HDD Cluster Size and SQL Server Performance

During my #sqlweek I was asked few times what HDD parameters (sector or cluster sizes) would be better for SQL Server installations. There’s a good article on Technet that explains Windows disk parameters in details, so I don’t need to retell it. Just read the article Disk Partition Alignment Best Practices for SQL Server thoroughly. The main points discussed are partition alignment, stripe unit size and file allocation unit size (cluster size).

As for the HDD cluster size, it is said that “an appropriate value for most installations should be 65,536 bytes (that is, 64 KB) for partitions on which SQL Server data or log files reside. In many cases, this is the same size for Analysis Services data or log files, but there are times where 32 KB provides better performance. To determine the right size, you will need to do performance testing with your workload comparing the two different block sizes.”

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