Mellanox’s RoCE Networking Enables Micron’s SolidScale™ NVMeoF-based SAN Platform to Achieve a Breakthrough in Data Center Efficiency

100Gbe, Connect X-4, Data Center, Link-X, Network Function Virtualization (NFV), NFV, RoCE, Spectrum

With the tremendous growth of data, the leading worldwide enterprises already realize that analyzing/understanding large amount of data, in real-time, is a key differentiator, that they must have. Micron’s SolidScale, which was launched on March 3rd 2017, is first NVMe-over-Fabric (NVMeoF) based SAN scale-out system, and it enables enterprises to achieve their goal of becoming a more efficient data-driven company.

Figure 1: Micro’s SolidScale™ Platform Architecture


The Micron SolidScale platform connects multiple server nodes (with Micron NVMe SSDs inside) using Mellanox’s high-speed and low latency RDMA over Converged Ethernet (RoCE) networking solution with low-latency software that provides a crafted set of data services. This combination results in extremely efficient Hyperconverged solution that performs like local direct attached storage.

Preliminary benchmark results for the Micron SolidScale platform have been published in Micron® SolidScale Platform Architecture solution brief. The results show that when running over three 2U servers, which are connected over a single Mellanox 100Gb/s RoCE link, the solution achieves more than 10.9M IOPS. This is within 4 percent of an equivalent server-local deployment (Figure 2) and achieved without adding more than an average of 10µs to the overall IO in 100 percent random reads in 4K blocks. This is also less than 1 percent of an equivalent server-local deployment (Figure 3). Those results validate again the efficiency of Mellanox’s end-to-end RoCE solution which includes the Spectrum Switch, ConnectX®-4 NICs and LinkX cables.

At the launch event, Micron also published a couple of application level benchmark results that have been tested over the same three nodes SolidScale cluster. The results show that under this configuration, and using a single 100Gb/E RoCE link between the nodes, each one of the SQL servers was able to achieve 11.1 GB/s (see figure 4) that is very close to the theoretical bandwidth that each link can support, and practically achieved the maximum possible wire speed.

Figure 4: SQL Server over SolidScale Benchmark Results

The above benchmark results show that combining the speed of Micron NVMe SSDs, with high-bandwidth Mellanox fabric, delivers performance that scales with a negligible performance penalty when compared to a local in-server NVMe. Positioning the joint solution to power the modern NVMeoF-based SAN solutions will take the data center to new record levels of efficiency.


About Motti Beck

Motti Beck is Sr. Director Enterprise Market Development at Mellanox Technologies Inc. Before joining Mellanox Motti was a founder of BindKey Technologies an EDC startup that provided deep submicron semiconductors verification solutions and was acquired by DuPont Photomask and Butterfly Communications a pioneering startup provider of Bluetooth solutions that was acquired by Texas Instrument. Prior to that, he was a Business Unit Director at National Semiconductors. Motti hold B.Sc in computer engineering from the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. Follow Motti on Twitter: @MottiBeck

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