IBM DS8880 Family
With general availability since December 2015, the new IBM DS8880 family introduces business-critical, hybrid data systems that span a wide range of price points. It includes two high-performance models (DS8884 Model 980 with its associated DS8884 Expansion Unit Model 98B, and DS8886 Model 981 with its associated DS8886 Expansion Unit Model 98E). Each model represents the most recent in this series of high-performance, high-capacity,flexible, and resilient storage systems, which are intended to address the needs of the most demanding clients. The machines come with a new R8.0 code release (88.xx bundle), which does not run on older DS8000 generations.
Warranty is available between one and four years (new models are: 2831–2834).
DS8880 also boasts world-class high availability and special integration with z Systems to deliver extraordinary value, and enables both hybrid-flash and traditional disk configuration options.
Special new features are for instance:
- The processor complexes are now based on POWER8. POWER8 has now 4.2 million transistors per core (=doubled to previous POWER7+ offerings). The POWER processor technology allows up to 8 simultaneous threads per core, with 4 initially enabled, being superior to any x86 technology on the market.
- Cache can be expanded up to 2 TB now.
- The rack has been reduced in footprint. While the DS8870 came with 33″ racks, the new models now come with much smaller 19″ racks, so footprint reduced by up to 30%.
- The rack power system has been redesigned and repackaged, to fit into the 19-inch rack. The repackaged power system provides 8 kW and is single-phase power only, with input voltages between 200 V and 240 V.
- The smaller DS8884 model supports up to dual-6-core processor complexes, up to 256 GB of system memory, 64 host adapter ports, 4 HPFE (High-Performance Flash Enclosures), and up to 768 disk drives. It is based on 2U-high IBM Power servers. The performance of this smaller model is already around equivalent to that of the latest 2nd-generation DS8870 fully-equipped 16-way model.
- The bigger DS8886 model is based on 4U-high POWER8 servers. It supports up to dual-24-core processor complexes, up to 2 TB system memory, 128 host adapter ports, 8 HPFE flash enclosures, and up to 1536 disk drives.
- The licencing model has changed. Licencing now comes in three groups (Base, CopyServices CS, z-synergyServices zsS), with each group combining all the relevant sublicences in one package, and for CS even allowing sub-capacity licencing in case the customer permits a steady IP connection to IBM. Things which came separate before like the I/O Priority Manager QoS licence, are now coming already included with the Base licence package.
- The HMC has changed: Instead of the former ThinkPads, we're now using US-made "Mini PCs", and these are located now both at the bottom of the Base frame.
- New I/O bay interconnect: The I/O enclosure pairs are PCIe Gen3 capable. The new I/O enclosure supports 6 PCIe adapter slots and two additional direct attached, High-Performance Flash Enclosure ports. The I/O enclosure connects to the POWER8 servers by two x8 PCIe Gen3 cables. Internal transfer rate to each I/O bay is four times faster compared to the prior model.
- The DS8884 model and frames come with 40U high racks. The DS8886 rack ships as a 40U configuration that can be expanded to 46U at installation, or on later upgrades.
- The storage systems integrate into software like Copy Services Manager, OpenStack, REST API, PowerVC or the IBM Cloud Manager.
- The drive selection contains 2.5″ enterprise SAS drives in 15K and 10K rpm, 3.5″ nearline SAS drives in 7200 rpm, 2.5″ flash drives with capacities between 200 GB and 1.6 TB, and 1.8″ HPFE flash cards with currently 400 GB.
- A model upgrade from DS8870 to DS8886 is available, reusing many of the parts. A model upgrade from DS8884 to DS8886 is not possible.
As the reduced input voltage (single-phase, e.g. 230 V) comes with higher currents, officially the machine needs 40 A wall breakers with this, when wanting to upgrade all configurations to their maximum at some time. And 40 A means that due to available IEC/EN 60309 standards, 63 A plugs would be the next ones to be used.
However, we got some feedback from clients who had difficulties to go with wall breakers larger than 32 A, and the wire gauges which go along with the 40 A. For such clients a process exists under which we check the configuration if we can allow it to be attached to 220–240 V environments with wall breakers up to 32 A only, and respective 230 V/32 A plugs/CEE connectors, and wire gauges. We've found a fairly wide range of configurations that go with this, just need to open RPQ #8S1481 to have your configuration checked, and tick the new #0102 feature which is now available in e-Config: http://www.ibm.com/common/ssi/ShowDoc.wss?docURL=/common/ssi/rep_sm/1/877/ENUS2834-_h01/index.html
– if <32A attachment is needed for any client environment.
Find more information in the DS8880 Product Guide http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/redpapers/pdfs/redp5275.pdf,
or the DS8880 Architecture and Implementation Redbook draft http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/redpieces/pdfs/sg248323.pdf.