back to article PCIe flash performance: Your mileage may vary

A Swiss supercomputing centre has found TMS PCIe flash delivers its advertised goods while Fusion-io and Virident do not. Two researchers at the Swiss National Computing Centre (CSCS) looked at the performance of PCIe flash cards from Fusio-io and Virident (pdf) and Texas Memory Systems (PDF). The tests used the open-source FIO …

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Nice stuff

We have some workloads coming up which require SERIOUS i/o bandwidth. The TMS cards look interesting indeed.

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Filesystems

Interesting they chose XFS and say they will also look a Lustre and GPFS.

However I would like to see them do it under ZFS!

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Not in the review,

but I have worked with TMS before. They are good guys, vary willing to support their product.

(I am in no way, shape, or form affiliated with the researchers or author of this article)

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Fly in the ointment?

It is perfectly valid to run a different workload than what is spec'd by vendors, and report the results of this test. It is, however, grossly unfair to report that a product does not "deliver its advertised goods" when the advertisement is for apples, and the comparison made was to oranges.

It's worth noting that the that the CSCS folks did not duplicate workloads quoted by the vendors in any of the cases. Fusion quotes for 512B IOs, not 4k. Virident quotes for a 75%/25% read/write workload- not the read only and write-only workloads tested in this paper. No flash vendor I've encountered specifies numbers for performance using XFS.

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Dissimilar systems used for benchmarking

An astute reader will notice that two different servers were used by CSCS in their testing. For the Fusion and Virident testing, they used a system with an AMD 2.0Ghz processor. For the RamSAN testing, they used a 2.93Ghz Intel processor.

That's not apples to apples, so it's quite questionable to compare the results between the two tests.

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