|StorageSearch.com is about thought
leadership in the SSD market. |
The market is plowing through some
heavy design issues with DIMM wars and a widening range of segmentation
opportunities in all memories not to mention a new plot twist in DWPD with
metascale advised, life-cycle fitted, virtually hardened flash endurance. Many
reference points in the memory storage framework which were long thought to be
stable are now cracking apart like ice flows - while flurries of IP volcanoes
are spawning new islands of cinder which may be too hot to safely reach for
without a promise of cloud-hanging softly insulated boots, bridges and
A to Z - quick load
view without ads
|1" SSDs (includes BGA,
DOMs & µSSDs)
1.8" SSDs (includes
2.5" SSDs - overview
2.5" NVMe SSDs
Xpoint / Optane
11 key SSD design
2012 - changes in SSD
changes in SSD market
changes in SSD market
2015 - month by
|About the publisher
- founded 1991
in the SSD market
Adaptive R/W &
DSP ECC in SSDs
Analysts - SSD market
Animal brands in
and blogs - top 50
Architecture guide - storage
auto tuning, caching,
- SSD enhanced
management in flash SSDs
Banner ads for SSDs
Big versus Small -
in SSD architecture
from SSD leaders
- citing StorageSearch.com
Strategies in the SSD market
Cache ratios inside
software and SSD appliances
Calling for an
end to SSD vs HDD IOPS
Can you tell me the best
way to SSD Street?
- storage interface
- SSD on a chip & DOMs
CIO - a day in the life
Cloud storage -
with SSD twists
in the enterprise market
Consumer SSDs guide
Consumer SSDs - why are they
chips for SSDs
|What defines the
personality of the SSD?
Cost of SSDs
Dark matter users in
Data integrity in
|When your SSD breaks...
do you call?
hidden segments in the enterprise
DIMM wars -
tech markets and SSD
DSP in flash
SSD controller IP
ratings in enterprise SSDs today?
|Education - re SSDs
Efficiency - comparing
SSDs - overview
Endurance - in
|The risk of flash
wear-out in SSDs is
a kind of "forever war"
which is never
|Fast purge / secure erase
SSDs - market timeline
(failures in time) & SSDs
flash SSD vs RAM SSD
Forecasts for SSD market
Hard disk drives
Hard drives in an
- SSD fans disagree fundamentals
History of SSD
of data storage (all)
|Hostage to the
fortunes of SSD
SSD appliances (enterprise)
syndrome - invisible SSD capacity
Inanimate Power, Speed
& Strength Metaphors
|If they survive manufacturing they'll
survive our industrial customers too.
IOPS and flash SSDs
IOPS Comparisons -
SSDs and HDDs
- flash SSD
Legacy vs New Dynasty
MLC - in SSD jargon
MLC in enterprise
era of the SSD market
MRAM, PCM & other
threats to flash in SSDs
- mentions on this site
Oracle articles - Burleson
Petabyte SSD roadmap
protection in SSDs
Power, Speed &
Strength in SSD brands
PR Agencies & SSDs
Price of SSDs - past,
present and why?
RAID - and SSDs
RAM memory chips
RAM SSDs versus Flash
SSD capacity - server vs SAN
Reliability - in SSD
games and enterprise SSD boxes
Silos in the solid
SLC vs eMLC
Software (for SSDs)
to enterprise SSDs
Symmetry impacts in
zero storage? - groan...
Top SSD companies -
7 years tracker
UlltraDIMM SSDs etc
propositions for buying SSDs
VC funds in storage
Videos - about SSDs
Where are we now
with SSD software?
SSDs killed 20K hard drives
(linkedin) - StorageSearch.com
a simple list of military SSD companies(how hard can it be to
editor - StorageSearch.com - April 15, 2016
|Nearly everything I've written about
the SSD market was written on the same day it was seen here. Indeed I
upload most of my notes and comments to the web as I'm writing them -
paragraph by paragraph - sometimes before reading back the complete text.
