NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool
 

NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool

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This ESG Lab Validation Report presents the hands-on evaluation and testing results of the NetApp FAS2200 series with Flash Pool. ESG Lab focused on key areas that make the FAS2200 an attractive ...

This ESG Lab Validation Report presents the hands-on evaluation and testing results of the NetApp FAS2200 series with Flash Pool. ESG Lab focused on key areas that make the FAS2200 an attractive offering for midsized businesses and distributed enterprises: cost-effective mixed workload performance, ease of implementation, and storage efficiency.

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NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool Document Transcript

  • Lab Validation Report NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool Virtual Storage Tiering with Flash for Performance By Tony Palmer, Senior Lab Analyst November 2013 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 2 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Contents Introduction..................................................................................................................................................3 Background............................................................................................................................................................... 3 The NetApp FAS2200 Series ..................................................................................................................................... 4 NetApp Flash Pool .................................................................................................................................................... 5 ESG Lab Validation........................................................................................................................................5 Mixed Workload Performance ................................................................................................................................. 5 Ease of Implementation ........................................................................................................................................... 9 Validating Cost-effective, Proven Storage Efficiency .............................................................................................12 ESG Lab Validation Highlights.....................................................................................................................16 Issues to Consider.......................................................................................................................................16 The Bigger Truth .........................................................................................................................................17 Appendix.....................................................................................................................................................18 All trademark names are property of their respective companies. Information contained in this publication has been obtained by sources The Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) considers to be reliable but is not warranted by ESG. This publication may contain opinions of ESG, which are subject to change from time to time. This publication is copyrighted by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. Any reproduction or redistribution of this publication, in whole or in part, whether in hard-copy format, electronically, or otherwise to persons not authorized to receive it, without the express consent of The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc., is in violation of U.S. copyright law and will be subject to an action for civil damages and, if applicable, criminal prosecution. Should you have any questions, please contact ESG Client Relations at 508.482.0188. ESG Lab Reports The goal of ESG Lab reports is to educate IT professionals about data center technology products for companies of all types and sizes. ESG Lab reports are not meant to replace the evaluation process that should be conducted before making purchasing decisions, but rather to provide insight into these emerging technologies. Our objective is to go over some of the more valuable feature/functions of products, show how they can be used to solve real customer problems and identify any areas needing improvement. ESG Lab's expert third-party perspective is based on our own hands-on testing as well as on interviews with customers who use these products in production environments. This ESG Lab report was sponsored by NetApp.