SGI Ships Its First 6G Bps SAS System

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2010-06-16 Print this article Print

The modular InfiniteStorage 5000 RAID data storage system will hold from 12 to 96 disk, solid-state or full-disk encryption drives in 2U or 4U configurations and features a 2GB controller cache.

SGI on June 15 joined the growing ranks of high-end storage vendors targeting the midmarket when it launched a spiffy new 6G-bps SAS version of its high-performance InfiniteStorage product line.

The InfiniteStorage 5000 features a choice of host interfaces-SAS, Fibre Channel/SAS or iSCSI/SAS-SGI says will enable the system to perform as if it were industrial-strength Fibre Channel.

The modular new system will hold from 12 to 96 disk, solid-state or full-disk encryption 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch drives in 2U (3.5-inch) or 4U (7-inch) configurations, and features a 2GB controller cache, SGI said. Users can start small and add to the system as needed, SGI marketing executive Floyd Christofferson told eWEEK.

In comparison, SGI's previous InfiniteStorage version, the 220, features 3G-bps SAS, 1G-bps iSCSI or 4G-bps Fibre Channel throughput, is scalable up to 48 (3.5-inch drives only) spinning disk drives and has a 512MB controller cache.

The new 5000 system is built on LSI's storage-control software-the result of an updated partnership with LSI announced in May.

SGI said all the new InfiniteStorage arrays are application-ready for the Oracle Database, VMware ESX hypervisors and Microsoft enterprise middleware, including such commonly used applications as SQL Server, Exchange and SharePoint.

InfiniteStorage 5000 can be deployed as primary or secondary storage for tiered virtualization implementations, Christofferson told eWEEK.

It also can be used as a front end for enterprise archives using an SGI Copan MAID system on the back end and in addition works seamlessly with Altix UV and Rackable rack mount servers, Christofferson said.

A refresher: Rackable Systems acquired SGI in 2009, and the company took on the SGI name. The new SGI then acquired the remains of MAID systems maker Copan in February.

All these technologies, together with LSI's software and processors, are what have gone into the new SGI storage systems.

InfiniteStorage 5000 can deliver bandwidth up to 4,000MB per second on sustained reads from disk, a performance improvement of four times compared with the previous-generation product, Christofferson said. The system delivers 40,000 IOPS (input/output operations per second) random disk reads-an improvement of better than double over the 220 systems.

"Although 6G-bps SAS for drives has already become common in the industry, completing that transition by including the host side has finally begun in earnest," said IDC analyst Benjamin Woo. "With both 6G-bps host and drive-side architecture, InfiniteStorage 5000 is ideally suited for mixed workloads and virtualization."

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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