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Quick guide: Amazon FSx for ONTAP pricing

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Trenton Baker
Trenton Baker

The introduction of Amazon FSx for ONTAP adds a whole new dimension of enterprise-grade data services to the cloud; it’s the first time NetApp has ported all the NetApp® ONTAP® capabilities into the public cloud. You get a full-featured ONTAP experience—including multiprotocol access to network file shares, point-in-time NetApp Snapshot copies for data protection, and data replication and cloning for redundancy. And that experience is managed natively from the AWS Management Console from day one.

If you’re considering FSx for ONTAP, pricing and TCO considerations are no doubt top of mind. ONTAP itself delivers a host of advantages both in AWS and on premises. It gives you a unified approach for simplifying operations, optimizing storage, and reducing costs while making it easier to meet cloud mandates and improve data protection.

More convenience, more savings, more moxie

This tight integration of ONTAP into the AWS infrastructure allows both traditional and born-in-the-cloud companies to seamlessly use the broader NetApp cloud portfolio. You can experience powerful data services for launching, scaling, monitoring, and managing applications and workloads in AWS. We’re talking optimized and automated ways to deliver immediate business value, whether in the form of cost efficiency, compliance, data protection, or performance.

Because FSx for ONTAP is an AWS service, NetApp leaves the pricing to AWS and focuses on delivering the industry-leading block and file storage of ONTAP. So, before delving into the pricing nitty-gritty, it’s worth noting that ONTAP has been known to reduce storage costs by up to 90%. That’s thanks to thin provisioning, deduplication, compression, compaction, and other storage efficiency capabilities. Policy-based storage tiering can help reduce costs even more by automatically shifting cold data to lower-cost storage tiers.

Automatic performance and cost optimization

Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP supports two tiers of storage: primary tier and capacity pool tier. The primary tier is a provisioned, high-performance SSD-based tier for active or latency-sensitive data. The fully elastic capacity pool tier is cost-optimized for infrequently accessed data, automatically scales as data is tiered to it, and offers virtually unlimited petabytes of capacity. You can enable data compression and deduplication on capacity pool storage and further reduce the amount of storage capacity your data consumes. NetApp’s native, policy-based FabricPool feature continually monitors data access patterns, automatically transferring data bidirectionally between storage tiers to optimize performance and cost.


Choose from four tiering policies to govern tiering:

  • Snapshot-only (the default) moves blocks of the volume Snapshot copies. The minimum cooling period is 2 days, with a valid range of 2 to 183 days.
  • Auto moves cold blocks in the Snapshot copies and the active file system. The default tiering minimum cooling period is 31 days and applies to the entire volume, for both the active file system and the Snapshot copies. Valid cooling period values are 2 to 183 days.
  • All moves all data blocks in the active file system and Snapshot copies. The tiering minimum cooling period doesn’t apply, because the data moves the cloud tier as soon as the tiering scan runs, and you can’t modify the setting.
  • None keeps data in the performance tier, preventing it from being moved. The tiering minimum cooling period doesn’t apply, because the data never moves, and you can’t modify the setting.

The breakdown: What you pay when you pay for what you use

At a high level, the pricing for Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP is straightforward: Charges are limited to the resources you use, and that’s it. There are no setup charges or minimum usage requirements. Five FSx for ONTAP components affect pricing. Here’s a quick synopsis of each.

SSD storage

  • Summary: Costs are based on a monthly average of storage provisioned for file systems.
  • Measure: Gigabyte months.


  • Summary: You automatically get 3 IOPS for each gigabyte (GB) of SSD storage at no charge. Higher levels of IOPS are available and billed based on the average IOPS provisioned above the included rate.
  • Measure: IOPS months.

Capacity pool storage

  • Summary: If you have a lot of infrequently accessed data, built-in elastic storage helps you optimize storage costs. Capacity pool storage costs are based on the average amount of storage used per month, and FSx for ONTAP automatically sends data back and forth between SSD and capacity pool based on demand. You also pay request costs for each read and write operation from capacity pool storage.
  • Measure: GB months.

Throughput capacity

  • Summary: Throughput capacity costs are based on the average throughput capacity provisioned for file systems per month. There are no additional charges for transferring data between Availability Zones for replication purposes.
  • Measure: Megabytes per second (MBps) months.


  • Summary: Backup costs are based on the average amount of backup storage consumed per month. FSx for ONTAP eliminates the duplicate data in backups to help you save on storage costs.
  • Measure: GB months.

FSx for ONTAP pricing example

Here’s a breakdown of the estimated costs for storing 100TB of data in the AWS US East Region.


  • Up to 80% of the data is infrequently accessed, based on industry and customer averages.
    • For this scenario, to optimize storage costs, Amazon FSx for ONTAP would automatically tier 80TB of the data to the capacity pool tier and 20TB to SSD storage.
  • FSx for ONTAP delivers 65% storage efficiency savings for SSD, capacity pool, and backup storage.
    • Total SSD storage required would be 7TB. Total capacity storage required would be 28TB.
    • 100TB of backup data requires 35TB of backup storage for the month.
  • 1024MBps of throughput capacity are provisioned (50MBps per TB of SSD data)
Pricing Quantity Total cost
SSD storage $0.250/GB-month 7TB $1,792
Capacity pool storage $0.0438/GB-month 28TB $1,256
Throughput $1.20/MBps-month 1024MBps $1,229
Backups $0.050/GB-month 35TB $1,792
Total monthly charge $0.059/GB-month 100TB $6,069

When considering what that all means compared to existing on-premises storage costs, don’t forget:

  • Everything involved in total on-premises costs. To compare cloud storage costs to on-premises storage costs, you need to factor in more than storage hardware acquisition costs. You also need to consider costs related to:
    • Data center space
    • Power
    • Cooling
    • Network creation and maintenance
    • Hardware and software maintenance
    • Infrastructure operations headcount
  • Actual storage utilization matters. The nice thing about the cloud is that you pay only for what you use, so there are no underutilization expenses.
  • Migration costs. The costs of migrating from one system to another on premises is often significant, especially when you consider the time involved. With cloud storage, you can eliminate periodic migrations associated with hardware refreshing while enjoying the benefit of ongoing improvements and upgrades of cloud storage services.

The sum of its parts, plus a lot more

On top of all the cost savings and flexibility benefits of FSx for ONTAP, keep in mind that the offering is more than the sum of its parts. It not only natively works with all NetApp enterprise data services, but FSx for ONTAP Is also tightly integrated with the AWS Management Console, so innovative capabilities are just clicks away.

Go forth and innovate

With compelling pricing, the benefits of a fully managed storage solution, and integration of both NetApp and AWS services, Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP is an unmatched solution. We invite you to explore pricing specific to your use cases, and we welcome further discussion.

Pricing resources

For more on this new AWS storage service, visit our overview of Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP. Or schedule a conversation with a specialist and get your questions answered.

Trenton Baker

As a content advocate and holistic marketing shepherd for several decades, Trenton R. Baker has formed a particular set of skills in distilling complex technical concepts into captivating stories. As NetApp’s AWS Cloud Portfolio Marketing Manager, Trenton is tasked with increasing joint go-to-market activities with AWS. As part of this exercise, Mr. Baker can routinely be found rambling on about how Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP is integrated with NetApp’s portfolio of enterprise-grade data services—all while nestled in an AWS native experience.

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