Having a high-level view of storage performance is good for a quick overview or understanding of how things are operating. In order to take your monitoring to the next level, having access to details is critical. In my previous post, I reviewed storage dashboards and performance data points that SolarWinds Storage Resource Monitor provides. Below I will cover performance monitoring at the array, storage pool, and LUN/Volume level.
The "Array Details" screen is usually the first stop when looking at your storage performance. This is a great starting point for when you want to get a look at the overall performance for a storage array. Having this information is ideal when you want to compare the expected performance of an array versus how the array is actually performing. In addition, you can get an understanding of read/write performance ratios in relation to the overall performance.
The “Block Storage” and “File Storage” tabs allow you to quickly get into the underlying performance information for the device’s storage pools and LUNS/Volumes. Each of these tabs will show you latency summaries and performance summaries for the individual resources. At-a-glance, this will let you see if you have any latency issues at the LUN/Volume level and what your highest performing LUN/volumes are by IOPS, throughput, or latency.
"Storage Pool Details” provide storage administrators the ability to understand performance at a pool/RAID level. Depending on how storage resources are assigned out to applications, this can provide the ability to understand performance for similar applications. An example would be a VM farm is created for different instances of the same application. Having the applications tied to the same pool of storage with different LUNs is ideal so that you have the same pattern of read/write ratio and not running into instances where different read/write ratios are involved. This can cause application performance problems if the disk is having to store random data in one instance and then sequential the next.
The "LUN & Volume Details" screen is where you can see performance at the lowest level. This is where you can tie application performance directly to the assigned storage. In addition, this is where the power of Storage Resource Monitor really comes into play. Not only can you see the individual LUN performance, you can also see it in relation to other LUNs in the same storage pool. Did a LUN in the same pool spike performance? Are all the LUNs in the same pool experiencing high latency? These are a couple of questions the LUN Details screen can help answer.
As you can see, the more in-depth you go with Storage Resource Monitor, the more information and comparisons become available. All of the information presented is critical to understanding your storage performance and how it affects your overall environment. In my next post, I will cover thresholds & alerting and how with the right settings & planning you can make Storage Resource Monitor not just an important monitoring tool, but a critical one.
How have you used the details screens to monitor and troubleshoot your storage performance?