Tay Foster

Everyone is tasked with doing more by using less these days. Budgets stay the same (or are cut!), but the amount of work to be done continues to grow. Those of us in the IT world are very familiar with this concept. We must accommodate more data, more users and more applications every day. But all is not lost! The new ThinkServer systems are here to help. With the latest generation of Intel Xeon E5 processors, our ThinkServer RD550 rack server is designed from the ground up to do more in less space. For example, with two quad-port 10GbE AnyFabric mezzanine cards and three dual-port 10GbE cards in its PCIe slots, it provides an astounding 140Gb of Ethernet networking bandwidth in only 1U of rack space! This is industry leading and 40 percent better than the nearest competitor can provide. A rack full of RD550s with network IO capable of over 5Tb per second can easily handle the most demanding application throughput.  If storage performance is the goal, the RD550 supports 12x 2.5” drives, two of which can be Intel’s latest NVMe PCIe SSD and the remainder can be 12Gbps SAS SSD. This can provide close to 2 million small block IOPS in the same 1U space. When comparing to one leading competitor, this is 85% more IOPS. In addition to the crazy...

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Have you heard anyone say the amount of data they need to store is going down?  No?  Me neither. In fact, data available for business use is growing exponentially. To remain competitive, businesses must evaluate differentiated storage strategies to ensure collected data can be cost effectively stored and analyzed. With traditional centralized storage systems, the architecture uses a single controller head in a frame that provides access to tens or hundreds of drives. When the single controller becomes a bottleneck, or the maximum number of drives in the frame has been reached, it’s both costly and disruptive to upgrade. Using a software-defined storage architecture is another way to design a storage system. This trending model uses a software layer to aggregate distributed direct-attached storage (DAS), which is normally captive to the server. Examples of this at the OS layer are Microsoft Windows Server Storage Spaces and VMware vSphere with vSAN.  Benefits of distributed DAS architectures include lower acquisition costs through purchase of standardized hardware and pay-as-you-grow scalability.  Server hardware is an important consideration in distributed data solutions. Key attributes of a server used in these solutions are storage density with varied performance choices, plus robust network capability.  For more information, see the

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