NPP Training series – Drive Breakdown

To continue NPP training series here is my next topic:  Drive Breakdown

If you missed other parts of my series, check out links below:
Part 1 – NPP Training series – Nutanix Terminology
Part 2 – NPP Training series – Nutanix Terminology
Cluster Architecture with Hyper-V

Data Structure on Nutanix with Hyper-V
I/O Path Overview

To give credit, most of the content was taken from Steve Poitras’s “Nutanix Bible” blog as his content is the most accurate and then I put a Hyper-V lean to it.

Drive Breakdown

In this section I’ll cover how the various storage devices (SSD / HDD) are broken down, partitioned and utilized by the Nutanix platform. NOTE: All of the capacities used are in Base2 Gibibyte (GiB) instead of the Base10 Gigabyte (GB).  Formatting of the drives with a filesystem and associated overheads has also been taken into account.

SSD Devices

SSD devices store a few key items which are explained in greater detail above:

  • Nutanix Home (CVM core)
  • Cassandra (metadata storage) – MORE
  • OpLog (persistent write buffer) – MORE
  • Extent Store (persistent storage) – MORE

Below we show an example of the storage breakdown for a Nutanix node’s SSD(s):

NDFS_SSD_breakdown3 Drive Breakdown

NOTE: The sizing for OpLog is done dynamically as of release 4.0.1 which will allow the extent store portion to grow dynamically.  The values used are assuming a completely utilized OpLog.  Graphics and proportions aren’t drawn to scale.  When evaluating the Remaining GiB capacities do so from the top down.  For example the Remaining GiB to be used for the OpLog calculation would be after Nutanix Home and Cassandra have been subtracted from the formatted SSD capacity. Most models ship with 1 or 2 SSDs, however the same construct applies for models shipping with more SSD devices. For example, if we apply this to an example 3060 or 6060 node which has 2 x 400GB SSDs this would give us 100GiB of OpLog, 40GiB of Content Cache and ~440GiB of Extent Store SSD capacity per node.  Storage for Cassandra is a minimum reservation and may be larger depending on the quantity of data.

NDFS_SSD_3060_2 Drive Breakdown

For a 3061 node which has 2 x 800GB SSDs this would give us 100GiB of OpLog, 40GiB of Content Cache and ~1.1TiB of Extent Store SSD capacity per node.

NDFS_SSD_3061v2 Drive Breakdown

HDD Devices

Since HDD devices are primarily used for bulk storage, their breakdown is much simpler:

  • Curator Reservation (Curator storage) – MORE
  • Extent Store (persistent storage)

NDFS_HDD_breakdown Drive Breakdown

For example, if we apply this to an example 3060 node which has 4 x 1TB HDDs this would give us 80GiB reserved for Curator and ~3.4TiB of Extent Store HDD capacity per node.

NDFS_HDD_3060 Drive Breakdown

NOTE: the above values are accurate as of 4.0.1 and may vary by release.

Next up, I figured we would look at some of the cool software technologies that run on our CVM (Controller Virtual Machine), next up Elastic Dedupe Engine.

Nutanix Community Edition – Public Beta – Now Available – Build Your Own Nutanix Test Lab for Free


Nutanix Community Edition

Another very exciting announcement was Nutanix Community Edition (CE) on June 9th, 2015 at our Inaugural .NEXT conference. So, what is it?…..Our website describes it the best “Community Edition is a 100% software solution enabling technology enthusiasts to easily evaluate the latest hyperconvergence technology at zero cost.”  In other words, you can use your own hardware to test out Nutanix.  Very cool.  This is great for building a lab and just gaining understanding of hyperconvergence hands on.

Nutanix is offering a hardware compatibility list (HCL) to users that includes the minimum requirements to run the software; essentially, any standard x86 server can be used….

And to quote our CEO and co-founder Dheeraj Pandey,

“From our very first software release in 2012, Nutanix has been dedicated to open architectures and technologies, offering unprecedented customer choice and flexibility,” “Community Edition is the next step in democratizing hyperconverged infrastructure technology, enabling anyone to experience the transformative benefits of our software. Only by eliminating the requirement for proprietary hardware and embracing off-the-shelf platforms can the next revolution of datacenter technologies be fully realized.”

As the name implies, the support for the CE will come from the community through Nutanix’s NEXT online portal. Users will be able to log in, ask questions and get answers from the community.

CE also allow you to also check our new hypervisor based on KVM and Acropolis. Check out Josh Odger’s Blog to learn more about Acropolis.

Join the beta…And don’t forget my NPP training series that helps you with all the concepts around hyperconvergence.

Currently, I am getting started with Nutanix CE installation and will be posting my experiences in a later blog post with how I build my Nutanix Lab @ Home. 🙂
Until next time….Rob