Quantum Doubles Dedupe Speed via Software

Saturday Jan 29th 2011 by Dave Simpson

The DXi 2.0 software runs on Quantum’s DXi line of disk-based backup and deduplication appliances.

The 2.0 version of Quantum’s DXi software provides 2X the performance of previous versions of the software, according to Quantum officials.

The DXi software runs on Quantum’s DXi line of disk-based backup and deduplication appliances.

The revamped software follows a series of hardware introductions from Quantum last year, which included the DXi8500, DXi6700, DXi6500, and DXi4500.

The DXi 2.0 software is initially available for the entry-level DXi4500 and mid-range DXi6500 series deduplication appliances. A version for the DXi6700 and high-end DXi8500 systems is due this summer, according to Janae Stow Lee, senior vice president in Quantum’s Disk and Software Products Group. (DXi 2.0 software does not run on the older DXi7500.)

Quantum officials compare their deduplication systems to competing appliances from EMC’s Data Domain unit on a raw performance basis, as well as a $-per-GB-hour basis, claiming anywhere from a 2X to 5X advantage. The comparisons include deduplication appliances in NAS mode and Open Storage (OST) mode, and are based on the vendors’ published specs and prices.

Although real-life performance varies depending on workload, Quantum claims up to 4.6TB per hour on a DXi6500 with OST, and up to 4.3TB per hour with a NAS interface, running the DXi 2.0 software. The DXi6500 competes with EMC’s DD670.

For a DXi4500 running DXi 2.0 software, Quantum claims performance of up to 1.7TB per hour with OST, and up to 1.4TB per hour in NAS mode. The DXi4500 competes with EMC’s DD610 deduplication appliance.

According to Quantum’s Lee, the performance improvements in the DXi 2.0 release are due to a variety of enhancements. For example, Quantum streamlined the data flow so that all data is now deduplicated in memory prior to being written to disk. This is in contrast to the “adaptive deduplication” in the DXi 1.0 software, where data was placed on disk and then deduplicated.

Quantum also enhanced the process control in its software, tweaked the code to take advantage of new processors and tiered storage, and upgraded its StorNext file system (which is re-sold by HP).

Technologies that were retained in the DXi 2.0 release include variable-block (as opposed to fixed-block) deduplication and integration of disk and tape.

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