As this is the web - that doesn't present a clarity problem - because
it's easy enough to add updates, cuts and corrections and additional links
to articles anytime from seconds to years later - depending how popular the
topic is. And - as you may have seen already in other pages - if later
events have made a big impact on the original idea.
general exceptions to this writing habit of mine (till to now) have been:-
- blogs started and abandoned on the same day (because I realized the
original idea wasn't compelling enough), and
The blog here below is a rare exception to what I've just
said above because I've always thought the subject matter - who designs and
makes military SSDs? - was important - but this is the only SSD article which
having been started, and intended for publication, has lingered in an
incomplete state in the ftp out tray while I've continued to think about it
from time to time over a long period.
- longer articles - which can take me one or two days elapsed time to
What held me back from posting
this blog before was that after exploring what I thought was a simple topic -
which should've had a simple conclusion and left you with an easily defined
bunch of associated links - developed - after much thinking about it - into
something quite different which didn't feel like it had a proper ending.
now - after looking back - I see that this aspect of the story (the lack
of a tidy wrap up) may indeed be the most important aspect of the story.
So here it is - warts and all.
a simple list of military SSD
For a year or so before publishing this article - I had
the idea of compiling a simple list of military SSD companies here on
StorageSearch.com to act as a pool for designers and specifiers of products
involved in applications which needed militarized, tough and secure SSDs.
was a part of me which naggingly said - why's it taking so long?
This should only take an hour or so - as you've already written about
most of these companies and to compile the list all you need to do is datamine
the past 15 or 20 years of writing about the SSD market - extract a list - and
it's almost done.
But there was another voice in my head which said -
what's the real purpose of doing this?
If it's not to be merely a
search engine optimization (aimed at web bots) but is designed to be useful to
real people - you have to do a better job than a mere cut and paste of past
resources. And delays in getting started meant that I had to be clear about
several factors in advance such as:-
- how simple should a "simple" list be? - in a way which can
still be useful but not be too misleading.
Is a list of company names
(without links) enough?
How about adding links? If so - should the
links be to the home page of the company or to their main mil product page or to
a profile page which descrobes their company?
In a simple list
(whatever formula is adopted) is it "useful" to append tags or
comments attached to each company name - based on what I know about each
company? (For example list of interfaces, memory types used, customer stories
Or are such tags misleading?
Because such anecdotes
- which might make the list more interesting to read - run the risk of
being biased and disproportionate and inevitably drawing reader focus away
from companies I know less well.
- what kind of definition of "military SSD" should I use?
the "military" nature of a mil SSD mostly about temperature? In that
case where do you draw the line with industrial SSDs. And what about high
temperature rated SSDs designed for pure scientific research which may lack
required mil features?
Or is a mil SSD mostly about security?
problem is that some secure SSDs designed for gaming or banking or medical uses
don't fit the picture of a mil SSD.
And what about enterprise
accelerator SSDs which have been used for particular military applications - but
which otherwise don't have any obvious military attributes?
important are serviceability attributes?
You might see a new rugged,
secure SSD appear on the market for an application like cameras - but then when
you need it again you may not be able to buy the same product again as soon as
6-12 months later - because the camera market has moved on. So is the ability
to have a defined BOM and longevity of supply something which is essential to
the definition of mil SSD? And if so - is the 7 years or so which many
industrial manufacturers offer reassuring enough for a market which typically
looks at volume deployments starting years after initial design and spares
requirements stretching to decades.
In a random conversation about
semiconductors I had in an airport queue yesterday (April 13, 2016) someone
told me their company was still making EPROMs.
the simple list of companies - more clarification required concerning - what
- Supposing the filtering questions are resolved and we can agree what a
military SSD company is... how far back in time should the list of such
companies go? - especially given the longevity of military projects
Some of questions I looked at in designing this page
- should I just name the companies?
- should it just be a list of urls?
- is it useful to know where a company is headquartered?
is an essential hygiene factor for sourcing mil SSDs for obvious geopolitical
reasons. And proximity facilitates on-site visits to review processes and
conformity issues too.
But - as we've seen in other parts of the SSD
market - companies can suddenly change where their HQ is based due to organic
growth or acquisition. So I took the view that geography is too impermanent
an attribute for the "simple list" of mil SSD companies.
