NetApp Simulator 9 Free eBook – Build a Free NetApp ONTAP 9 Lab!

NetApp Simulator Lab Guide

Download your NetApp simulator complete lab build guide here.

Updated in May 2018 for the latest software version.

Download your ‘How to Build a NetApp ONTAP Lab… For Free’ eBook to get hands on practice with NetApp storage. It has complete step-by-step instructions, with screenshots, about how to build a fully ready and complete NetApp simulator lab from scratch, using NetApp’s latest operating system ONTAP 9.


Step by step instructions on how to build a complete NetApp lab, all on your laptop for free.

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NetApp Simulator 9 Free eBook – How to Build Your Own NetApp Lab with ONTAP 9

The book details where you can find all the software for free, how to build the NetApp simulators, the Windows and Linux clients, the VMware setup and how to configure the networking.

The lab features two NetApp simulator ONTAP 9 clusters, Windows and Linux clients and separate IP subnets to make it as close to a real world environment as possible.

You’ll have the entire lab up and running in an hour, and you won’t need to figure anything out along the way because I show you everything.

You can build the lab at no cost, all you need is a PC to run it on. I really hope you can make use of it to expand your storage knowledge and further your career.

The lab build outlined in the book is the same one I use for the hands-on demonstrations in my videos. You can use the instructions in the free eBook to build your own lab and follow along with me as you watch.

Almost all NetApp features can be practised and tested using the lab. You can use it as a NetApp training study tool or for testing features before deploying them in your production environment.

All you need to do to get the eBook is sign up to my mailing list which I’ll use to keep you in the loop with information I think you’ll find valuable. I’ll just send occasional updates and I promise no spam ever, only information which I’d like to receive myself.

If you know anybody else who would like the NetApp simulator lab eBook, please spread the love and send them over here to rather than sharing it directly yourself. Thanks!

  • Introduction
  • Lab Topology Diagram
  • Lab Topology Notes
  • IP Addressing Tables
  • Lab Notes
  • VMware Workstation Player Install
  • VyOS Router Build
  • NetApp Simulator Build
  • Windows Server Build
  • Linux Build
  • SuperPutty Install

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Comments (62)

  • vijay agarwal | November 25, 2017 | Reply

    i need for practise purpose

  • Maria | October 13, 2017 | Reply

    Very useful book. I also would like you could do a guide about creating aggregates m volumes,LUNS

  • Charles Fox | October 12, 2017 | Reply

    Neil really outstanding piece of work. I have run into an issue I run ESXi 6.5 WITHOUT Vsphere and The web client wont accept the ontap simulator as it is stored as compressed and reading that is not supported. I dinked around with VMware tools to create an uncompressed version but was never successful in getting it loaded. Any thought on how I might overcome this little hurdle? Thanks and great job

    • Neil Anderson | October 14, 2017 | Reply

      Hi Charles, what error message are you getting? Thanks, Neil

  • Pratap | October 9, 2017 | Reply

    Hi Neil,
    Thank you very much. It’s very useful. Good work Neil. Once thank you.

  • Manohar | October 6, 2017 | Reply

    It was great pleasure to talk to you like this…. i am facing problem to setup lab in my lap (configuration :64 bit win 10,4gb ram) could you please help on the same.

    • Neil Anderson | October 9, 2017 | Reply

      Hi Manohar,
      You need 16 GB RAM to run the full ONTAP 9 lab, you can get away with 8 GB for Clustered ONTAP 8.2.

  • Andy Garlick | September 29, 2017 | Reply

    Thanks Neil
    Very good guide which I followed and worked…..even when I did need a question answered you replied and gave me good advice – Would highly recommend

  • Henk | September 29, 2017 | Reply

    This is a real time saver! Just go and install it. Very usefull for lab testing. Also the concept is very easy to understand.

  • David Pham | September 28, 2017 | Reply

    Hi Neil,
    Your sim guide is an awesome asset for anyone who wants to set up a NetApp Sim. This is the way to teach people “how to” – I love it. The instruction are straight forward and easy to follow. Your follow-up course is also awesome and cut down my learning curve significantly. You are my hero man! Thanks.

  • sean | September 28, 2017 | Reply

    Hi Neil, Great guide to setting up the sims, i had issues with the snapshots filling the root drives so this was very useful. cheers!

  • Syam | September 23, 2017 | Reply

    It’s very usefull

  • Bukhari | September 23, 2017 | Reply

    Very helpful guide to setup Netapp lab and thank you Neil for providing a valuable knowledge at no cost.

