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Validating HDD Storage System Performance in a Real-World Context

QSAN XCubeNXT XN8000D and Tohiba 16TB Nearline SAS HDD Lab Report

Validating HDD Storage System Performance in a Real-World Context

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) now find themselves having to deal with far greater amounts of data than they would have ever imagined in the past. When looking to source large-scale, multi-functional storage hardware to fulfil their on-site requirements, they are faced with a broad array of possible solutions from a multitude of vendors. While the specifications stated on the vendors technical collateral will show the operational parameters that can potentially be attained, there is a clear need to know exactly how these relate to real-world scenarios. Before making large scale purchasing decisions, it must be ascertained that the performance levels mandated will in fact be met once the system is running actual workloads under normal (rather than idealised) working conditions.

Toshiba has published a detailed lab report describing the studies carried out on QSAN’s XCubeNXT XN8000D dual controller unified storage solution, which is targeted directly at the SMB sector. The objective of this report is to help SMBs’ technical and procurement staff to have better visibility of the solution’s overall operational performance, so they can make certain it fits with their particular requirements.  The HDDs tested as part of this study were 24 of Toshiba’s popular enterprise capacity nearline MG Series.

The 24 16TByte MG Series HDDs in the test set-up constituted 384TBytes of gross storage capacity. These were configured in 2 separate pools in order to enable optimal performance to be realised, with each of the XCubeNXT XN8000D’s controllers being used to access 12 of the HDDs respectively. A wide range of different workload examples were applied. These covered a combination of random reads and writes, sequential reads and writes, plus mixed read/write activities, with different block sizes involved. It was determined that the QSAN XN8024D is very effective in providing SMBs with a storage solution that maintains elevated performance and high availability, as well as exhibiting industry-leading operational reliability characteristics. Sequential read/write speeds reaching 3,000 IOPS (without cache) were achieved. Overall power consumption was calculated to be approximately 2W per TByte of net capacity, making this an attractive option in terms of low running costs as well as its performance. The noise levels experienced were also very low.

You can find out more by reading the full report. It can be downloaded here:

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