While synthetic workloads do a great job of testing the underlying technology and reporting easy to understand results, they aren’t always indicative of how the drive will be used by the end-user. Workloads that simulate enterprise environments try to bridge that gap without being overly complex.
The database profile is 8K transfers, and 67% percent of operations are reads.
For our database profile, the Samsung 845DC PRO took an early lead and didn’t give it up as queue depths increased. The competition was just not able to keep up due mostly to the massive advantage the 845DC PRO has in write performance.
The fileserver profile is based on an 80% read/20% write mix. Its made up of blocksizes from 512 to 64K, each making up a different percentage of the access pattern. The pattern is: 512 bytes=10%, 1k=5%,2k=5%, 4k=60%, 8k=2%, 16k=4%, 32k=4%, 64k=10%.
It’s the same story with the fileserver profile. The 845DC PRO is going to be a very hard SSD to beat so long as any amount of writes are involved.
The webserver profile is similar to the fileserver profile, but has some additional 128K and 512K accesses thrown in for good measure. Additionally, the profile is 100% read.
Finally, in the webserver profile, the 845DC PRO was shown to be mortal. Since this profile is 100% read operations, the SanDisk Optimus Eco took the lead at higher queue depths.
Overall, the 845DC PRO performed great in all of our server profiles. The excellent small block write performance allows it to cruise through these profiles.
When companies like Samsung, which have seemingly unlimited R&D budgets, show what they are capable of, we end up with products like the 845DC PRO. While the 3D V-NAND used in the 845DC PRO is not new, it is the first time we have had a chance to look at it in an enterprise environment. We knew that the consumer 850 PRO was an excellent performer and expected nothing less of the 845DC PRO and in that regard, Samsung delivered.
In many cases, you can break enterprise SSDs into three categories: performance, endurance and price. When looking at write performance, the 845DC PRO is the clear winner. It’s very rare that we can say that without caveats. Whether it was pure synthetics or server profiles, the 845DC PRO posted numbers that can only be challenged by PCIe and 12Gbps SAS SSDs.
For endurance, Samsung was also able to hit the 10 DWPD specification that you see at the top end of enterprise SSDs. Normally, when you see performance and endurance numbers that high, you expect to pay a premium. When Samsung initially quoted $1.50-2.00/GB we were excited, but the final prices ended up being $2.29-2.40/GB, which is unfortunate. Breaking $2/GB would have been the icing on the cake. At this point, you can get the Intel SSD DC S3700 for ~$2/GB which gives you identical endurance, but less performance. So, now it comes down to whether the additional write performance is worth the added cost. We fully expect the prices to drop over time, much like the S3700 has over the last 18 months, but at this time, we have to go with the pricing we have.
Taking all things into consideration, we believe the 845DC PRO is the best enterprise SATA SSD that you can buy.