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 3 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Introduction This ESG Lab Validation Report presents the hands-on evaluation and testing results of the NetApp FAS2200 series with Flash Pool. ESG Lab focused on key areas that make the FAS2200 an attractive offering for midsized businesses and distributed enterprises: cost-effective mixed workload performance, ease of implementation, and storage efficiency. Background Around the globe, midmarket and distributed enterprise organizations are tasked with managing complex IT infrastructures. The nearly ubiquitous adoption of server virtualization, a shortage of employees with the proper skill sets, and the continuous focus on improving resource efficiency and ROI has increased IT management’s focus on newer technologies. As a result, performance and efficiency are at the heart of four of the ten most-cited IT priorities reported by respondents to ESG’s annual IT spending intentions survey.1 This is also reflected in the criteria used by IT management when making investments in new technology. As can be seen in Figure 1, price, TCO, and ease of installation and management weigh heavily in the minds of IT.2 Figure 1. Top-ten Most Important Technology Selection Criteria for Midmarket Organizations for 2013 Source: Enterprise Strategy Group, 2013. 1 Source: ESG Research Report, 2013 IT Spending Intentions Survey, January 2013. 2 Ibid. 16% 17% 21% 24% 25% 29% 31% 37% 40% 47% 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45% 50% Ability to leverage existing staff skills Industry-specific expertise Ease of initial implementation Ease of ongoing management Existing relationship with vendor Reputation/brand of vendor Total cost of ownership (TCO) inclusive of capital costs, operational costs, productive benefits Product features/functionality Vendor Service and support Price In general, what would you consider to be the most important criteria to your organization when it comes to selecting a technology vendor/solution? (Percent of respondents, five responses accepted) Midmarket (100 to 999 employees, N=214)
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 4 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. The NetApp FAS2200 Series The FAS2200 series is an entry-level platform targeted at the midmarket, branch and remote offices, and distributed enterprises. Offering enhanced scale, flexible flash support for both cache-based hybrid and all-SSD configurations, simplicity and efficiency, the FAS2200 series enables midmarket organizations to build agile data infrastructures that adapt to support any combination of application workloads. Figure 2.The Comprehensive NetApp FAS Portfolio With reliable, high-performance hardware including high-speed flash, the FAS2200 is the entry-level solution for the broader FAS portfolio, which also includes the mid-range FAS3200 series and the enterprise FAS6200 systems (see Figure 2). A key feature of NetApp FAS storage systems and Data ONTAP software is the ability to leverage flash storage for acceleration at multiple points in the system architecture. With the FAS2200, NetApp supports flash in two places – at the host and as part of the disk storage. At the host, NetApp offers Flash Accel technology that operates with server-based PCIe flash cards or SSD to provide coherent, end-to-end cache management. At the storage level, NetApp offers the ability to create both SSD volumes for persistent flash storage and hybrid volumes with Flash Pool. The FAS2200 series is available in two models: the 2U FAS2220 and the FAS2240 which is available in 2U (2240-2) and 4U (FAS2240-4) configurations. Both models use the same processors and have 12GB of RAM, and provide multiple I/O capabilities including SAS, GbE, 10GbE and 8G Fibre Channel. The FAS2220 scales to 240TB of storage and the FAS2240 supports up to 576TB. All members of the FAS2200 family support a maximum of 400GB of flash pool capacity.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 5 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. As with all NetApp FAS storage systems, the FAS2200 series runs Data ONTAP. Data ONTAP 8.2 is the latest version of the NetApp clustered storage OS designed to deliver an on-demand, highly efficient, flexible, and scalable single storage operating system to help users manage data, application, and scale-out storage infrastructure growth. Clustered Data ONTAP 8.2 takes multiple NetApp storage systems and creates a massively scalable unified storage platform to provide increased operational flexibility and efficiency with a goal of eliminating planned and unplanned downtime for both enterprise and service-oriented infrastructures. NetApp Flash Pool NetApp’s Flash Pool is a hybrid caching technology which combines SSD with traditional disk drives to form a Flash Pool Aggregate. The Flash Pool technology automatically manages the cache, which is fully RAID protected and integrated with NetApp’s High Availability technology. Because the Flash Pool supports both read and write operations, the number of HDDs in the system can be reduced while maintaining or increasing overall system performance. In addition, Flash Pool enables the replacement of performance disks with a hybrid combination of capacity disks and SSDs. Flash Pool read caching acts as a typical read cache tier, behind the system memory cache, and in front of the physical disk drives. Data not in the cache is fetched from disk and inserted into system memory. As the data in system memory ages, random blocks are transferred to the Flash Pool SSD cache. All the subsequent reads related to the blocks in the Flash Pool cache are fetched from the SSDs As the data in the Flash Pool cache ages, the least frequently used blocks are evicted to