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sas disk difference

Posted on 2012-03-27
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Last Modified: 2012-04-11
Recently i request an offer from IBM partners for SAS disks 600GB 15K for two different storage- for Nseries storage and for DS3400 series storage. My surprise was when I received the offer , SAS disks for N series storage was 8 times more expensive. What the hell is the difference for this disks?  How many models there is for SAS 600GB 15K. Why there is so big difference.
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Question by:dedri
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8 Comments
 
LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:pjam
ID: 37773433
I would ask for an explanation from supplier.
Are they Enterprise disks?
Possible they are 6.gb also which your controller may or may not be able to access.

Just a couple of thoughts.
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OCDan earned 100 total points
ID: 37773439
It sounds like they have quoted for standard SAS drives for the DS3400.

But have quoted for SAS FDE drives for the N Series as it supports (but doesn't require) them. These offer full encryption of everything on the drive.

The price difference doesn't seem pretty steep though.

You normally expect a bit of deviation but I wouldn't pay more than £600ex vat for a 600GB SAS drive. Our last 3.5" 15K Cheetah cost £520.

Anything beyond that you might as well get a decent MLC SSD drive.

(obviously prices are a bit inflated still after the floods)
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LVL 47

Expert Comment

by:dlethe
ID: 37773440
Well lots of differences, but in a nutshell you get what you pay for, and they are worth it if performance, consistency and availability/uptime is worth it.

I work with a fair number of sites that have petabytes of data.  Only one of them went down the path of using SATA disks (the other knew better) .. that SATA site has since bought 7 figures worth of SAS drives to replace the SATA drives.   Too many lockups and performance was awful (for their datasets).  

Go to the IBM site and look at the specs for the disks.   It isn't just throughput and IOPs.  Look at things like SAS disks are dual-pathed, and the firmware does background data scrubbing, and higher tolerance for vibration which translates into performance.

But 8X?  You probably aren't factoring footprints.   While you can buy a 3TB SATA disk, no such thing as a 3TB SAS drive (outside of the test labs).  So you need more HDDs to get that much data.

If downtime and availability is important, go SAS.  If you are flexible, go SATA.  Your call.
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Author Comment

by:dedri
ID: 37773568
dlethe, i am not talking about sata drives, my request was for 600GB SAS 15k 6Gb/s disk. And what i receive was 8 times difference.One  SAS disk for N series storage cost more than 2000$.
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LVL 47

Assisted Solution

by:dlethe
dlethe earned 100 total points
ID: 37773627
No, you can't get the same product for 1/8th the cost.  It won't have the IBM firmware on it that does magic like encryption and proper error recovery.

Granted it is a stock HDD and the "only" difference is the firmware compared to what you are looking at, but w/o that IBM firmware that does proper error recovery, sectoring, and encryption (assuming you bought that too), then you might as well try to get your toaster to work on the hardware.

To be blunt, pay the money, or get better pricing, or kick IBM out and buy something else that isn't from IBM that costs less and may not be as good. This is the right of all consumers.
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LVL 55

Assisted Solution

by:andyalder
andyalder earned 200 total points
ID: 37774122
I'd guess that in one case the "License to Use" is bundled in with the disk and in the other it isn't. LTU can far exceed the hardware cost because it covers the intelectual property of running that many terabytes on that manufacturer's algorithm.

Does that make sense?
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LVL 55

Assisted Solution

by:andyalder
andyalder earned 200 total points
ID: 37774217
I remember bits of the "IBM N Series for NetApp technicians" course, but so much of it was about how IBM added value with different bundling rather than technical stuff about how it worked that I dozed off. I did absorb a bit about how buying the disk included the license to add it to the storage in one pricing model but not in the other.
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LVL 18

Assisted Solution

by:BigSchmuh
BigSchmuh earned 100 total points
ID: 37797169
Isn't that a clear example of a dual-port drive overpricing ?
Those dual-port drives has no market volume and are too expensive for me...but MPIO capability need that kind of feature.
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