Xiotech recently added blades to its Intelligent Storage Element (ISE) architecture that combine hard disk drives (HDDs) and solid state disk (SSD) drives – which the company calls Hybrid ISE — marking the first time that SSDs are available on the ISE architecture.
Xiotech uses 100GB, multi-level cell (MLC) SSDs from Smart Modular Technologies, and provides a five-year warranty on SSD-equipped Hybrid ISE systems versus three-year warranties on many SSD-based arrays from other vendors.
In a 3U system with 14.4TB of raw capacity (with about 10% of the capacity on SSDs and the rest on 2.5-inch SAS drives), Xiotech claims approximately 64,000 I/Os per second (IOPS) based on internal testing. That configuration is priced at about $100,000, which translates into $7,000 per TB and $1.56 per IOPS.
Users can scale performance to almost 900,000 IOPS per rack, according to Xiotech officials.
“We’re balancing HDDs and SSDs, as opposed to making tradeoffs between capacity and performance like some other vendors that support SSDs do,” said Jim McDonald, Xiotech’s chief strategy officer.
A key technology behind Xiotech’s HDD-SSD hybrid is the company’s Continuous Adaptive Data Placement (CADP), which automatically places data on the most appropriate tier (HDDS or SSDs) without user involvement.
“CADP monitors data access patterns on hard drives in real time and automatically moves data to the SSDs,”said McDonald.
Another feature of Hybrid ISE is application profiling, where the system profiles application I/O patterns in order to eliminate or “dissipate” I/O storms before they happen
To improve reliability, or endurance, of the SSD-based blades, Xiotech combines on-drive technologies from Smart Modular with reliability-enhancing techniques that Xiotech uses on its HDD arrays, including head-level sparing, preventative drive maintenance, and environmental monitoring.
Hybrid ISE can be configured with 20 100GB SSDs and 20 900GB HDDs, 8GB of memory, and eight 8Gbps Fibre Channel front-end ports. With Hybrid ISE, Xiotech moved to 6Gbps SAS for the internal drive interconnect (versus Fibre Channel in previous generations).