make room for new read requests. With Flash Pool write caching, random blocks with repetitive writes are stored on the SSDs. Streaming block writes are always written directly to disk. All first-time writes are also written to disk. Repetitive writes to existing data are written to the SSD cache, while simultaneously marking the HDD blocks as invalid. Subsequent reads associated to the written blocks are served from the SSDs. As with reads, the least frequently used blocks are evicted from cache and written to HDD. The Flash Pool is a hybrid model where random reads are cached in the SSDs and repetitive random writes are stored in the SSDs. The Flash Pool supports multiple policies to control caching behavior. Read policies include no cache; caching only metadata in the cache; caching only random read data; and caching random-read-writes, which accelerates read-back of just-written data. Write cache policies include no cache, and caching random write updates that are less than or equal to 16KB. These policies can be applied individually to each volume in the Flash Pool aggregate. ESG Lab Validation ESG Lab performed hands-on evaluation and testing of the FAS2200 series at NetApp headquarters, in Sunnyvale, California. Testing was designed to examine the enhanced performance provided by NetApp Flash Pool, as well as the ease of set up and configuration, and capacity efficiency. Mixed Workload Performance The configuration used in ESG Lab testing is shown in Figure 3.3 A single physical server was configured with VMware vSphere 5.1, with two virtual machines, each of which was running Microsoft Server 2008 R2. The Physical Server was connected via a single 10GbE interface to both a NetApp FAS2240-2 and a NetApp FAS2240-4, each running NetApp clustered Data ONTAP 8.2. Each FAS2240 system was tested in a high availability configuration, with a pair of controllers for each system. The controllers were configured as active / passive, where the active controller handled all workload requests while the passive controller was used only for fault tolerance. The FAS2240-2 was configured with 48 2.5 inch 900GB 10Krpm SAS disk drives for a total of 42TB of raw storage and used as the baseline system against which the relative performance of the FAS2240-4 with SATA drives and 3 Configuration and workload details can be found in the Appendix.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 6 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Flash Pool technology would be measured. The FAS 2240-4 was configured with 32 3.5 inch 2TB 7.2Krpm SATA disk drives and four SSD drives of 200GB each for 64TB of raw storage. Each NetApp system was configured with one aggregate, and each VM was allocated 3 dedicated LUNs from within a volume on the aggregate. These LUNs were used as the data drive for each VM and the target for each VM’s workload. Testing was conducted using the industry-standard Iometer test tool to both simulate workloads and create datasets. The applications simulated included Microsoft Exchange 2010, Microsoft SQL Server 2010, and File Services. The ESG Lab test bed was designed not to generate the highest possible performance numbers, but to compare the relative performance of identically configured controllers connected to either small, fast disks or a combination of large, slow disks with SSDs configured as a flash pool. Figure 3.The ESG Lab Test Bed ESG Lab Testing The industry-standard Iometer workload generation utility was used to emulate the I/O activity of three common business application workloads:  Exchange 2010: The Iometer utility was used to generate storage traffic modeled after the I/O patterns produced by the Microsoft Jetstress and Loadsim utilities. ESG Lab used Iometer to simulate the activity of typical Microsoft Exchange users as they send and read e-mails, make appointments, and manage to-do lists. The Iometer utility is, however, a more lightweight utility than either Jetstress or Loadsim, designed to focus solely on storage performance.  OLTP Database: The Iometer utility was also used to generate response-time sensitive online transaction processing (OLTP) database traffic.  File Services: The Iometer utility was used to generate file server traffic. The I/O definition was composed of random reads and writes of various block sizes. The file server Iometer profile used for this test was originally distributed by Intel, the author of Iometer; Iometer has since become an open source project.4 Each of the three workloads was run in parallel in its own dedicated virtual machine. One instance of each workload was set to run against either the FAS2240-2 without Flash Pool or the FAS2240-4 with a Flash Pool aggregate. Figure 4 http://www.sourceforge.net/projects/iometer
