Storage Systems for I/O-Intensive Applications in Computational Chemistry
Many programs in computational quantum chemistry need a fast storage system capable of serving more than 10,000 I/O operations per second while also being large enough to store the temporary files created by these applications. A good solution which fulfills both requirements is a hybrid approach consisting of a large network storage and small but very fast local SSDs. It was found that off-the-shelf SSD-based caching strategies did not perform satisfactorily for the applications investigated in this study. A better result can be achieved by concatenating the two storage systems via a RAID or even better via LVM. After taking care about the creation of the logical volume and the layout of the file system we could obtain 75 % of the performance gain of an SSD by using only 50 % SSD storage.
The authors would like to thank the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) and the Ministry for Science, Research and Arts Baden-Württemberg for funding the bwHPC project. Further more, the authors thank the bwHPC-C5 team Baden-Wrttemberg for fruitful and constructive discussions and are grateful to our project partner NEC for their support and cooperation.
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