Nimble OS 3.1 – What’s New?

To recap, Nimble OS is the all-in-one software package that delivers firmware, features, fixes and functionality to Nimble customers.

It’s designed to be cross-platform (all Nimble systems use the same image), easy to deploy and update – all through the GUI! Existing customers will know that Nimble provides all software features and integration packs free of charge. And that includes new features that are released during the lifecycle of product.

2015 – Another busy year for Nimble and NG-IT!
The last year saw a number of significant Nimble features and additions. Take, for example, version 2.3’s introduction of SmartSecure: the ability to encrypt data on a per-volume basis, in software without any host configuration or specialist hardware required.

In terms of virtualisation enhancements, VMVision – the ability to monitor and diagnose virtual machine performance directly from Nimble’s Infosight portal – is now available to all Nimble customers using VMware vSphere. We also saw the introduction of VVOLs support for vSphere 6.

Aside from features enhancements, we’ve also seen Nimble and NG-IT take the market by storm with more and more SmartStack customers coming on board – all of whom are benefitting from Cisco and Nimble converged infrastructure platforms designed and implemented by NG-IT. Enterprise customers and small businesses alike are getting true business value from the efficiency, simplicity and scalability of both platforms.

What’s New in Nimble OS 3.1?
Possibly the biggest news about 3.1 is that it’s the first official GA version of code for the new All Flash Array. However, this is also the start of a common code base for both the CS-series hybrid and AF-series all flash arrays – and the new features for both are anything but insignificant. Here are some highlights:

  • All Flash Array support. Probably the biggest change to the Nimble platform since its birth in 2008, OS 3.1 will support the new AF3000, AF5000, AF7000 and AF9000 SSD-based arrays. These will provide up to 300,000 IOPS and 3GB/s of throughput. See Amirul’s post for more information.Picture3
  • In-line deduplication. All new AFA devices will support in-line de-duplication for additional space savings in conjunction with CASL’s existing in-line compression feature. This will offer a combined data reduction rates of 5x on average workloads.
  • Active Directory Integration. Not ground breaking but much requested, AD integration will allow the existing RBAC functionality to utilise existing AD accounts for an integrated security approach.

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  • Volume folders will enable logical grouping of volumes by the user and also to optimise how VVOL volumes are organised within the GUI. 

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  • VMware VVOLs in production. Previously a ‘tech preview’, Nimble OS 3.1 will fully support VVOLs, with built in workflows for configuration and ongoing management (including folders – more below)
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  • Improved replication performance, 3rd party VSS support and general optimisations to the code are also part of the 3.1 update.

What to Expect in 2016
Of course, we can’t reveal any specifics here (and we wouldn’t want to steal Nimble’s thunder!), but suffice to say, in each new Nimble OS release in 2016 we can look forward to the platform developing even further and improving on the already great set of enterprise features that Nimble offers.

NG-IT will, as always, be ahead of the game on any new developments and we’ll have some of our own announcements to make along the way.

olly-profile-imgAbout Olly: Olly Haywood is a Solutions Architect at NG-IT with 9 years of industry experience, across support, engineering and technical pre-sales. He has helped a range of organisations, from NHS Trusts to international law firms, rationalise and improve their IT infrastructure.

Contact Olly: Olly@ng-it.co.uk or via Twitter @TheNimbleGuy