Linstor world record 14,8 million

IOPS World Record Broken – LINBIT Tops 14.8 million IOPS

In a performance test LINBIT measured 14.8 million IOPS on a 12 node cluster built from standard off-the-shelf Intel servers. This is the highest storage performance reached by a hyper-converged system on the market, for this hardware basis. Even a small LINBIT storage system can provide millions of IOPS at latencies of a fraction of a millisecond. For real-world applications, these figures correspond to outstanding application performance.

Test setup

LINBIT chose this setup because our competitors have published test results from equivalent systems. So it is easy to compare the strengths of each software offering with fair conditions and the same environment. We worked hard to get the most of the system and made it! Microsoft managed to reach 13.7 million IOPS, and Storpool marginally topped that with 13.8 million IOPS. We reached 14.8 million remote read IOPS – a significant jump of 7.2%! “Those performance numbers mark a milestone in the development of our software. The results prove we speed up High Availability at a large scale”, says CEO Philipp Reisner. The numbers would scale up even further with a larger setup.

Linstor world record 14,8 million


These exciting results are for 3-way synchronous replication using DRBD. The test cluster was provided through the Intel®️ Data Center Builders program. It consists of 12 servers, each running 8 instances of the benchmark, making a total of 96 instances. The setup is hyper-converged, meaning that the same servers are used to run the benchmark and to provide the underlying storage.


Linstor world record 14,8 million server


For some benchmarks, one of the storage replicas is a local replica on the same node as the benchmark workload itself. This is a particularly effective configuration for DRBD.

DRBD provides a standard Linux block device, so it can be used directly from the host, from a container, or from a virtual machine. For these benchmarks, the workload runs in a container, demonstrating the suitability of LINBIT’s SDS solution, which consists of DRBD and LINSTOR, for use with Kubernetes.

IOPS and bandwidth results are the totals from all 96 workload instances. Latency results are averaged.

Let’s look into the details!

Top performance with DRBD

5.0 million synchronously replicated write IOPS

This was achieved with a 4K random write benchmark with an IO depth of 64 for each workload. The setup uses Intel® Optane™ DC Persistent Memory to store the DRBD metadata. The writes are 3-way replicated with one local replica and two remote replicas. This means that the backing storage devices are writing at a total rate of 15 million IOPS.

85μs synchronously replicated write latency

This was achieved with a 4K random write benchmark with serial IO. That is, an IO depth of 1. This means that the writes were persisted to all 3 replicas within an average time of only 85μs. DRBD attained this level of performance both when one of the replicas was local and when all were remote. The setup also uses Intel® Optane™ DC Persistent Memory to store metadata.

14.8 million remote read IOPS

This was achieved with a 4K random read benchmark with an IO depth of 64. This corresponds to 80% of the total theoretical network bandwidth of 75GB/s. This result was reproduced without any usage of persistent memory so that the value can be compared with those from our competitors.

10.6 million IOPS with 70/30 mixed read/write

Representing a more typical real-world scenario, this benchmark consists of 70% reads and 30% writes and used an IO depth of 64. One of the 3 replicas was local.


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Benefits of persistent memory

DRBD is optimized for persistent memory. When the DRBD metadata is stored on an NVDIMM, write performance is improved.

When the metadata is stored on the backing storage SSD with the data, DRBD can process 4.5 million write IOPS. This increases to 5.0 million when the metadata is stored on Intel® Optane™ DC Persistent Memory instead, an improvement of 10%.

Moving the metadata onto persistent memory has a particularly pronounced effect on the write latency. This metric plummets from 113μs to 85μs with this configuration change. That is, the average write is 25% faster.

Detailed results

Below are the full results for DRBD running on the 12 servers with a total of 96 benchmark workloads.

Benchmark name Without local replica With local replica
Random read

(higher is better)

14,800,000 IOPS 22,100,000 IOPS
Random read/write 70/30

(higher is better)

8,610,000 IOPS 10,600,000 IOPS
Random write

(higher is better)

4,370,000 IOPS 5,000,000 IOPS
Sequential read

(higher is better)

64300 MB/s 111000 MB/s
Sequential write

(higher is better)

20700 MB/s 23200 MB/s
Read latency

(lower is better)

129 μs 82 μs
Write latency

(lower is better)

85 μs 84 μs

The IOPS and MB/s values have been rounded down to 3 significant figures.

