Leaner, meaner screamer from INFINIDAT dreamer

INFINIDAT is tweaking its Infinibox array design to increase its capacity.

The present 3U drive trays and 2U controller enclosures will each become 1U trays, enabling an increase from 480 drives to 720 in a rack – a 67 per cent increase. These drive trays hold 60 vertically mounted disk drives.

At INFINIDAT’s Herzliya office, press visitors saw an Infinibox array in the data centre with three 1U server enclosures, releasing 3U from the current 3 x 3U controller (Dell 370 server) enclosures.

Below this were 1U drive trays holding rows of flat-mounted Seagate 3.5in Constellation ES drives. We calculated there were 20 drives per tray and space for 36 trays in the rack, making up the 720-drive total we were quoted.

That provides 7,200TB with today’s 10TB drives, and 8,640TB with the 12TB drives which are expected to be announced in the next few months. INFINIDAT will thus have a 8.64PB rack, a useful 1.8X increase over today’s 4.8PB rack (480 x 10TB drives).

We understand that INFINIDAT is expecting future disk drives to use HAMR (heat-assisted magnetic recording technology), and shingled (partially overlapping) tracks in helium-filled enclosures. Spokespeople talked of a 50PB rack by 2020, which would equate to 70TB drives if there are still 720 drives per rack.

Also on INFINIDAT’s roadmap were deduplication and an increase in the number of controllers. We were led to understand that there would still be an odd number of controllers, implying an increase from three to five or seven.

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