  • Shiva | September 18, 2017 | Reply

    Hi Neil
    I could not set up this lab due to my resource limitations.
    However, The descriptive video tutorial is very Good. It’s very useful for a beginner and also for someone who is struggling to understand the environment.
    Precise Crisp and Clear explanations. Thank you

  • John Kane | September 15, 2017 | Reply

    Neil, thanks for making it easy for us to get our hands on an easy way to deploy NetApp simulators. I wanted a NetApp Lab to try new features and study for certification exams and this saved me a lot of time. Thanks again!!
    John Kane
    Consulting Systems Engineer
    World Wide Technology

  • PK | September 9, 2017 | Reply

    This is a very accurate and a very useful asset and experience for me to get to know better NetApp …
    Thanks a lot Neil

  • JA | August 26, 2017 | Reply

    Fantastic e-book. Build a NetApp lab for free. What else can you ask for.

  • Rajmund | August 23, 2017 | Reply

    I have built the lab environment with the instructions and it was breeze. Absolutely invaluable.
    Even for a seasoned Netapp engineer there is quite a bit of info. Neil has a great attention to detail so following the lectures is very easy. This is a really great resource !

  • TT | August 8, 2017 | Reply

    These courses have helped me so much, you explain things in such a clear way. And thank you for all the great extra content and materials! You’re the best man!

  • Charles Fox | August 3, 2017 | Reply

    Building a custom rig to run this. 64MB memory on an HP ML30 with scads of cheap SSD’s
    I need a ‘complex’ ontap device so I can run Netapps OnCommand Insight manager – Very cool

  • Everett S | August 2, 2017 | Reply

    This course was very helpful in helping me distinguish between SAN / NAS storage. I would highly recommend it to everyone. Thanks.

  • [email protected] | August 1, 2017 | Reply

    Dear Neil
    Excellent guide best I have seen, I have also attended the official netapp courses. Highly recommendable. Must have for everyone training or freshening Netapp Know how. Would be interested in any work on 2016 server storage spaces direct.
    Thanks for the hard work in preparing and sharing this guide.

  • Hariom | July 28, 2017 | Reply

    Hi Neil,
    The lab is great, second to none on netapp. It is a good must have hands on tool for sharpening netapp skills. I am enjoying every bit of it and would not hesitate to recommend to anybody intending to pursue Natapp training or career.
    Thanks for sharing wonderful learning path….

  • Sakthivel | July 25, 2017 | Reply

    Yes… It is very useful… Thanks for your help..

  • Darrel Cook | July 20, 2017 | Reply

    This is a great resource for learning NetApp. Neal has a great ability to teach the concepts in a easy and well thought out way. Thanks Neal for all your hard work and dedication for the IT field.

  • Ali Parsfar | July 18, 2017 | Reply

    It’s awesome! Fully Detailed, Professional and Technical, and easy to follow and understand. I 100% recommend it for anyone who likes to learn this technology. Thanks Neil for all your efforts to make a perfection.

  • Anthony Ankrah | July 18, 2017 | Reply

    More grease to your elbow. Really appreciate your book and tutorials . I continue to learn more and more each day.

  • Ivan | July 14, 2017 | Reply

    Hi Neil thanks for the update on the new guide! I’ve used the last guide before this and works perfectly. Great job!

  • Tan | July 13, 2017 | Reply

    Very useful guide. Thanks.

  • William | July 6, 2017 | Reply

    Thanks for all the hard work that went into creating the free simulator, I also purchased the ontap cluster data storage course and now I don’t have to worry about learning on a production system. makes life a little simpler for me.

  • Sandeep N | July 6, 2017 | Reply

    I am using the guide and I found it to be very useful.

  • Mohan | July 5, 2017 | Reply

    Thank you Neil its great lab you put together, It benefited me practicing netapp keep it going. emc san products lab if you can develop will be a great help also.

  • Michel oudt | July 2, 2017 | Reply

    Great resource for studying netapp, thx a lot Neil, for creating the best guide around!!

  • Sebastien | June 30, 2017 | Reply

    Thank you very much Neil for all the work you do, especially concerning this book 🙂 Keep going so you are actually helping a lot of people 😀

  • kese | June 14, 2017 | Reply

    Great work, Neil. thanks for all the time and effort coordinating such a nice lab and various courses. This helped a lot. Keep up with the good work! many thanks for your effort.

  • Gerard | June 11, 2017 | Reply

    Thanks a lot,
    you invested time to give others a simple manual to set the NetApp simulator
    Kind Regards Gerard

  • marc | June 10, 2017 | Reply

    Awesome book just what i need to understand the new piece of equipment we got at work now i can learn from home!!!!

  • Peter M | June 8, 2017 | Reply

    This guide was more than I expected. Knowing how hard it is to find materials related to storage setups. Thumbs up. Good stuff…cheers and thanks…

  • Arnold Romeijn | June 4, 2017 | Reply

    I have been using the NetApp simulators regularly the past 10 years but this guide is still very useful to me. Great stuff.

  • AndyP | May 27, 2017 | Reply

    I downloaded this guide as I wanted to see how real the simulator was. The guide made this task really easy to achieve, I was up and running in minutes.
    I can recommend both the Netapp simulator and this guide. A great tool for learning for new and experienced administrators.

