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Nimble Storage 4x AF9000
Predictive All Flash Storage for the Modern Data Center

Nimble Storage AF-Series

Nimble Storage
Nimble Storage 4x AF9000
Nimble Storage 4x AF9000 Array
2212TB Raw, 1636TB Usable, 8180TB Effective, 4x 1Gb/10Gb iSCSI/Mgmt
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Nimble Storage Products & Technology Overview:

The industry’s only Predictive All Flash array combines the speed of flash with the power of InfoSight Predictive Analytics to deliver absolute performance and non-stop availability at a TCO 33-66% less than other All Flash arrays. Backed by Nimble’s Timeless Storage, there is no need to pay for optional software and forklift upgrades are a thing of the past.

Sheer Performance with Unmatched Scalability
Built for speed and scalability, Nimble All Flash arrays deliver the performance and low latency needed to power the Flash data center.

33-66% Lower TCO
All flash performance at less than the cost of legacy performance disk solutions and one to two thirds lower TCO than other all flash arrays.

Absolute Resiliency
Non-stop availability delivers 99.9997% measured uptime through InfoSight Predictive Analytics and no single point of failure hardware and software design.

Backup at One Third of the Cost
Storing backup copies on all flash arrays can be cost-prohibitive. That’s why Nimble costoptimized Adaptive Flash arrays can be used for backup, DR, test/dev and archival even when primary copies are stored on All Flash.

An All Flash array scale-out cluster, managed as a single entity, can non-disruptively scale beyond the limits of other all flash arrays to over 8PB with more than 1.2 million IOPS at less than 1ms response time. And with Scale-to-Fit, grow capacity and performance of an array independently and non-disruptively.

Nimble Storage AF-Series Arrays


Nimble Storage AF-Series Arrays The AF3000 and AF5000 are the perfect entry points for all IT organizations that require speed and economy for performance-sensitive workloads.


The AF7000 offers high performance and attractive economics for performance-sensitive workloads that need the best blend of price/performance/scalability.


The AF9000 is designed for consolidating multiple large-scale performance-sensitive applications with aggressive performance and high scalability demands. Nimble All Flash arrays support iSCSI and FC storage protocols.

Nimble All Flash arrays support iSCSI and FC storage protocols.

Nimble Storage Technology: All Flash

Key Benefits

Sheer Performance and Scalability
  • Scale-up capacity and performance non-disruptively in an array
  • Scale-out with up to four arrays managed as one
  • Up to 8PB+ and 1.2 million IOPS at sub-ms latency
33-66% Lower TCO
  • Requires 10-30X less memory
  • Cost and performance optimized for 3D-NAND
  • 5X or more data reduction from deduplication and compression
  • Backup, DR, and archival at one third of the cost
Absolute Resiliency
  • Non-stop availability measured at 99.9997%
  • Triple+ parity RAID • Integrated data protection
  • Application granular encryption and secure data shredding

Features and Benefits:

Absolute Performance to Power the Flash Data Center

Blazing Speed

Blazing Speed

Sustain 1.2M+ IOPS with consistent sub-ms response time and never worry about performance again.


Independently scale the performance and capacity of a single array beyond the limits of other all flash arrays. And scale-out non-disruptively to over 8PB in a cluster that’s managed as a single entity.

Application Optimized
Application Optimized

Integrated and certified with industry-leading applications to streamline deployment and simplify management. No need for manual application performance tuning.

Breaking the limits of All-Flash scalability

Breaking the limits of All-Flash scalability

33% to 66% Lower TCO

Unconstrained by Memory

Unconstrained by Memory

Nimble All Flash arrays require 10-30X less memory than the competition, providing unparalleled flash scalability at a lower cost.

Designed for 3D-NAND

Designed for 3D-NAND

Advanced Flash Endurance Management extends flash lifespan and requires less overhead, driving down cost and data center footprint.

Comprehensive Data Reduction

Comprehensive Data Reduction

Variable-block deduplication and compression for 5X capacity savings. And even more with thin provisioning and zero copy clones.

Dramatic Data Center Footprint and TCO Reduction

Dramatic Data Center Footprint and TCO Reduction

Data Protection at One Third the Cost

Using flash for backup, DR and archival can sometimes be cost-prohibitive. That’s why Nimble also allows its cost-optimized Adaptive Flash arrays to be used for backup, DR, Dev/Test and archival at a third of the cost of All Flash. And since both primary and secondary arrays share common data services, you’ll get identical functionality and user experience.

Absolute Resiliency

Designed for 'six 9s'

Designed for 'six 9s'

Non-stop availability delivers 99.9997% measured availability through predictive analytics and ‘no single point of failure’ hardware and software design.

