Updates to this article below.
Recently, I managed to temporarily get 2 SuperServer 5028D-TN4T loaners. Fired up Windows 10 on one of them, with BIOS 1.0b set to UEFI mode.
I haven't gone through bootability testing yet, this is just a secondary drive for this first, quick look.
I just ran ATTO Disk Benchmark from Windows 10, results below. Repeated runs give consistent results.
Compare this to my recent test of the Samsung SM951 M.2 SSD a couple of days ago. They're very different animals. Results pictured below.
I've had some issues with getting the fully recognized (accelerated) in VMware ESXi 6.0 Update 1, but that's for another day.
It's "another day" now, and yes, I'm getting very close to full native speeds on VMware ESXi 6.0 Update 1 now, now that I'm using the Intel 18.104.22.1682 driver, check it out!
The Solid State Drive Toolbox GUI interface doesn't let you upgrade the firmware on your 750 Series, with the Firmware Update button greyed out.
To get to the latest 8EV10171 firmware level, I just installed the Intel Solid-State Drive Data Center Tool and ran the following 2 commands:
isdct show -intelssd
this let me determine that of the several SSDs installed, the 750 Series NVMe SSD is drive 6, thus, the firmware upgrade command:
isdct load -intelssd 6
actually performed the firmware upgrade, took about 10 seconds, then I powered off and back on again, although a simple reboot should have been sufficient.
Also, you can't do Secure Erase from Intel Solid-State Drive Toolbox under Windows 10.
Interesting bit of information about the Microsoft NVMe driver, over at FUTUREMARK:
Short answer: because NVMe drivers behave differently than SATA/AHCI drivers. PCMark 8 benchmarks all storage devices the same way and NVMe is not any different.
Long answer: New NVMe storage devices run on a completely new software stack. Traditional SATA drivers are not used and instead there's a new driver in Windows that can be either implemented by the device manufacturer or it can be the standard NVMe driver provided by Microsoft. What is different from old software stack, is that there's a command called FUA (force unit access) that is now implemented in Microsoft's driver so that all write operations are enforced to be written not only on a cache but on the non-volatile media. This is different from how AHCI was implemented and will lead to reduced performance. The benefit of the implementation with Microsoft NVMe driver is that it keeps your data safe in case of power outage or system crash.
The storage performance (and as a side result also PCMark 8 Storage score) may be improved by installing device drivers provided by the device manufacturer. For example, Intel provides drivers for Intel 750 SSD that improve the performance. Another option is to tweak storage device policies in Windows. Futuremark does not recommend modifying Windows cache policies on a production system since it can lead to data loss during a power failure or a system crash.
PCMark 8 never optimises or modifies the PC being benchmarked. Testing is done on the system as it is in order to reflect the real application performance an end user would observe when using the PC. Applications do not detect the storage device and change their behaviour according to device and neither should a benchmark do.
- Home Server Show Meetup 2015 - My experience and my Superserver presentation