StorageReview Lenovo ThinkServer RD630 Universal Testing Platform

When it comes to storage benchmarking, the proven platform of the StorageReview Test Lab is the Lenovo ThinkServer RD630. Built around the Intel Sandy Bridge microarchitecture with dual E5-2600-series CPUs and open standards, the RD630 is a formidable server offering high-performance resources and great hardware compatibility. Over the past year, StorageReview has partnered with Lenovo to incorporate the RD630 into a wide range of tests, instead of leveraging proprietary and frequently use-case limited hardware. Utilizing industry-standard storage HBAs and networking adapters, the RD630 has proven itself evaluating multitudes of storage products, including locally attached SAS, SATA, or PCIe storage as well as networked attached storage over 1GbE, Twinax and 10GBase-t 10GbE, 40GbE, 8/16Gb Fibre Channel, and 56Gb InfiniBand. In this guide we cover the hardware and software needed to replicate our synthetic testing environment to help make the StorageReview test bench an open platform.

In the StorageReview Test Lab we currently leverage 13 Lenovo ThinkServer RD630s in varying configurations (sometimes paired with other Lenovo ThinkServer models) to best utilize them for a given workload or application testing environment. Many of these systems are dual-purpose, where boot drives are swapped to give it a new personality, while some are operated as both physical servers in a Windows or Linux environment, or guest operating systems with the servers running VMware ESXi 5.1 Hypervisors.

Lenovo ThinkServer RD630 SATA/SAS/PCIe Physical Testing Environment

  • 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2620 (2.0GHz, 15MB Cache, 6-cores)
  • Intel C602 Chipset
  • Memory - 16GB (2 x 8GB) 1333Mhz DDR3 Registered RDIMMs
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 64-bit, Windows Server 2012 Standard and CentOS 6.3
  • LSI 9211-4i SAS/SATA 6.0Gb/s HBA (For boot SSDs)
  • LSI 9207-8i SAS/SATA 6.0Gb/s HBA (For benchmarking SSDs or HDDs)

Lenovo ThinkServer RD630 10GbE Virtualized Testing Environment

  • 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2690 (2.9GHz, 20MB Cache, 8-cores)
  • Intel C602 Chipset
  • Memory - 256GB (16 x 16GB) 1600Mhz DDR3 Registered RDIMMs
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 64-bit and Windows Server 2012 Standard
    • Operating from VMware ESXi 5.1 Hypervisor
  • Intel X540-T2 10GbE PCIe 2.1 Adapter
  • Mellanox ConnectX-3 10GbE PCIe 3.0 Adapter

Lenovo ThinkServer RD630 8/16Gb Physical Testing Environment

  • 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2690 (2.9GHz, 20MB Cache, 8-cores)
  • Intel C602 Chipset
  • Memory - 256GB (16 x 16GB) 1600Mhz DDR3 Registered RDIMMs
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 64-bit and Windows Server 2012 Standard
  • LSI 9211-4i SAS/SATA 6.0Gb/s HBA (For boot SSDs)
  • Emulex LightPulse LPe16002 dual-port 16Gb FC PCIe 3.0 Adapter
  • QLogic QLogic 2600 Series dual-port 16Gb FC PCIe 3.0 Adapter

Lenovo ThinkServer RD630 40/56Gb IB Physical Testing Environment

  • 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2690 (2.9GHz, 20MB Cache, 8-cores)
  • Intel C602 Chipset
  • Memory - 256GB (16 x 16GB) 1600Mhz DDR3 Registered RDIMMs
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 64-bit and Windows Server 2012 Standard
  • LSI 9211-4i SAS/SATA 6.0Gb/s HBA (For boot SSDs)
  • Mellanox ConnectX-3 InfiniBand PCIe 3.0 Adapter

Lenovo ThinkServer RD630 Sysbench Physical Testing Environment

  • 2 x Intel Xeon E5-2650 (2.0GHz, 20MB Cache, 8-cores)
  • Intel C602 Chipset
  • Memory - 128GB (16 x 8GB) 1333Mhz DDR3 Registered RDIMMs
  • CentOS 6.3
  • LSI 9207-8i SAS/SATA 6.0Gb/s HBA (For boot and benchmarking SSDs or HDDs)

Large-scale benchmarks such as our MarkLogic MarkMail NoSQL benchmark or VMware VMmark Virtualiztion benchmark require many servers working in conjunction with one another. In these cases it is best to reference the individual benchmark pages for the environment descriptions. A quick look of each environment is shown below to show the layout.

MarkLogic MarkMail NoSQL Benchmark Environment

VMware VMmark Virtualiziation Benchmark Environment

As we continue to deploy additional application-based testing protocol, we will update this page with additional configuration details and component information.