RAID6 testing the Linux Enterprise iSCSI Target Software…

This time we got a Software RAID6 Volume with 6 drives which made a volume size of 1953584325 sectors = 953899 Megabyte. This Volume is exported with the iSCSI Enterprise Target Software for Linux.

Aparently it’s a bit faster than the Software RAID5 – which is quite interesting because we expected it to be much slower (more work for the CPU).

Interface-Transferrate with a blocksize of 128 sectors at 0.0 percent of the capacity:

sequential read rate medium (unthrottled): 63045 Kilobyte/s
sequential read rate Read-Ahead (Latency 1.15 ms): 66480 Kilobyte/s
repeatedly sequential read (“coretest”): 54418 Kilobyte/s

permanent transfer rate: (blocksize: 128 sectors):

  • Average: 51447.9 Kilobyte/s
  • Minimum: 49329.7 Kilobyte/s
  • Maximum: 71003.1 Kilobyte/s


  • Average: 11671.8 Kilobyte/s
  • Minimum: 10575.1 Kilobyte/s
  • Maximum: 12278.3 Kilobyte/s

access time read:

  • Average: 14.47 ms
  • Minimum: 0.21 ms
  • Maximum: 28.01 ms

access time write:

  • Average: 37.96 ms
  • Minimum: 9.89 ms
  • Maximum: 100.16 ms

access time read (<504 MByte):

  • Average: 6.21 ms
  • Minimum: 0.12 ms
  • Maximum: 19.65 ms

access time write (<504 MByte):

  • Average: 15.16 ms
  • Minimum: 0.38 ms
  • Maximum: 33.09 ms

we also don’t know what the peaks are…they just show up even after several tests…

a windows iSCSI target software: Stringbeansoftware WinTarget 2.0

We recently tested Stringbeangsoftwares WinTarget Version 2.0. It’s a software implementation of an iSCSI Target with a huge feature set.

“WinTarget Standard Edition provides the core SAN functionality required to centralize, consolidate, and manage storage centrally. The Standard Edition provides this core functionality on an economical basis for those customers that do not need, or are not ready to implement more advanced data management and protection solutions.”

We tested the Standard Edition Evaluation Version 2.0 since we do not need the other features at the moment (like DataView, Snapshot,…).

As usual first the testing setup:

We got 6x 250 GByte Harddisks on 2 Promise FastTrack 150TX4 Controllers. All this on an Intel Serverboard with an 3 Ghz P4 and 2 Gb of RAM. As the client we used the same machine as in all other tests.

14 days should be enough

When you installed it and started it the first time you’ll have something like that:

The Main-Screen of WinTarget 2.0 is divided into the information pane on the right and the section tree on the left side of the window.

WinTarget divides it’s structure into Hosts and Devices. The Snapshot Feature was not tested/used.

We started by creating a new Host:


entering the host name and description

we have to specify which Client IP can access this host…


After creating the host we can create the iSCSI Target Volumes (called “Disks” in WinTarget 2.0):

With WinTarget you can use an actually existing volume or a file to create a iSCSI Target.

We choose the RAID…


a descriptive name…

to which host does the belong to?


Attention: All Data will be deleted from the volume…(we even didn’t have to format it in the beginning…)

there it is…

and it looks good ;)

There’s a snapshot feature in WinTarget that we just didn’t test due to limited testing time.

Now everything is setup. That’s it. ;) Just that few steps. We can now configure the iSCSI Client:

by entering the IP and Port…

selecting the exported iSCSI Target Volume…

and there it is on the client machine.


in the WinTarget environment it does look a bit different afterwards…

So. That’s it for the configuration. Since we had limited time we could not make a full benchmark of the device. It just took too long since it’s not as fast as expected.

We got around 30 to 40 Megabyte per second reading speed and not more than 7 Megabyte for writing. That’s simply horrible.

We therefore cannot recommand this software combination for our hardware configuration – maybe it’ll be faster with another hardware but as you know: we don’t have the time to test that.