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Discussing the latest in Storage solutions

SSDs are no longer products of Toshiba as of October 1, 2019.
Adding Fast Access to Capacity

Not surprisingly, many small and medium sized organizations just like the larger entities are experiencing rapid growth in data volumes, as well as the need for increasingly demanding business applications. An effective approach for budget-minded IT managers and system integrators to support SMB requirements for high I/O application workloads is to seek flexible, off-the-shelf, and cost effective solutions to scale storage capacity and increase I/O performance. The goal is to scale up capacity without disrupting access performance or application service levels.

With this in mind, we recently set out to build such a solution to showcase how SMB IT professionals can break past the traditional storage I/O bottleneck by offering high storage capacity, as well as fast access to storage performance. To construct this example of a useful solution, we first looked to the channel for today's off-the-shelf, configurable server and storage subsystem components to emphasis easy assembly to high capacity and, more specifically in this case, highlight high random read IOPS performance.

We just completed the finishing touches on a system solution comprised of popular channel components designed to support commonly deployed read-intensive application workloads, such as email environments, database, web server, caching, and HPC to name a few. The plan is to have the system first demonstrated at Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, August 6 and 7, but we'll also bring the demo to IDF in San Francisco, September, and SC in New Orleans, November.

IT professionals can, and will, utilize a similarly purpose-built, tiered storage, mainstream server system as a value alternative to achieve high random read IOPS performance for a lower TCO solution. Our showcase solution demonstrates the capabilities and benefits of Toshiba's current line-up of high capacity HDDs combined with read-intensive SSDs, by employing separate LUN configurations for the HDD and SSD, and serving data through a RAID storage management software to maximize the capabilities of Toshiba drives.

Channel Solution Components:

Storage Devices

  • 8 x Toshiba 5TB1 capacity 3.5-in NL SATA HDDs2
    • 40TB total storage capacity
  • 8 x Toshiba 800GB 2.5-in 12Gb SAS SSDs3
    • Low latency, read-intensive SSD based storage performance
    • Optional lower cost, lower performance, solution can utilize Toshiba SATA SSDs too

12Gb SAS I/O Controller

  • LSI MegaRAID SAS 9380-8e
    • Supports up to 8 ports of external connectivity per controller
    • Provides external JBOD expansion, protects critical data, and supports high bandwidth.


  • Supermicro SuperChassis SC826BE16-R1K28LPB
    • 2U chassis supports up to motherboard sizes - 13.68" x 13"
      • Supports up to E-ATX, 12-in x 13-in MB
    • Optional configuration could be Supermicro SuperChassis SC747TQ-R1620B
      • Tower/4U support for DP and UP ATX, E-ATX motherboards
  • Intel Xeon® Motherboard X9DRG-QF
    • Dual socket R (LGA 2011) supports Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2600 and E5-2600 v2 family
  • Supermicro 1U Chassis SC116AC-R700WB4
    • 10 x Hot-swap 2.5" SAS/SATA HDD tray

By utilizing both Toshiba's capacity optimized 3.5-inch 5TB NL HDDs for a high 40TB total capacity and Toshiba's 2.5-inch SSDs, which leverage Toshiba's 19nm MLC NAND flash technology, combined with the SSD's dual-port SAS3 12Gb/s interface, this system can achieve up to 800K IOPS5 with 4K 100% random read workload6.  

Storage Cost Assumptions:






Drive Type

Random Read

IOPS7 (sustained)


Power Consumption (typical)


3.5-in 7.2K RPM NL SATA HDDs



8 x $400


8 x 5TB = 40TB

2.5-in 12Gb SAS SSD


130K (4KiB)

8 x $3,000


8 x 800GB = ~ 3TB (RAID 10 configuration)

2.5-in 6Gb SATA SSD (optional)


75K (4KiB)

8 x $770


8 x 480GB = ~ 1.7TB (RAID 10 configuration)

Granted, IT managers can configure a similar solution with how ever many storage devices they need. This capacity optimized solution offers high total storage to serve today's growing volume of data. The read-centric SSDs provide significant acceleration in read-intensive applications and improved application response times, while server-side caching implementations boost performance of underlying disk storage especially in SAN/NAS and DAS environments. Scalable, tiered storage configurations reduce storage TCO by customizing the percentage of high capacity versus high-performance storage. I hope you will have a chance to stop by Toshiba's exhibit booth and see our demo.


1One Terabyte (1TB) = 1,000 Gigabytes (GB). One Gigabyte (1GB) means 109 = 1,000,000,000 bytes using powers of 10. A computer operating system, however, reports storage capacity using powers of 2 for the definition of 1GB = 230 = 1,073,741,824 bytes, and therefore shows less storage capacity. Available storage capacity will also be less if the computer includes one or more pre-installed operating systems, pre-installed software applications, or media content. Actual formatted capacity may vary.

2Toshiba MG04ACA Series 6Gb SATA HDDs

3Toshiba PX03SN Series read-intensive 12Gb SAS SSDs

4A cost-effective mobile rack with 4 to 8 hot-swap SAS/SATA storage devices could be utilized too

5Utilizing 8 read-intensive SSDs in the system

6Solution performance measured by FIO, a highly configurable I/O subsystem measurement tool

7Random reads with 12Gbps SAS interface

8Storage device cost based on the average of published prices available online at time of publication

9800GB capacity point

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc.

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