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Unified management of your NetApp ONTAP environment


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Rip Wilson
Rip Wilson

Toolbox? Swiss Army knife? What’s the best way to manage, monitor, and support your environment?

Who doesn’t love a specialized tool? Having the right tool for the job simplifies the task at hand. But, as a storage owner, you have a lot of tasks, and you don’t want to juggle 10 or 12 different tools to manage your environment.

A single management tool sounds good, but it comes with its own challenges. It’s hard for one tool to offer an extensive feature set for a wide variety of tasks, use cases, roles, and so on.

So, what’s the right approach? 

NetApp combines a feature-rich management platform with advanced data services and fit-for-purpose integrations to truly simplify the monitoring, management, protection, optimization, and support of your hybrid multicloud infrastructure. You get a single interface, but with access to specialized services when you need advanced functionality. Here’s how it works.

The Control Center

NetApp® Cloud Manager is a SaaS-delivered unified management platform that gives you complete control over your hybrid multicloud data landscape. It offers visibility into your on-premises and cloud storage, provisioning capabilities, licensing management, and access to a wide range of advanced data services. You can protect, tier, migrate, secure, classify, and support your on-premises and cloud storage—all from a single interface.

unified CM with connector lines

Customers who use our cloud services are familiar with Cloud Manager, but many of our on-premises customers are not. Let’s take a quick look at some of its key features and data services that are equally as powerful for on-premises storage as they are for cloud storage.

Key features of Cloud Manager:

  • Manage all your capacity-based licenses through the Digital Wallet
  • Automate policy-driven workflows to ensure consistency with AppTemplates
  • Replicate data between NetApp ONTAP® clusters, to the cloud, or between clouds using an intuitive drag-and-drop wizard
  • Assess how well protected your data is against cyber threats and get vital insights for improving your security posture via the Ransomware Protection service

Licensed data services in Cloud Manager:

  • Secure and protect your data with seamless and cost-effective Backup
  • Extend your ONTAP clusters to the low-cost object storage of your choice with Tiering
  • Move and synchronize your NAS data between ONTAP and Object storage with Sync
  • Scan, analyze, and classify your data nature, sensitivity, and compliance with Data Sense
unified CM with all services

I could go on and on about data services, but let’s talk about an everyday storage task—setting up and using ONTAP volumes. Cloud Manager lets you manage Cloud Volumes ONTAP, Amazon FSx for ONTAP, Azure NetApp Files, Cloud Volumes Service for AWS, and Cloud Volumes Service for Google Cloud.

You can also use Cloud Manager to create NFS or CIFS volumes on your AFF and FAS system via Cloud Manager, but there are additional storage administration tasks needed for on-premises systems. This leads us to the “fit-for-purpose” integrations and Cloud Manager’s new advanced view.


Cloud Manager’s feature set and data services are fantastic for a wide range of users and use cases, but there are times when specialized functionality is needed. For users who need advanced AFF and FAS system management, or detailed visibility into system health, Cloud Manager offers fully integrated access to NetApp System Manager and NetApp Active IQ®.

NetApp System Manager is the “ONTAP UI” for AFF and FAS storage systems. It enables users to fully leverage the rich data management features of the NetApp ONTAP software and to perform common management tasks such as creating a cluster, configuring protocols, managing storage objects, setting up NetApp Snapshot™ copies, and more. For clusters running ONTAP 9.10 or higher, System Manager functionality is available in Cloud Manager by selecting “Switch to Advanced View” from the cluster working environment.

Support is often thought of as “break/fix”, but it has a valuable role to play in manageability. NetApp Active IQ is an intelligent digital advisor that simplifies the proactive care and optimization of NetApp storage, both on premises and in the cloud. Active IQ provides constant visibility into storage health and clear guidance to address risk factors such as misconfigurations, security vulnerabilities, outdated firmware, and best practice gaps. Its actionable intelligence simplifies storage administration and leads to higher availability, improved security, and higher-performing storage.

unified AIQ

Active IQ’s actionable intelligence can also be found throughout Cloud Manager, from the Digital Wallet to tiering inactive data. And there’s more on the way. 

Finally, in addition to being fully integrated into Cloud Manager, both System Manager and Active IQ have their own browser-based UIs, giving customers options to efficiently manage their environment.

Monitoring your environment

We’ve talked about managing and supporting your hybrid cloud; now let’s turn our attention to the third pillar: monitoring.

Long-time NetApp customers are familiar with Unified Manager, which monitors the availability, capacity, performance, and data protection status of your entire on-premises AFF and FAS fleet in one interface.

NetApp Cloud Insights goes beyond NetApp storage. This cloud-based infrastructure monitoring tool offers real time, full-stack visibility into your complete multivendor, multicloud environment. Its advanced data collection and analytics capabilities enable you to monitor, troubleshoot, and optimize all your resources, from public clouds to your private data centers. Whether it is identifying abandoned resources, uncovering resource contention and degradation, or ensuring compliance, there is no better way to keep an eye on your entire environment than Cloud Insights.

unified cloud insights

Cloud Manager leverages Cloud Insights to monitor Cloud Volumes and provides easy access to the full Cloud Insights interface. Additionally, Cloud Insights works closely with ONTAP and Active IQ to provide ransomware protection, full-stack analytics, proactive alerts, and more.

Start simplifying storage management today

If you’re a NetApp customer with AFF and/or FAS systems, it’s possible that the capabilities of Cloud Manager, Active IQ, and Cloud Insights are a surprise to you. I encourage you to give them a try and to see their value and synergies for yourself. All are available with your system purchase or support contract, or via a free trial. 

Learn more about Cloud Manager, create an account to get started today, or give it a free test drive.

Active IQ is available to all customers who have an active support contract. Watch this short video to learn more, or get started now using your NetApp Support Site (NSS) login.

Cloud Insights basic version is available at no cost to monitor your NetApp systems. There’s also a 14-day free trial to try out the full feature set. Watch this video for an informative overview of Cloud Insights.

Whether you need to configure a single system or monitor a multivendor, multicloud environment, NetApp has the management solution to simplify your day-to-day activities.

Rip Wilson

Rip Wilson is a principal product marketing manager at NetApp with over 20 years of experience developing compelling messaging and content that communicates our unique business value. Rip holds a degree in business management from Georgia Tech. He is based in Colorado and enjoys golf, tennis, and poker.

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