SCI Briefing: A Review of the New Hitachi Unified Storage and Hitachi NAS Platform 4000 Series. Silverton Consulting, Inc.

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1 SCI Briefing: A Review of the New Hitachi Unified Storage and Hitachi NAS Platform 4000 Series Silverton Consulting, Inc. StorInt Briefing Written by: Ray Lucchesi, President and Founder Published: July, 2013

2 PAGE 1 OF 6 Executive Summary Hitachi Unified Storage (HUS) and Hitachi NAS Platform(HNAS) have been enhanced with the newly introduced 4060, 4080 and 4100 file sharing models. These new file modules provide significantly more file IOPS and throughput performance. They also offer improved front- end server and faster back- end storage connectivity, as well as expanded scalability through a larger single namespace. Primary data deduplication is the major new feature that helps achieve higher utilization and cost savings through capacity efficiencies. This increase in performance, scalability and capacity efficiency helps IT departments to accelerate insight, improve decision- making and free up resources. Introduction In today s data center, file data is growing at exponential rates with no end in sight. We are all generating more data almost 2.5EB a day most of which is in the form of file information. To provide better insight, smart businesses are capturing information on customer interactions everywhere they can, and their employees are creating and sharing more information than ever before. Data centers are struggling, especially since the traditional storage and systems used to manage this avalanche of file data are insufficient to the task. HUS and HNAS 4000 Series Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) has recently introduced three new file- sharing models called Hitachi NAS Platform 4060, 4080 and These models improve performance, enhance configuration flexibility and increase name space scalability. These improvements, together with the increased capacity effectiveness available from deduplication, help customers store more file data with fewer storage systems and, as such, reduce the operational burden for managing enterprise file storage. HDS offers their new file modules in HNAS file service gateways that use SAN- attached storage, as well as HUS configurations that support both file and block data in a single system. In both solutions, the new file modules supply the same advanced functionality available from Hitachi s current HNAS 3080 and 3090 file sharing models. However, the new file modules perform better. The new file modules have undergone a number of industry- standard benchmark tests to obtain more information on their performance. In a subsequent section of this paper, we discuss one series of benchmark results that compares the previous generation of file modules with the new file modules in HUS configurations. Enterprise File Challenges Today Managing increasing amounts of file data is challenging because traditional file storage suffers from limitations of scale at the directory, file system and name space level. When dealing with explosive file growth, scalability constraints like these can cause IT significant problems. For example, sooner or later corporate file data expands beyond set limits, and then the data must be divided across multiple directories, file systems or name spaces. At that point, operators must find or configure more storage, move file data to the new storage and update hundreds, if not thousands, of end users or applications to point to the new location.

3 PAGE 2 OF 6 Much of this administrative work can be automated, but splitting up file data makes files harder to find, protect and manage. With the increased use of big data analytics, the value of file data is increasing in the enterprise, and more business- critical applications are starting to use files rather than block storage. As file data becomes more mission- critical, file performance tuning becomes yet another reason to move file data. It s one thing when a few users complain about slow access to file data, but it s something else entirely when crucial applications wait on file data. With these thoughts in mind, it s no wonder that the time to store, tune and protect file data is starting to reach troubling levels. But even without the above system constraints, managing file information is becoming a more significant burden to IT staff given the expansion of corporate file data. Hitachi 4000 Series of File-Sharing Systems Enhancements HDS supports the new Hitachi NAS Platform 4060, 4080 and 4100 as standalone gateway configurations or as file modules in HUS 110, HUS 130, HUS 150 and Hitachi Unified Storage VM storage systems. All of the new file modules offer the following hardware enhancements: Next- generation FPGA that has faster hardware and more electronics, which can help sustain much faster file I/O performance. Hitachi s use of FPGA hardware acceleration has always been the hallmark of its superior file I/O performance. New Intel Xeon processors that have more CPU cores, more local memory and faster instruction execution to help speed up the file software stack and increase the number of simultaneous I/O operations that can execute in parallel. Larger memory cache to help generate more cache hits, resulting in faster file I/O because data is coming out of memory rather than backend storage. Both NAS Platform 4060 and 4080 now support 46GB of cache per node, and the 4100 offers 108GB of cache per node. Faster file sharing 10GbE frontend ports, which speed up server data transfers and provide more file data throughput. The new systems can be configured with up to 4-10GbE links for server networks, and they also continue to support 2-10GbE links for inter- cluster communications. Higher- speed 8Gbps backend fibre channel ports for faster storage to file module data transfers, leading to better performance for data coming off of backend storage. The system can be configured with up to 4-8Gbps FC links. Furthermore, the NAS Platform 4060 can be configured with up to two nodes per cluster, and the 4080 and the 4100 can be configured with up to four nodes per cluster.

