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LSI Delivers Maximum VDI Density with WarpDrive Products

Collaborative testing with VMware Horizon View demonstrates breakthrough virtual desktop scalability and application performance.

Published Mon, Sep 23 2013 3:32 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:20 PM CST

LSI Corporation announced they are working closely with VMware to deliver breakthrough desktop density for VMware Horizon View deployments. VDI can be a challenging environment for the storage infrastructure with its 'bursty' random write workloads. For HDD-based solutions, be they SAN, NAS or direct attached storage, these workloads closely mirror the absolute worst-case scenario for an HDD. Throwing more spindles at the problem isn't the best of solutions, as this leads to drastically over provisioned storage resources to tackle a problem that can be addressed with a simple slip-in solution that provides lower power consumption and exponentially better latency performance.

Many administrators mistakenly think that throughput and IOPS can address every performance challenge, but the secret to maximum performance actually falls to the latency of the storage solution.

LSI Delivers Maximum VDI Density with WarpDrive Products 01 |

Enter the LSI WarpDrive, which brings a healthy helping of flash and places it as close to the processor as possible, delivering massive performance improvements with a minimum of configuration. Above we can observe the VSImax rating of 280 obtained before the system maxed out the CPU.In collaborative testing with VMware Horizon View using a single LSI Nytro WarpDrive application acceleration card, the WarpDrive comfortably delivers concurrent support for 200 active virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) workloads on a two-node cluster with no storage latency.

LSI Delivers Maximum VDI Density with WarpDrive Products 02 |

VDI environments can present performance challenges from a multitude of angles. Many companies simply test the bootstorm environment, which is an important aspect of VDI performance, but there are many more use-cases in the day-to-day management and use of VMware that can benefit from flash acceleration.

Here we see that the time to deploy linked clone pools can be drastically reduced.

LSI Delivers Maximum VDI Density with WarpDrive Products 03 |

VDI environments benefit more from low latency than sheer IOPS, and here the WarpDrive delivers with 150 desktops per ESXI node.

What is most amazing about these results is that the CPU became the bottleneck before the WarpDrives ran out of steam, meaning that with optimized infrastructures there is the possibility of even more performance than demonstrated in this test. Of course, it always boils down to TCO. The benefits of a flash solution are numerous, from the lowered power consumption, the small form factor and the removal of a whole layer of devices associated with the deployment of a SAN or NAS. The LSI Nytro WarpDrive delivers enough endurance to provide long-term acceleration, and the addition of compression technology provides maximum performance in VDI environments.


The quest for benchmark world records led Paul further and further down the overclocking rabbit hole. SSDs and RAID controllers were a big part of that equation, allowing him to push performance to the bleeding edge. Finding the fastest and most extreme storage solutions led to experience with a myriad of high-end enterprise devices. Soon testing SSDs and Enterprise RAID controllers at the limits of their performance became Paul's real passion, one that is carried out through writing articles and reviews.

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