HPE 3PAR StoreServ Storage is a high-end storage solution product for important application systems in large enterprises. The 3PAR system supports unified environments, provides multiple interfaces and connectivity services, including concurrent data retrieval, block, file and object storage.

With the same architecture and operating system, HPE 3PAR systems work in unity and interoperability, regardless of mid-range systems (8000 series) or high-end systems (20000 series).

Storage systems requiring large storage capacities can use Hybrid Storage systems:

–3PAR 20800 or 20840 allows scale out up to 6PiB of raw capacity, or

– 3PAR 8440 allows scale out up to 3PiB of raw capacity

Storage systems requiring high performance can use All-Flash systems:

– 3PAR 20840 or 20850 allows providing up to 3.2 million IOPS with latency less than 1ms

– 3PAR 20450 allows providing up to 1.8 million IOPS with latency less than 1ms

– 3PAR 8440/8450 allows providing up to 1 million IOPS with latency less than 1ms

1.      3PAR StoreServ architecture

HPE 3PAR 20800 system allows flexibly scaling out 2 – 8 Controller Nodes and directly connects clustering together. With this new architecture, 3PAR has the advantages of the Dual-controller system, such as reasonable cost, simplicity, automation in management and operation, and has the high-end features such as high scalability, availability and stability.

2. HPE 3PAR ASIC hardened processor module

The biggest architectural difference of a 3PAR system from other storage systems in the market is the HPE 3PAR ASIC processor module. This module processes important parts of a storage system that require high processing performance. Additionally, when using a hardened processor module, features such as RAID 0, 1, 5 6, Thin technology processing features, and support for different types of load, the overall performance of the system will be least affected.

3.     Wide striping storage architecture

Wide striping processing and storage architecture and distributed sparing

One of the architectural advantages of a 3PAR system is the wide stripping storage architecture, therefore the performance of the LUN (Volume) is very high as it is served by many (all hard disks) in disk group.

4.    Good I/O support of various types of load

For traditional storage systems, various types of data loads (OLTP or OLAP) are processed sequentially, with a common processor for metadata information and data of packets, so Small I/O packets may have to wait for large I/O packets before being processed. Therefore, the system is not really optimal for various types of load, which are simultaneously processed.

Unlike that processing, the 3PAR system divides information of the packets to the storage interface into two different information streams including control information and Data that are processed separately.

– Control information is processed by the Intel Xeon processor and the Control Cache.

– Data is processed by the 3PAR ASIC processor module and the data cache.

With such processing, control information is processed quickly, while the 3PAR ASIC module processes the data packets at high speed, because the algorithms are hardened and processed by preprogramming. This is the distinction of 3PAR, thereby providing high processing performance and supporting various types of load processed simultaneously on the same system.

5. 3PAR high availability

Wide striping processing and storage architecture and distributed sparing

With wide striping storage architecture, storage capacity of 3PAR system is divided into chunklets and distributed to all hard disks in the disk drive. Data chunklets and spare chunklets are distributed to all hard disks. Therefore, when a hard disk fails, the system will recalculate the data and recover data from the distributed spare chunklets, as a result there is no congestion when rebuilding the data.

Sparing in case of failed hard disks

3PAR systems support various levels of protection of hard disks, such as:

– Magazine-level data protection (4 hard disks) – HA MAG

–Cage-level data protection (tray for 24 or 12 hard disks) – HA CAGE

Ability to handle problems with the controller

For a traditional storage system with 2 controllers, when one controller fails, the feature to record data to cache will not be disable, since there is only one controller left, data in the cache is not mirrored to another controller, to ensure data integrity when the server records to the disk drive.

With the ability to use 4, 6, and 8 storage controllers, when one processor fails, the feature to record data to cache is still working, since data in the cache is still mirrored to other controllers, therefore the performance of the storage system is maintained.

6. Outstanding technologies on 3PAR StoreServ

6.1 Thin technologies

Traditional storage capacity provisioning technology is used on most storage systems, whereby storage capacity is provided to the servers at the time of application initialization. This provided capacity will be occupied by the server and cannot be reused by another server. In case the capacity provided to that server is not used, this will cause waste, low performance of disk drive, high initial investment costs, and high operating costs with low performance.

Thin technologies on 3PAR system provide efficient and flexible storage solutions, including: Provisioning of capacity as required by applications (Thin provisioning – ThP), Thin storage conversion (Thin Conversion), and capacity recovery when applications are not in use (Thin Persistence).

– ThP brings high capacity performance and saves up to 50% of hardware capacity of the storage system

– Thin Conversion saves up to 50% of storage costs when replacing storage systems, using 3PAR ThP technology.

– Thin Persistence enables the use of ThP and unused capacity recovery, including Snapshot and Remote copies solutions.

– Thin Dedup reduces storage space in the data center by 50-90%.

Highlights of Thin technologies on 3PAR systems:

– Built-In: 3PAR Storage system is designed to support Thin Provisioning (ThP) features with high performance and the most complete Thin features, thanks to the advantages of 3PAR Gen4 ASIC chip hardened processor platform.

– In-band: 3PAR ASIC allows to detect and automatically process Zero chains without recording them to the hard disks. This process performs In-band, which is more efficient than other storage solutions while recording those Zero chains to hard disk, before processing them.

Reservation-less: 3PAR ThP technology allows automatic execution of ThP features without reserve (backup) of any storage areas, thereby improving the storage efficiency of the system.

Integrated: 3PAR ThP technology provides APIs connection functions, allowing integration of ThP on Symantec File System, VMware, Oracle ASM and some other solutions.

