Kevin OBrien

StorageReview Test Center

12 posts in this topic

As some of you guys have seen, we have been expanding the StorageReview Test Center at a near exponential rate since we acquired the site over two years ago. Kind of interesting starting off with a Dell XPS 9000 as the go-to testing platform and comparing that to where we are today. Going forward enterprise testing will be the main focus, scaling back on the consumer side. In the enterprise testing space, we have some interesting equipment either inbound or being setup right now which will be a part of the StorageReview Data Center. Still working out the electrical needs, which will be around 50-100A 240V, but we will be supporting 42U of rackspace initially, with space for 2-3 additional racks in this first lab. It goes without saying that this is a fun transition for us, especially as the gear we review transitions from single SSDs or hard drives to blade server/NAS appliances like the HP X5000 G2 that came in this week.

I am also going to be updating our equipment list that was so painfully out of date over the next few days. B)

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Its not a lab until you have rackspace B)

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Wrapped up today starting a new round of lab tests and got a good chunk of our gear into the rack. Still need to do a ton of cable management, install the 240V line to power one of the HP servers since we are close to maxing that wall outlet... but got it just about ready for the next inbound shipment of servers and lab gear.

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Items in the picture:

Eaton S-Series Rack

Eaton 5PX UPS w/ additional battery unit

HP X5000 G2

Two Lenovo ThinkServer RD240's

NetGear NAS

Synology DS411slim

Drobo B1200i

Mellanox SX1036 36-port 40GbE switch

Firewall

Whole bunch of wires (need to bring in a spool of cat6 next week and get some proper cabling)

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Very impressive. That is quite a setup. Though it looks a little lonely. I suggest asking for another rack + stuff to fill it up with...or maybe just a picture on the wall. :P

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Yea I completely understand that. We will be expanding the room out slightly with some additional gear and a lab bench next week. While it might be cool to use that room as an office next to all that equipment, in practice we chose a basement room on the far side of our building for a reason.... I don't want to be deaf. My main office and business gear is still upstairs in more pleasant conditions. As that room expands as we need more equipment space the rack will be joined by a few more. Electrical and cooling needs will be overbuilt to cope with probably 4 racks total.

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I'm still not sure what exactly you guys are planning to test, since I don't exactly see a server/client setup or any traffic generators...

Are you guys aiming for an Anandtech-style client/server backend for heavy server loads? Piping lots of network traffic over 40G (but with what additional equipment if so?)?

And no you can't have any of my Smartbits. :D

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Actually right now the equipment on hand is convertible between hardware-testing on a local level to traffic generating in a cluster configuration. In a sense the RD240's would be used for load-generating/client side when testing larger combined appliances. On an upcoming HP X5000 review, the RD240's load the twin-blade/DAS array. As we add in more equipment (next-gen Lenovo platforms for example) older systems take the client role, newer systems take the server role, and we start testing larger DA appliances. We are designing the lab to handle everything storage, using networking and compute hardware, but keeping the storage focus.

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Soory if this should be placed elsewhere.

Question about test methods, perhaps there is something wriiten about tests performed.

My question deals with safe amount of free disk space.

Perhaps my imagination, but it seems if my free space drops below 30 gigs i start having issues.

Running osx snow leopard, on 8 yr old machine, abt a 4 yr old hard drive, 750 g

I wonder if disk reliabilty drops, for example as drive uses more of inner or outer sectors

Specifically, something is now happening where there is a lot of disk activity, in some cases filling disk such as filling a log, a restart clears abt 25 gigs.

Today i'll clear about 15 more gigs.

Smart status shows veified, hw diagnostics pass, even with extended test

(And I know, time for a new machine, waited 2 years too long, but hopefully well backed up)

Just seems I have experienced this in past

In testing hard drives , do the tests do heavy continuous seeking?

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I have a Lenovo RD630. One of my Hitachi SAS drives wont work? Do these Lenovo servers require 'Lenovo' drives only?

What gives? thanks

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Pretty much everything under the sun is compatible with the LSI RAID card they use.

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That's what I thought. My RD630 won't take a drive past the 0 slot... Lenovo is shipping me a new backplane, they already sent me a new raid card.

Hopefully that will fix it.

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