Small changes can make a big difference. For example, a small change in the way you manage your days can have an impact on how many days you manage, overall. The same goes for a storage array with all its architectural advantages, when it comes to dealing with multiple workload demands. The answer to this conundrum is simplicity. If there are faster processors on the array, they simply need bigger caches and interfaces for performance enhancements, before we even consider the software stack on the array, as a way to boost performance. This will provide a proper structure to how data is handled within the storage array, and how fast. This becomes important for the life cycle of the array and gives you the investment protection you are looking for.
Extreme Cache and Extreme Cache Pool are two such enhanced caching features on ETERNUS DX Hybrid Storage arrays. They can ensure that you get the right level of performance from your hybrid storage array. This is extremely useful when your array will be required to process vast amount of data, at a very fast pace.
How does it work?
Both Extreme Cache and Extreme Cache Pool can help expand the cache of a storage array with the use of SSD drives. This results in increased performance, which is based on the leverage offered by an additional cache within the array.
But then the demands made by the storage array are different. The mechanics of every storage array can vary. The same is true of the workloads that they generally have to handle. Given these facts, why should the caching mechanism of all the storage arrays be same? That is the difference between Extreme Cache and Extreme Cache Pool.
Designed with the focus on workloads handled by mid-range and enterprise systems, the Extreme Cache feature is available on Fujitsu ETERNUS DX 500 / 600 / 8700 S3 hybrid storage arrays. It uses PFM (PCIe Flash Module), a PCIe card with flash (SSD). Because of the low latency PCIe connection, its response time is much faster than normal SSD’s within the array. This card forms part of the controller and offers the performance benefits of using SSDs at controller level without the cost implications of any niche newer technology options. Even though there are recommendations available on selecting extreme cache (depending upon capacity requirements and data access hit rates), you can expect a performance boost of up to 100 times the cache capacity of disk storage with Extreme Cache.
Designed with the focus on the mechanics and cost structure of organizations, the Extreme Cache Pool feature is available on Fujitsu ETERNUS DX 100 / 200 S4 hybrid storage arrays. It uses a Flash (SSD) installed in a drive slot as a cache. This flash cache uses 2 slots on the controller and supports hot expansion during on-going operations.
Where does it make a difference?
These days you need more than one thing from your storage array. Based around scalability, performance and upfront investment the requirements generally point in one direction. Start small and grow as necessary, with multiple workload consolidation on a single array.
Here is how we can make this happen.
Let’s evaluate this scenario involving a retail shop with multiple outlets where many user requests needed to be handled by the storage array at a given point of time for billing purposes, the prime task of the array. The next most important task involves users who prefer to make online purchases and may need to make infrequent additions, in the form of profile updates or order placement. This could be closely followed by user access to the webpage online. Extreme Cache or Extreme Cache Pool enables all of these tasks to be categorized at different levels so that they can be handled by an extended system cache, at controller level long before the data is even passed on to drives below.
By the end of the day, an appropriate caching mechanism within your storage array can complement the arrays architecture. This can be further leveraged upon by all other software’s on the array and can be the foundation of a more robust storage array. A storage array which can be trusted with multiple workloads, all in one go or one after the other.
If you’re interested in more information about Cache, please follow these links: