Western Digital will package new NVMe SSD into NVMe-oF JBOF

Jeffrey Cuebas

New NVMe SSD releases are barely out of the everyday for Western Digital. Introducing a substantial-effectiveness JBOF (Just a Bunch of Flash) enclosure with fabric adapters to permit servers share the storage drives via NVMe over Materials is a very first for the business.

Western Digital unveiled the JBOF, termed OpenFlex Data24 NVMe-oF Storage Platform, last 7 days in tandem with a new dual-port Ultrastar Knowledge Centre (DC) SN840 NVMe SSD. The SN840, which is owing to ship in July, will become Western Digital’s optimum-executing flash push for cloud and mission-crucial workloads this kind of as real-time analytics, substantial-frequency investing and genomics exploration.

The OpenFlex Data24 JBOF can allow compute nodes to share the bandwidth of up to 24 hot-swappable NVMe SSDs as if the drives are domestically attached to the PCIe bus of the x86 servers, in accordance to Western Digital. The JBOF, which will become readily available in the fall, gives up to 368 TB of storage ability in a 2U form component.

No switch necessary

Prospects can specifically hook up six compute nodes, or three servers with dual-route connections, to the OpenFlex Data24 JBOF without an external switch. Every single JBOF contains up to six of the freshly rebranded RapidFlex NVMe-oF community adapters that Western Digital bought by way of its 2019 acquisition of Kazan Networks. Western Digital said the OpenFlex Knowledge 24 would allow 100 Gb Ethernet connectivity over an RDMA-over-Converged-Ethernet (ROCE) v.two fabric, with the probable for sub-500 nanosecond latency, 13 million IOPS and 70 GBps of throughput.

Western Digital strategies to assist ROCE v2 with the preliminary OpenFlex Data24 products for the reason that customers want the optimum effectiveness and most affordable latency, in accordance to Scott Hamilton, the firm’s senior director of products administration for info middle platforms. He said Western Digital strategies to increase assist for NVMe over TCP.

Western Digital’s new OpenFlex Data24 JBOF gives a ability of up to 368 TB with its new Ultrastar DC SN840 NVMe SSDs.

“TCP is of curiosity for the reason that of its ubiquity,” Hamilton said. “But you do sacrifice some supplemental latency with TCP compared to ROCE v2.”

Prospects who want to hook up more than six compute nodes, or three dual-route servers, to the OpenFlex Data24 JBOF can use an Ethernet switch to do so.

SAS JBOF replacement

Hamilton said the OpenFlex Data24 would be “the pure replacement” for the SAS JBOF that Western Digital unveiled just over three years ago. He said the OpenFlex Data24 JBOF is comparable in price tag to the SAS JBOF and enhances the IOPS by about 4 periods and the bandwidth by shut to three periods.

The 2U OpenFlex Data24 is compatible with Western Digital’s 3U OpenFlex E3000 enclosure that can hold ten of Western Digital’s NVMe-centered F3100 Sequence Material Equipment, supplying more than 600 TB of total ability. Hamilton referred to the new OpenFlex Data24 as the “little-brother counterpart” to the E3000/F3100.

While Western Digital made the new OpenFlex Data24 for use with it new Ultrastar DC SN840 SSDs, customers could also use the JBOF with other Western Digital SSDs or probably even other vendors’ SSDs, in accordance to Hamilton.

Tom Coughlin, president of Coughlin Associates, observed that distributors this kind of as AIC, Supermicro and Wiwynn now make NVMe-centered JBOFs. But he said Western Digital could supply probable advantages in effectiveness, latency and price tag for the reason that it can make the flash, the SSDs, the community adapters and the JBOF. Prospects don’t have to set alongside one another Western Digital’s NVMe-oF-centered storage in piecemeal trend.

“If you just want rapid and you don’t need to have the SAN [storage characteristics] or fancy administration, then JBOF’s the way to go to save some money,” said Jim Useful, common director and semiconductor analyst at Objective Analysis. “Western Digital has a dual-port NVMe SSD and JBOF that not only supports extremely substantial bandwidth but also has no single place of failure. That’s some thing laudatory.”

Western Digital takes advantage of its ninety six-layer triple-level mobile (TLC) 3D NAND, controller and firmware technological know-how in the new Ultrastar DC SN840 SSD, which gives a ability array of one.six TB to fifteen.36 TB in a two.five-inch U.two form component. The NVMe SSD offers customers the choice of 1 or three push writes for each working day and can produce up to 775,000 IOPS for random reads, in accordance to Western Digital.

PCIe assist

When distributors this kind of as Intel, Kioxia and Samsung are launching business SSDs that assist PCIe 4., Western Digital elected to assist PCIe three.one with its new dual-port SN840 NVMe flash push. Bandwidth-doubling PCIe Gen 4 is continue to at an early phase, with AMD supplying CPU assist but Intel still to stick to match.

“We’ll get to PCIe Gen 4 offerings as the ecosystem evolves and the need comes out,” said Swapna Yasarapu, senior director of SSD products marketing for Western Digital’s info middle equipment. “But today our target is to make guaranteed that we are getting customers what they need to have from an NVMe perspective, and Gen three is getting that functionality.” 

Yasarapu said numerous customers are continue to utilizing SAS and SATA SSDs, and the changeover to NVMe-centered PCIe three SSDs can give them a 2x to 5x effectiveness enhancement.

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