- How committed are these companies to the mil SSD business?
I insert a tag which indicates how long each company has been active in the
And how about estimating what percentage of their
business is in that market?
That seems like a deceptively obvious idea.
A company which has been designing military SSDs for 10 years surely rates a
different mention to another which has only been involved in the market for 2
But that signal can be misleading - because the new project
you're designing prototypes for today might benefit from a new technology (or
scaling density) which older companies don't yet supply.
happens when a company which is new to the SSD market - but which is well
funded - buys a long established SSD company? How much of the longevity (in the
mil market) attribute should be inherited by the new owner in such a list?
Clearly the idea of a scoring system like this is important - but best done by
the customer rather than by a disconnected reviewer.
- what about "gone away" military SSD companies - those which are
no longer in the market because they're gone out of business, been acquired or
exited the military market?
In most other markets a list of current
suppliers would benefit from excluding "gone away" companies.
sometimes it can be useful to know that a company (even if it no longer exists)
did once have a standard product which solved a rare niche type of
application - if you have a similar problem today.
Maybe it's just
knowing that someone in the past did solve that kind of problem so it should be
feasible to solve again... Or maybe you need to track down what happened to an
old company and see who owns it now because you need spares and are being
presented with an uncomfortable cost option if you have to emulate an old
product and over engineer it in the absence of original design details.
- what about military systems integrators?
activities can cover a broad spectrum of technical interventions and the
result is more questions than answers.
For example - is the activity of
installing an enterprise SSD array into a box which includes a DC power
supply, with air filters, and anti-condensation and anti-fungus measures enough
to place the integrator on such a list?
Extrapolating from this shows
the problem with this approach.
Such a box can accommodate a wide
variety of systems (servers and HDDs - not just SSDs.) So if we include this in
a list of "military SSDs" what category should it be in?
think here the obvious answer is that the maker of such a box or the
integrator is better placed in a directory of "military electronic
packaging and enclosures" rather than a list of "military SSDs".
Despite that line of thinking, however, the same manufacturers might feature in
a military SSD news story from time to time - even if they don't score highly
enough to appear in an SSD directory.
But another awkward decision
arises at the other end of the integration scale.
Suppose you have a
company which designs and makes its own SSDs for use in a range of integrated
systems (in which the storage is simply a small but essential component). And
what if - that SSD maker doesn't sell its SSDs except as spares or upgrades to
users of the bigger system?
If the purpose of the military SSD makers
directory is to be a useful resource for wouldbe buyers of SSDs then probably
that kind of company shouldn't be on such a list.
But if the purpose of
the military SSD makers directory is to be a useful resource for those wanting
to understand where the hot spots are in SSD design (maybe with the view to a
business partnership - supplying SSD related components to, competing with or
investing in or acquiring such companies) then it would be useful to know that
this type of company is in the military SSD business.
If you're still with me at this point of the
blog - you can see some of the potential incongruities and false signals which
can creep into in any well intentioned simple list of "military SSD
- And what about those invisible mil SSD makers?
There's an agency
which has paid some contractors to develop a standard design platform which
is useful for a lot of its SSD projects. It's simpler than many commercial
designs and does the job well. It's like a COTS or "open standard"
platform. But only this agency (or closely related partners) know about it and
can use it. It's so secret that even mentioning the interfaces and applications
publicly buys you swift entry to the kind of gated community where the doors
are locked on the outside.
Time served specialists in the mil SSD
market know this agency and its platform because it has an influence on the
applications which emerge for COTS aspects of some design projects.
any authoritative list of military SSD companies is incomplete without
including the agency (which has a different name in different countries). But
they don't want to be included in this type of list on the web (thanks for
asking Mr Editor and BTW how did you get this email address?) as they're not
looking for business.
So how do we represent their influence in the
list? Add more white spaces in the columns to indicate there are important gaps?
If so - how many spaces?
The more I thought about the processes of filtering
and editing such a list the more I recognized that its usefulness could only be
extremely limited and dependent on how compatible it was with the needs of the
person who encountered it.
Maybe it's because of these difficulties
(and I'm learning more) that my instinct has been to avoid publishing
such a list in recent years.
