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The performance of a storage solution is important when evaluating its cost efficiency and usefulness. Microsoft Exchange, or virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), determine how the storage can be optimally configured. Simple spaces are not resilient to disk failures and should thus be used only for temporary data and data that can easily be recreated, for example intermediary video rendering files or caches. From a performance standpoint, simple spaces provide the best overall performance when considering reads and writes. Mirroring refers to creating two or more copies of data and storing them in separate places, so that if one copy gets lost the other is still available.
Reads on mirror spaces are very fast, since the mirror not only benefits from the stripe, but also from having 2 copies of data. 1 and 3 are busy servicing another request, the needed data can be read from disks 2 and 4. Mirrors, while being fast on reads and resilient to a single disk failure (in a two-way mirror), have to complete two write operations for every bit of data that is written.
In the diagram below, a 768 KB stripe of data is written across disks 1 through 3 (A1, A2, A3), while the corresponding parity bit (AP) is placed on disk 4. The sequential write performance of parity spaces can be improved by using dedicated journals. In other words, ensure that dedicated journal disks are very fast and scale the number of journal disks with the number of parity spaces on the pool. The type of disk that is used for a given workload is important, as there are significant performance and capacity differences between them. HDD – 7,200 RPM These disks usually provide the greatest single-disk capacity, and adequate performance, depending on the workload. SLC-type: Typically capable of higher write speeds than MLC-type, and can typically sustain a higher amount of full disk re-writes and stress over the course of the lifetime of the disk. RPM disks might be deployed to house databases or other data that needs to be accessed and manipulated relatively quickly. SATA disks attached via a “just a bunch of disks” (JBOD) enclosure typically incur a slight performance penalty when compared to SAS.
Storage Spaces takes full advantage of the performance capabilities of the underlying storage.
At TechEd North America 2012, as well as TechEd Europe 2012, Microsoft presented a three-node cluster system backed by 24 enterprise-level SSDs and Storage Spaces. Storage Tiering, the practice of moving frequently accessed data to very fast storage, while maintaining infrequently accessed data on moderate or slow storage is supported with Storage Spaces starting in Windows Server 2012 R2. Frequency of access (heat) on files is measured by the file system and fed into a tiering engine that instructs Spaces to move often used files to flash-based storage devices, while retaining cold data on large-capacity, slow storage. Two parameters that are important in any workload are block size and interleave (stripe size).
Many database-style applications such as Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Exchange use relatively small blocks (8KB – 32KB), though other applications may use larger blocks. The number of columns specifies how many physical disk data is striped across and has an impact on performance regardless of stripe and block size.
The following table provides real-world performance numbers comparing two simple spaces with different numbers of columns.
The following example describes this trade-off: A typical hard disk is saturated writing a large number of 1MB files or block data in a sequential fashion. There are a few more points to consider and adjust when maximizing the performance of Storage Spaces.
Power Protected Mode: Storage Spaces allows administrators to enable “power protected mode”, which assumes that disk caches have batteries or are otherwise resilient to power failures.
Unless your workload has very specific needs and is unlikely to grow significantly, utilize the default column count chose by Spaces at creation time.
2012 R2) Do not use simple spaces unless resiliency is provided by the application or is unnecessary. The following example describes how to deploy Storage Spaces in a standalone Microsoft SQL Server instance. To build a resilient system it is important to have redundant paths from the server to the storage.
The typical workload of an actively used SQL database is random in nature with relatively small block sizes (8KB – 32KB). This will allow for fast access times to the data and 7.2 TB of total capacity for the database tables. This provisioning scheme yields a total database capacity of ~7.2 TB, log capacity of ~584 GB, and ~8 TB of backup capacity while being highly focused on resiliency to component failure. This cluster deployment element is designed to provide extremely high levels of performance at a low price point. Microsoft has since released a Word document that outlines the various components and settings used to achieve the above 1M IOPS.