All volumes are 500GiB in size, giving a total active set of 48,000GiB and consuming a total of 144,000GiB of the underlying storage. The workloads are generated using the fio tool with the following parameters:

Benchmark type Block size IO depth Workload instances Total active IOs
Random 4K 64 96 6144
Sequential 128K 16 96 1536
Latency 4K 1 96 96

Quality controls

In order to ensure that the results are reliable, the following controls were applied:

  • The entire dataset was written after allocating the volumes, but before running the tests. This prevents artificially fast reads of unallocated blocks. When the backing device driver or firmware recognizes that an unallocated block is being read, it may simply return zeros without reading from the physical medium.
  • The benchmark uses direct IO to bypass the operating system cache and the working set was too large to be cached in memory in any case.
  • The tests were each run for 10 minutes. The metrics stabilized within a small proportion of this time.
  • The measurements were provided by the benchmarking tool itself, rather than being taken from a lower level such as the DRBD statistics. This ensures that the performance corresponds to that which a real application would experience.
  • The random pattern used for the benchmark used a random seed to avoid any bias due to the same blocks being chosen by subsequent test runs.

Software stack

The following key software components were used for these benchmarks:

  • Distribution: CentOS 8.0.1905
  • Kernel: Linux 4.18.0-80.11.2.el8_0.x86_64
  • LVM from distribution kernel
  • DRBD 9.0.21-1
  • Docker 19.03.5
  • Fio 3.7


In this text and at LINBIT, in general, we use the expression 2 replicas to indicate that the data is stored on 2 storage devices. For these tests, there are 3 replicas, meaning that the data is stored on 3 storage devices.

In other contexts, the expression 2 replicas might mean one original plus 2 replicas. That would mean that data would be stored on 3 storage devices.

Test infrastructure

These results were obtained on a cluster of 12 servers made available as part of the Intel® Data Center Builders program. Each server was equipped with the following configuration:

  • Processor: 2x Intel® Xeon Platinum 8280L CPU
  • Memory: 384GiB DDR4 DRAM
  • Persistent memory: 4x 512GB Intel® Optane™ DC Persistent Memory
  • Storage: At least 4x Intel® SSD DC P4510 of at least 4TB
  • Network: Intel® Ethernet Network Adapter XXV710 with dual 25GbE ports

The servers were all connected in a simple star topology with a 25Gb switch.


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Speed is of the essence

Storage has often been a bottleneck in modern IT environments. The two requirements speed and high availability have always been in competition. If you aim for maximum speed, the quality of the high availability tends to suffer and vice versa. But with this performance test we demonstrate the best-of-breed open source software-defined storage solution. A replicated storage system that combines high availability and the performance of local NVMe drives is now possible.

This technology enables any public and private cloud builder to deliver high performance for their applications, VMs and containers. If you aim to build a powerful private or public cloud, our solution meets your storage performance needs.

If you want to learn more or have any questions, do contact us at [email protected]


Joel Colledge on Linkedin
Joel Colledge
Joel is a software developer at LINBIT with a background in mathematics. A polyglot programmer, Joel enjoys working with many different languages and technologies. At LINBIT, he has been involved in the development of LINSTOR and DRBD. Originally from England, Joel is now based in Vienna, Austria.


Linbeat - band, linux

A new star is born: LIN:BEAT – The Band

LINBIT is opening up a new division to specifically address our community’s desire to turn the music up to 11! As you all know, LINBIT is famous for its DRBD, Software-Defined Storage (SDS) and Disaster Recovery (DR) solutions. In a paradigm-shifting turn of events by management, LINBIT has decided to expand into the music industry. Since there is so much business potential in playing live concerts, LINBIT has transformed five of their employees into LIN:BEAT – The Band. These concerts are of course made highly-available by utilizing LINBIT’s own DRBD software.

Linbeat - band, linux

The Band will be touring all Cloud and Linux events around the globe in 2019. Band members use self-written code to produce their unique sound design, reminiscent of drum and bass and heavily influenced by folk punk. The urge to portray all the advantages of DRBD and LINSTOR is so strong they had to send a message to the world: Their songs tell the world about the ups and downs of administrators who handle big storage clusters. LIN:BEAT offers a variety of styles in their musical oeuvre: While “LINSTOR” is a heavy-driven rock song and “Snapshots” speaks to funk-loving people, even “Disaster Recovery,” a love ballad, made it into their repertoire. Lead singer, Phil Reisner, sings sotto voce about his lost love — a RAID rack called “SDS”. Reisner told the reporters, “Administrators are such underrated people. This is sadly unfortunate. We strive to give all administrators a voice. Even if it’s a musical one!”

