Data Storage Server

The onset of data-driven applications in the enterprise has led to advances in data storage technology resulting in improvements in storage capacity and data I/O performance. For the latter, the data storage server that manages how data is stored impacts directly the speed at which data can be accessed.

Data Storage Server Performance

The performance of server storage is critical to the performance of data-driven applications. Hence, the specifications of each data storage server determines how well an application performs. This is particularly true when a storage server is part of a shared storage infrastructure. Storage server specifications that affect storage performance include hard drive rotational speed (if hard drives are used instead of solid-state drives), drive controller throughput (for example, SAS or SATA), network interface throughput, and computing power.

Requirements for hard drive rotational speed are application-dependent. For example, a backend cloud data storage server may use 7,200RPM hard drives for reliability and cost-effectiveness. A mission-critical storage server that processes heavy workloads such as an enterprise server running transaction processing applications that require high speed data access would typically use 10,000RPM and 15,000RPM drives. Solid-state drives are also ideal for these heavy workload applications but currently are cost-prohibitive for large capacity storage needs.

Drive controller throughput is also a factor in data storage server performance. A slow drive interface causes bottlenecks for high speed drives. Current industry-standard bandwidths for fast drive access are SAS/SATA 6Gb/s and SAS 12Gb/s.

Network interconnect speed is critical to how fast data can be transported from a data storage server to other servers in a data center. Modern data centers are equipped with very high bandwidth network infrastructures. Each rack mount computer server in the data center needs to leverage that bandwidth by using compatible network interfaces such as InfiniBand or Fibre Channel adapters. For SAN and NAS deployments, this is especially critical.

Configure a High Bandwidth Data Storage Server from Thinkmate

Thinkmate’s range of storage servers offer the highest bandwidth drive controller interfaces available today. Each Thinkmate data storage server can be configured with one or more PCIe 3.0-based SAS-3 12Gb/s controllers. These controllers double the throughput of SAS-2 6Gb/s drives and are also backward compatible with SAS-2 drives. 12Gb/s hard and solid-state drives and compatible drive controllers can easily be configured for a Thinkmate STX or Supermicro SuperStorage data storage server through the Thinkmate website.

Thinkmate’s website also allows you to configure high bandwidth network interfaces for any Thinkmate storage server. Options include 40/56-Gigabit ethernet network, 40-Gigabit QDR InfiniBand, 56-Gigabit FDR InfiniBand, and Fibre Channel host bus adapters. Should you require assistance, Thinkmate solution engineers are standing by to help you determine the optimal configuration for your environment and expected workloads.


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