Windows Storage Server is based on the Windows Server operating system, and it is specifically optimized for use with network-attached storage devices. Windows Storage Server offers you a platform to build storage appliances that are customized for your hardware. DSS V7 is a Linux-based Data Storage Software used for building and managing centralized data storage - NAS and SAN.
Dakota Storage Servers are available without an operating system, so you can build your own custom storage appliance on reliable, tested platforms.
To address the performance gap between HDDs and SSDs, DakotaStor models featuring Hardware RAID controllers can utilize a small pool of SSDs as an embedded intelligent cache. Traditional Storage deployments using JBOD expansion chassis offer users excellent cost per TB for their storage investment that becomes more cost effective as capacity is added to the server node. DakotaStor Storage Servers provide maximum capacity and performance in minimal space, ideal for use in Enterprise, Data Center and Cloud Computing environments. Advanced Media Services provides cost-effective solutions for storing, serving, protecting, and archiving data. A professional application that helps users easily perform various partition operations (e.g.
It sports a clean and straightforward layout that displays the current partitions found on the computer.


The step-by-step approach comes in handy especially for rookies, as they can master the process with minimum effort. When it comes to working with partitions, the application provides various tools for helping you resize, merge, create, and delete partitions, change partition label, delete or format partitions, adjust the cluster size, and convert FAT to NTFS and vice versa.
Other important features worth mentioning are represented by the possibility to explore partitions, check and recover file system in order to ensure the integrity of your files, and recover lost or deleted partitions.
What’s more, you can permanently delete data from the selected disk, so it cannot be recovered with other dedicated tools, copy disks and partitions, as well as realign disk drives for optimizing hard drive performance. MiniTool Partition Wizard Server Edition allows users to convert MBR disk to GPT and vice versa, as well as create, delete, format, move, wipe, and explore dynamic disks. Depending on the partition and disk size, the deleting, formatting, and copying processes might take a while. All things considered, MiniTool Partition Wizard Server Edition offers a handy set of tools for helping users perform various partition operations efficiently.
This will not be a typical complete review, as this much hardware in parallel is not realistically comparable to even the craziest power user setup.
While the Windows RAID solution adds a bunch of software layers that limit the ultimate performance of this sort of configuration, what if we had a piece of software that spoke to the SSDs individually, and in parallel? That’s actually a respectable figure considering we were jumping through so many hoops to get data to that slot.
With that limit established, I tried swapping the GPU into slot 2 and giving the fifth SSD 750 the primary slot, but the system simply would not have it. The above result only needed QD64 per SSD to achieve because they were unconditioned and were more able to exceed their rated 430,000 IOPS per SSD. As you can see, the Windows scheduler is intelligent about allocating threads, keeping spreading the load across the eight cores for as long as possible before it ramps up the second thread of each of those cores. The high number there is only 519k IOPS, but our Web Server test is far more demanding than a simple 4K random workload, with some of the IO falling below the 4K sweet spot for the SSD 750. Why do you have an NSF (National Science Foundation?) branded shelving unit and where can I get one? Could you do one of them videos, to show windows loading and then loading a bunch of apps, etc? Admiring benchmark scores is fun and all, but it doesn't look like SSDs will ever reach practical prices. When operating systems are stored in high-speed non-volatile memory, it will be a cinch to create a drive image of same in very little time. I may be wrong about this analysis, but it seems to me that a RAID-5 array using 4 x 2.5" Intel 750 SSDs should afford the same or better level of data integrity + the extra speed should be worth the extra cost. Am I wrong to expect compatible PCIe NVMe add-on RAID controllers that should exploit the raw upstream bandwidth of PCIe 3.0? I would prefer an add-on controller to a PCIe 750: what happens if some component fails inside the PCIe version?
On the system we were testing on, we would not see any further IOPS performance as we were pegging all CPU cores. For being such a big storage guy I am not sure why you would try to use Windows Raid instead of storage spaces. In the video they don't mention what the hardware configuration is, but if they are showing Storage Spaces in a high performance environment, the chances are it's at least a dual Xeon server, with way more CPU cores per CPU than the desktop test machine here.