Crowds will be jumping up and down in excitement when LIN:BEAT comes to town! Be there and code fair!

An Excerpt of the song “My first love is DRBD” written by Phil Reisner:

My first love is DRBD,

there has never been a fee

instead it serves proudly as open source

your replication has changed the course

It’s the crucial key for Linux’s destiny

cloudfest rust

Meet us at Cloudfest in Rust, Germany!

Come and meet LINBIT at CloudFest 2019 in Europa-Park, Rust, Germany. (23rd – 29rd of March 2019)

cloudfest 2019 booth linbit

CloudFest has made a name over the last few years as one of the the best cloud-focused industry events in which to network and have a good time. This year more than 7,000 people are attending the event. Attendees will hear from leaders in the business and get the latest industry buzz. 

The speaker line-up includes names like Dr. Ye Huang, Head of Solution Architects at Alibaba, Will Pemble, CEO at Goal Boss, Bhavin Turakhia, CEO at Flock, or Brian Behlendorf, Inventor of the Apache Web server. 

VISIT us at Booth H24!

LINBIT is announcing some exciting news at Cloudfest: NVMe-oF with LINSTOR! Meaning LINSTOR can now be used as a standalone product, independent from DRBD. NVMe-oF supports Infiniband with RDMA and allows ultrafast performance, easily handling workloads for Big Data Analytics or Artificial Intelligence. Come say hello at Cloudfest! Visit us at Booth H24. 

We are looking forward to you!

Booth visitors will be rewarded with a surprise that even your family will love! 🙂 

LINBIT and OpenNebula Launch Reference Architecture for Container-Native Software Defined Storage (SDS)

VIENNANov. 8, 2018 – LINBIT, the pioneer in Linux-based Software Defined Storage (SDS) built on open source high availability, disaster recovery, and container technologies, today announced a reference architecture for SDS in collaboration with cloud platform leader OpenNebula. The architecture demonstrates how a container-native SDS solution can be deployed easily and deliver unprecedented speed and reliability. The companies have installed a powerful representative configuration in Frankfurt, Germany at a modern facility provided by e-shelter, one of the top data center operators in Europe.

LINBIT SDS is the only SDS solution that augments, rather than duplicate the storage management functionality that is already available in the Linux operating system,” said Brian HellmanLinbit COO.  “This simple but novel approach translates to a reliable feature-rich solution for large and small enterprise customers.”

Volume and configuration management is provided by LINSTOR, a software tool that serves as management console for LINBIT products, while fast and reliable data replication is delivered by DRBD, a part of the Linux kernel for nearly a decade.

“OpenNebula over LINSTOR enables a fully hyper-converged cloud with state-of-the-art orchestration and storage features, using OSS components exclusively,” said Constantino Vázquez, Engineering Manager at OpenNebula Systems. “The integration between the two couldn’t be more natural – they are a perfect fit.”

LINSTOR simplifies the management of block storage devices for Linux server clusters of any size. In addition, it is fully integrated with Kubernetes and OpenShift, which simplifies building, running, and controlling block storage.

OpenNebula is a turnkey enterprise-ready solution that includes all the features needed to provide an on-premises (private) cloud offering, and to offer public cloud services. Red Hat OpenShift is an open source container application platform based on the Kubernetes container orchestrator for enterprise application development and deployment.

The facility enable companies to test the full range of the OpenNebula and LINSTOR functionality with easy access, within minutes, and access to a pre-build configuration. Customers who are interested in running a test using the system may contact their LINBIT sales representative. For more information, please visit

LINBIT is the force behind DRBD and the de facto open standard for High Availability (HA) software for enterprise and cloud computing. The LINBIT DRBD software is deployed in millions of mission-critical environments worldwide to provide High Availability (HA), Geo Clustering for Disaster Recovery (DR), and Software Defined Storage (SDS) for OpenStack and OpenNebula based clouds.