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 7 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 4 shows the Iometer results for each of the workloads, comparing the relative performance of the FAS2240-2 without Flash Pool (baseline) to the FAS2240-4 with Flash Pool. Figure 4. FAS2240 Performance With and Without Flash Pool Figure 5 translates the test results into real-world parameters, showing the relative number of Exchange 2013 mailboxes that could be supported by the FAS2240-2 with high performance SAS drives but no Flash Pool compared with the FAS2240-4 using slower SATA drives and Flash Pool. These calculations were based on the Microsoft heavy workload definition of .1 IOPS per mailbox, plus 20%. Figure 5. Exchange 2013 Mailbox Support With and Without Flash Pool 100% 137% FAS 2240-2 Without Flash Pool FAS 2240-4 With Flash Pool IOPS Mail OLTP File Services 135% 100% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% 120% 140% 160% FAS 2240-4 With Flash Pool FAS 2240-2 Without Flash Pool Exchange 2010 Mailboxes
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 8 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Table 1 makes the direct comparison between the FAS2240-2 without Flash Pool and the FAS2240-4 with Flash Pool, showing the amount of relative performance, capacity, and cost improvements. Table 1. Flash Pool Price and Performance Advantages Raw Capacity Cost OLTP IOPS Exchange Mailboxes File Services Through- put Average Read Response Time $/GB $/IOPS FAS 2240-4 With Flash Pool +48% -18% +46% +35% +15% +34% -31% -45% -40% What the Numbers Mean  NetApp Flash Pool was able to significantly increase both the number of supportable Exchange mailboxes and OLTP IOPS.  ESG Lab saw a 31% reduction in average read response times and a 27% reduction in overall response time, with a pool of fewer, larger, and slower disks.  The Flash Pool enabled superior performance in a system that cost 18% less and provided almost 50% more raw storage capacity versus the system with SAS drives.  The NetApp FAS2240 with Flash Pool provided excellent price-performance improvement with a 45% reduction in cost per GB and a 40% reduction in cost per IOPS. Why This Matters Storage scalability and performance are significant challenges for the growing number of organizations embracing virtualization technology and the IT-as-a-service, on-demand delivery model. However, these organizations are not only driven by outright performance. Capital costs and TCO are also key factors driving infrastructure architectures and purchasing decisions.5 Historically, benchmarks have focused on a single workload, such as database or e-mail, and a single performance metric, such as IOPS. To help IT managers understand how the NetApp FAS2200 series performs in a typical implementation, ESG Lab ran a benchmark designed to assess how multiple real-world applications behave when running with or without flash pooling on otherwise identically configured controllers. ESG Lab simulated the traffic of a mid-sized organization running Exchange 2010 servers, OLTP databases, and file servers, all running simultaneously on just one physical server, and FAS2200 series storage systems—one running small, fast disks, the other running large, slow disks combined with SSD in the NetApp Flash Pool. Through hands-on testing, ESG Lab has verified that the NetApp FAS2200 with Flash Pool provides a significant cost, performance, and storage capacity advantage over a comparably configured FAS2200 without SSDs. Implementing a system with large, slow disks and SSD in a Flash Pool reduced cost per GB by 45%, while it reduced the cost per IOPS by 40% and lowered read response times by 31% on average. 5 Ibid.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 9 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Ease of Implementation ESG Lab explored the out-of-box setup and installation experience of the FAS2200 series, validating the rapid and easy installation procedure. This included basic network configuration, storage aggregate and flash pool configuration, and provisioning of storage to the hosts in the test environment. ESG Lab Testing ESG lab began ease of implementation testing by starting the NetApp System Setup configuration wizard. As seen in Figure 6, in the first step, the wizard runs an auto-discovery program, identifying the two FAS2240 systems present on the test network. Figure 6. Auto Discovery Proceeding to the next step (see Figure 7), the license key was assigned to the selected systems. Each system was assigned network addresses and system names. The cluster name and network information (network mask, gateway, DNS servers) and administrator passwords were also assigned. At the top of the wizard is a progress guide, showing each step in the configuration and installation process: discovery, management network, storage, data network, protocols, and summary. Figure 7. Name and Network Configuration
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 10 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Selecting “next” applied this configuration to each node in the cluster, and advanced to the next step, where support information was entered. Selecting “next” then advanced to the storage pool configuration, as shown in Figure 8. Figure 8. Storage Pool Configuration At this point, the wizard provisioned the disks and advanced to the next step. At this stage, network settings for the client data network were configured as well as storage protocols. Check boxes were presented for Windows (SMB or CIFS clients), NFS clients, and iSCSI clients. iSCSI was enabled, and iSCSI network settings were configured. The final step in the wizard is presented the configuration summary (see Figure 9).
