IBM has selected SanDisk to provide a flash-based storage solution for recently-released blade servers. SanDisk's SATA 5000 2.5-inch solid state drive (SSD) will be offered for data storage within the IBM BladeCenterR HS21 XM, featuring the latest in processing and power-management performance.
Blade computers – which integrate servers, storage, networking and applications into one system – offer a design point that helps reduce the proliferation of server "farms," large IT staffs to manage them and wasted energy resources.
IBM HS21 XM blades are packed with up to 32Gb of random-access memory and up to eight I/O ports, helping to boost memory and processing performance while reducing energy costs as compared to traditional rack systems.
According to IDC, blade servers are the fastest growing sector of the overall server market, with revenues projected to surpass $11-billion by 2010.
IBM selected SanDisk's SSD product based on its high levels of reliability and performance and low power consumption. Using the SSD, power savings with IBM BladeCenter HS21 XM can be up to 18 watts per blade, 252 watts per chassis and 1 512 watts per server rack, which can help reduce energy costs.
For the server industry, SanDisk SSDs provide an advantage over conventional hard disk drives in a variety of areas:
* Reliability – Incorporating advanced flash management technology, SanDisk SSDs deliver 2-million hours mean time between failures (MTBF), approximately six times more hours than conventional hard disks.
* Performance – SanDisk SSDs offer a sustained read rate of 67Mbps and a random read rate of 7 000 inputs/outputs per second (IOPS) for a 512-byte transfer.
* Power efficiency – SanDisk SSDs have minimal power requirements, with savings rated at over 50% compared with a conventional hard disk drive – 0.9 watts during active operation versus 1.9 watts.
* Cooler and quieter – Power efficiency contributes to reduced heat generation. Furthermore, without the motor, bearings and moving head mechanism of conventional spinning hard drives, SanDisk SSDs generate even less heat than a conventional hard disk drive. Additionally, while conventional hard disk drives always make at least some noise during read and write operations, SanDisk SSDs are completely silent, contributing to a quieter server environment.
* Low cost of ownership – With no moving parts, SanDisk SSDs contribute to a virtually maintenance-free alternative to conventional disk drives.
* Expandable product offering – SanDisk SSDs are available in capacities ranging from 4Gb to 64Gb, allowing for easy upgrades depending on need.
Scott Tease, worldwide marketing manager for IBM BladeCenter, says: "IBM is the first major blade vendor to deliver enterprise-class solid state storage in blade servers, helping clients balance datacenter cost, complexity, reliability and manageability. SanDisk's SSD uses up to 87% less power than a conventional hard disk drive and runs with no moving parts, eliminating a common point of disk failure and making the HS21 XM blade solution even more reliable."