I'm a huge fan of Storage Spaces, but to try to do a performance comparison without knowing the specs is kind of tough. The other thing with Storage Spaces is that I've seen it hit a quad core Xeon E3 (1230 or 1220 variant, need to verify) incredibly hard with de-dupe enabled with multiple large sustained reads with a 2 column SSD and HDD config, so I wasn't surprised to see Allyns results with a single CPU, despite having more CPU cores. Our hope is that someone releases a generic version of this kit, perhaps with a larger PLX switch than is found on the AOC-SLG3-2E4 card. Bottom line: awesome kit, but unless you have one of the specific Intel systems that works with the kit, the PCIe x16 card is unlikely to work in your machine. There are really two options if you want to add drives to existing systems: the ASUS Hyper Kit ($22 street price) or the Supermicro AOC-SLG3-2E4 ($249 street price).
The former carries a low initial purchase price while the latter allows for expanding to significantly higher densities than had been previously possible. While m.2 SSDs in gum stick form factors make excellent client SSDs[,] the prospect of using higher-end drives in servers that come with both power loss protection and higher write endurance is very exciting.
For the majority of servers and workstations with few if any m.2 slits, the Supermicro AOC-SLG3-2E4 is the card to get. Windows has a built-in driver, Linux has supported NVMe out of the box for some time, even FreeBSD now supports NVMe. Click Sign In to add the tip, solution, correction or comment that will help other users.Report inappropriate content using these instructions.
You can choose the resiliency type of a storage space based on business needs, with choices of Simple (no resiliency), Mirror, and Parity.
Striping refers to the idea of writing data across multiple disks to reduce access and response times. Using the example of a simple space, you can see that 256 KB are allocated on each of the four disks to write a total of 1 MB of data. They provide the cumulative performance of multiple disks, depending on how many disks are in the storage pool. If a new physical disk is added or a hot-spare is present, the mirror regenerates its resiliency.
Since parity is striping across all but one disk in the storage space it has good read performance while still providing resiliency to a single disk failure. Parity spaces are an excellent choice for workloads that are almost exclusively read-based, highly sequential, and require resiliency, or workloads that write data in large sequential append blocks (such as bulk backups). Note that the throughput of the journal disks will now be the overall throughput limit to all parity spaces created on this specific storage pool and you might trade extra capacity for performance. HDD – 5,400 RPM and Variable RPM “Green” Drives These disks run at either 5400 RPM or a variable RPM rate, and while they usually match 7,200 RPM disks in capacity, they provide reduced performance in exchange for decreased power usage. If your workload involves random small block reads and writes, and your budget allows, SSDs are an excellent choice. Usually these disks are priced higher than standard MLC and the implementation is vendor specific. This means that a few high capacity 7,200 RPM disks are available for storing backups, or data that is not accessed very often.


SATA SSDs further exacerbate the problem by having an order of magnitude larger CPU overhead. More details about this system can be found in the Sample Deployments section of this paper. The more columns a storage space is assigned, the more disks can be striped across and the higher performance.
Random workloads do not experience as significant a performance increase, exhibiting more uniform performance across different column counts. For high performance systems it is typically best to have one cable per HBA, two if MPIO is used for path redundancy. If SSDs are deployed, it is possible for the CPUs of the server node to become the performance bottleneck. At the same time, load balancing can provide optimized performance by utilizing the capabilities of multiple SAS cables. Note that enabling power protected mode without battery-backed caches or resilience to power failure puts your data at risk of loss or corruption. As a result of these characteristics, it is advisable to utilize fast disks (10,000 RPM or faster) and keep the storage space stripe size relatively small to accommodate the blocks read and written by the database.
If this degree of resiliency is not required, then the provisioning can change to provide more performance or capacity. The use of commodity hardware makes Storage Spaces deployments flexible, easily expandable, and cost-efficient. Thin provisioning, tiered caching and Deduplication make this a solution for demanding enterprise environments. This allows acceleration of the most active files without the expense of pure SDD solutions.
