Western Digital and Percona improve MySQL performance by factor of three

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During its own Flash Perspective Event, Western Digital has just announced a partnership with Percona. This consists of linking Percona’s open-source MySQL database and Western Digital’s Zoned Storage technology. This should yield significant performance gains under the belt.

The idea behind the partnership is fairly obvious. Organizations are going to be working with more and more data applications that are also putting more and more demands on the storage they use. That’s why most modern databases are increasingly running on NVMe SSDs. Especially if you as an organization are active in business where speed is crucial. Think especially of services where end users should not experience any delay, such as e-commerce.

Zoned Storage

For its partnership with Percona, Western Digital has its sights set on the Ultrastar DC ZN540 NVMe ZNS SSD in particular. This SSD is part of what Western Digital itself calls the Zoned Storage initiative. Zoned Storage is a more efficient way of addressing and using storage. The idea is that the application decides where the data goes. With conventional storage, the disk determines that.

Zoned storage has several advantages, according to Western Digital. First, virtually no over-provisioning needs to be done. This means that a significantly larger portion of the capacity is available. In addition, there is also less cleaning up to do (garbage collection), so the controller responds faster. The disk will also last longer, because data does not have to be continuously rewritten. Finally, Zoned Storage has significantly lower DRAM requirements, according to Western Digital, so the price can come down.

Better performance

The combination of Percona MySQL Server and Western Digital Zoned Storage in the form of the Ultrastar DC ZN540 NVMe ZNS SSD delivers solid performance gains, according to Western Digital. For example, during its own tests, Western Digital measured an increase of 3 times the number of transactions per second, compared to a conventional SSD with an identical workload. The transactions logically have a lower latency, which ensures that the cloud service offered to end-customers is more responsive. Furthermore, the Zoned Storage SSD also delivers a 25 percent higher density and can endure 3.5 drive writes a day without sacrificing performance.

Percona itself will provide the necessary support. This includes performance tuning and consultancy on the optimal deployment of Percona MySQL Server in combination with Western Digital disks. The promise from both parties is that support will be available twenty-four hours a day.

The combination of Percona MySQL and Western Digital ZNS SSDs will become available in the second half of this year.