PernixData first Beta Test

PernixData first beta test

From the time we heard about PernixData and watched PernixData CTO Satyam Vaghani’s videos form Storage Field Day http://pernixdata.com/SFD3 we were excited to get our hands on the PernixData Flash Virtualization Platform (FVP) product and give it a test.

What is PernixData and why should you care?

PernixData is a inline storage IO acceleration software that leverages flash storage on your VMware ESX host.

OK so you might be saying to yourself ok I have flash on my VMware ESX host why would I need a piece of software like PerixData FVP.

For Statefull / Persistent VM’s you typically want them running on some type of SAN that provides raid and enables you to use all the enterprise features from the VMware vSphere such as live migration. You also want to reduce the risk of data loss and having data on a single flash device could put you in that situation.

So back to why PernixData FVP, if you want to leverage your existing SAN that uses SAS or SATA disk and get higher performance without the risk of data loss that is where PernixData FVP comes in.  PernixData FVP will leverage local flash across multiple VMware ESX servers increase performance and to prevent any data loss that might happen with local flash in a single system.

pernixdata

The fun stuff testing PernixData FVP

We tested PernixData FVP in our lab in the Cloud hosted at Baremetalcloud.com

The requirement is a VMware ESX compatible system with a flash drive.

If your system has only a single flash drive you will need to either boot and install VMware ESX from SAN, ISCSI, USB key or add a second drive. PernixData FVP needs the entire flash disk not just a vmfs volume.

  1. Build and install ESX on a compatible system “Do not install ESX on your Flash Drive”
  2. Enable SSH on ESX host and the PernixData FVP VIB
  3. Install the PernixData FVP server side component on a Windows 2k8 we used an existing SQL 2k12 database server.
  4. Register the PernixData FVP plugin in vCenter.

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  1. Once you click getting started you will be taken though a guided setup.
  2. First you create a flash cluster and add the ESX hosts with the PernixData FVP VIB and Flash.
  3. Then you will add the associated VMware datastores that you want to accelerate.
  4. VM’s are now accelerated by PernixData FVP, yes it is that easy.

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Quick VDI Boot Storm with 15 VMWare View VM’s with PernixData FVP

We wanted to get a little taste of how PernixData FVP would work with VDI specifically VMware View.

Since we were limited by what was available to us in the cloud we made use of what we could get.

Our testing is more functional than performance.

Our ESX host has 16gb of memory with 1 quad core CPU so not the most ideal VDI host.

1 256gb SSD flash device, 1 146gb SAS drive for OS, 1 iscsi LUN for Datastore.

We used VMware View to provision 15 VM’s once all VM’s were ready to use we did a simple boot storm by restarting all of the 15 running VM’s.

Let’s take a look at what the PernixData FVP performance tab shows

Frist up is VM IOPS this is the total number of IOPS generated by the VM’s in this case a peak of about 1800 in orange hitting the local flash, in purple the ISCSI Datastore about 200 IOPS resulting in a savings of 1600 IOPS on the backend.

bootstorm

VM Latency you can see that the flash is providing almost zero latency but the backend SAN Datastore has a latency peak of 200.

bootstorm3

VM Throughput we noticed a peak of around 58000KBps to the flash and only 6000 to the SAN Datastore.

bootstorm2

Hit Rate & Eviction Rate this is how much is hitting flash vs. going to SAN and you can see PernixData FVP is Caching a high percentage of the activity during this boot storm.

bootstorm4

As you can see by the performance charts PernixData FVP can improve performance of VM’s by reducing latency and reduce the load on your backend storage.

We look forward to the general release of PernixData FVP and are excited to see what the PernixData team comes up with next.

written by Chas Setchell – chassdesk(at)gmail.com

One Response to “PernixData first Beta Test”

  1. chassdesk Says:

    Reblogged this on chassdesk.

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