Under the hood is an Intel Grizzly Pass two-socket motherboard with a pair of Intel Xeon E5-2690 v2 10-core 3.0GHz processors running Windows Server 2012 R2 with 64 GB of 1,866MHz ECC RAM. Also inside were four Intel X520-DA2 dual-port SFP+ 10-Gbit Ethernet direct-connect copper adapters. These were attached through a switch to four worker PCs running the IOmeter workload generator. Each of the four workers was attached to three of the shares on the server under test (again a total of 12).
"We designed this to be similar to a small group of CAD users moving huge files around," said ION founder and CTO Keith Josephson.
Thanks to its implementation of SMB 3.0, Windows Server 2012 automatically aggregates all NICs to provide maximum network bandwidth between server and nodes. "Before [WS2012], we had to statically assign different IP addresses and manually balance the workload that way," Josephson said. How was the performance? Turn the page to find out.