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 11 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Figure 9. Configuration Summary The overall installation and configuration process took less than 15 minutes. Each step was simple and easy to understand, and was presented in a logical, orderly fashion. Why This Matters According to ESG research, increased use of server virtualization and managing data growth are among the most- cited IT priorities reported by mid-market organizations, defined as having between 100 and 999 employees.6 As these organizations broaden their virtualized environments and their data grows, they are investing more time and money in deploying and implementing. As a result, ESG research has found that among mid-market organizations, TCO, ease of implementation, and ease of management are significant drivers of purchasing decisions.7 The NetApp FAS2200 series was extraordinarily easy to deploy and configure. In ESG Lab testing, the NetApp System Setup configuration wizard configured storage hardware and software, provisioned and exported storage, and enabled management of host connections directly from the wizard. Configuration was easy and rapid, with a logical progression through the configuration steps. With NetApp FAS2200 series storage, organizations have the potential to significantly reduce implementation complexity, time, and cost. 6 Ibid. 7 Ibid.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 12 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Validating Cost-effective, Proven Storage Efficiency ESG Lab examined the NetApp FAS2200 series efficiency as a platform, validating the ability of NetApp FlexVol storage-virtualization technology to enable organizations to respond to changing storage needs, reduce overhead, avoid capital expenses, and reduce disruption and risk. FlexVol technology aggregates physical storage in virtual storage pools, so IT can create and resize virtual volumes as application needs change. ESG Lab began with a look at storage provisioning. NetApp Data ONTAP is different from traditional storage systems in that storage virtualization can be applied at the volume level, commonly used in NAS configurations, or at the LUN level, useful for SAN configurations where not every LUN may be a good candidate for thin provisioning. Figure 10 compares traditional provisioning with NetApp FlexVol thin provisioning. When provisioning a volume for a host in the traditional manner, the amount of physical disk allocated is equal to the size of the volume presented to the host. When thin provisioning by volume, the entire volume is thinly provisioned, providing storage efficiency to any client or server that attaches to the volume. Thin provisioning by LUN provides greater flexibility, enabling administrators to selectively apply thin provisioning only where it makes sense. Figure 10. Traditional Provisioning Compared to NetApp Thin Provisioning In the example shown in Figure 10, a server running a mission-critical online application has a storage capacity requirement of only 10GB, but over time, its storage requirement is projected to grow to 1TB. With traditional provisioning, 1TB is pre-allocated to the application. This means that 99% of the physical storage assigned to this volume would be unused and, importantly, unavailable to other applications. Using NetApp FlexVol technology, an administrator need only specify a volume's virtual capacity. This is the maximum capacity that the volume may consume on disk. Physical disk space is consumed only as data is written to the thin provisioned volume. ESG Lab Testing To test thin provisioning using FlexVol, ESG lab created a new 3TB volume on an empty aggregate, node4_aggr, as seen in Figure 11.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 13 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Figure 11. Creating a FlexVol Inside this volume, a 2TB thinly provisioned LUN was created and assigned to a virtual machine. Figure 12. Creating a Thin-Provisioned LUN
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 14 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. From the console of the virtual machine, the volume was mounted and initialized using Windows Disk Manager, shown in Figure 13. Figure 13. Accessing the Thin Provisioned LUN ESG Lab copied a 12.6GB file to the LUN, and confirmed available capacity by viewing the properties of the disk in the virtual machine. Figure 14. Capacity Consumed on the LUN
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 15 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Finally, ESG Lab confirmed that the 2TB volume was only consuming .01TB on the aggregate using the NetApp OnCommand management application, seen in Figure 15. Figure 15. Space Consumed By the FlexVol Why This Matters ESG has found that end-users often acquire and implement new storage systems when they have allocated but unused storage capacity. In a survey of IT managers and storage administrators, more than half reported that up to 50% of their purchased storage capacity was stranded and unused. In addition, 45% percent indicated that they purchased new storage systems to support new and existing applications every six months or more frequently.8 With thin provisioning, less physical storage is required since the amount of stranded storage is significantly reduced. In addition, companies are continuously challenged to cost-effectively meet the capacity and performance requirements of applications. Failure to meet these requirements can result in downtime leading to lost productivity and costly loss of services. ESG Lab has validated that thin provisioning on the FAS2200 series with NetApp FlexVol is easy to manage and extremely capacity efficient. Provisioning additional storage capacity happens entirely behind the scenes while the application remains unaware of any changes. The storage system automatically provisions additional capacity as needed without any manual intervention. The FAS2200 series leverages NetApp FlexVol to provide enterprise-class storage efficiency to mid-sized organizations. 