Instead what I do is try to keep attuned
to companies which may be involved in this type of product activity (which is
any SSD company which has crossed my radar in the past 20 years) and when I
learn something interesting which can be discussed in an SSD news context - then
I write about them and put a note in their profile page. I admit that's not a
fool-proof method but it avoids making a claim to completeness (such as "this
list includes every known military SSD maker") which is doomed to fail.
a long established
buyers guides (long being 24 years so far) I think if you want readers to
trust you - you have to know your own limits. So that's why I (still) haven't
published a simple guide of military SSD manufacturers - despite knowing many
companies which might easily qualify to be placed in such a list.
can find a wide net of potential companies (from the StorageSearch.com
by using site search and a suitable search filter such as "military SSD".
But you'll have to do your own filtering and follow up on the linked-to web
sites to confirm if they're still active in the market.
If you have
views about this, or suggestion which you think other readers might find useful
- email me and I'll consider adding them as an update to this article.
Let me know too if you follow up the above discussion on twitter or
linkedin (although most of you in the mil business won't be in a position
where it's advisable to do this).
for the above article.
comments - re a simple list of military SSD companies
Peter Kindl -
April 20, 2016
Hi Zsolt, I am getting an error message while trying to
comment on LinkedIn. Here is what I was going to comment - always with a little
grin in my face.
Welcome to the club - "just the two of us?"
Quite simple ;-)
- do a product list and categorize product by compliance with
mil.-specs: environmental mil.-specs (8), mil.-secure erase options (10/11), -
add optional parameters i. e. SLC vs MLC (1/2bit), power loss hold up time (not
just power loss detection and protection (SW)), conformal coating?, full metal
The list won't be big if you only enter suppliers who can prove
compliance by a formal test certificate.
Since 2006 my list only had "Zeus"
(EOL) listed, which met all criteria!
My "supplier's marketing"
version has approximately 40 entries - legacy industrial grade SSDs applicable
for military / aerospace applications (w/o showing any mil. spec compliance in
the data sheet!)
Maybe we should do a major military/defense
application list, in order to understand the client's requirements, i. e. why
some will only accept SLC, others consider MLC; why a military grade NAS uses
commercial grade enterprise class SSDs, ...
BTW: I liked the "Zeus" with the military grade
feature the most, in particular the testing of that feature to prove that it
works ;-D Peter Kindl
latency loving reasons for fading out DRAM in the virtual memory slider
mixsome glimpses into the roots of DRAM's indeterminate latencies
which underlie market opportunities for tiering flash as RAM and memory
editor - StorageSearch.com - March 1, 2016
|Retiring and retiering enterprise DRAM
was one of the
big SSD ideas
which took hold in the market in 2015 with 9 companies announcing significant
product plans for this market. But looking back on my own past editorial
coverage of SSD
DIMM wars, rethinking
RAM etc I realized I hadn't reported much about the details of
DRAM's growing latency problems. |
For certain we know there are
problems because otherwise some of the flash inspired solutions for
replacing portions of DRAM with slower tiered flash etc which we know work -
wouldn't work so well.
But although we can guess at what some of
these DRAM behavior problems may be - I thought it would be useful to round up
a small set of linked articles which provide a clearer overview into what makes
DRAM latency so variable. Here are some links which I found useful. ...read the
rest of this article
|Hmm... it looks like you're seriously
interested in SSDs. So please bookmark this page and come back again soon. |
written thousands of stories and guides related to the SSD market. The most
popular can be
StorageSearch.com is published by
ACSL. © 1992
to 2016 all rights reserved.
Editor's note:- I currently talk to
more than 600 makers of SSDs and another 100 or so companies which are
closely enmeshed around the SSD ecosphere.
Most of these SSD
companies (but by no means all) are profiled here on the mouse site.
I learn about new SSD companies every day, including many in stealth mode. If
you're interested in the growing
big picture of
the SSD market canvass - StorageSearch will help you along the way.
Many SSD company CEOs read our site too - and say they value our thought leading
SSD content - even when we say something that's not always comfortable to hear.