4 PAGE 3 OF 6 Hitachi File Module Software Enhancements The new file modules add to the already impressive file storage functionality present in the previously available NAS Platform 3080 and 3090 file modules. Earlier this year, HDS introduced primary storage deduplication for file data. Primary storage deduplication eliminates data redundancy across files, which reduces the storage needed to save file data and increases the capacity efficiency and effectiveness of their file sharing modules. Most file storage or NAS systems that offer data deduplication perform the compute- intensive portion of deduplication processing using software that can materially reduce file I/O performance, especially when files are being created. In contrast, Hitachi s new deduplication functionality uses FPGA hardware acceleration to perform most of the compute- intensive work required to eliminate redundant data and, as such, has a minimal impact on file creation performance. Hitachi deduplication can be enabled/disabled at a file system level. The base license comes with one deduplication engine and is available for free. Additional deduplication engines can be purchased if needed. In addition, the new NAS Platform 4080 and 4100 file modules also offer a larger single name space that now supports up to 16PB of file data. The 4060 file module supports up to an 8PB single name space. All current and new file modules support up to a 256TB file system pool size. As shown in Table 1, the new file modules offer more file throughput and more cache. For NAS Platform 4080 and 4100, they also offer substantially more scalability and performance per node. We discuss these performance advantages more fully later in this paper. Some reasons to continue using the NAS Platform 3080 and 3090 are 1GbE support and the ability to add a performance acceleration option (3090 only) to boost performance beyond base configurations. A few reasons to consider using the new 4000 series include better frontend and backend throughput, more simultaneous open files and more cache memory. Advantages for the 4080 and 4100 also include more IOPS, higher throughput and larger name space. HUS & HNAS 3080 HUS & HNAS 3090 HUS & HNAS 4060 HUS & HNAS 4080 HUS & HNAS 4100 IOPS per node 1 Throughput per node 40,000 72,000 70, , , MB/sec. 1,100MB/se c. 1,000MB/sec. 1,500MB/sec. 2,000MB/sec. Performance Acceleration N/A Yes N/A N/A N/A Scalability 2 4PB 8PB 8PB 16PB 16PB File sharing ports/node 2-10GbE and 6-1GbE 2-10GbE and 6-1GbE 4-10GbE 4-10GbE 4-10GbE 1 Performance results from SPECsfs_2008 NFSv3 data. 2 Single name space maximum capacity.

5 PAGE 4 OF 6 Backend 4-4, 2, or 1 4-4, 2, or 1 4-8, 4, or 2 4-8, 4, or 2 4-8, 4, or 2 ports/node Gbps Gbps Gbps Gbps Gbps Cache/node 32GB 32GB 46GB 46GB 108GB Max nodes per cluster Table 1 Summary Hitachi NAS Platform Technical Specifications HUS 100 Series and HUS VM Block Storage Enhancements The HDS block storage modules present in HUS configurations have recently been enhanced. For instance, the Hitachi Accelerated Flash (HAF) array with new Flash Module Drive (FMD), previously available only on Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform (VSP), is now offered on HUS VM. The FMD is a proprietary, Hitachi- designed flash storage device that offers more capacity, better read performance and higher write performance, as well as higher endurance than traditional SSD or flash storage. All of these capabilities will increase HUS VM file data access speed. Moreover, HDS has eliminated all prior limits on the number of FMDs or SSDs that could be used in HUS storage systems; as a result, HUS storage all- flash array options are now available for customers that need even higher performance. HDS now also supports an all- DC power option for HUS storage. This option adds deployment flexibility and will simplify installation for many customer environments that don t have AC power or don t want to use it. HDS block storage module software functionality has also been enhanced. Specifically, Hitachi Dynamic Tiering (HDT) can now use external capacity as a separate, distinct storage tier. For example, an external, all- flash storage array can now be used for HDT s top data storage tier. HDT now enables data volumes to be locked to a single tier such as flash storage until they no longer need high levels of performance. HUS block storage now offers data- at- rest encryption for secure data storage. HUS block storage controllers encrypt/decrypt data as it is written/read back from backend storage. File Sharing Roadmap HDS has announced a statement of direction for its future file sharing model hardware and software functionality that includes the following: 32PB single name space, which doubles the current single name space capacity; 1PB file system, which quadruples the current file system capacity; and 8- node clusters, which double the current cluster configuration.

6 PAGE 5 OF 6 New File Module Performance The SPECsfs_2008 (Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation for System File Services, 2008 version) benchmark suite is an industry- wide performance test that provides a standard method to compare file I/O performance across storage systems from a number of vendors. SPECsfs2008 benchmark runs are formally documented, independently audited and available for viewing on their website. 3 SPECsfs2008 testing is designed to measure file system performance from low levels all the way up to peak system performance. Although SPECsfs2008 is defined for NFSv3 and CIFS/SMB1, the testing discussed below is based on NFSv3 results only. Figure 1 shows both published SPECsfs2008 benchmark results (red columns) and projected results (blue columns). 4 The height of each column indicates the peak NFS throughput operations per second achievable by the storage system under SPECsfs2008 stress testing. Figure 1 SPECsfs2008 NFS Throughput Operations/Second Hitachi Comparison As the figure shows, the HUS with 4080 and 4100 dual node clusters performed better than the clustered (2- node) HNAS G2 system with the optional Performance Accelerator feature by ~10% and ~54% respectively. For the G2 without the performance acceleration feature, the HUS with 4080 and 4100 significantly exceeded the performance of the clustered G2 by ~41% and ~97% respectively. 3 Please see for more information. 4 Projected results have been submitted to SPECsfs2008 but have yet to be published.

7 PAGE 6 OF 6 The clustered HNAS G2 system without the performance accelerator feature just barely topped the new HUS 4060 by less than 1%. This small performance gap could easily be due to differences in backend storage and could be the result of a measurement error. Summary Hitachi s three new file sharing models provide the same features and functionality of the current Hitachi NAS Platform 3080 and 3090 while supplying increased frontend and backend throughput for an organization s file data. NAS Platform 4080 and 4100 supply better file IOPS and throughput performance as well. In addition, the new 4080 and 4100 models offer a larger single name space than previously available. With the new deduplication functionality, all HDS file modules also offer more efficient storage capacity. With the increased capacity effectiveness and scalability of the new 4000 series, customers can now use even fewer storage systems to support their file data needs. All in all, the new HDS lineup of NAS Platform 4060, 4080 and 4100 file- sharing models provides an even more compelling solution to data centers that need better performance, more scalability and easier management for their ever- expanding and increasingly mission- critical enterprise file data environment. Silverton Consulting, Inc., is a U.S.-based Storage, Strategy & Systems consulting firm offering products and services to the data storage community. QRcode: SilvertonConsulting.com

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