Linux RAID Benchmarks With EXT4 + XFS Across Four Samsung NVMe SSDs
Written by Michael Larabel in Storage on 24 August 2018. Page 1 of 3. 17 Comments

Last week I offered a look at the Btrfs RAID performance on 4 x Samsung 970 EVO NVMe SSDs housed within the interesting MSI XPANDER-AERO. In this article are some EXT4 and XFS file-system benchmark results on the four-drive SSD RAID array by making use of the Linux MD RAID infrastructure compared to the previous Btrfs native-RAID benchmarks. Tests were done on the Linux 4.18 kernel to provide the latest stable look at the XFS/EXT4 MD RAID performance with these four powerful Samsung 970 EVO 250GB NVMe solid-state drives.

For those that missed the earlier Btrfs RAID benchmarks, the XPANDER-AERO is an accessory included with MSI's new MEG X399 CREATION motherboard that we have been using with many of our Threadripper 2950X and 2990WX benchmarks. The XPANDER-AERO allows for four M.2 NVMe SSDs (up to the M.2 22110 length) to be installed onto this PCI Express x16 sized PCB and it's topped off with an active cooler that very much looks like a lower-end MSI graphics card. On the downside though, this large cooler means this M.2 PCI-E adapter occupies two expansion slots. An external 6-pin PCI-E power adapter is required as well for sufficiently powering the drives.

The EXT4 and XFS RAID setups were configured using the mdadm utility. Each file-system was mounted with the default mount options. RAID 0, 1, 5, 6, and 10 levels were tested across the four Samsung 970 EVO 250GB SSDs while the Btrfs tests had been done using the file-system's native RAID functionality.

Linux 4.18.1 was the kernel in use atop Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. Tests were done from the same Threadripper 2950X system. There are also single-disk SSD benchmark results too for reference.

These Linux RAID reference benchmark results were carried out using the open-source Phoronix Test Suite benchmarking software.

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