6.2 Storage optimization technologies – Dynamic Optimization & Adaptive Optimization

3PAR storage system optimization technology includes Dynamic Optimization (DO) and Adaptive Optimization (AO), in which DO allows the system to entirely switch a Volume among different storage tiers or among different RAID levels such as RAID 1 RAID5, etc., while AO allows one volume to use all 3 storage partitions with various types of disks like SSD, FC and SATA/SAS.

By using DO, a 3PAR system automatically switches among different types of RAID levels or among different disk volumes, without affecting the applications that are using those volumes.

The switching operations are performed in the back-end of the storage system, as the 3PAR system performs using the 3PAR ASIC processor, the performance of the storage system is not affected, the applications work online, and service is not interrupted.

3PAR Adaptive Optimization

Adaptive Optimization (AO) technology develops the advantages of Thin Provisioning technology, allowing real data to be automatically served on the disk spaces with the most suitable performance.

Hình 2: Kết hợp công nghệ Thin Provisioning và SMART Tiers

AO technology allows:

– The storage system to track the data reading/recording performance of the applications in Smart Pool zone, and

– Automatically migrate data (online) to storage tiers with the most appropriate performance.

  • Data ranges retrieved at high reading/recording frequencies are served in the storage tier with the highest performance (SSD or FC 15K or 10K),
  • Data ranges retrieved at low reading/recording frequencies are served in the storage tiers with corresponding performances (SAS 7.2K).

In this way, AO provides the applications with the highest performance for reading/recording data on SAN, with the lowest response times for different data ranges, thereby speeding up the processing of the applications and reducing the system investment and operating costs to achieve the highest performance for the applications.

6.3 Service quality management solution for storage partitions using Priority Optimization technology

HPE Priority Optimization is the software that implements and controls the priority management policies for each Volume and VVset, allows administrators to control the performance of storage partitions distributed to each application or server by setting ceiling/floor parameters for IOPS/bandwidth, QoS priority and latency for the most important applications.

If the important parameters cannot be reached, the storage system automatically adjusts the service levels of applications or loads with low priority to always ensure the service levels of applications with higher priority.

With the above processing capabilities, the storage system will minimize the effects of less critical applications when storage resource disputes occur with critical applications in a centralized storage environment.

AO technology is used in the following cases:

– Protection (QoS) for the most important applications:

  • Configuring QoS for important applications with “high priority” and “high latency goals”, while applications with less priority will be set to “low” or “normal”.
  • When a resource dispute or a problem occurs, storage resources will be reserved for important applications with “high priority” and “high latency goals”.

– Make sure to set service commitment levels for different applications:

  • “Copper” service level will not be allowed to exceed 5000IOPS and not be delayed or rejected below 1000IOPS. If the system is busy, the “copper” level I/O will be delayed first, before the “silver” or “gold” levels.
  • “Silver” service level will not be used in excess of 7000 IOPS and will not be delayed or rejected below 2000IOPS. If the system is busy, the “silver” level I/O will be delayed before the “gold” levels.
  • “Gold” service level can use up to 10000 IOPS. The system will take actions to guarantee a maximum service level of 10ms by controlling the “silver” and “copper” levels.

6.4 Data copy solutions

3PAR system supports the data copy technology (Full Copy) in the available feature of the InForm OS, allowing customers to perform the data copy within 3PAR disk drive without purchasing any additional license.

Full Copy technology allows the use of ThP features on disks with different RAID levels or types of disk of Base Volume and Full Copy.

In case that customers need to use the data copy feature PIT Snapshot, Virtual Copy license allows the 3PAR system to make hundreds (100s) of snapshot copies of data from an original.

Snapshots, supporting ThP technology, do not need a data pre-provisioning for snapshots, allowing the use of different capacity ranges with different performances and RAID levels to perform data copy, ensuring different requirements of quality of service (QoS) of storage.

6.5 Data synchronization solution

The data synchronization among 3PAR disk drives is done through the Remote Copy feature that is performed at the storage level and among the controllers.

Synchronization solution can be done:

– On the Gigabit Ethernet (1GE/10GE) ports available on the storage controllers where customers do not need to invest in additional connection equipment.

– Or through FC ports synchronized via FC network between two data centers, where customers need to invest in connection devices SAN or DWDM.

Data synchronization can be:

– Synchronous

– Asynchronous

The bandwidth, distance and delay requirements are shown in the table below.

7. 3PAR manageability and operability

3PAR system is managed and operated by various options depending on customer requirements. Customers can choose Graphical User Interface (GUI) through StoreServ Management Console (SSMC) software or centralized infrastructure management software HPE OneView.

3PAR manageability

If customers choose CLI, they can choose 3PAR CLI software for different environments such as HP-UX, AIX, Linux, Solaris, Windows, or SSH from any operating system supported.

3PAR management system provides mechanisms to enable integration with external authentication systems AD/LDAP.

3PAR StoreServ Management Console (SSMC) software is used for configuration, management, and operation of 3PAR storage system and the systems connected to 3PAR.

Remote operation support service for 3PAR systems

All 3PAR systems operated in the customers’ Data Centers are supported by HPE using a remote operation support service through the 3PAR Support Center.

3PAR system operating information will be collected and transferred to the global centralized 3PAR service support center through a secure connection, for the purpose of remote tracking and monitoring the operation of 3PAR systems.

In case of any abnormal operation or breakdown in 3PAR systems, the Customer Service Center will immediately provide operating information to administrators of customer systems and HPE engineers in Vietnam for support plans as quick as possible.

Source: According to HPE

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