I hope you'll find it it useful too.
never compile email lists from this web site, not for our own use nor anyone
else's, and we never ask you to log-in to read any of our own content on this
web site. We don't do pop-ups or pop-unders nor blocker ads and we
don't place cookies in your computer. We've been publishing on the web since
1996 and these have always been the principles we adhere to.
| There's a growing
consensus that DWPD should map into recognizable application zones and
the state of DWPD?|
|Why can't SSD's true
believers agree on a single shared vision for the future of solid state
|the SSD Heresies |
so sad... when Data sped to meet Software|
and we think of - what
might have been?
|When Data met Software in the enterprise
singles bar (and everyone thought they were so well suited for each other)
there was (let's just say) a little disappointment. |
The SSD valet
parking was swift and left you confidently feeling they'd taken keys
to pricier data objects before.
But the big let down was the DRAM
data matchmaking service (a well-meaning OS friend and ambitious
virtualizing mother) had somehow between them got the estimated time of the
first meet so very wrong.
DRAM just isn't as fast as you think and
is easily distracted. Although as you'd expect the hopeful couple will try
again as soon as possible with a new set of diaries.
You can read
the background to this engaging story (and a new plot twist) in
loving reasons for fading out DRAM in the virtual memory slider mix
|Just as "day zero"
malware can remain undetected by anti-virus software so too can "year zero"
patterns of mismatched enterprise SSD customer needs fail to be recognized by
SSD vendors who simply move on their attentions to easier / less problematic
customers and resort to the tactic of selling their AFA systems below the
hidden segments in the flash enterprise|
You'd think it should be getting easier for industrial buyers as there are
more sources than ever. But there's no such thing as a "standard SSD".
|BOM control and SSDs|
|"SSD 101 is a series
of 13 educational articles describing solid state drives from the basic NAND
cell and architecture to controller architecture and functions."
|SSD Bookmarks - from
|Can you trust market
reports and the handed down wisdom from analysts, bloggers and so-called "industry
experts" any more than you can trust SSD benchmarks to tell you which
product is best?
|heck no! -
whatever gave you that silly idea?|
|In many ways the enterprise
SSD market resembles a jungle and the creatures within it are evolving fast.
The bugs haven't read the blurb on the bug spray - and don't realize they are
supposed to stay away - or be dead.|
Guide to enterprise SSDs|
|"See how optimizing
processors for SSD can gain a 2x to 250x speed-up on popular functions as well
as reduce the energy consumed by a similar amount! "|
|SSD Bookmarks - from
|After 2003 the only
technology which could displace an SSD from its market role was another SSD (or
I was talking to an end user whose organization has spent hundreds of
millions of dollars on EMC storage. |
They'd love to decouple
themselves and benefit from modern lower cost flash.
But the flash
marketers in startups aren't doing those kinds of conversations.
many of them a single customer like that is bigger than their whole business
to EMC" - the unreal positioning of AFA startups|
|How much investment does it
take to achieve something big in the SSD market? A couple of years ago - if you
were a big company wanting to get into the SSD market by an acquisition or
strategic investment then a budget somewhere between $500 million and $1 billion
would have seemed like plenty.|
|over 100 SSD VC funding
|The big memory companies
would like to become the biggest SSD companies. |
So we're seeing some
similar price behavior trends in SSD.
But trying to understand the
SSD market (based on what happened in the past in memory) is a seriously wrong
|an SSD view of
semiconductor memory boom-bust|
|With hundreds of patents
already pending in this topic there's a high probability that the SSD vendor
won't give you the details. It's enough to get the general idea.
R/W and DSP ECC IP in SSDs|
design of memory controllers, and in particular memory scheduling algorithms,
leads to uncontrolled interference of applications in the memory system"|
|Are you ready to
|"A critical test of
whether you really understand the dynamics of a complex market like enterprise
SSDs - is whether you can predict what rational buyers might do when offered new
product options at the extreme limits of - for example - price."|
Analysis in SSD Market Forecasting|
|"The winners in SSD
software could be as important for data infrastructure as Microsoft was for
PCs, or Oracle was for databases, or Google was for search."|
|all enterprise data
will touch an SSD |