You probably saw that Mike Linett submitted a post to the Zerowait High Availability Blog. He will do that from time to time.

Having read his post, I almost passed right over a very interesting statement. Mike said: “Today, I read an article that said that HDS and NetApp were breaking their OEM agreement. This does not surprise me at all, NetApp does not play well with others.” I didn’t want anyone to miss his point, so I asked him to expand on his initial comment.

Mike then filled me in on some NetApp history. You see, some years back, NetApp had a partnership with Dell; NetApp produced 700 series units with the Dell name on it for Dell to sell. As Dell’s direct sales force started to take sales away from the NetApp sales force the OEM deal fell apart. This seems to have had other unintended consequences since the F85 and the F87 were manufactured by Dell, for NetApp, But the support went away when the relationship broke down. This is why Mike recommends that people stay away from Low end NetApp Products. Their history is to drop support on them quickly.

Now we see that the Gfiler relationship with Hitachi Data Systems Inc. has eroded. From a support perspective what does that mean for the oil and gas customers that bought these units?

Today, NetApp has announced a partnership with IBM. How long will this relationship last, and who will be NetApps next partner at the dance?
What does this mean to you? As the relationships with NetApp go away, the support for that equipment dissolves and NetApp goes on to partner with someone else, leaving the current customers standing lonely by the punch bowl.

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