The LSI SAS MPT integrated drivers allow for plug-and-play capability, easing installation into the host computer. The half-height half-length form factor opens this card up for deployments into increasingly popular low-profile server racks, and upon installation the WarpDrive presents itself as one volume to the host OS with no user configuration required.
Managing the WarpDrive itself is simple with the WarpDrive Management Utility. This basic program has few bells and whistles.
The utility is very straightforward, and here we can see a typical use. Upon startup the utility asks the user to select which WarpDrive to manage. Querying the drive for health information returns a life measurement reflected by a percentage of the warranty remaining, and the temperature and overall health of the unit.
There is no access to SMART data for the drive, which would be helpful for users to determine some relevant metrics, such as the number of reallocated sectors and the amount of data written to the device. This type of data is surely taken into consideration by the utility when determining the overall health of the device, but it would be nice for users to have access to that level of granularity.
Formatting the drive is also as simple as it gets, with the option for a few different levels of overprovisioning for the end user. By utilizing different levels of overprovisioning users can attain a speed increase at the sacrifice of some capacity. The Performance Overprovisioning setting gives the user 595.05 GB of usable capacity and the Nominal Overprovisioning yields 745.06 GB of usable capacity. We conducted our testing with the Nominal Overprovisioning setting.
This is a much-needed feature that should be included on other enterprise-class SSDs in general. The option to provide users with an easy means of setting variable levels of overprovisioning will certainly cut configuration time and provide excellent benefits in heavy write environments.
All other drive management tasks are handled in the server manager, as per normal.