Fusion-io Introduction

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Fusion-io develops PCIe based NAND flash memory cards and related software that can be used to speed up MariaDB databases.

The ioDrive branded products can be used as block devices (super-fast disks) or to extend basic DRAM memory. ioDrive is deployed by installing it on an x86 server and then installing the card driver under the operating system. All main line 64-bit operating systems and hypervisors are supported: RHEL, CentOS, SuSe, Debian, OEL etc. and VMware, Microsoft Windows etc. Drivers and their features are constantly developed further.

ioDrive cards support software RAID and you can combine two or more physical cards into one logical drive. Through ioMemory SDK and its APIs, one can integrate and enable more thorough interworking between your own software and the cards - and cut latency.

The key differentiator between a Fusion-io and a legacy SSD/HDD is following: Fusion-io card is connected directly in the system bus (PCIe), this enables high data transfer throughput (1.5 GB/s, 3.0 GB/s or 6GB/s) and fast direct memory access (DMA) method can be used to transfer data. ATA/SATA protocol stack is omitted and therefore latency is cut short. Fusion-io performance is dependent on server speed: the faster processors and the newer PCIe-bus version you have, the better is the ioDrive performance. Fusion-io memory is non-volatile, in other words, data remains on the card even when the server is powered off.

Use cases

  1. You can start by placing only database logs on an ioDrive, this can already speed up database performance a lot.
  2. Whole database on ioDrive (remember to take backups) or use software RAID (needs two cards at least)
  3. Use ioDrive as a write-through read cache. This is possible on server level with Fusion-io directCache software or in VMware environments using ioTurbine software or the ioCache bundle product. Reads happen from ioDrive and all writes go directly to your SAN or disk.
  4. Highly Available shared storage with ION. Have two different hosts, Fusion-io cards in them and share/replicate data with Fusion-io's ION software.
  5. The luxurious Platinum setup: MariaDB Galera Cluster running on Fusion-io SLC cards on several hosts.

Settings for best performance

TBD [XL, please add here suggested best fs, parameter configuration]

Example configuration

GoldenEggs diagram, courtesy of goldeneggs.fi

Card models

There are several card models. ioDrive is older generation, ioDrive2 is newer. SLC sustains more writes. MLC is good enough for normal use.

  1. ioDrive2, capacities per card 365GB, 785GB, 1.2TB with MLC. 400GB and 600GB with SLC, performance up to 535000 IOPS & 1.5GB/s bandwidth
  2. ioDrive2 Duo, capacities per card 2.4TB MLC and 1.2TB SLC, performance up to 935000 IOPS & 3.0GB/s bandwidth
  3. ioDrive, capacities per card 320GB, 640GB MLC and 160GB, 320GB SLC, performance up to 145000 IOPS & 790MB/s bandwidth
  4. ioDrive Duo, capacities per card 640GB, 1.28TB MLC and 320GB, 640GB SLC, performance up to 285000 IOPS & 1.5GB/s bandwidth
  5. ioDrive Octal, capacities per card 5TB and 10TB MLC, performance up to 1350000 IOPS & 6.7GB/s bandwidth
  6. ioFX, a 420GB QDP MLC workstation product, 1.4GB/s bandwidth
  7. ioCache, a 600GB MLC card with ioTurbine software bundle that can be used to speed up VMware based virtual hosts.

Additional software

  • directCache - transforms ioDrive to work as a read cache in your server. Writes go directly to your SAN
  • ioTurbine - read cache software for VMware
  • ION - transforms ioDrive into a shareable storage
  • ioSphere - software to manage and monitor several ioDrives

More information:

Fusion-io on Futurea ltd webpage (English)

Fusion-io Futurea Oy:n websivuilla (in Finnish)


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