Storage specialist Western Digital (WD) has introduced a new networked NVMe flash storage platform (NVMe over Fabrics). In the professional environment, this platform is designed to better distribute the speed of SSDs to multiple hosts via an Ethernet fabric. WD RapidFlex has combined NVMe oF controllers with new Ultrastar DC SN840 NVMe SSDs.
According to WD, the OpenFlex Data24 storage platform enables “the full bandwidth of Ultrastar NVMe SSDs to be shared by multiple hosts over a low-latency Ethernet fabric as if they were locally attached to the PCIe bus in x86 servers.” WD also said that the new storage platform will enable the storage platform to be used in a variety of applications. The primary goal of the development was to prevent underutilization of storage resources in the data center through high performance and efficiency.
24 SSDs offer 368 TB capacity
The OpenFlex Data24 storage platform requires two height units in a rack. Up to 24 2.5-inch NVMe SSDs with U.2 connectors can be installed. When using the new Ultrastar SSDs of the DC SN840 series, which have a capacity of up to 15.36 TB, a total of 368 TB storage capacity is possible. The system is managed by up to six NVMe-oF controller cards from the RapidFlex series. These are connected internally via PCIe-x16 and each has a LAN port with 100 Gbit/s data transfer rate.
According to WD, the maximum expansion stage thus allows over 3 million IOPS/ and 70 GB/s data transfer rates. The manufacturer’s Ultrastar 2U24 Flash Storage Platform, which is also highly professional SAS-based, “only achieves 4.7 million IOPS and 23 GB/s.
Ultrastar DC SN840 NVMe SSD
The recommended SN840 SSD with dual-port functionality is connected electronically via PCIe 3.1 and logically via NVMe 1.3c. It uses 96 layer 3D TLC NAND and an unspecified SSD controller. The largest version of the SSD thus achieves 3,300 MB/s for reading and 3,200 MB/s for writing when used individually. Smaller versions reach 2,200 MB/s when writing. The IOPS indicates WD at optional 4K transfers with 257,000 in writing and 780,000 in reading.
The NVME-oF controllers of the RapidFlex series are available immediately. The Ultrastar DC SN840 NVMe SSD will be launched in July. However, the OpenFlex Data24 storage platform can only be ordered as a complete package in autumn. As is customary with server hardware, WD has not communicated prices because these depend heavily on individual contracts based on purchase quantity and other criteria.