Cisco Systems Inc., (NASDAQ: CSCO)and storage array provider NetApp Inc., (NASDAQ: NTAP)have broadened the FlexPod storage and switching portfolio to include new capabilities designed for data-intensive workloads.

FlexPod is a pre-configured and pre-certified storage network. It was rolled out in 2010 for users group of 1,000 to 2,000 people.

Introduced today was FlexPod Select, which was designed to address targeted workloads, such as high performance applications. It will focus on data-intensive requirements of Hadoop-based big data applications in financial services, government, retail manufacturing and other markets.

“Specifically midsized and small businesses have been clamouring for FlexPod solutions at a smaller scale with midsize-focused features,” said Joel McKelvey, senior marketing manager at NetApp. “Large enterprises have been asking for FlexPod solutions or satellite offices and smaller data centres.”

He said IT departments struggling with data intensive workloads are also asking for FlexPod “to meet specific needs of analytics, high-performance computing or other specialized workloads.”

The FlexPod Select combines NetApp E-Series and FAS storage systems, Cisco C-series servers, Cisco Nexus switches, Cisco management software and Hadoop analytics into a single architecture.

“FlexPod with Hadoop helps minimize the risk of deploying Hadoop by validating the open source analytics platform for storage, compute, connectivity and management,” according to a Cisco statement.

FlexPod Select with Hadoop includes two validation configurations:

  • FlexPod Select with Cloudera’s Distribution including Apache Hadoop
  • FlexPod Select with Hortons Data Platform

The FlexPod Datacentre solution now also features the Cisco Nexus 7000 Series switch. The switch provides FlexPod with the highest density 10 Gigabit Ethernet system supporting up to 768 10 Gigabit Ethernet ports.

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