  • Andri | May 27, 2017 | Reply

    Very helpfull

  • Mark Filer | May 27, 2017 | Reply

    It’s the greatest. I set it up on Player very smoothly. I’m going to try it on Esxi soon. I’ve seen NA material and this is as good or better. Thanks for putting in so much work on this!

    • Conwyn | May 28, 2017 | Reply

      Hi Mark
      Unfortunately my laptop network card does not support ESXi so I ran ESXi 6.5 under VMPlayer 12 Originally I ran with a 8MB and it was slow but I have now increased it to 16GB. NetApp version 8 can run in 3GB if you adjust the boot parameters. ESXi will identify common storage so allows instances than VMPlayer. The problem I had was the new 6.5 ESXi web interface does not support compressed OVA and so I had to use the ESXi CLI to create the VMs. I also used the solarwinds ESXi monitor to display the VM. Other than those consideration you can follow Neil’s excellent guide to create the lab. I forwarded my notes to Neil if you require them.
      Regards Conwyn

  • Eli Deck | May 26, 2017 | Reply

    Awesome work, Neil. thanks for all the time and effort coordinating such a nice lab and various courses. This helped a lot. Keep up with the good work pal!!

  • Paul Akengo | May 16, 2017 | Reply

    I agree with Byron Picado. The lab is great, second to none on netapp. It is a good must have hands on tool for sharpening netapp skills. I am enjoying every bit of it and would not hesitate to recommend to anybody intending to pursue Natapp training or career.

  • Byron Picado | May 16, 2017 | Reply

    I am a Netapp Technical Support Engineer and I can say this is the best guide you can find in the web in concerns of building a Netapp lab for free, take advantage of this

  • Paul Young | May 12, 2017 | Reply

    The How to Build a Netapp Ontap LAB guide was easy to follow even for first timer dealing with NetApp. Also, Very good resources guide for how to get other free soft wares to build the LAB. Thanks Neal.

  • Georg Berghammer | May 9, 2017 | Reply

    Neil’s course is excellent. It is also very useful to learn more about VMware Player Environments.

  • Recep YUKSEL | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Very good publishing, a very nice and valuable share, Thank you very much.
    We will continue to follow you.

  • Anthony Ankrah | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Good content in your guide , it’s easy to understand and it would help a lot of beginners to have hands on feel of the net app interface. Thanks for your great work even with the tutorial’s it been of great help to me.

  • Lance | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Neil’s course has been an invaluable tool when I needed to “refresh” my NetApp knowledge. The simulator lab takes advantage of advanced networking techniques using a virtual network operating system to provide a more real world environment. In this fashion you will learn how to implement a true data center infrastructure with a clear separation of management and production networks. Any one with a moderate IT background can build this lab. My lab is a modest white box computer with 32GB of memory using an AMD Phenom-528 for a CPU. A low cost hardware training platform that can easily handle the multiple VM’s that make up Neil’s NCDA training solution. I would strongly recommend using his guide to learn how to build out your own OnTap simulator.

  • Robert | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Very helpful. Guide leads me to build my own testlab. With vmware Workstation it was quite simple with using your guide.
    Tanks a Lot Neil. Gerat Experience.

  • Martijn Moret | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Hi, as a NetApp United member and NCDA I use this guide to set-up lab and demo environments. A great resource to setup the simulator!

  • Paul | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Quality content in this guide that is easy to understand and follow. Thank you for all of the time and effort you have put into your material!

  • zhiming li | May 8, 2017 | Reply

    Great, i think this guide is very helpful for guys who are want to learn about Netapp.
    I did 7-Mode and Cluster-Mode on my personal pc and no need to connect VPN for use resources from company’s Lab.(vpn is really slow).
    Thanks, Neil. i am looking forward more shares.

  • Pete Springfield | December 2, 2016 | Reply

    I’ve used your guide to great effect to create a lab environment. In the past I have created very simple virtual network environments using VMware Fusion to host older version of the NetApp simulator and Windows hosts.

    You guide provides an extremely useful cookbook to help me develop more sophisticated lab environments. Thanks for your efforts and generosity in publishing this.

    Kindest Regards,
    Pete Springfield

    • Neil Anderson | December 2, 2016 | Reply

      Thanks Pete!

      • ABE Shoubaki | May 10, 2017 | Reply

        Hi Neil,
        I am using the guide and I found it to be very useful. I am just to busy to complete it, but it is very helpful. Thank you for this, it helps a lot.
        Great work

    • Sairam | July 27, 2017 | Reply

      Nice boox

    • Hazey T | September 29, 2017 | Reply

      Thanks Neil for your well put together and amazingly free resource! I used parts of it asks it really helped my understanding of what I was doing. I used the book in conjunction with vmwares guide. Many thanks for the time and effort you put in. If I continue on I won’t hesitate to buy the full course from you. Cheers