[Beowulf] Any recommendations for a good JBOD?

Rahul Nabar rpnabar at gmail.com
Fri Feb 19 15:18:17 PST 2010

On Fri, Feb 19, 2010 at 11:29 AM, Mark Hahn <hahn at mcmaster.ca> wrote:

Thanks Mark!

> right - 10 years ago, the cost overhead of the system was larger.
> nowadays, integration and moore's law has made small systems very cheap.
> this is good, since disks are incredibly cheap as well.  (bad if you're
> in the storage business, where it looks a little funny to justify thousands
> of dollars of controller/etc infrastructure when the disks cost $100 or so.
>  disk arrays can still make sense, of course, but availability of useful
> cheap commodity systems has changed the equation.

I totally agree! Especially for my "tiny" storage capacity (~5
Terabytes)  the cost of the non-disk accessories
(enclosure+controllers+cables) is turning out to be several fold that
of the disks themselves! That was pretty surprising to me!

> point: you plug it into your existing ethernet fabric.  for the low-overhead
> application you describe, it's a reasonable fit, except that even low-end
> iSCSI/NAS boxes tend to ramp up in price.
> that is, comparable to what you'd
> pay for a cheap uATX system (which would be of about the same speed,
> power, space and performance, not surprisingly.)

I'm curious, what's the selling point for iSCSI then? The prices are
quite ramped up and the performance not stellar. Do any of you in the
HPC world buy i-SCSI at all?

> procs+ram+nic can easily total less than $100; enclosures can be very cheap

Really?! Hmm....What kind of "procs+ram+nic" combo can one get for
less than $100. That is pretty surprising for me! That again makes me
wonder about the performance of these NAS boxes. Standard server + DAS
seems safer than a low-end NAS.


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