About OpenNebula 
OpenNebula is the open-source platform of choice in the converged data centre, providing a simple, albeit flexible and powerful, cloud manager that supports traditional IT features such as fault tolerance and failover; the dynamic provisioning, elasticity and multi-tenancy of modern enterprise clouds; and connectors for external clouds. With tens of thousands of deployments, OpenNebula is parked in some of the biggest organizations. OpenNebula Systems is the company that manages the OpenNebula Project and provides enterprise-grade support services.


LINBIT USA Celebrates 10 Year Anniversary

LINBIT US is celebrating a decade of service and growth. 10 years ago, we started our journey with you from a newly established office in the pacific northwest. In that time, we have moved into new offices, grown our team 4 times in size, built some really great software, and most importantly, met, collaborated with, and served some of the most sophisticated customers along the way. Here’s a snapshot of some of the major milestones told in the present tense.

2010: Our bread and butter has always been High Availability. LINBIT HA software, DRBD, is now in the Linux mainline kernel since 2010, as of release 2.6.33. This promises to be a standout event that makes enterprise-grade HA a standard capability within Linux and puts the open source community on par with the best of proprietary systems out there.

2015: Fast forward to 2015. LINBIT is a company that is actually being talked about as the best solution for huge enterprises! Hundreds of thousands of servers depend on the replication that DRBD provides. All our customers are doing really cool work. And some of them are very well known, such as Cisco and Google. We are forming strong partnerships across North and South America– think RedHat and Suse.

New Horizon: Disaster Recovery

2016: Not only is the LINBIT HA product a success, but our new product focused on disaster recovery, DRBD Proxy, is  proving to be incredibly useful to companies who need to replicate data across distances. LINBIT is having wonderful success in providing clients peace of mind in case a disaster strikes, or perhaps a clumsy admin pulls on some cables they weren’t supposed to be pulling on! Oh, and we can’t forget our fun videos that go along with these products: LINBIT DR, LINBIT HA, and LINBIT SDS.

More in 2016: The official release of DRBD9 to the public. A huge move for enterprises looking to have multiple replicas of their data (up to 32!). Now, companies can implement software-defined storage (SDS) for creating, managing and running a cloud storage environment.

New Kid on the Block: LINSTOR

2018: Now that SDS is a feature, many clients are looking for it. LINBIT is making it even easier, and plausible, with the release of LINSTOR. With this, everything is automated. Deploying a DRBD volume has never been easier.

2018: At this point we would be remiss if we didn’t mention that LINSTOR has Flex Volume & External Provisioner drivers for Kubernetes. We now provide persistent storage to high performance containerized applications! Here is a LINSTOR demo, showing you just how quick and easy it is to deploy a DRBD cluster with 20 resources.

Now: A new guide describes  DRBD for the Microsoft Azure cloud service. We have partners and resellers who have end clients running Windows servers that need HA. One of our engineers even created a video of an NFS failover in Azure!

What else? There is almost too much to say about the past 10 years and the amount of growth and change is astonishing. However, at our core, we are the same. We believe in open source. In building software that turns the difficult into fast, robust, and easy. In our clients. In our company.

“We are grateful”

During a conversation at Red Hat Summit this year, LINBIT COO Brian Hellman was asked how long he had been at LINBIT.  “I replied ‘10 years in September.’ The gentleman was surprised; ‘That’s a long time, especially in the tech industry’.  To which he replied, ‘I love what I do and the people I work with — Not only the members of the LINBIT team, but also our customers, partners, and our extended team.  Without them we wouldn’t be here, they make it all possible and for that we are grateful.”

To whomever is reading this, wherever you are, you were part of it. You ARE part of it! So a big thank you for reading, caring, and hopefully using LINBIT HA, LINBIT DR, or LINBIT SDS. Cheers to another 10 years!

Kelsey Swan
Kelsey turns her personal passion for connecting with people into a supporting LINBIT clients. As the Accounts Manager for LINBIT USA, Kelsey engages with customers to provide them with the best experience possible. From Enterprise companies, to Mom and Pop shops, Kelsey ensures the implementation of LINBIT products goes smoothly. Doing what is best for the client is her #1 priority.

Testing SSD Drives with DRBD: Intel DC 3700 Series

Over the next few weeks we’ll be posting results from tests that we’ve run against various manufactures SSD drives; including Intel, SanDisk, and Micron, to name a few.

The first post in this series goes over our findings of the Intel DC S 3700 Series 800GB SATA SSD drives. Read more