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IBM Solid State Drives SSD prices for iSeries, VIOS and Power AIX systems have dropped so much over the years, it is a no brainer decision to replace those old HDDs. Using IBM SSD with eMLC will give your applications, queries and other frequently and randomly accessed DB2 data a cheap performance boost. Regardless of your IBM Power system generation, the cost of replacing existing hard disk drives with refurbished SSDs is a fraction of what you originally paid for your installed HDDs. Data you will not likely want to move to solid state drives include sequentially read and rarely accessed data. Refurbished solid state drives are eligible for IBM maintenance contracts, so there is no need to worry about support from IBM.

ibm ssd solid state drive emlc4Prices for refurbished IBM SSDs can be up to 90% less than IBM list price. IBM’s 3rd generation enterprise solid state drives provide excellent price comparisons, like the ES0D 387GB SSD SFF-2 with eMLC. At the moment, the ES0D SSD is selling for $500 in refurbished condition with warranty, compared to IBM list price of $3,588. The ES0D Solid State Drive uses IBM’s third generation eMLC technology offering significant performance advantages, providing up to 2X more IOPS capacity and 40% better latency than the previous eMLC SSD generation technology.

IBM’s eMLC Solid State Drives are what IBM now refers to as Enterprise SSDs, and should not to be confused with mainstream (read intensive) SSDs. IBM's 2nd generation eMLC SSDs were also designed to deliver great sustained performance, reliability and longevity, but the enhancements with the 3rd generation eMLC Solid State Drives can provide 24x7x365 usage for 5 years, even while running write-intensive workloads. Actual customer workloads will never reach the usage levels IBM used to test their SSDs, so the life span of the SSD should be significantly much greater for every customer.

The newer 4th generation eMLC4 Solid State Drives for IBM Power9, Power8 and Power7 systems also have a great price to performance ROI. A couple good eMLC4 SSD price comparisons are the ES8N and ES8R Solid State Drives. The ES8N 387GB SFF-3 SSD 4k eMLC4 is currently sold for about 80% off list price for roughly $450 and the ES8R 775GB SFF-3 SSD 4k eMLC4 is currently sold for less than 50% of list price.

The IBM eMLC4 enterprise SSDs also offer a 1.55 TB SSD, providing twice the maximum capacity of previous eMLC Solid State Drives. Using larger capacity SSD drives, means less SAS adapters. It is important to note, random read-only IOPS performance is only slightly better on eMLC4 SSD compared to the previous generation. However, random write-only eMLC4 IOPS performance is very much worth the investment, as it has increased significantly.

IBM eMLC4 SSDs are supported in Power9 and Power8 system units (SFF-3) and in EXP24S I/O drawers 5887 attached to Power9, Power8 and Power7 servers (SFF-2).  Another valuable note about eMLC4 SSD’s, is that they provide SAS 6 Gbps throughput, and capable of supporting 12 Gbps when future SAS adapters come to market.

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