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Community Forum > Using Softlayer Performance Storage with OSNEXUS

I am looking to stand up two new OSNEXUS servers within Softlayer. I can attach multiple Performance Storage volumes (say 12TB) to the OSNEXUS servers. Once attached, I need to create network shares for applications to access files on each of these volumes. SoftLayer allocates Performance storage with fixed IOPs. I would like to get 12TB volumes with lower fixed IOPS (cheaper) and then use 2 x SSD drives in the OSNEXUS server to improve WRITE performance.


1. Would the 2 x SSD drives for WRITE caching offer any better performance than the native SL Performance Storage volumes with up to 6000 IOPs ? Use case is writing out EML files extracted from a PST

2. If the Performance Storage volumes are created on redundant storage hardware (NetApp) do I need to create my own RAID groups for these volumes in OSNEXUS to protect the data? Or can I simply attach each 12TB volume and create the storage pool using Raid0?

Jon

January 20, 2016 | Registered CommenterJon Wright

Hello Jon,

I have responded to your questions below.

>1. Would the 2 x SSD drives for WRITE caching offer any better performance than the native SL Performance Storage volumes with up to 6000 IOPs ? Use case is writing out EML files extracted from a PST

The caching you can add for ZFS based Storage Pools provides a Write ZIL SLOG device, which provides a Log device and journal for writes. This provides the ability for Sync Based writes to quickly be acknowledged back from the SAN to the client for bursts of sync based write I/O.

I believe what you are looking for is more of a traditional write back cache such as those available with a RAID controller or with the LSI Cachecade Pro 2.0 SSD Tiering technology available with the LSI/Avago RAID Controllers. These RAID controller options are available at SoftLayer.

Please note that unfortunately the RAID controller caching technology cannot be combined with the SoftLayer Performance Storage volumes. RAID caching requires that the data disks be attached to the RAID controller via SAS cables and be SATA or SAS based disks inside the Storage server.

>2. If the Performance Storage volumes are created on redundant storage hardware (NetApp) do I need to create my own RAID groups for these volumes in OSNEXUS to protect the data? Or can I simply attach each 12TB volume and create the storage pool using Raid0?

We recommend the use of ZFS Storage Pool RAID1, or RAID5(Z1) to provide redundancy of the NetApp Performance Storage when it is used to create Storage Pools. This helps protect against the possibility of inconsistencies and allow automatic repair of the data if a particular lun is interrupted during a write or read due to a network issue or possible problem with communication from one of the nodes in SoftLayers Storage Cluster.

Please note that our Forums are used for our Community Edition License support. As you are looking to deploy a configuration using Enterprise Edition License Keys at SoftLayer, you can contact us directly for solution design assistance from our Sales Engineering team at sdr@osnexus.com or for support via one of the contact methods here: http://www.osnexus.com/contact-support/

Please reach out to us via our support contact or Sales Engineering mailing list if you have any other questions regarding these Enterprise level features.

Thank You,
Chris Golden
OSNEXUS Support

January 20, 2016 | Registered CommenterChris Golden