logo-ontap-3Global File Cache

Consolidate your
Unstructured data
Into the cloud

Enable real-time global file sharing for your distributed
workforce by using NetApp’s intelligent Global File Cache

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Modernize Distributed Storage using NetApp’s Global File Cache

IDC estimates that 90 percent of today’s enterprise data is unstructured — accessed and stored across multiple environments, in multiple formats, in locations all over the world. By leveraging the power of the cloud, NetApp enables organizations to consolidate the data into the cloud to cut costs and create a globally accessible file system in the cloud.

NetApp’s proven intelligent Global File Cache allows distributed enterprises to securely consolidate silos of file servers into one cohesive global storage footprint in the public cloud, which streamlines overall IT management, significantly cuts costs and boosts business productivity on a global scale.


Why Global File Cache

NetApp’s intelligent Global File Cache creates a software fabric that caches “active data” sets in distributed offices globally. As a result, business users are guaranteed transparent data access and optimal performance on a global scale.

As organizations are aiming to centralize and consolidate their branch office server and storage assets, eliminating IT complexity provides significant cost savings. As Global File Cache deploys transparently on a Microsoft Windows Server instance, enterprises can consolidate local storage and embed services like Microsoft Active Directory, DNS/ DHCP, DNS, DFS Namespaces, and SCCM software distribution in their unified IT infrastructure.


The Challenges

IT Challenges

  • ic-01 Managing "Islands of Data" in branch offices
  • ic-02 Excessive data growth and duplication of data
  • ic-03 Inefficient usage of server and storage resources, server sprawl
  • ic-04 Local storage, data replication and backups cause poor recovery times
  • ic-05 Complex IT Management

Business Challenges

  • ic-06 Poor performance accessing data
  • ic-07 Unable to collaborate efficiently
  • ic-03_2 Data integrity issues
  • ic-09 Conflicting file versions, resulting in data loss
  • ic-10 Poor business productivity

Key Use Cases


Distributed File Server Consolidation

Leverage the cloud for a single enterprise data footprint for all users, simplify data management and improve business continuity.


Global VDI Deployments

Enable regional VDI farms to keep user productivity high and keep data close to the VDI farm/users without needing replication/sync overhead.


Large File Collaboration

Enable a “Single Set of Data” for users globally to leverage virtual teams and increase their productivity for team and collaborative workflows.

The Solution: Global File Cache

NetApp’s intelligent Global File Cache is a software-based solution that delivers fast and secure access to data for
users by caching ‘active data’ sets to distributed offices globally. Anywhere, anytime, as used by your workforce, your
data is consistent, and performance is guaranteed.


  • ic-file-services-11 Cloud Platform Agnostic
    Deploy Global File Cache together with Cloud Volumes ONTAP, Cloud Volumes Service or Azure NetApp Files in any of the major hyperscaler platforms (Azure, AWS and GCP) to kick-start your cloud consolidation project.
  • ic-fullstack-1 End-to-End Security
    Seamless integration with Microsoft Active Directory and data access control through ACLs and NTFS permissions along with data encryption at-rest and in-flight.
  • ic-file-services-11 Cost Savings
    Leverage existing hardware or VM infrastructure at distributed locations while providing file services to globally dispersed users.
  • ic-dashboard-2 Operational Simplicity
    Zero touch management through a self-sustaining, self-managing cache at the edge and a consolidated and centralized storage environment at the core in the public cloud.
  • ic-relationship-1 Transparent Integration
    By accessing data and collaborating in real-time, users will feel as if they’re all working in the same office, anywhere in the world, regardless of bandwidth, latency, and distance.
  • ic-analytics-66 High Performance
    Accelerated data access as active data is cached locally in your office together with efficient data transfer over WAN through compression / streaming and delta differencing.

Customer Success Stories


The feedback from the locations has been fantastic, with users commenting that they feel like they are working on the LAN, which is exactly what we were aiming for.


NetApp Global File Cache was cost-effective and makes it feel like information is on your local file server, even when it is not.


We looked at other similar solutions, but the pricing and the comparable performance was not competitive to NetApp Global File Cache.


Bringing the data together using NetApp Global File Cache software allows users to work simultaneously on large project files from any location. And in a disaster recovery situation, you get the business back up and running very, very quickly.


Our CEO has a vision to grow nationally and internationally over the next few years. We say 'bring it on.' We can now access files anywhere without performance worry.


NetApp Global File Cache has been great. New technologies like VR scanning are becoming more of a possibility every day, so we will eventually integrate those technologies into our system, and GFC will help us keep the data under control.


NetApp Global File Cache has been great. New technologies like VR scanning are becoming more of a possibility every day, so we will eventually integrate those technologies into our system, and GFC will help us keep the data under control.


We were moving from a daily replication to a single consolidated footprint, so there were some growing pains. The NetApp engineers were fantastic and very responsive for implementation and post-implementation support.

Frequently Asked Questions

We get asked a lot of questions, which is great. However, below you can find the most frequently asked questions, either on
the Global File Cache (GFC) solution itself, technical aspects, support, services-related queries, or how the solution is licensed.

Supported Platforms

Global File Cache is supported with all variations of Cloud Volumes across all hyperscalers.