Recently, we've had the opportunity to help several clients migrate their legacy physical or virtual infrastructure environments to converged infrastructure that consolidates the compute (server) tier and the storage tier into a single integrated appliance.
Nutanix is a market leader in converged infrastructure and has provided our client's with the ability to significantly reduce their physical infrastructure footprint and scale linearly. Many clients are seeing the value in modernizing their infrastructure and removing reliance on a SAN as well as seeing significant reductions in energy, rack space & power requirements. One client managed to reduce 22U of Rack space into a single 2U Appliance!
The Nutanix differentiator resides in it's ability to combine standard enterprise grade hardware with it's proprietary tiered Storage Control technology allowing for linear scale-out and ground breaking storage performance all at a reasonable price point. Each Nutanix node has a combination of Solid State Flash Storage & Traditional Hard Drive drives. The Storage controllers pool together all of the storage available and present it as either NFS or SMB 3.0 and is Hypervisor agnostic.
How does it perform?
One of the key benefits of the Nutanix infrastructure is removing the reliance on an underlying storage network, allowing the flash tier to be placed as close as possible to the compute tier.
We were recently migrating a client from Hardware that was approximately 5 years old:
- 3 Node Hyper-V 2008 R2 Cluster
- Mid-tier SAN with 28 Disks Capable of roughly 4000 IOPS
- 3 Node Hyper-V 2012R2 Nutanix Cluster comprised of 6020 Model Nodes.
Performance was benchmarked using inside a Windows Server 2008 R2 test VM before and after migration and the performance increase was astounding.
Tests performed using SQLIO - 25GB Test File, 8 Threads, 8 Outstanding requests, 120 second duration as follows:
sqlio -kW -t8 -s120 -o8 -frandom -b8 -BH -LS C:\TestFile.dat
sqlio -kR -t8 -s120 -o8 -frandom -b8 -BH -LS C:\TestFile.dat
sqlio -kW -t8 -s120 -o8 -fsequential -b64 -BH -LS C:\TestFile.dat
sqlio -kR -t8 -s120 -o8 -fsequential -b64 -BH -LS C:\TestFile.dat
|TEST-VM on Old Hardware||MBPS||IOPS||Avg Latency (ms)|
|Random 8 KB Writes||11.16||1429.5||44|
|Random 8 KB Reads||12.18||1559.1||40|
|Sequential 64 KB Writes||195.67||3130.87||19|
|Sequential 64 KB Reads||247.45||3959.25||15|
| || || || |
|TEST-VM on Nutanix||MBPS ||IOPS||Avg Latency (ms)|
|Random 8 KB Writes||189.52||24259.2||2|
|Random 8 KB Reads||733.83||93930.45||0|
|Sequential 64 KB Writes||1392.56||22281.11||2|
|Sequential 64 KB Reads||3792.72||60683.59||0|
| || || || |
| ||Performance Increase||Latency Decrease|| |
|Random 8 KB Writes||1698%||2200%|| |
|Random 8 KB Reads||6025%||4000%|| |
|Sequential 64 KB Writes||712%||950%|| |
|Sequential 64 KB Reads||1533%||1500%|| |
While in-guest performance testing is never fully representative of real-world workloads, running identical tests within the same Virtual Machine on different hardware definitely shows how much progress has been made in 5 years!