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Starting small with burst buffers? DDN says it's got an 'entry-level' one

How much? No word yet

DataDirect Networks (DDN) has added a smaller burst buffer product, decreased RAID rebuild times and introduced a cross-product monitoring and management facility to its HPS/supercomputing storage product set.

The entry-level IME140 burst buffer is a 1U appliance delivering more than 11GB/s write and 20GB/s read throughputs and more than 1M file IOPs (read and write). It slots in under the 2U IME240, with its up to 23GB/sec of read and write performance, and has up to 8 x NVMe drives per system whereas the IME240 has up to 23 such drives. DDN calls the smaller unit "lower-cost" but there are no pricing details available yet.

The IME240 is powered by dual Xeon E5 Series processor and has 8 x 16GB of DDR4-2400 RAM. The IME140 uses dual Xeon SP (Skylake) CPUs with the same amount of RAM. That helps to explain why its bandwidth is not much less than the IME240's.

Back in June we heard about IME features expected in the third quarter:

  • Protection against compute node failure,
  • Ethernet added to existing InfiniBand and Omni-Path support,
  • Improved metadata performance,
  • Support for the new processor technologies (Intel Xeon Phi, ARM, and IBM Power),
  • Flash optimisations for full utilisation of the latest media designs.

These have all been delivered – apart from the ARM support, which is a work in progress.

DDN's SFA systems' RAID rebuild schemes use an over-provisioned backend and optimised rebuild algorithms. But, as drive capacities have increased, so have RAID rebuild times.

SFA Declustered RAID was also pre-figured in June.

It says its Declustered RAID (DCR) removes the constraint of a small, fixed drive count RAID pools and allows data and parity information to be distributed among a much larger, user configurable, number of disks, shortening RAID rebuild times. DCR is available on DDN's SFA14KX arrays, and provides higher IOPs performance, larger virtual drives, and increased storage efficiency as well.

DDN Insight is monitoring software covering DDN's SFA, EXAScaler, GRIDScaler and IME, but not its WOS (object storage) product. Customers can monitor DDN environments at scale, across multiple file systems and storage appliances, and identify and address hot spots, bottlenecks and misbehaving applications.


DDN INsight screenshot

More IME140 information can be found here, though there are no details on pricing.

The IME140 will ship in volume in the first 2018 quarter of 2018. SFA DCR is shipping today with the SFA14KX, and DDN Insight monitoring software shipping today with DDN's SFA, EXAScaler, GRIDScaler and IME products. ®

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