Fujitsu Eternus DX90 S2 review

Fujitsu's new DX90 S2 storage array claims to be much faster and more expandable than previous Eternus models. In this exclusive review, Dave Mitchell finds out just how fast it really is and whether it's good value or not.

To test raw performance we used the Iometer utility configured with four disk workers, a 64KB transfer request size and ten outstanding I/Os. For the RAID-5 array we saw a superb raw read throughput of 783MB/s for one server and a cumulative 1565MB/s for both servers showing no contention for resources was occurring.

Our review system came with an impressive storage package which included four 200GB SSDs and twelve 300GB SAS disks per chass

Our review system came with an impressive storage package which included four 200GB SSDs and twelve 300GB SAS disks per chass

One can mix and match different types of interface modules in the same RAID controller.

We reran these tests on the SSD array and saw virtually identical speeds. However, using ten outstanding I/Os equates to light disk usage so we upped the pressure by changing this Iometer value to 256 to simulate very heavy usage.

Running the tests again on the RAID 5 array saw Iometer report a lower read throughput of 692MB/s for one server and a cumulative 1360MB/s for both servers. Moving over to the SSD array saw read speeds almost unchanged with one server returning 775MB/s which increased to 1560MB/s with both servers in the mix.

Along with excellent performance, the Eternus DX90 S2 is also very good value. Comparing the review system's specification with IBM's StorWize v7000 shows Fujitsu is offering a better package for a lot less cash and made all the more impressive as it includes eight 200GB Stec SSDs.

We found the DX90 S2 easy to deploy with high levels of redundancy and excellent expansion potential. Fujitsu will also be implementing automated data tiering towards the end of this year, so it will be able to dynamically move data between SSD and HDD storage based on usage patterns.

So what's our verdict?


The Eternus DX90 S2 delivers on its promises as it is a highly expandable and, as our lab tests show, extremely fast storage array. The ability to mix different data interfaces on each controller makes it very versatile and the optional thin provisioning is a much needed feature. It's also good value as the price for our review system includes eight 200GB high-performance SSDs.

Two controller chassis each with the following specification: Chassis: 2U rack with 24 SFF hot-swap drive bays Storage: 4 x 200GB Stec ZeusIOPS SSDs, 12 x 300GB Seagate SAS 2 SSF hard disks RAID: 2 x hot-swap controllers with 8GB DDR3 cache Array support: RAID 0, 1, 10, 5, 6, 50, JBOD, hot-swap, global hot-spare Interface ports: 2 x 8Gbps FC ports per controller (max 4) Network: 1 x Gigabit Ethernet management port per controller Other: 1 x SAS expansion port per controller Power: 2 x hot-plug supplies Management: Web browser Software: Fujitsu SF Express

Dave Mitchell

Dave is an IT consultant and freelance journalist specialising in hands-on reviews of computer networking products covering all market sectors from small businesses to enterprises. Founder of Binary Testing Ltd – the UK’s premier independent network testing laboratory - Dave has over 45 years of experience in the IT industry.

Dave has produced many thousands of in-depth business networking product reviews from his lab which have been reproduced globally. Writing for ITPro and its sister title, PC Pro, he covers all areas of business IT infrastructure, including servers, storage, network security, data protection, cloud, infrastructure and services.