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SAN Disk I/O metrics

Posted on 2013-06-11
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Last Modified: 2013-06-11
Hi,
I'm currently building a new Windows 2008 R2/SQL 2K8 Failover Cluster and waiting for SAN disks provisioning from the storage team. I am also planning to run a disk I/O measurement tool and save the result as a baseline metrics for future references.

One tool comes in mind is SolarWind SAN Monitor for EMC Clariion.

Are there any other good free tools that I can use? And also, what are the key elements that are essential to disk performance and I should incorporate into my test? Almost new to this area.

Thanks, Sharad
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Question by:sharad_rai
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Expert Comment

by:Racim BOUDJAKDJI
ID: 39238182
I recommend the following tool for measuring both IOPS (in KIops) and throughput (in MB/sec).  In itself performance monitor will give you a good indication whether the system presents IO contention by looking at LogicalDisk/PhysicalDisk:Avg Sec per Write/Read
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Author Comment

by:sharad_rai
ID: 39238247
Hi Racino,
Is this part of the Windows Performance monitoring tool?
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Author Comment

by:sharad_rai
ID: 39238347
Please ignore my last comment.

I just need help deciphering the graph. The metrics uses the default scale of 1,000, what is this scale and how to interpret and relate it to my reading?

And what are those units on Y axis, it starts at 0 and goes up to 100. X is time and moves every second... that I figured

thanks a million,

Sharad
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Racim BOUDJAKDJI
ID: 39238537
By default the Avg Sec per Write is expressed in ms.  For example, under a scale of 1000,, a contention of 10 on the graph means each Write takes in average 10 ms to run.
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Expert Comment

by:Racim BOUDJAKDJI
ID: 39238541
You can also use another tool called IOMeter.
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Author Comment

by:sharad_rai
ID: 39238684
Hi Racimo,
I installed IOMeter on a test server and it looked pretty good to me. It does however prepare the disks before running the monitoring on them, hope it is safe to do on production disks right?

I found it better than SolarWinds SAN Monitoring as SW works only with specific EMC storage models.

thanks,
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Accepted Solution

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Racim BOUDJAKDJI earned 1200 total points
ID: 39238703
IOMeter is the reference tool for serious OS level IO testing no matter what is the storage layer behind.  It is safe to run but, as any stress tool, it has to put some heat on the partition where the data is stored and may slow down things a little: you can stop it any time though.  Use it, based on application IO profile, to evaluate how much throughput you are getting.
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Author Comment

by:sharad_rai
ID: 39238713
Excellent, thanks!
I do like this product though...
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Author Closing Comment

by:sharad_rai
ID: 39238714
Exactly what I was looking for...
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Racim BOUDJAKDJI
ID: 39239536
Glad it helped. :)
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