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Accelerate Your Server Performance with SSD RAID Arrays

Kingston and Microchip Technology have completed joint SSD and RAID/Host Bus Adapter solution interoperability testing that delivers high performance for server storage.

SSDs and RAID

SSDs are becoming popular performance upgrades for notebooks, desktops, and workstations and are praised for their speed and durability. SSDs offer additional tremendous gains in server performance when SSDs are grouped together into RAID arrays and presented to the host operating system as a single drive. RAID storage accomplishes three main objectives:

  • Make individual disk drives redundant using hot-spares or RAID levels with redundancy, so that even a single point of failure would not have an impact on data integrity.
  • Increase the I/O performance of the storage. There are several RAID levels available that offer different levels of redundancy, performance, and usable capacity.
  • SSDs fully saturate the maximum possible performance and remove any bottlenecks seen with traditional hard drives.

While, historically, RAID was created to manage and mitigate risks associated with HDD storage, its data protection benefits are still relevant today with SSDs, enabling users to get the benefits of the high read/write speeds and transfer rates that SSDs offer. Particularly important when rebuilding after a system failure, which is significantly faster on SSDs, leading to shorter rebuild times, faster restoring of the performance/functionality of the array.

SAS RAID Adapters Support SATA as Well

Today’s RAID adapters support both SAS and SATA. This means that a user can attach either SAS or SATA end points to the same backplanes and RAID adapters. Users didn’t have this flexibility several years ago with parallel SCSI and ATA technology, as the two technologies had to live in separate systems. This flexibility gives the user the benefit of designating certain end points for specific workloads within the same system, which has ROI benefits, as well as less hardware to manage for administrators.

Benefits of Using SSD in RAID

For servers, SSDs are ideal for dataset applications where high-performance IO is required or for an application where a user designates a caching area on high-speed storage for transaction files, temporary database files, and frequently accessed tables. SSDs in a RAID configuration combine both the speed and the redundancy needed for business-critical applications.

Kingston Enterprise SSDs with Adaptec Smart Storage Adapters

At Kingston, we rigorously test our SSDs with RAID adapters from third-party vendors such as Microchip, as well as RAID adapters that are built into mainstream servers.

Adaptec Smart Storage Adapters* from Microchip are an ideal solution for server-based storage systems that require maximum bandwidth and I/O connectivity, low power consumption, high reliability, plus options for data availability.

  • The SmartRAID 3100 RAID adapter is optimized for enterprise storage applications that require the highest level of data availability and data center applications that benefit from caching.
  • The SmartHBA 2100 allows a combination of RAID and raw devices. This is useful in SDS environments where hardware RAID significantly increases OS boot reliability, but full HBA features and performance are otherwise needed.
  • The HBA 1100 is an optimized Host Bus Adapter for SDS, cold storage, and raw high-performance connectivity.

The Adaptec Smart Storage RAID and Host Bus Adapters offer significant power savings when compared to prior generations and significant power advantages versus competing solutions, resulting in the lowest Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for an HBA/basic RAID solution. They deliver a robust and scalable solution that can handle the toughest system workloads and configurations and are a perfect match for Kingston’s Enterprise SSDs.

What’s more, Microchip’s maxCache caching technology**, enables a tiered storage approach, where an existing traditional HDD-based server storage system can be optimized by adding Kingston SSDs as caching pool to accelerate application performance.

Performance increase is achieved by keeping frequently accessed data in a pool of SSDs rather than traditional HDDs, which brings benefits to read-intensive and write-intensive applications.

Kingston’s Enterprise SATA 3.0 and NVMe Data Center (DC) SSDs are designed with a stringent set of development requirements and a thorough testing process. This results in consistency for workloads requiring a balance of high random read-and-write IOPS performance. Power-fail features keep mission-critical environments up and running all day, every day.

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