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1 White Paper EMC Reference Configuration for Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Fast Track Data Warehouse: Powered by Intel Xeon Processors (HP Proliant DL580 server) and EMC VNX 5300 Series Unified Storage Systems January 2012

2 Copyright 2012 EMC Corporation. All Rights Reserved. EMC believes the information in this publication is accurate as of its publication date. The information is subject to change without notice. The information in this publication is provided as is. EMC Corporation makes no representations or warranties of any kind with respect to the information in this publication, and specifically disclaims implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. Use, copying, and distribution of any EMC software described in this publication requires an applicable software license. For the most up-to-date listing of EMC product names, see EMC Corporation Trademarks on EMC.com. Part Number H10504 Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 2

3 Table of Contents Executive Summary... 4 Introduction... 4 Audience... 5 Microsoft Fast Track Data Warehouse Overview... 5 EMC-HP Fast Track Data Warehouse Hardware Detail... 6 EMC VNX 5300 Storage Layout... 7 EMC VNX 5300 Storage System Cache Settings... 9 EMC-HP Reference Configuration Performance Characteristics Conclusion For More Information Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 3

4 Executive summary Data Warehouses provide the foundation for business intelligence systems. BI has been a high growth application and will continue to grow dramatically as organizations realize the importance of mining their accumulated data for key business insights. Enterprise data warehouses have been growing rapidly. The massive data growth is often accompanied by increased complexity, but the data warehouse configuration typically suffers from design principles that were originally intended for online transaction processing systems (OLTP). The reference configurations presented in this document address the common business challenges that Data Warehouse face today, and helps customers design and implement balanced configurations specifically for Microsoft SQL server Data Warehouse databases with the goal of providing a hardware-balanced approach and predictable out-of-box performance. Introduction Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse provides a framework that allows customer to select a reference architecture that has been designed, tested and validated by hardware vendors. It is designed to let organization quickly and reliably deploy a total system solution stack including server, storage, and connectivity for data warehouses based on Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2. This approach helps to accelerate deployments and dramatically reduce the burden on end users in selecting, sizing and testing the combination of products and technologies while minimize the risk of failures. This white paper describes a reference architecture implementation of Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse 3.0 Reference Guide utilizing HP Proliant DL580 servers and EMC VNX5300 unified storage system. The goal is to define a methodology to build a balanced and optimized hardware and software configuration specifically for SQL Server Data Warehouse deployments. The reference configurations presented in this document are based on: EMC VNX 5300 Series storage system. With industry-leading performance, EMC VNX 5300 storage systems offer unified support for block and file usage protocols, a simple and intuitive management interface, five-nines reliability, and built-in features for supporting replication, disaster protection, and automatic storage tiering. HP Proliant DL580 G7 Servers. Powered by Intel Xeon Processor E processors, HP Proliant DL580 G7 Server offers unprecedented reliability, Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 4

5 scalability, flexibility and performance desired for complex IT environments, cost- effectively and energy-efficiently. Audience This white paper is intended for customers, partners, solution architects, storage administrators, and database administrators who are evaluating, planning, or deploying a balanced data warehouse solution. The scope is limited to the main repository of data warehouse and the balanced configuration thereof. The Microsoft Fast Track Data Warehouse Overview Optimized for common data warehouse, decision support, and business analytics deployments based on Microsoft SQL Server, the Microsoft Fast Track Data Warehouse program allows organizations to deploy tested configurations utilizing proven technologies that offer balanced solution stacks. By following these reference configurations, new projects can be implemented quickly and confidently, avoiding much of the guesswork, planning choices, and difficult decisions involved with traditional approaches. Goals of the program include: Accelerated data warehouse projects with pre-tested and validated hardware and software configurations Reduced hardware and maintenance costs as a result of purchasing the right balanced hardware solution that is optimized for data warehouse workloads Reduced planning and setup costs and risk through choosing the right scale model, configuring the system correctly, and taking advantage of tuning guidance. Fast Track Data Warehouse reference configurations are successful because of their specific focus on sequential I/O critical to data warehouse performance as well a balanced approach to hardware configuration. Most system architectures consider the memory, I/O bandwidth and storage capacity separately when planning a system. Instead, Fast Track Data Warehouse reference architecture is intended to balance the overall system so that throughput is matched across the various hardware and software components specifically for data warehouse performance. Key considerations for balanced data warehousing application performance include: Compute power in terms of available CPU cores Main memory for the use of the Microsoft SQL Server Cache I/O channel throughput between the server and the storage system, including the combined throughput of the Host Bus Adapters (HBA) and switching hardware Storage system throughput for sequential reads, caching capabilities, data storage capacity, and redundancy Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 5

6 The goal of a Fast Track Data Warehouse reference configuration is to achieve a costeffective balance between SQL Server data processing capabilities and the capabilities of the underlying hardware components. Figure 1. SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse component architecture The EMC-HP Fast Track Data Warehouse Hardware Detail The EMC VNX 5300 Fast Track Data Warehouse reference architecture consists of HP Proliant DL580 G7 server and two EMC VNX5300 storage systems. The HP Proliant DL 580 G7 server is based on Intel Xeon Processor 4870 CPUs. Intel Xeon processors at the heart of the system deliver outstanding scalability and performance to support new business intelligence capabilities in Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2. These advancements help enable large-scale consolidation efforts while serving demanding data-intensive workloads. New features specific to Intel Xeon processor E7 series such as multi-bit error correction provide advanced reliability, availability, and serviceability for enterprise database applications. In addition, dramatic TCO reductions are possible with Intel Xeon processors, helping organizations realize cost reductions with automated energy efficiency and consolidation. The new generation of EMC unified storage VNX series offers performance, capacity, protection and the best total cost of ownership to meet the diversified business requirements. VNX series storage boosts both sustained read and write bandwidth, Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 6

