Oracle pops cork as cut-price ZFS array creams NetApp rival
Plenty more bang for your bucks in SPECsfs2008 benchmark
An Oracle ZFS 7420 storage array provides 40 per cent more performance than a NetApp FAS6240 at a $700,000 lower price point.
That's according to the SPECsfs2008 benchmark, which tests how effective an array is at servicing NFS IO transactions. The chart shows a selection of vendors' SPECsfs2008 IOPS scores in the fewer-than-1-million-IOPS arena. We're not looking at absolute SPECsfs2008 IOPS numbers here but at relative ones.
Selected SPECsfs2008 IOPS numbers
A dual-controller FAS6240 scored 190,675 IOPS, with an overall response time (ORT) of 1.2msecs. It needed 288 hard drives and an exported capacity of 85.8TB to do it.
Oracle's ZFS 7420 scored 267,928 IOPS, with an ORT of 1.31msecs. It was fitted with eight 512GB flash SSDs for read caching, eight more 73GB SSDs for write caching, 280 hard disk drives and a 36.3TB exported capacity. Oracle provide estimated pricing information for the 6240; it's not a requirement that SPECsfs2008 reports include this data, a curious omission.
The 6240's estimated list price is $1,178,868 which means every SPECsfs2008 IOPS cost $6.18. Oracle's own ZFS 7420 costs $430,332 which gives us $1.61 per IOPS.
There is a 4-node NetApp FAS6240 cluster, running Data ONTAP 8.1 in the SPECSfs2008 reports, that scores 260,388 IOPS and an ORT of 1.83msecs. It had 512GB flash cache in each node. That is far closer to the ZFS 7420's performance. Its Oracle-estimated list price is $1,606,048, which gives us $6.17/IOPS, almost four times higher than the ZFS 7420's $/IOPS number.
Interestingly the ZFS 7420 beats a 28-node Isilon S200 cluster, which cost $2,453,708 at a $10.63/IOPS cost. That suggests that the S200 better equip a flash booster as soon as possible. The Isilon clusters go up to 140 nodes and beyond; they are scale-out machines, scoring 1,112,705 IOPS with a 140-node cluster, far, far higher than any ZFS array can achieve.
Back in standard dual-controller array land, the Oracle ZFS array looks like a very cost-effective SPECsfs2008 performer and, by extension, a very cost-effective filer. Oracle is on a bit of a SPECsfs2008 NetApp-bashing expedition at the moment and seems to be enjoying every minute of it. Read Oracle bod Darius Zanganeh's blog to find out more. ®
Re: Possibly true, but...
True, but I'd expect Oracle tin to support all Oracle software to a level exceeding a 3rd party. Unfortunately, most people use more than just Oracle software.
Oracle support for 3rd party stuff on the other hand is pretty poor. It's VMware integration alone is poor in comparison to NetApp.
If you want to host Oracle DBs etc, then Oracle tin is a great choice, enjoy! Likewise, if you want an easy to use iSCSI box for Windows servers, you could try Equallogic, while, for a more versatile platform, I'd go NetApp. It all depends on what's the right tool for the job.
As companies, I'd sooner deal with NetApp than Oracle - far less troublesome in my experience and this is important when something goes bang in the middle of the night.
Re: But can you admin the device?
Well - I have several of these units in production - in fact, this is our only storage vendor having finally canned the old EMC gear - a mix of single head and clustered configurations w/ cross DC replication blah blah; and I've had absolutely no problems in the last year.
The network stuff isn't too bad, if you have a dual head config the only real gotcha is if you want to administer the"non-active" head in the cluster then you need to sacrifice an additional network port. For example the admin interface may be on nge0 on head 1, and nge1 on head 2 then you can't then use nge1 on head 1 for anything else.
The clustering and fail over is rock solid for us - we even have oracle dbs sitting on the NFS on these units and the failover isn't noticeable to any end users and things puur along fine.
The bang for buck is way up there, and they're very simple to administer once you get your head around some of the BUI quirks and the fact that you can't mess around on the shell without risking the warranty our red overlords hand to us.
Support for them is reasonable, you generally have to shout a bit to get over to the really "technical" teams (all of whom seem to be US based, so if you do have issues then you may be in the office a bit later than you want to be). I recon that's the same for most vendors though.
Generally speaking; I don't have any plans to deploy anything other than these units for the next year at least.
Re: Possibly true, but...
The comparison doesn't include any of the expensive netapp software other then NFS... Oracle's arrays by the way have a very large stack of included software such as dtrace based analytics which netapp cannot touch and Netapp cannot even support Hybrid Columnar Compression for the Oracle Database.