexPod now also includes Cisco C-series servers.
The specifications for the new entry-level FlexPod Solution are: