Intel X25-E SLC SSD on a IBM x3650 M3

ipW
ipW used Ask the Experts™
on
Hi team,

can I install two Intel X25-E SSD on a IBM x3650 M3 Server?

Regards
ED
Comment
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
What is the RAID controller in the server?

We have been running X25-M series Intel SSDs in server applications since the second generation SSDs arrived.

As long as the hot swap backplane, RAID controller, and the server board are configured to work with SATA drives you should have no issues.

Note that even with the X25-M series we managed to saturate the RAID controller and the bus quite easily due to their high performance capabilities.

SSD just kills for IOPs.

Philip
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
And one other small factor: The drive caddy needs to support 2.5" drives.

Philip
The X25-M series write cache does NOT support a power outage !
I don't know about the X25-E...but you should check.
Success in ‘20 With a Profitable Pricing Strategy

Do you wonder if your IT business is truly profitable or if you should raise your prices? Learn how to calculate your overhead burden using our free interactive tool and use it to determine the right price for your IT services. Start calculating Now!

Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
To date _no_ hard drive cache supports power outage.

The cache to be concerned about is the cache on the RAID controller. Battery Backup is preferable for both data security but also a significant increase in performance for RAID 5 etc with parity bits.

Philip
ipW

Author

Commented:
I plan to turn the server into a storage using SAS HDDs, and I will not use hardware RAID, the RAID will be created by the operating system. I need to know if the Intel SSD fit well in the IBM's 2.5 hotswap bays.
And I don't know if the IBMs HD backplane can support SAS and SATA.
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
The Intel SSD uses a standard SATA layout for the power and SATA connectors.

If the caddy, backplane, and server board support SATA then you are good to go.

http://www-03.ibm.com/systems/x/hardware/rack/x3650m3/index.html


Disk bays (total/hot swap) Up to sixteen 2.5" hot-swap SAS/SATA HDDs or SSDs

Philip
The X25-M G3 is announced with a "Power safe write cache"...
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3965/intels-3rd-generation-x25m-ssd-specs-revealed

I thought that OCZ SandForce based Vertex was already handling a power safe write cache (large capacitors are visible onboard)...but I was not able to quickly find a "support link"
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage

Commented:
That article is well out of date.

Intel SSD 320 Series PDF:
http://download.intel.com/design/flash/nand/325212.pdf

That is the X25-M replacement.

Intel SSD 510 Series is their current performance line using a Marvell controller:
http://download.intel.com/design/flash/nand/Intel_SSD_510_Series_Product_Brief.pdf

The successor to the X25-E is not out officially that I know of.

This article is a lot more recent and a little more accurate:
http://www.engadget.com/2011/04/28/intel-ssd-720-710-and-520-series-leak-out-larsen-creek-and-pai/
There is a good roadmap of Intel SSDs at this link.

Philip
Reading the Intel 320 series specs, you should see
To reduce potential data loss, the Intel SSD 320 Series detects and protects from an unexpected system power loss. The drive saves all cached data in the process of being written before shutting down, thereby minimizing potential data loss.

So, you HAVE some SSD usable with their write cache enabled...
ipW

Author

Commented:
Team, tks for the comments about the use of SSDs for Cache, but what I need to know is if this SDDs can fit (size and connectors) on this sistem SATA/SAS HDDs bays.
The SAS backplane connector was designed to accept either a SAS drive or a SATA drive.
http://www.serialstoragewire.org/images/articles/it24fig1.jpg

The 2,5" SAS tray should allow your X25-E (with a power sensitive write cache) to be installed normally
Technical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage
Commented:
I am really not sure why the sticking point for the on board drive cache?!? Every server we deploy, whether SSD or SAS has drives with on board cache. We managed _a lot_ of servers.

At no point since I personally been building server systems (early 1990s) has the hard drive's on board cache ever been a consideration.

The RAID Controller's cache is indeed a factor as already mentioned. That is why there is a battery backup for on board RAM cache or something like Adaptec's MaxIQ RAID Cache that uses non-volatile memory to store parity bits being worked on by the RoC. It is the loss of those parity bits that have not been written to disk that risk data corruption.

Again:

The Intel X25-E uses a _standard_ SATA connection.

As per IBM's product specification noted in one of my previous links a standard SATA drive will work.

Philip
The x3650 M3 can use the ServeRAID-M5014 where the battery is an option to 256MB cache.

Commented:
Sorry to jump in, but I have the exact same question.
So, ipworkers, did you actually try and use this ssd on the server ?

I'm also not too worried about the compatibility, but more on the physical bay "converter"?
It seems that ibm wont allow us to plugin ordinary hdd, so I'm not sure about this hdd

Thank you. And sorry aain.

Do more with

Expert Office
Submit tech questions to Ask the Experts™ at any time to receive solutions, advice, and new ideas from leading industry professionals.

Start 7-Day Free Trial