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SAN Performance Concepts 101

This Education Guide focuses on factors that determine performance in a block storage environment, which also includes SSD and Flash.  Even though this paper focuses on block based storage systems many of the principles in is paper can be applied to the other storage technologies.  Consequently, the specific purpose of this paper is to:

  • Educate the reader concerning typical storage system performance criteria (e.g., input and output (I/O) rate, response time, and data rate).
  • Understand that a bottleneck is any limiting factor or component in the storage system, which negatively impacts its performance; i.e., a storage system will only perform as fast as its slowest component.
  • Resolve storage system bottlenecks should help improve storage system performance, which can assist in meeting, and hopefully exceeding, overall business performance requirements.

The Appendices provide a reference list of tools and best practices from vendors, in addition to common terminology.

Related to this document:
SAN Storage Evaluation Guide, , SAN Comparison Matrix – Mid-Range

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July 1, 2013

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