I'm looking for advice on how best to upgrade my SQL server's disk IO. I'm running SQL Server 2000 on Windows 2000 Adv Server, so whatever solution I use should be compatible.
I'd like to rebuild the server onto an 8-core dual-e5420 machine (Supermicro X7DCA-L motherboard) but at present I'm hardly utilizing the Q6600 proc, so seems to me that the database disk IO bottleneck is probably the speed-limiting factor of the whole cluster (1 DB Server + 3 Webservers and growing). The database workload consists of ~1200 SQL Server Databases (2400 DB files including transaction logs), 17 GB total database files, powering ~600 Social Networking websites (similar to facebook) so lots of random reads and writes.
For the new machine, my plan is to put the OS and daily db backups on the hard drive, and use a SSD to hold just the database files. I've got some Highpoint RocketRaid 3120 cards sitting around, and while I'm not thrilled about them they are already paid for. So here are some options I've considered so far:
1 x OCZ Vertex 30GB (OCZSSD2-1VTX30GXXX) - $80 after mail-in rebate at newegg right now
2 x OCZ Vertex 30GB, using one of the RocketRaid Cards - $185 ($80 + $105 after rebate)
1 x Intel X25-M 80GB - $215
2 x Intel X25-M 80GB, using one of the RocketRaid Cards - $430
1 x OCZ Z-Drive m84 256GB PCIe - $1020 (Would probably require buying a 3U case and possibly be incompatible with the motherboard as it's not listed on the motherboard compatibility list)
Also I've considered investing in a better RAID card if the RR 3120 turns out to be a performance limitation. From what little I've found on this card it seems to have a practical limit of around 150 MB/s.
Thanks in advance for any advice.