Adaptec enables SSD + HDD RAID

Posted on September 10, 2009

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By Dave Simpson

-- As part of a partnership with Intel, Adaptec this week introduced software for its RAID controllers that will enable its OEM and channel partners to combine the controllers and software with solid-state disk (SSD) drives and traditional hard disk drives in what the company refers to as High-Performance Hybrid Arrays (HPHAs).

Adaptec delivers the solution in the MaxIQ SSD Cache Performance Kit, which is priced at $1,295 and includes a customized 32GB SATA-based SSD from Intel (the X25-E Extreme), which integrators can configure as a cache, and Adaptec's caching software for SSD data management.

Integrators/OEMs/VARs can combine the kit with SATA or SAS drives and Adaptec's Series 5Z, Series 5 or Series 2 Unified Serial RAID controllers. Integrators can configure the HPHAs with up to four of Intel's SSDs, which are based on single-level cell (SLC) flash technology.

Adaptec claims that HPHAs based on its software and Intel's SSDs can increase performance up to 5X compared to SAS-only disk arrays (based on tests with random read-only workloads and 4KB blocks), with up to a 50% savings in capex and opex costs. HPHAs can be configured with any combination of SATA, SAS and SSD drives, and will be optimized for read-intensive applications such as Web servers, file servers and databases, according to Scott Cleland, Adaptec's director of marketing.

Adaptec's MaxIQ SSD Caching Software includes algorithms that manage data placement based on access patterns by identifying frequently read ("hot") data blocks and optimizing subsequent reads by moving the hot data to a low-latency SSD cache tier that functions as a read cache pool. No modifications are required at the controller, disk array, application or operating system levels.

For more information on SSDs, visit InfoStor's SSD Topic Center.

Related article:
Adaptec puts ZMCP on RAID controllers


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