Empowering Enterprise Applications with Optimized Flash Hardware and Software

The Combination of Optimal Flash Caching with Accelerated I/O Access Delivers a Leading-Edge Flash Implementation

Allon Cohen, PhD
Scott Harlin

Published February 2013

Introduction

Flash-based solid-state drives (SSDs) are being deployed in increasing numbers throughout virtualized data centers to provide increased performance and reduced total cost of ownership (TCO). When deployed correctly, one host-based flash SSD can deliver random input/output operations per second (IOPS) comparable to thousands of hard disk drives (HDDs). When caching and virtualization software is added to the mix, the combined solution can deliver accelerated I/O access and an immediate performance boost of business-critical applications.

As more flash is implemented within data centers globally, IT managers are realizing that the positive effect it has on enterprise applications is highly dependent on how it is deployed. If not deployed properly, key enterprise applications may not receive the full performance benefits capable from flash storage. Therefore, when considering the best utilization of flash in an enterprise environment, IT managers must evaluate best-of-breed hardware and software solutions to enable those key enterprise application’s to be optimized and fully accelerated by the power of flash.

A tight integration between flash hardware and software not only optimizes the speed by which an application can get to its critical data, but also identifies which data is important, worth caching, and readily available to user requests. The ability to streamline the data path with hardware and software working in unison will not only improve IOPS performance but assures that data is on flash when the application needs it (the ‘Hit Ratio’). This white paper addresses an emerging hardware/software solution developed by OCZ Storage Solutions that combines the power of flash acceleration with the power of flash caching to deliver a leading-edge and successful flash implementation.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. The Basic Ingredients for a Successful Flash Implementation
  3. The Catch-22 of Optimal Flash Caching
  4. Efficiently Integrating Hardware and Software
  5. Conclusion: The Best of Both Worlds