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Intel 910 800GB PCI Express Solid State Drive Enterprise RAID Report

By: Paul Alcorn | PCIe SSDs in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Jul 25, 2012 12:49 pm

4K Random


4K random read speed measurements are an important metric when comparing drive performance, as the hardest type of file access for any storage solution is small-file random. We test with a five-second ramp time to eliminate any burst results. Read speeds are largely unaffected by extra over-provisioning, so we only include standard results.




The 4K random read IOPS scaling is perfect, with actually a slightly better than linear scaling with the two 910s topping out at 457,146 IOPS. This represents pulling off 228,573 IOPS per SSD, well above the Intel-advertised 180,000.


The 800GB tops out at QD256 at 227,247 IOPS, this is also above the rated 180,000 IOPS by over 21%.


The 400GB version peaks at 113,489 IOPS at QD128, also 21% over the rated specification of 90,000 for that capacity.




As we move into the random write results, we begin to include our 20% over-provisioning results, indicated as "œOP" in our graphs. OP consists of leaving 20% of the drive unformatted. By increasing the amount of available spare area, the SSD can perform at higher write speeds. This represents an optional performance boost for users at the cost of some capacity.


The 910s do not disappoint, with a top speed in steady state of 164,946 IOPS at QD32. The over-provisioned (OP) results top out at 186,839 IOPS at QD32. This scaling does represent a slight loss in IOPS attained per device.


The 800GB results with standard Steady state peak at 85,768 IOPS at QD32. This is 13% higher than the rated 75,000. The OP result reaches 100,342 IOPS at QD32. The 400GB plateaus at QD32 with 42,971 IOPS, 12% higher than the rated 38,000. The OP results reach 52,421 IOPS at QD16.



8K Randoms


8K random read and write speed is a metric that is not commonly tested for consumer use, but for enterprise environments this is an important aspect of performance. With several different workloads relying heavily upon 8K performance we include this as a standard with each evaluation. Many of our Server Emulations below will also test 8K performance with various mixed read/write workloads.




For 8K 100% Random Read the dual 910s blast out 213,426 IOPS, again actually coming out with better than linear scaling.

The 800GB version scores 104,700 IOPS at QD128 and the 400GB version tops out at 52,166 IOPS at QD128.




The 8K Random write speed in Steady state with the dual 910s reaches 44,360 IOPS and the extra 20% of Over-provisioning boosts that value up to 49,146 IOPS. There is a slight loss with the 8K random writes in IOPS attained per SSD. The 800GB model tops out at QD64 with 23,995 IOPS and gets a boost up to 26,000 with extra Over-provisioning. The 400GB model scores 12,275 at QD32 in Steady state and with extra Over-provisioning scores 13,607 at QD32.

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