Can storage really be maintenance free?

Can storage really be maintenance free?

It is commonly believed that to achieve a stable and reliable storage system that ongoing maintenance including firmware updates, software updates and even replacement of failed hardware components are things that cannot be avoided. However, in a real-world installation Toshiba and its partners from the “Technology Experience Lab” at NTT Global Data Centers have demonstrated that this does not have to be the case.

During 2017, Toshiba installed a ZFS storage system to support the storage infrastructure needs of the “Technology Experience Lab”. In total, 102 TB net storage was required built upon 240 TB of raw storage and utilising the ZFS-based JovianDSS software of Toshiba’s partner Open-E.

To form the 240 TB of raw storage, Toshiba’s 4 TB, 3.5" SAS Enterprise Capacity Drives (MG04SCA40EA) were used. With a 1,400,000 hours MTTF and a non-recoverable error rate of just ten errors per 1016 bits read, they achieved the required reliability. The 7,200 rpm drives achieved a Zpool read performance rating of 12.9 x single disk and 8.5 x single disk for writes. For the ZFS write logs and reach caches, reliable 10 DWPD SAS Enterprise SSDs with 1.6 TB storage from KIOXIA (formerly Toshiba Memory) were selected.

Power consumption and heat are always a challenge, making the enclosure pivotal to overall reliability. How these challenges have been tackled and more details about this project can be found in this Toshiba Case Study here:

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