All the arrays tested had a total capacity of approximately 1TB, using 73GB drives, and were limited to a single shelf. The lab configuration for all arrays was a 2Gb SAN fabric, switched by McData Sphereon FC switches for the CX200, and the integrated 8-port FC switches for the MSA1000. The reference servers used were a Dell 2650 with dual 2.4GHz Hyper-Threaded P4 Xeon CPUs and 2GB of RAM, and an HP ML370 with dual 2.8GHz Hyper-Threaded P4 Xeon CPUs and 1GB of RAM.
The arrays were run through a battery of tests across several operating systems -- Windows Advanced Server 2000 SP3, Windows Enterprise Server 2003, Windows Standard Server 2003, and Red Hat Linux Advanced Server 2.1. Performance testing on the Windows platforms was done with SiSoft’s Sandra 2003 and Bonnie++ on the Linux platforms. Additionally, array degradation and rebuild test data was gathered with Bonnie++ on Red Hat Linux AS 2.1, measuring array performance under adverse conditions with the controllers configured to allow high-priority array rebuilds. All tests were performed on a five-spindle RAID5 array with a single 200GB logical drive, formatted with NTFS for the Windows tests and ext3 for the Linux tests.
All Web-based configuration testing was attempted with a variety of browsers across several platforms, including Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X.