8 Source: ESG Research Report, Scale-out Storage Market Trends, December 2010.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 16 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. ESG Lab Validation Highlights  ESG Lab has verified that the NetApp FAS2200 series with Flash Pool provides significant performance improvements, increased capacity, and reduced cost compared with similarly configured FAS2200 systems without Flash Pool.  NetApp FAS2200 systems with Flash Pool are able to reduce costs significantly. In ESG Lab testing, the cost per GB of a system was reduced by 45% by using large format drives while performance and response time improved significantly.  The implementation process for the NetApp FAS2200 series storage was intuitive, and configuration was easy and rapid, with a logical progression through the configuration steps.  ESG Lab validated that thin provisioning with NetApp FlexVol is easy to configure and manage while extremely capacity efficient. Issues to Consider  ESG Lab testing was not designed to determine the maximum performance attainable by the FAS 2200 series. Instead, the test bench and tests were designed by ESG Lab to compare and contrast the performance of identically configured controllers, one using a large number of small, fast disks, and the other using a smaller number of large, slow disks combined with SSD using NetApp Flash Pool.  The FAS2240 systems described in this report were tested in a configuration known as Two Node Switchless Cluster (TNSC) with a single cluster interconnect between the two controllers. The NetApp FAS2200 has a 2-port 10GbE mezzanine card that is used to create the cluster environment and while NetApp supports using a single cluster interconnect on FAS2200s, it is the recommended best practice to use both 10GbE ports for cluster interconnects for the highest fault tolerance and non-disruptive operation capabilities.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 17 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Bigger Truth Explosive data growth, backup and recovery challenges, and flat or declining IT budgets are pervasive, especially in mid-sized businesses and distributed enterprises with reduced or undertrained IT staff. When IT management takes these issues into consideration to develop purchasing criteria, performance, efficiency, and TCO become critical. The NetApp FAS2200 Series was designed to address those challenges. ESG Lab confirmed that the NetApp FAS2200 series with Flash Pool provides significant performance and capacity improvements while reducing costs compared with similarly configured FAS2200 systems without Flash Pool. Two NetApp FAS2200 systems running clustered Data ONTAP 8.2 were configured by ESG Lab in a test bench designed to compare similarly configured controllers with and without Flash Pools. Deployment of the systems was fast, simple, and intuitive, using a six-step deployment wizard. Keeping it simple with the slick graphical user interface provided by the new OnCommand System Manager, we were able to efficiently manage storage and implement NetApp storage-management best practices through a single interface. ESG Lab also validated that thin provisioning on the FAS2200 series with NetApp FlexVol is easy to manage and extremely capacity efficient. ESG Lab compared two identically configured controllers—one connected to a large number of small, fast SAS disks, and the other connected to a smaller number of large, slow SATA disks combined with SSD. The SSDs were configured into a Flash Pool, which provided a fast read/write cache tier, along with persistent access to cached data during failover and recovery events. NetApp Flash Pool provided FAS2200 with a 37% improvement in IOPS along with a 31% reduction in read response times, all in a system with 48% more capacity at a lower cost than the all-disk FAS system. In relative terms, the NetApp Flash Pool enabled FAS2200 system cost 45% less in $/GB and 40% less in $/IOPS. ESG lab validated that it is possible to configure storage to use larger, slower SATA drives combined with SSD in a Flash Pool, providing a significant overall performance boost to the NetApp FAS2200 series while simultaneously reducing costs and increasing capacity compared to the SAS only configuration. This comes with no penalties, as the FAS2200 runs Data ONTAP 8.2 and is part of a larger family of unified, enterprise-class storage systems. The FAS2200 systems proved to be rapid to deploy and simple to manage. IT managers in medium-sized businesses and distributed enterprises looking for efficient, unified, enterprise-class midrange storage would be smart to consider the NetApp FAS2200 series with Flash Pool.
  • Lab Validation: NetApp FAS2200 Series with Flash Pool 18 © 2013 by The Enterprise Strategy Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Appendix Table 2. ESG Lab Test Bed Details Storage NetApp FAS2240 – without Flash Pool 12GB physical memory per node 48 x 900GB SAS drives 4 x 10GbE ports NetApp FAS2240 – with Flash Pool 12GB physical memory per node 4 x 200GB Flash drives 32 x 2 TB SATA drives 4 x 10GbE ports Servers Virtualization Servers (1) vSphere 5.1 Virtual Machines (1) Windows Server 2008 R2 Software and Tools Data ONTAP Version 8.2 OnCommand System Manager Version 3.0 Iometer Workloads: Exchange 2010: 32KB block size, 73% read, 100% Random 8KB OLTP, 8KB block size, 67% Read, 100% Random File Services: Mixed block Sizes, 80% Read, 100% Random Version 2008.06.18
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