This week at Flash Memory Summit 2018 we are bracing for a number of NVMe over Fabric (NVMeoF) solutions. MiTAC and Mellanox are joining forces on a storage JBOF array. The MiTAC HillTop NVMeoF JBOF is powered by Mellanox BlueField. MiTAC may not be well known to everyone, however, it is the parent company behind organizations like Tyan. This is big news as it signals a shift from traditional x86 NVMeoF arrays and into ARM-based arrays.
What is Mellanox BlueField?
The central idea behind Mellanox BlueField is that provides a 16 core ARM (Cortex A72) CPU along with an integrated PCIe switch and a Mellanox ConnectX-5 networking IP base to provide a complete solution for NVMeoF storage appliances.
For systems integrators, this means there is no need to build a solution around an x86 CPU and chipset, a PCIe Gen4 switch, and then add a Mellanox ConnectX-5 100GbE/ EDR Infiniband adapter. This solution combines the above and has hardware acceleration for much of the NVMeoF stack.
MiTAC HillTop Mellanox Bluefield NVMeoF Press Release
Here is an excerpt from the official press release:
Mellanox Technologies, Ltd. (NASDAQ: MLNX), a leading supplier of high-performance, end-to-end interconnect solutions for data center servers and storage systems, today announced that MiTAC Computing Technology Corporation (MCT) has selected Mellanox BlueField™ system-on-chip (SoC) for their new generation MiTAC HillTop NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF) JBOF (Just A Bunch of Flash) storage platforms. Accommodating up to 24 hot-swappable NVMe SSDs, MiTAC’s JBOF platform provides a storage capacity of up to 156TB in a high-density 2U rack space. In addition, the integration of two BlueField SoCs enables MiTAC’s platform to support direct connectivity with up to four 100Gb/s Ethernet and InfiniBand ports, making it a flexible and performant storage platform, answering to the demanding needs of today’s data centers.
As the most integrated and efficient flash controller available on the market today, the BlueField dual-port 100Gb/s Ethernet and InfiniBand SoC combines the industry-leading ConnectX®-5 network controller, with a powerful 16 core Arm A72 CPU, DDR4 memory subsystems, and a PCIe switch with 32 PCIe Gen3/4 lanes. BlueField has demonstrated record-setting NVMe-oF performance of 7.5 million IOPS, with zero CPU utilization and under 3 microseconds of NVMe-oF latency.
MiTAC HillTop NVMe Storage Platforms will be available later this year.