1 Million IOPS

As a keen follower of storage performance I couldn't help but be drawn to this article in The Register  http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/04/14/lsi_million_iops/ this morning.

I gave my 5 year old laptop a new lease of life with a SSD and in combination with the old drive made external managed to reduce the time of a demo query from 50 odd mins down to 6 mins.

I also have 4 Silicon Power 32GB SSDs set up as a raid 0 on my home server, an overblown PC.  http://www.futurestorage.co.uk/index.asp?selmanuf=Silicon%20Power&showcat=YES&selCategory=SSD  in some tests I ran these outperformed a very substantial SAN with 15k disks. OK The Silicon Power SSDs are consumer directed, e.g. cheaper than many, however I've found them pretty damn quick and I'd say probably at least equal in performance to a 15k scsi disk, I bought them mainly to use for video editing put in a raid 0 as they are so much quieter than a

Anyway back to LSI  http://www.lsi.com/DistributionSystem/AssetDocument/SSS_PB_LSI6200.pdf  and I have to say I've yet to see any of my female colleagues show that much excitement over a SSD < grin > , if you read the actual spec this isn't actually a disk, it's a Pci x 8 card - I'm not sure how you might set these up as a high speed storage unit or add redundancy.

The uptake of SSDs by storage vendors has I believe been limited in a sense by the iop bandwidth of the backplanes, in other words yes SSDs will give you high IOPS with few units, but at the likely cost of the backplane/bandwidth not being able to support.

As usual I had a look at the LSI device, the high iops are for 2k read/writes, -25% for 4k, but from a database point of view the use of Pci slots somewhat restricts the amount of storage, after all 1TB isn't much in database world. I was talking to one SAN vendor and they were suggesting that the likelyhood was to use SSDs ( the disk type this type ) almost as an extended cache with the software moving data from physical disk to SSD and back as demand required.

The one thing I couldn't discover was the price, usually SSDs are very expensive on a capacity vs price per disk, however as LSI point out you need some 2,500 standard disks to achieve the same IOPS, however you would get  1,125 times the raw storage, e.g. 1,125 TB so really the power and capacity cost comparison isn't really valid for as we all know that for databases it's more often the number of spindles required to get the performance rather than the capacity - in these cases SSDs may prove more cost effective where the actual database size is small, however I could witter on for ages trying to produce cost vs iops vs capacity calculations.

Published 15 April 2010 21:00 by GrumpyOldDBA

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# re: 1 Million IOPS

30 April 2010 02:49 by DavidB

Colin,

Wondering if you had read this and what your thoughts were. I can tell you that we are in the process of trying a similar configuration and could probably provide some before and after stats to you if interested.

blogs.netapp.com/.../shed-a-tier-with-pam-ii-an-alternative-to-emc-fast.html

Seems pretty much like what you stated here - "I was talking to one SAN vendor and they were suggesting that the likelyhood was to use SSDs ( the disk type this type ) almost as an extended cache with the software moving data from physical disk to SSD and back as demand required."

Anyway, thanks for your thoughts!