Archive for December, 2014

Project Donard: Peer-to-Peer Communication with NVM Express Devices – Part Two

Author: Stephen Bates (@stepbates)

Adding Remote Direct Memory Access


In my last blog post I introduced a project called Donard that implements peer-2-peer (p2p) data transfers between NVM Express devices and PCIe GPU cards.  We showed how the p2p transfers could improve performance and offload the CPU, which can save power when compared to classical non-p2p transfers.

In this article we extend Donard to add RDMA-capable Network Interface Cards (NICs) into the mix of PCIe devices that can talk in a p2p fashion. This is very important as it brings the third part of what I call the PCIe trifecta to the Donard program. The three elements of the trifecta being storage, compute and networking.

Read more »

Is your ISCSI fast enough?

Author: Neil Cameron

iSCSI is a great technology. It gives you the ability to create SANs very cheaply and easily, without having to become a guru in Fibre Channel or put yourself into deep debt buying all the Fibre equipment. By using easily available networking equipment, you can add storage to existing boxes, even if you want to go crazy and do shared access, clustering or other high-end features.

A lot of vendors provide basically free iSCSI targets (there’s even one in Windows Server these days), and almost every OS has a free software initiator to connect to those targets. Yes, we can bang on about whether software or hardware initiators are better, but software initiators are free and work so well that most iSCSI hardware initiator vendors have stopped bothering.

Read more »