I first chatted with Chuck Keith (Dir of Infrastructure, Supreme Lending) a couple years ago at VMworld. They had a custom-built loan application that sat on MS-SQL that was the most mission critical application to the business. The loan officers relied on it daily to do their jobs effectively. One problem – it was slow.
“Our common workloads are supported by our older Dell Compellent arrays, but all of our MS-SQL workloads are supported by newer Nimble storage arrays. As great as Nimble performs from a ‘cost per performance’ standpoint, it simply wasn’t enough with the growth of data and users we had been experiencing. Loan officers were complaining about slow queries taking five to ten minutes to run reports, and up to five seconds to advance from screen to screen within the loan origination system,” said Chuck Keith, Director of Infrastructure, Supreme Lending.
“At the time, we thought our only solution was to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars into new all-flash arrays to get the performance we needed. No matter how well your business is doing, no one wants to have a million-dollar conversation that’s not in budget. We needed to see how we could maximize performance on the hardware we already had, which led to a conversation with Condusiv,” said Keith.
“We examined a couple server-side caching players including Pernix Data and Infinio, but since Condusiv’s V-locity® I/O reduction software does so much more than server-side caching, its proof of concept came out the clear winner on both performance and price. And we didn’t have to add any additional hardware, since we already had a good amount of DRAM,” said Keith.
Keith continued, “Right off the bat, MS-SQL reporting that used to take five to ten minutes dropped to 30 seconds with V-locity, and all user complaints about sluggishness disappeared. We couldn’t believe it,” said Keith. Moreover, the typical 30-second load times to log into the software package dropped to ten seconds – a 3X improvement. The five-second wait to advance from screen to screen also disappeared, so that users could load each screen almost instantly.
“Not only did V-locity solve our ‘death by a thousand cuts’ issue of excessively small, tiny writes and reads from Windows VMs, but their DRAM caching engine provided huge gains on top of that by offloading a good percentage of hot reads from our underlying Nimble hybrid storage. It made a huge difference and gave back a big chunk of IOPS to our Nimble storage to be used for other things. We saved hundreds of thousands of dollars by being able to squeeze significantly more performance from the hardware stack we already have.” said Keith.
To read the full story on how V-locity I/O reduction software boosted their MS-SQL performance, read here: Supreme Lending Case Study