Triple+ Parity RAID
Triple+ Parity RAID

Tolerate 3 simultaneous drive failures plus additional protection from intra-drive parity and integrated sparing. This takes RAID protection to a level never seen before in All Flash arrays.

SmartSecure Encryption
SmartSecure Encryption

Application-granular, FIPS-certified encryption and secure data shredding provides end-to-end security for data at rest and on-the-wire when replicated offsite.

Effortless Management

Storage is pre-configured and optimized for applications out-of-the-box. Tasks such as selecting RAID-level, media layout, aggregations and reserves are not required. Initial setup and configuration can be completed within two hours.

Effortless Management

CASL Architecture:

Nimble Storage solutions are built on its patented Cache Accelerated Sequential Layout (CASL) architecture. CASL leverages the unique properties of flash and disk to deliver high performance and capacity – all within a dramatically small footprint.CASL and InfoSight form the foundation of the Adaptive Flash platform, which allows for the dynamic and intelligent deployment of storage resources to meet the growing demands of business-critical applications.

CASL and InfoSight form the foundation of the Adaptive Flash platform, which allows for the dynamic and intelligent deployment of storage resources to meet the growing demands of business-critical applications.

Watch CASL Architecture Deep Dive
Storage architect Devin Hamilton provides an in-depth look at Nimble’s core architecture. (74:45)

Key Innovations from CASL

  • Flexible Flash Scaling
    Flexibly scale flash to satisfy the changing performance demands of today's business-critical applications.
  • Adaptive Flash Service Levels
    Tailor the amount of flash allocated to workloads on a per-volume basis. Assign one of three flash service levels (All Flash, Auto Flash and No Flash) to accommodate latency-sensitive critical applications to capacity-optimized applications, for management efficiency and optimal TCO.
  • Dynamic Flash-Based Read Caching
    CASL caches "hot" active data onto SSD in real time—without the need to set complex policies. This way it can instantly respond to read requests—as much as 10X faster than traditional bolt-on or tiered approach to flash.
  • Write-Optimized Data Layout:
    CASL collects or coalesces random writes, compresses them, and writes them sequentially to disks. This results in write operations that are as much as 100x faster than traditional disk-based storage.
  • Inline Compression
    CASL compresses data as it is written to the array with no performance impact. It takes advantage of efficient variable block compression and multicore processors. A recent measurement of our installed base shows average compression rates from 30 to 75 percent for a variety of workloads.
  • Scale-to-Fit Flexibility
    CASL allows for the non-disruptive and independent scaling of performance and capacity. This is accomplished by either upgrading the storage controller (compute) for higher throughput, moving to larger flash SSD (cache) to accommodate more active data, or by adding storage shelves to boost capacity. This flexible scaling eliminates the need for disruptive forklift upgrades.
  • Scale Out
    Scale capacity and performance beyond the physical limitations of a single array by seamlessly clustering any combination of Nimble Storage hybrid arrays. Eliminate capacity silos and performance hotspots, and easily manage all hardware resources across the cluster as a single storage entity.
  • Snapshots and Integrated Data Protection
    CASL can take thousands of point-in-time instant snapshots of volumes by creating a copy of the volumes’ indices. Any updates to existing data or new data written to a volume are redirected to free space (optimized by CASL’s unique data layout). This means there is no performance impact due to snapshots and snapshots take little incremental space as only changes are maintained. This also simplifies restoring snapshots, as no data needs to be copied.
  • Efficient Replication
    Nimble Storage efficiently replicates data to another array by transferring compressed, block-level changes only. These remote copies can be made active if the primary array becomes unavailable. This makes deploying disaster data recovery easy and affordable – especially over a WAN to a remote array where bandwidth is limited.
  • Zero-Copy Clones
    Nimble Storage arrays can create snapshot-based read/writeable clones of existing volumes instantly. These clones benefit from fast read and write performance, making them ideal for demanding applications such as VDI or test/development.

Scalable Storage Capacity and Performance


With Nimble Storage's Adaptive Flash platform, it is easy to accommodate application growth by scaling performance, capacity, or both—efficiently and non-disruptively. While the CASL architecture enables seamless, independent scaling, InfoSight's powerful deep-data analytics deliver precise guidance on the optimal scaling approach to fit the requiremets of critical applications.

