LSI is looking to cut the number of hard drives used for booting servers in a data center with its new Syncro MX-B rack boot appliance.
LSI's new Syncro MX-B rack boot appliance is a 1U appliance that can be used to boot up to 48 servers, eliminating the need for each server to have its own boot drive, said Tom Kodet, market segment lead for the mega data center business at the Milpitas, Calif.-based storage vendor.
The vast majority of servers in large data center don't need anything more than a 40-GB hard drive to boot up, Kodet said.
"There are 24 to 48 servers per rack, and if each one has one disk, that's a lot of wasted storage space," he said. "Most of those servers don't need 120-GB or 140-GB or larger hard drives. They need 40 GB. But no one sells 40-GB hard drives."
LSI's answer is the Syncro MX-B rack boot appliance. The 1U appliance is configured with two or four hard drives along with LSI RAID and other technology that allows those drives to be shared across up to 48 servers. "Every server gets its own image," Kodet said. "Nobody shares or reads other servers' data."
In addition to cutting the number of hard drives used in the servers in a rack, the Syncro MX-B rack boot appliance can also significantly cut back on the number of hard drive service calls in large data centers, Kodet said.
"The failure rate for hard drives is about 15 percent to 18 percent over three years," he said. "That amounts to about 100 failed drives per week per 100,000 servers. And servers fail because the boot volumes fail."
The Syncro MX-B rack boot appliance is based on the new LSI Syncro architecture. LSI Syncro technology is targeted at making it possible for multiple servers or users to better share disk drives and other storage media as well as the data residing on them, Kodet said.
"It's targeted at solving real-world problems at all sizes of data centers, including the ongoing data deluge and related cost pressures," he said. "It will remove the islands of storage associated with server-attached storage to provide for higher utilization and high availability."
In addition to the Syncro MX-B rack boot appliance, LSI will in the near future also introduce Syncro CS, a new storage controller family for adding enterprise capabilities along with redundant shared-node capabilities to direct-attached storage (DAS) environments, Kodet said.
PUBLISHED NOV. 15, 2012