Two interesting takes on storage controller bottlenecks have appeared in the past few months. The first is a late June posting entitled I Have Seen the Future of Solid-State Storage, and It’s Scale-Out in which Network Computing’s Howard Marks discusses SSD’s impact on storage controller bandwidth. According to Marks, today’s controllers have been more than powerful enough to support current levels of hard disk performance without causing any performance bottlenecks, even with CPU-intensive business continuity features, such as thin provisioning, snapshots, and replication tacked on. Add SSD, however, and the controller struggles to keep up. Why? According to Marks, the power needed from the disk controller is a function of IOPS, not disk capacity. With five or ten MLC SSD’s delivering the same number of IOPs as 1,000 disk drives, the typical single or dual-controller architecture of legacy arrays simply won’t cut it. Add business continuity features such as snapshots and you have even more of a problem.
Posts Tagged ‘Howard Marks’
RIP Storage Controller
Scale Out, Not UpBy Gareth Taube, Vice President Marketing, Kaminario
SSD Array Architectures and Latency: The Proof is in the Pudding
PROOF THAT SSD ARCHITECTURE MATTERSBy Gareth Taube, Vice President Marketing, Kaminario
There are some interesting discussions revolving around Robin Harris’s StorageMojo blog—too bad he’s taken a vacation just when the discussion’s getting really good. The topic is SSD architectures and whether disk-form-factor SSD arrays can possibly provide the kind of performance speed-hungry applications require.
At Kaminario we’ve long argued that a disk-form-factor SSD architecture is inherently flawed. While the SSD itself might deliver on performance, inevitably the legacy storage controllers and other legacy components become a performance and reliability bottleneck, increasing latency and reducing throughput as several SSD’s vie for the same limited pipe.
Don’t Forget Data Protection and High Availability
PERHAPS THE KAMINARIO K2 IS A CROSS BETWEEN A LAMBORGHINI AND A VOLVOBy Gareth Taube, Vice President Marketing, Kaminario
In Howard Marks’ Network Computing column yesterday, he makes the point that there are different performance tiers among SSD storage arrays. He uses a car metaphor to differentiate vendor offerings by speed. It is fun, creative and definitely flattering to be compared to a Lamborghini. However, as we usually do, we would like to make a few comments.
Speed is not enough to distinguish among SSD storage arrays
We started 2012 off by proclaiming it was the Year of the SSD. Since then, we have discussed frequently that while IOPs and latency are important to convince organizations to adopt SSD, speed is not enough. Data protection and high availability are particularly important to enterprise customers. Many customers we speak with say data protection is equally important to them as speed in determining whether to adopt SSD arrays in their data center. So it would be nice to extend Marks’ car metaphor to include data protection. In fact, if a Lamborghini could cross-breed with a Volvo, the offspring would be a lot closer metaphor for the Kaminario K2.