The NetApp 2040 is being transitioned but that doesn’t mean your equipment is dead.
When announced that the NetApp 2040 is to be transitioned (a kind word for End of Life), it sends a clear message that NetApp wants you to upgrade to newer hardware. The 2040 was introduced in late 2009 and touted twice the performance of the FAS2050, 30% more drive capacity and twice as many GbE ports. Because of the functionality, the FAS 2040 became a staple in customer’s data centers and a major source of revenue for NetApp.
Many times, when customers hear End of Life, they become anxious because the feeling of having to plan for an upgrade is not too far down the road. This can be exciting because who doesn’t like the latest and greatest shiny object but for many other reasons it just isn’t practical. Let’s look at some of the reasons why.
- Budget. It’s no secret that everyone’s budgets are tight. To ask for budget to replace equipment that is providing the functionality your business requires just doesn’t make sense.
- Stability. The NetApp 2040 probably has been in your environment for at least a couple of years and is stable. If your business isn’t demanding or pushing you to newer equipment, why should NetApp force you to do so?
- Other Projects. Everyone is trying to do more with less. There are other projects on the horizon that help drive your business. Upgrading to appease NetApp’s product cycle shouldn’t be one of them.
What About Support?
Many times support becomes the elephant in the room. Even when a product such as the NetApp 2040 is being supported by the OEM, many companies just accept the cost of the contract as part of doing business. When a product is announced as end of life, many of those same customers walk the plank assuming that upgrading to new equipment is the only option because they don’t want to live without support.
What customers are beginning to realize is there are very good options available to both current and end of life NetApp products when it comes to support. Third Party Maintenance (TPM) providers have proven they are capable of supporting NetApp equipment as well as the OEM for savings that typically range from 30%-70% annually. The reputable TPMs will also support your OnTap software. In fact, many companies are looking to TPMs as soon as their original contract (or warranty) expires. By working with the right TPM, you will not sacrifice the support you require and will actually see added benefits (such as equipment on site).
When you look at the scenario of the NetApp 2040 and its “transitioning”, all of the obstacles created by being pushed to purchase new hardware are gone when a TPM becomes involved and your business can dictate to NetApp when it is time to upgrade rather than the other way around.
A great White Paper on how to evaluate and select a TPM can be downloaded and will provide you with the details you need to make an informed decision.