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Input/Output Operations per Second (IOPS)

Definition - What does Input/Output Operations per Second (IOPS) mean?

Input/output operations per second (IOPS) is the measure of how many input/output operations a storage device can complete within one second. It is a standard performance benchmark for hard drives, solid state drives, flash drives and even network attached storage (NAS) devices. Although IOPS is a common performance indicator, performance measures for the same device can vary from system to system based on other factors.

Techopedia explains Input/Output Operations per Second (IOPS)

The most common performance characteristics that are measured are random and sequential operations. Sequential operations are generally related to access of stored operations in a contiguous way, usually associated with operations concerning large file sizes. Random operations, on the other hand, access locations in the storage device in a non-contiguous manner, which is related to small file sizes that are dispersed all over the storage medium.

There are the different characteristics that IOPS measures:

  • Sequential Write IOPS: The average of the number of sequential write I/O operations that occur per second
  • Sequential Read IOPS: The average of the number of sequential read I/O operations that occur per second
  • Random Write IOPS: The average of the number of random write I/O operations that occur per second
  • Random Read IOPS: The average of the number of random read I/O operations that occur per second
  • Total IOPS: The total IOPS when performing mixed read and write operations

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