Dell PowerStore design principles
Before diving into the specifics of Dell PowerStore's many options, it is vital to understand the principles on which this leading storage solution was designed. These are:
By spreading your storage workload across resources, you create optimum performance and reliability.
The most valuable storage solution you can leverage quickly and manage efficiently.
Design for resilience
To address everything from security threats to power outages and other unforeseen challenges, the best storage system for your solution can maintain your data's integrity in the face of failure.
Staying current on PowerStoreOS
Dell Technologies knew that constantly updating its OS was vital to keep its storage appliances delivering the best possible performance.
Dell PowerStore models
Dell Technologies offers ten different PowerStore models, each varying CPU core count, speed, memory, and the number of NVMe and NVRAM drives. These range from Dell PowerStore models 500 to 9200. And based on their release, these appliances come with either PowerStoreOS 1.0, 2.0, or 3.0.
Dell PowerStore deployment modes
Dell knows that no one storage configuration fits the needs of all solutions, so they offer three storage modes:
PowerStore T - Unified
The Dell PowerStore T configurations run directly on the appliance. Unified is the default deployment mode of PowerStore T systems. It enables access to both files and blocks storage at the same time.
PowerStore T - Block-optimized
This mode is for storage appliances that don't need file storage access. As a result, the system can handle larger block storage workloads.
Instead of running Dell PowerStoreOS directly on the appliance, PowerStore X models run it on a virtual machine via an ESXi hypervisor. As a result, guest VMs can run directly on the appliance. Although the PowerStore X models perform slightly lower than the Dell PowerStore T models, they deliver the flexibility that some solutions require.
How they perform
As mentioned, different Dell PowerStore configurations are available for various workloads.
With I/Os per second (IOPS), you can expect a linear progression from the PowerStore 500 model up to the 9200. But, of course, your chosen deployment mode also makes a difference. PowerStore T configurations in block-optimized mode deliver more block IOPS than in unified mode. And as you can guess, a PowerStore X configuration delivers fewer block IOPS because it must also support multiple VMs.
Except for the PowerStore 500, all Dell PowerStore appliances come equipped with NVMe NVRAM drives for persistent data storage for write data operations. The more drives the system has, the higher the MBPS it offers when working with large-block write workloads.
The number of drives per system is as follows:
- PowerStore 1000 - 3200 models - two drives per system
- PowerStore 5000 - 9200 models - four drives per system
PowerStore cluster configurations
Multiple PowerStore systems can be clustered and managed as a single system. As a result, you can benefit from the combined performance of all the machines within the cluster, although each appliance can only service a single volume at a time.
PowerStore clustering is available only for block storage deployments. It's recommended (but not necessary) that all the machines within a cluster be of the same PowerStore model. It's required, however, that all appliances be connected to the same LAN.
PowerStore drive configuration - NVMe SSDs
PowerStore appliances can be configured with NVMe SSDs and expanded with expansion shelves, depending on the model chosen. And the PowerStore Dynamic Resiliency Engine (DRE) allows you to group the drives into resiliency sets to protect against drive failure and provide for fast rebuilds.
PowerStore drive configuration - SCMs
PowerStore can also leverage storage class memory (SCM) drives recommended for low-latency, small-block workloads. These drives store both data and metadata for faster performance for data lookups. They can also combine with NVMe SSDs in hybrid configurations.
Deploying your ideal storage solution
Most providers agree that data storage is vital to a solution's performance. However, they don't always have the resources to configure and deploy the proper hardware.
Look to UNICOM Engineering to provide your data storage and systems integration expertise. As an Intel Technology Provider and Dell Technologies OEM Partner, they can supply, build, and support the best hardware to meet or exceed the needs of your application and help you bring it to market faster. Schedule a consultation today to learn more about how UNICOM Engineering can keep you moving forward.