With the Adaptive Flash platform, organizations can:

  • Flexibly scale flash to accomodate a wide variety of application working sets
  • Scale up performance by upgrading compute for greater throughput and IOPS
  • Scale capacity by adding additional HDDs or expansion shelves
  • Scale capacity and performance together by clustering any combination of Nimble Storage arrays
Scale to fit

Scale Out


Nimble Storage's Adaptive Flash platform features a scale-out architecture that makes it easy to scale capacity and performance beyond the physical limitations of a single array. Any combination of Nimble Storage CS-Series arrays can be seamlessly configured into a storage cluster that accomodates growing business-critical workloads and supports new ones, without complicating storage management by creating additional silos or breaking the budget with forklift upgrades. Nimble Storage's innovative approach to scale-out storage dramatically simplifies configuration, upgrades, and management.

With Nimble Storage scale-out you get:

  • Single-console management of all storage hardware resources as a single entity
  • Dynamic load balancing to eliminate performance hot spots
  • Multi-array data striping, enabling any application to fully leverage the collective hardware resources of the scale-out group
  • Seamless reconfiguration and hardware refreshes, without downtime
  • Flexible configuration of any combination of Nimble Storage arrays, maximizing storage ROI

Product Specifications:

All Flash Array Specifications
Nimble AF-Series Array AF3000 AF5000 AF7000 AF9000 Scale-Out1
4x AF9000
Raw Capacity (TB/TiB)2 6-92 / 5-83 11-184 / 10-167 11-323 / 10-293 23-553 / 20-503 2212 / 2012
Usable Capacity (TB/TiB)2 4-67 / 3-61 8-136 / 7-123 8-238 / 7-217 17-409 / 15-372 1636 / 1488
Effective Capacity (TB/TiB)2,3 20-335 / 15-305 40-680 / 35-615 40-1190 / 35-1085 85-2045 / 75-1860 8180 / 7440
Max # of Expansion Shelves 1 1 2 2 8
RAID Level Triple+ Parity Triple+ Parity Triple+ Parity Triple+ Parity Triple+ Parity
Max IOPS (100% Read) 60,000 140,000 270,000 350,000 1,400,000
Max IOPS (70% Read / 30% Write) 50,000 120,000 230,000 300,000 1,200,000
Onboard iSCSI/Mgmt 1Gb/10Gb ports per array4 4 4 4 4 16
Optional iSCSI 1Gb/10Gb ports per array4 4 or 8 4 or 8 4, 8, or 12 4, 8, or 12 Up to 48
Optional FC 8Gb/16Gb ports per array 4 or 8 4 or 8 4, 8, or 12 4, 8, or 12 Up to 48
Max Power Requirement 600W / 0.667kVA 700W / 0.778kVA 800W / 0.889kVA 900W /1kVA 3600W / 4kVA
Thermal (BTU) 1,965 2,293 2,620 2,948 11,792

SSD Expansion Shelves5
Raw Capacity (TB/TiB)2 5.2″H x 17.2″W x 26.5″D13.2 cm x 43.7 cm x 67.3 cm3 Rack Units
Usable Capacity (TB/TiB)2 76 lbs. / 34.5 kg
Effective Capacity (TB/TiB)2,3 55 lbs. / 25 kg
Power Requirement 10 - 35° C (50 - 95° F)

Physical and Environmental Specifications
Dimensions 7”H x 17.2”W x 26.5”D 17.8 cm x 43.7 cm x 67.3 cm 4 Rack Units
Weight 83 lbs / 38 kg
Weight (All-Flash Shelf) 68 lbs / 31 kg
Operating Temperature 10 - 35° C (50 - 95° F)
Non-Operating Temperature 0° C - 40° C (32° F - 104° F)
Operating Humidity 8 - 90%
Non-operating Humidity 5 - 95%
  1. Scale-out configuration consists of 4x AF9000 arrays, each with two all flash shelves.
  2. Raw, usable and effective capacities are shown in TB (1012 bytes) and TiB (240 bytes). Usable and effective capacities exclude space used for parity, spares, and system overhead.
  3. Effective capacity is the capacity of the base array and maximum number of expansion shelves. Assumes data reduction of five to one from deduplication and compression.
  4. Onboard ports are 10GbaseT. Optional ports are: 1GbaseT, 10GbaseT or 10GbE SFP+
  5. Each shelf consists of up to 48 SSDs. SSDs can be 240GB, 480GB, 960GB, 1.92TB or 3.84TB raw capacity.
* Learn More:
Video: Nimble Storage Overview Whiteboard

Pricing Notes:

Nimble Storage
Nimble Storage 4x AF9000
Nimble Storage 4x AF9000 Array
2212TB Raw, 1636TB Usable, 8180TB Effective, 4x 1Gb/10Gb iSCSI/Mgmt
Contact us for pricing!
Nimble Storage Expansion Shelves
Nimble Storage SSD Expansion Shelf
6-184TB Raw, 4-137TB Usable, 20-685TB Effective, Hyb Expansion Shelf
Contact us for pricing!