The Technology Experience Lab at NTT Global Data Centers provides data center managers and their teams with the space and infrastructure to explore innovative approaches for architecting their servers and storage. It enables businesses to evaluate the efficacy of private or hybrid clouds, distributed architectures, and alternative approaches to deliver IT services in a low-risk environment. In addition, its community of users provides support and ideas through meetups, boot camps, webinars, and hackathons.
A long running project, since 2017, is the server and storage technology unit build by Toshiba and laboratory partners to test the premise “Can storage be installed and forgotten?”. For this purpose, 102 TB of net storage were desired, requiring 240 TB of raw storage, and it was decided to use Open-E’s ZFS-based JovianDSS software. Proven to deliver high availability, no single point of failure, and flexibility, JovianDSS was ideal for this application. The hardware to support it would need to be reliable and offer the necessary performance to take full advantage of the software, supporting several iSCSI block storage targets ranging in size from 10 TB to 40 TB, plus some shared file folders.
Over the course of its operation, the storage solution has handled a multitude of proof-of-concept activities within the lab, much to the satisfaction of all involved. Having reviewed how the storage is used, with countless snapshots and scrubbing, and iSCSI block targets being connected and disconnected, week in, week out, the software has proven to be the optimal choice too.
Until now the Experience Lab system has operated failure-free for four years and the plan is to continue running the system to explore its reliability further – even after the supplier warranty ends for most of the enterprise-grade hardware components.
A case study was creates giving more details about the project and the set up, it can be downloaded here