Storage

A Performance Evaluation of Scientific I/O Workloads on Flash-Based SSDs

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Executive Summary

Flash-based Solid State Disks (SSDs) are an alternative form of storage device that promises to deliver higher performance than the traditional mechanically rotating hard drives. While SSDs have seen utilization in embedded, consumer, and server computer systems, there has been little understanding of its performance effects with scientific I/O workloads. This paper provides a trace driven performance evaluation of scientific I/O workloads on SSDs. The authors find that SSDs only provide modest performance gains over mechanical hard drives due to the write-intensive nature of many scientific workloads. Other workloads (like read-mostly web servers) would likely see much larger gains.

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