With up to 7 PCI-E 3.0 expansion slots available in DakotaStor servers, host connectivity can be optimized for applications that require storage of large sequential data types.
With Double-Sided Storage® architecture, drives can be stacked and packed in the front and rear of the server chassis for ultimate storage density. AMS is also a value-added distributor for storage and networking solutions from technology leaders of today and tomorrow. Plus, the program reveals information about them, such as capacity, used and unused space, file system, type, and status (hidden, system). Plus, you can view volume properties and change the volume label, letter, and cluster size.
We got the prizes in to be sent out to the winners, but before that happened, we had this stack of hardware sitting here. A few feet in the other direction was our CPU testbed machine, an ASUS X99-Deluxe with a 40-lane Intel Core i7-5960 CPU installed. It is more just a couple of hours of playing with an insane hardware configuration and exploring the various limits and bottlenecks we were sure to run into. An application meant to demand the most of SSDs would theoretically be coded in such a way, and we can configure Iometer to do the same sort of thing by delegating workers across multiple storage devices. Low speeds in the Iometer file creation process is expected as it is a low queue depth operation, but disk 5 was going half the speed of the others, with roughly double the active time, suggesting a slower link than the others. While we are only using 20 lanes worth of connectivity for our five PCIe 3.0 x4 devices, the X99-Deluxe is not designed around this sort of connectivity. DMI appeared to be the limit here, with obvious added latency and possible bandwidth sharing with other devices hanging off of the DMI, negatively impacting the ultimate IOPS we can see from an SSD 750 connected via this path. This was because the additional unit connected over a higher latency link, combined with diverting CPU threads to that slower device, slowed the overall result and made it far more inconsistent. Before conditioning, the SSD 750’s were simply returning null data (Deterministic Read Zero after Trim - DZAT) since we were trying to read data that had never been written. Realize this is not an apples to apples comparison as we are on a higher clock CPU with the workload configured across 16 workers (we historically ran this test with only one worker). While not as high as the figures seen earlier in this review, this quad of storage is certainly capable of some impressive figures when compared to the others in that same chart. At home I've a Dell Precision 7600 workstation with 2x Xeon E5-2687 which I primarily use as a Hyper-V server, I'm serious thinking about getting a couple of the 750s to try in it whereas I'm currently just using a couple of Samsung drives. That would allow users to bypass the tough to find U.2 cables and upgrade existing systems easily. At this point, in servers and workstations where there is generally more space, booting off of a SATA SSD or USB drive (for embedded systems) is much easier. Applications from video post-production, high resolution surveillance, and disk to disk backup are just a few examples. AMSa€™s goal is to provide solutions that reduce your total cost of ownership and increase your productivity. We’ll do a few tests in a some different configurations and let you know what we found out. Each worker acts in its own thread, and this can simulate a multi-threaded application hitting multiple storage devices with multiple simultaneous IO requests. It’s a game of design challenges and compromises when using a limited resource, and even though 40 PCIe lanes may seem like a lot, they can get gobbled up quickly by slots and integrated devices. I whipped up a quick Iometer configuration, allocating one worker per SSD for sequential performance and four workers to each SSD 750 for random IO testing and let ‘er rip.
They only use 3 NVMe drives in the second demo and beat your performance while using less than 20% cpu.
I know these aren't server optimised, but the workloads I'm running should still benefit dramatically. With high density form factors, usable capacity can reach hundreds of TBs, under a single server node.
We had the Intel NVMe driver installed from previous testing, and all five devices automatically used that driver instead of the Windows 8.1 In-Box driver. The typical use case for that board would be to provide sets of 8 or 16 lanes to as many of the slots as possible, with priority in linking those lanes directly to the CPU (even if we are only installing x4 devices). This means we have slots 1 and 3-6 all going straight to the CPU, with ASUS choosing to take some of the leftover lanes from the Southbridge and diverting them to slot 2.



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Author: admin | 29.10.2013 | Category: Small Storage Buildings


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