New Intel Data Center SSDs

Intel has announced two new series of their 2.5-inch and 1.8-inch SATA data center solid-state drives. These are the upper-tier DC S3710 Series and mid-level DC S3610 Series. The DC S3710 replaces the previous DC S3700 Series, which was introduced back in late 2012. The high-level specifications for the entire Intel Solid-State Drive Data Center Family are listed here.

The Intel SSD DC S3710 Series is a 2.5” form factor and comes in 200GB, 400GB, 800GB, and 1.2TB capacities. The Intel SSD DC S3610 Series comes in both 2.5” and 1.8” form factors with the 2.5” coming in 200GB, 400GB, 480GB, 800GB, 1.2TB, and 1.6TB capacities and the 1.8” coming in 200GB, 400GB, and 800GB capacities. Both of the new SSD Series will use a high-endurance version of Intel’s 20nm MLC NAND, with a SATA interface and will have greater write performance compared to the previous models. The endurance rating for the DC S3710 is 10 drive writes per day for the length of the five-year warranty, while the DC S3610 is rated at 3 drive writes per day for five years.

Intel quotes these performance figures for the DC S3710 Series:

  • Sustained sequential read/write
    • 200GB: Up to 550/300MB/s
    • 400GB: Up to 550/470MB/s
    • 800GB: Up to 550/460MB/s
    • 1.2TB: Up to 550/520MB/s
  • Random 4k read/write
    • 200GB: Up to 85,000/43,000 IOPS
    • 400GB: Up to 85,000/43,000 IOPS
    • 800GB: Up to 85,000/39,000 IOPS
    • 1.2TB: Up to 85,000/45,000 IOPS

Intel also quotes these performance figures for the 2.5-inch version of the DC S3610 Series:

  • Sustained sequential read/write
    • 200GB: Up to 550/230MB/s
    • 400GB: Up to 550/400MB/s
    • 480GB: Up to 550/440MB/s
    • 800GB: Up to 540/520MB/s
    • 1.2TB: Up to 500/500MB/s
    • 1.6TB: Up to 540/500MB/s
  • Random 4k read/write
    • 200GB: Up to 84,000/12,000 IOPS
    • 400GB: Up to 84,000/25,000 IOPS
    • 480GB: Up to 84,000/28,000 IOPS
    • 800GB: Up to 84,000/28,000 IOPS
    • 1.2TB: Up to 84,000/28,000 IOPS
    • 1.6TB: Up to 84,000/27,000 IOPS

The S3710 Series has better write performance, and higher write endurance compared to the S3610 Series. As always, the larger capacity models typically have better performance than the lower capacity models from the same series. These drives are supposedly available now, although I have not found them listed for sale anywhere just yet. Here is the suggested retail pricing from Intel:

  • 1.2TB  DC S3710            $1909.00
  • 800GB DC S3710            $1249.00
  • 400GB DC S3710            $  619.00
  • 200GB DC S3710            $  309.00


  • 1.6TB  DC S3610            $1719.00
  • 1.2TB  DC S3610            $1289.00
  • 800GB DC S3610            $  839.00
  • 480GB DC S3610            $  509.00
  • 400GB DC S3610            $  419.00
  • 200GB DC S3610            $  200.00

These drives are a very attractive alternative to being price-gouged for internal flash-storage by your server vendor. I have had a number of customers use the older DC S3700 drives in new servers they have purchased, all with good results.

Remote Presentation of Analyzing I/O Subsystem Performance for Israel PASS Chapter

I did a remote presentation of Analyzing I/O Subsystem Performance for the Israel PASS Chapter on Monday, February 2. Here is the abstract for this presentation:

SQL Server is often I/O bound – but why? Do you feel lost when talking to your storage administrator? Are your storage subsystems like a mysterious black box where your databases live but you can’t go visit? This session will get you up to speed with the fundamentals of storage subsystems for SQL Server. You will learn about the different types of storage that are available, and how to decide what type of storage to use for different workload types. You will also learn useful tips and techniques for configuring your storage for the best performance and reliability. We’ll cover methods to effectively measure and monitor your storage performance so that you will have valuable information and evidence available the next time you have to discuss IO performance with your storage administrator. Come to this session to learn how to analyze I/Os as well as options to reduce the bottlenecks.

The PDF version of my deck and the queries I used in the demos are available here.

SQL Server 2012 SP2 CU4 Available

Microsoft has released SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 2 Cumulative Update 4, which is Build 11.0.5569. This Cumulative Update has 36 fixes in the public fix list. This is the build that you want to be on if you are running SQL Server 2012, since you should be on the SQL Server 2012 SP2 branch by now, at least in my opinion.

Microsoft has also released SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 1 Cumulative Update 14, which is Build 11.0.3486. This Cumulative Update has only eight hotfixes in the public fix list. There is no corresponding CU for SQL Server 2012 RTM, since SQL Server 2012 RTM is not a supported Service Pack.