7 which is typically crucial for data warehouse deployment. The boost in bandwidth results from innovative system re-architecting, including the adoption of high power multi-core processors, fast memory chips, multichannel 6 GB/s SAS backend buses and the use of new GEN II PCI/E buses. Figure 2 shows the picture of HP Proliant DL580 G7 Server and EMC VNX5300 Storage. Table 1 outlines the configuration details for this platform: Figure 2. HP Proliant DL580 G7 Server EMC VNX5300 Storage Table 1. Configuration details for EMC-HP Reference Architecture Model Proliant DL 580 G7 Server CPU 2 x 10 Core Intel Xeon Processors Model X4870(2.40 GHz, 30Mb cache, 130W ) number cores 20 PCI-E slots (2) x8, (2) x16 HP Proliant PCI-X slots (3) 100MHz (with optional expander) Server DL 580 Drives (2) 146GB 10k-RPM SAS disk drives Storage Controller 1 Smart Array P410/1GB FBWC Host Bus Adapters 4 Emulex LPe12002-E Network Adapters 1 1GbE NC3751 Multifunction 4 ports RAM 256 GB PC2-5300FBD Memory Slot 32GB DDR3 DIMMs with 64 DIMM slots Storage EMC VNX 5300 Disk drives 150 SFF 300 GB 10k-RPM SAS disk drives Data Protection RAID 5 for data and TempDB, RAID 1/0 for log EMC VNX 5300 Storage Layout The EMC VNX 5300 storage system can support up to inch form factor disk drives. Additional disk drives can be connected using integral disk array enclosures (DAEs) that each provides 25 additional drive slots. One EMC VNX 5300 storage system with two installed DAEs is used in this reference configuration. The total Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 7

8 storage system, including all the enclosures for the disk drives, occupies nine rack units (9U) of rack space. Figure 3 illustrates data layout for the reference configuration. Figure 3. Data layout for EMC-HP reference configuration Disk drives within the EMC VNX 5300 storage system are configured according to how they are used within the data warehouse system. Storage System. Four drives are reserved for VNX storage system (FLARE) use, shown as orange in the illustration. Transaction Log. Four drives in the form of a 2+2 RAID 10 group are used for the transaction log, shown as yellow in the illustration. Hot Spares. Two drives are reserved as hot spares (colored red in the diagram) and are ready to be automatically switched in to immediately rebuild of any of the data drives in any of the RAID 5 groups minimizing the chance of data loss resulting from drive failures in one of the data LUNs. Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 8

9 Staging Area. Four drives are used for staging area such as data landing and are colored gray in the illustration. Data LUNS. 60 drives are used for database files. These 60 drives are organized into 4+1 RAID 5 sets, known as RAID groups in VNX terminology and colored green in the illustration. The RAID 5 configuration consists of four data drives protected by one parity drive. In the RAID 5 configuration, each 256 KB chunk of database data stored on one of the data LUNs is striped in 64 KB increments across four of the five drives in each RAID set. On the fifth drive, 64 KB of parity information is computed and stored based on the data on the other four drives. RAID 5 was chosen as the storage deployment layout for two key reasons: Lower cost data protection compared to RAID 10, with RAID 5 requiring only 20% of the total usable capacity for storing parity data High read performance as all drives contribute to the delivery of data EMC VNX 5300 Storage System Cache Settings In this reference configuration, 2000 MB of DRAM memory from the storage processors was dedicated to supporting host write caching and 700 MB allocated to support read ahead caching. Some performance gains may be achieved by the cache to writes during data load windows, it is recommended to increase the available memory to allow data activity happen in memory as opposed to disk which may affect the overall performance. Figure 4 provides a screenshot from the storage management browser window. Figure 4. EMC VNX 5300 storage cache configuration Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 9

10 EMC-HP Reference Configuration Performance Characteristics Following Microsoft Fast Track guidelines, two performance tests were completed. The first one is the Baseline hardware validation. It is to validate the hardware with SQLIO tools to ensure the hardware has been properly configured and the components are performing to the maximum listed capacity. The second one is to validate the whole system by loading a defined TPCH database on SQL server to ensure that access to data is performed efficiently for the hardware configuration. Table 2 shows the test results of EMC-HP powerful, high performing configuration, which achieved benchmark testing and validated by Microsoft. Table 2. Benchmark performance test result Benchmark Scan Rate Logical Benchmark Scan Rate Physical Average SQL Server data processing rate Maximum SQL Server data processing rate 4327 MB/s 2825 MB/s 3576 MB/s 5582 MB/s Conclusion Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Architecture presents a balanced configuration of processor core and disk performance capabilities, optimized for sequential workload. The reference configuration presented here is designed, tested and validated by EMC and Microsoft, which offer simplicity, reliability,scalability and low TCO for organizations deploying infrastructure for data warehouse with predictable performance. For More Information To learn more about the Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse solution, visit Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track Data Warehouse EMC-HP Reference Architecture 10

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