Nick Fisk

Nick Fisk

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Nick has been working in IT for 15 years mainly around Storage, Virtualisation and Networking.
He is currently working at System Professional as a Cloud Architect, which includes the design and operation of the hosted services, of which some run on Ceph.

He started with Ceph in 2012, purely for testing and experimenting on new technologies. After cache tiering was implemented, a POC for using Ceph to store replica’s of VMware VM’s via Veeam was run. This had the requirement of needing to be able to provide cheap bulk storage, but offer flash style performance if needed. This was done via presenting RBD’s via NFS into ESXi. This was put into production in 2014. Initially a number of problems were experienced with the cache tiering, some of which were fixed by Nick's contributions in the ceph performance meetings.

Since the initial implementation several investigations have been undertaken into tuning write latency to the point where they had gotten it a lot lower than what was previously thought possible. Most of these tuning turned out to be around hardware and OS configuration. He has also worked with Ceph developers in diagnosing bugs and adding general feature enhancements over time.

In 2016 following further investigations a second Ceph cluster was deployed to provide a storage backend for our Veeam Cloud Connect service. This was also the result of further investigations into hardware requirements of Ceph, such as required Mhz per IO, and resulted in building custom specific servers for the OSD nodes. This enabled to obtain high performance but also pushed the cost per GB as low as possible. This is also where the librados utility was created to enable us to take consistent backups of RBD.

Nick is currently testing the latest development releases and feeding back to the developers, as we are very keen on implementing bluestore + erasure coding with RBD’s when possible, to lower our opex/capex costs. Throughout the last 4 years, Nick has been an active member of the mailing list helping and advising other ceph users where possible.

Books from Nick Fisk