Micron® 9200 MAX NVMe™ with 5210 QLC SATA SSDs for Red Hat® Ceph Storage 3.2 and BlueStore on AMD EPYC™

By Tony Ansley - 2019-04-02

Micron® has released its latest Red Hat® Ceph® Storage reference architecture (RA). Focusing on lower-cost, general-purpose use cases, this new RA leverages a single-socket AMD EPYC server platform as its primary building block. Using the quad-level cell (QLC) based Micron 5210 ION SDD, this new RA provides a highly scalable capacity solution at a reasonable cost. To ensure high write performance, this new solution adds a pair of high-performance Micron 9200 MAX NVMe™ SSDs to each storage node. Learn more at our Micron Accelerated Solutions for Ceph Storage site.

AMD Ceph 1

This tiered NVMe+SATA configuration is not what we would call a traditional caching tier. We are not using the native Ceph caching functionality. Instead, we placed the NVMe devices into a separate pool of storage, and we placed the Ceph BlueStore database (rocksDB) and the Ceph write-ahead logs onto this pool. As my colleague, John Mazzie, explains in more detail in his blog, "Ceph BlueStore: To Cache or Not to Cache, That is the Question," this configuration change can reap some significant benefits.

What are the results of creating this tiered Micron 9200 SSD + Micron 5210 SSD solution?

While not as performant as our all-NVMe Ceph solutions, which produced over one million 70%/30% read/write IOPS, this new RA offers 70%/30% read/write performance of 346K IOPS, or about 4 IOPS/$ for the 4-node configuration1. When compared to our all-NVMe Ceph RA, the cost for performance of the new Micron 9200 SSD + Micron 5210 SSD solution is 11 percent better.

Object performance shows similar results for read-centric configurations that are best-fit for the Micron 5210 ION SSD with QLC NAND.

The charts below show the performance (blue bars) for various workload types along with the cost analysis (orange lines).

AMD Ceph 2

The introduction of AMD EPYC and the Micron 5210 ION SSD lower the overall cost of the Ceph storage nodes . For those workloads that still demand high-throughput or lower latency operations, you should consider the all-NVMe solutions we have presented in the past. As Ceph gets tasked with storage duty for large data analytics, big data, and general-purpose SAN deployments, high capacity at a reasonable cost can offset high performance requirements. In these use cases, Micron’s new Ceph tiered solution can be a better fit.

Learn more about this latest Micron reference architecture as well as all our reference architectures by visiting the Micron Accelerated Solutions portal.

1Based on configuration pricing of AMD 9200+5210 configuration versus all-NVMe configuration as of 3/1/2019.

Amit Gattani

Tony Ansley

Tony is a 34-year technology leader in server architectures and storage technologies and their application in meeting customer’s business and technology requirements. He enjoys fast cars, travel, and spending time with family — not necessarily in that order.