[gpfsug-discuss] GPFS Evaluation List - Please give some comments

Grace Tsai gtsai at slac.stanford.edu
Wed May 30 20:15:55 BST 2012


We  are in the process of choosing a permanent file system for our 
GPFS is one of the three candidates. Could someone help me to give 
comments or answers to the requests
listed in the following. Basically, I need your help to mark 1 or 0 in 
the GPFS column if a feature either
exists or doesnt exist, respectively. Please also add supporting 
comments if a feature has
additional info, e.g., 100PB single namespace file system supported, etc.
I answered some of them which I have tested, or got the information 
from  google or manuals.

User-Visible Features:

1. Allows a single namespace (UNIX path) of at least 10s of petabytes in 
     (My answer: Current tested: 4PB)

2. Large number of files supported (specify number) per namespace.
     (My answer: 9*10**9)

3. Supports POSIX-like mount points (i.e., looks like NFS)
     (My answer:      1)

4. File system supports file level access control lists (ACLs)
     (My answer:      1)

5. File system supports directory level ACLs, e.g., like AFS.
     (My answer:      1)

6. Disk quotas that users can query.
     (My answer:      1)

7. Disk quotas based on UID
     (My answer:      1)

8. Disk quotas based on GID
      (My answer:     1)

9. Disk quotas based on directory.

10. User-accessible snapshots

Groupadmin-Visible Features

1. Group access (capabilities) similar to AFS pts groups.
     (My answer:    1)

2. Group access administration (create/delete/modify) that can be 
delegated to the groups themselves.
     (My answer:    1)

3. High limit (1000s) on the number of users per group

4. High limit (100s) on the number of groups a user can belong to.
     (My answer:   1)

5. Nesting groups within groups is permitted.

6. Groups are equal partners with users in terms of access control lists.

7. Group managers can adjust disk quotas

8. Group managers can create/delete/modify user spaces.

9. Group managers can create/delete/modify group spaces.

Sysadmin-Visible Features

1. Namespace is expandable and shrinkable without file system downtime.
     (My answer:    1)

2. Supports storage tiering (e.g., SSD, SAS, SATA, tape, grid, cloud) 
via some type of filtering, without manual user intervention (Data 
life-cycle management)

3. User can provide manual "hints" on where to place files based on 
usage requirements.

4. Allows resource-configurable logical relocation or actual migration 
of data without user downtime (Hardware life-cycle 

5. Product has been shipping in production for a minimum of 2 years, 
nice to have at least 5 years. Must be comfortable with the track record.
     (My answer:  1 )

6. Product has at least two commercial companies providing support.

7. Distributed metadata (or equivalent) to remove obvious file system 
     (My Answer:   1)

8. File system supports data integrity checking (e.g., ZFS checksumming)
     (My answer:    1)

9. Customized levels of data redundancy at the 
file/subdirectory/partition layer, based on user requirements. 
Replication. Load-balancing.

10. Management software fully spoorts command line interface (CLI)

10. Management software supports a graphical user interface (GUI)

11. Must run on non-proprietary x86/x64 hardware (Note: this might 
eliminate some proprietary solutions that meet every other requirement.)

12. Software provides tools to measure performance and monitor problems.
      (My answer: 1)

13. Robust and reliable: file system must recover gracefully from an 
unscheduled power outage, and not take forever for fsck.

14. Client code must support RHEL.
      (My answer:  1)

15. Client code must support RHEL compatible OS.
      (My answer:  1)

16. Client code must support Linux.
      (My answer:  1)

17. Client code must support Windows.
      (My answer:  1)

18. Affordable

19. Value for the money.

20. Provides native accounting information to support a storage service 

21. Ability to change file owner throughout file system (generalized 
ability to implement metadata changes)

22. Allows discrete resource allocation in case groups want physical 
resource separation, yet still allows central management.
       Resource allocation might control bandwidth, LUNx, CPU, 
user/subdir/filesystem quotas, etc.

23. Built-in file system compression option

24. Built-in file-level replication option

25. Built-in file system deduplication option

26. Built-in file system encryption option

27. Support VM image movement among storage servers, including moving 
entire jobs (hypervisor requirement)

28. Security/authentication of local user to allow access (something 
stronger than host-based access)

29. WAN-based file system (e.g., for disaster recover site)

30. Must be able to access filesystem via NFSv3
       (My answer:    1)

31. Can perform OPTIONAL file system rebalancing when adding new storage.

32. Protection from accidental, large scale deletions

33. Ability to transfer snapshots among hosts.

34. Ability to promote snapshot to read/write partition

35. Consideration given to number of metadata servers required to 
support overall service, and how that affects HA, i.e.,
      must be able to support HA on a per namespace basis . (How many MD 
servers would we need to keep file service running?)

36. Consideration given to backup and restore capabilities and 
compatible hardware/software products. Look at timeframe requirements.
       (What backup solutions does it recommend?)

37. Need to specify how any given file system is not POSIX-compliant so 
we understand it. Make this info available to users.
       (What are its POSIX shortcomings?)

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