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  • Which storage solution

    Morning all,

    I am designing a new hardware infrastructure for our web based service. I currently have a 2 node (active/passive) cluster connecting to a Dell MD3000 storage array, with a 2 node NLB Web farm front end. Everything works well right now, no performance issues (providing the Quorum is resident on the same node as the running service (SQL)), however for DR reasons I shall be replicating the infrastructure and so have the opportunity to go for a more robust, scalable solution.

    Over the next 5 years the likelihood is that the single application database on the cluster will become 2 databases, perhaps 3, and load is likely to increase 100/200 fold as the application grows and is more heavily subscribed to.

    The MD3000 was originally chosen as it offered a good balance between cost and specification but as I don't have a background in shared storage I thought it might be wise to pick your collective brains for more appropriate hardware/configurations as growth is now looking like it will far outstrip the original forecasts made.

    As yet I haven't purchased any of the hardware required, the system I build will become the main system with the current setup becoming the DR site system.

    So, anyone with a background in, or knowledge of, storage solutions, please feel free to voice your opinions.

    Thanks in advance.

    Stuart Ramwell

  • #2
    Re: Which storage solution

    Did you know you can expand the MD3000/i with added MD1000 stores, daisychained to it? IIRC up to 3 units was supported. So from 15 drives, you go up to 60, purchasing only cheaper DAS stores instead of SAN level stuff.

    Of course the more drives you daisychain on the MD3000's controllers, the more disk access bandwidth can be lost during heavy IO cycles, but calculating disk load vs TCO vs performance is up to you of course
    Real stupidity always beats Artificial Intelligence (c) Terry Pratchett

    BA (BM), RHCE, MCSE, DCSE, Linux+, Network+

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    • #3
      Re: Which storage solution

      Thanks for the reply.

      I do know about the expansion possibilities of the MD range but this is more about performance than capacity.

      The application we host generates a very high volume of small data entries for insertion and a high volume of read requests so performance rather than capacity is the key issue here.

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      • #4
        Re: Which storage solution

        Increasing the spindle count will definitely help then, so don't completely disregard the MD's right away SAN access bandwidth though, will be the bottleneck I suppose, so if your budget allows, you have to start looking at FC solutions.
        Real stupidity always beats Artificial Intelligence (c) Terry Pratchett

        BA (BM), RHCE, MCSE, DCSE, Linux+, Network+

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        • #5
          Re: Which storage solution

          I've already maxed out the MD3000:

          Disk Group 1 - 6 x 146GB, RAID 5 - Main DB
          Disk Group 2 - 2 x 146GB, RAID 1 - Main DB Log
          Disk Group 3 - 2 x 146GB, RAID 1 - Temp DB
          Disk Group 4 - 2 x 146GB, RAID 1 - Temp DB Log
          Disk Group 5 - 2 x 146GB, RAID 1 - Misc
          1 x Hot Spare.

          We learnt the hard way how best to configure the MD3000 for our usage. The app behaves amazingly well now and Read/Write Queues are minimal. Forecast growth and additions to the application functionality (see original post) are forcing us to look at scaling out beyond this architecture.

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          • #6
            Re: Which storage solution

            Not to beat a dead horse, but as I mentioned - you maxed out only the single MD3000. You're using 15 drives, when you can go up to 60 there.
            Real stupidity always beats Artificial Intelligence (c) Terry Pratchett

            BA (BM), RHCE, MCSE, DCSE, Linux+, Network+

            Comment

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