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Web-Server, Fileserver, Workstation Patterns

The controllers are tested under loads typical of servers and workstations. The server tests are the most interesting to us, being the most typical application for a RAID controller. Workstations may also have a high disk load, though.

The names of the patterns are self-explanatory. The Workstation pattern is used with the full capacity of the drive only. The request queue is limited to 32 requests in the Workstation pattern.

The results are presented as performance ratings. For the File-Server and Web-Server patterns the performance rating is the average speed of the drive under every load. For the Workstation pattern we use the following formula:

Rating (Workstation) = Total I/O (queue=1)/1 + Total I/O (queue=2)/2 + Total I/O (queue=4)/4 + Total I/O (queue=8)/8 + Total I/O (queue=16)/16.

The RAID controllers fall into two groups depending on their behavior in the File-Server patterns. The first group includes the ASR-44300 and AAR-1430SA which are increasing performance as the load is growing up. The other controllers only accelerate until a queue depth of 16 requests. This reminds me of the Database results where there was no performance growth at random reading. Take note that the ASR-3405 is the best controller at small queue depths as it is ahead of the controllers from the first group there.

We have similar results with the RAID10, the controllers splitting up in two groups again. This time the ASR-3405 enjoys a bigger lead at small queue depths and keeps in the lead for longer, until a queue depth of about 150 requests.

The ASR-3405 wins this test as it delivers higher performance without any slumps.

The ASR-44300 and AAR-1430SA controllers working with the RAID10 array have the highest performance ratings due to the performance growth depending on load. The ASR-3405 is in the lead with the other array types. The AAR-2820SA and AAR-1420SA are very slow. So, we can see that Adaptec’s new controllers are really faster than older ones.

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