AFF, NVMe, and EF-Series Discussions

VMWare ESXi 5.5 on AFF




I'm in the process of replacing current FAS6280 controllers with AFF. These are used for a large VSI environment hosting over 2000 VMs and I am currently struggling with disk activity always >95%, b2b CPs, and de-dupe running 24/7 due to the amount of FC LUNs I am hosting (~250).


Does anyone have any perfermance results of VMWare on AFF in a similar environment?







You didn't mention which exact AFF model you're getting...


Based on your description of your performance bottlenecks a new AFF system should mitigate those bottlenecks, nicely.


I would request some performance modeling estimates for your new AFF system from your NetApp sales rep.


You mentioned your current pain points on your spinning disk based system being "disk activity always >95%, b2b CPs, and de-dupe running 24/7".


99% of the time the AFF will definitely resolve this. An AFF is flash optimised, it bypasses layers in the RAID system to drastically improve latency/speed when writing to disk. When you add the fast IOP/low latency performance of flash, you should see an eliminaction in b2b CPs. Also take note that flash is more resiliant to a "full file system" than spinning disk. As your available capacity reduces the system doesn't need to keep seeking the disk subsystem for free space.


AFF also introduces inline-dedupe (at an aggregate level if you get on to 9.2), which will exponentially improve your post-dedupe performance.


Overall, moving to an AFF *should* be a good move for you. But definitely get advice from your SE/partner that is specific to your environment.

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