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Hyperstone

Hyperstone, founded in 1990, and based in Konstanz, Germany, is a fabless semiconductor and microprocessor design company whose products include SSD controllers optimized for low power applications.
Hyperstone logo - click for more info about the company's SSD controllers
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Together with subsidiaries in Taiwan, USA and with other worldwide partners, Hyperstone serves a global customer base. Hyperstone is a member of the CML Microsystems Plc group, traded on the London Stock Exchange. The group currently consists of 8 subsidiaries and has over 170 employees.

Hyperstone research and development is based in Germany and Taiwan. Industry-leading partners provide world-class wafer subcontracting, packaging, and testing services. Hyperstone's success is based on its proprietary 32-Bit RISC processor, optimized for flash handling applications. Hyperstone's products include microcontrollers for Solid State Disks (SSD), Disk-on-Module (DoM), Disk-on-Board (DoB), embedded Flash solutions such as eMMC, and Flash cards such as CF, SD & microSD. Flash controller firmware is supplied complementary to the controllers and customized for each flash and application. Hyperstone is one of the pioneers in the flash memory controller business and owns several patents for flash handling, including wear leveling algorithms and microprocessor design...

see also:- Hyperstone - editor mentions on StorageSearch.com
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  • editor's comments:- May 2014 - among other things - Hyperstone designs SSD controllers for industiral and embedded SSDs for use in low power applications.

    The company's patented architecture includes skinny RAM cache SSD principles to obviate the need for external RAM - and the design includes strong protection against data corruption from sudden power loss.

    For competing suppliers try taking a look at the SSD controller directory.
Hyperstone mentions in recent SSD market history

In February 2009 - Hyperstone launched a controller chip for oems designing industrial grade CF compatible SSDs. The F4 provides safe power-fail handling, proven error detection and correction and static wear leveling. Data transfer rate to the attached flash memory array (16 chips) is upto 80MB/s. Sustained R/W via the CF interface is upto 50MB/s and 40MB/s respectively. Alternatively oems can add a SATA bridge, or RAID controller for other markets.

In October 2010 - Hyperstone announced that Toshiba (Europe) has agreed to provide the company with a variety of ASIC design and manufacturing services.

New SSD controllers based on Toshiba semiconductor process technology will sample in Q1, 2011.

In August 2011 - Hyperstone introduced their new A2 family of SSD controllers - designed to enable physically small, very low power consumption industrial SATA skinny flash SSDs.

In May 2014 - Hyperstone began sampling controllers for USB 2 SSDs aimed at low power, high reliability and long data retention applications in the industrial market. Hyperstone says its U8 USB controller (available as probed die and in a QFN-76 package) works with SLC and 1x nm MLC.

In February 2015 - Hyperstone said its hyMap technology could reduce Write Amplification in industrial flash SSDs by a factor of more than x100 in fragmented usage pattern and for small file random writes.
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aspects of extreme diversity in SSD design

no supercaps or batteries vs 3 seconds hold up time
Editor:- March 23, 2015 - zero to three seconds are 2 numbers which demonstrate some of the extreme diversity in SSD design.

These are the hold up times inside 2 different 2.5" SATA SSDs designed for the military market.

These vast differences are the direct consequences of 2 different approaches to RAM cache flash architecture.
  • the regular design - uses a 3F capacitor - to enable enough time for the DRAM cache to save all its data to flash
  • the ultra skinny design - doesn't need any hold up capacitor at all
The 2 different architectures are explored in 0 to 3 S
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"For Hyperstone, the biggest idea and industry trend that we pushed and participated in is the implementation of page-based-FTL running on DRAM-less controller architectures. This approach improves random write performance, increases endurance while maintaining power-fail robustness at the same time. As this architecture also reduces system cost it is also adopted in consumer markets.

We also see a significant adoption of USB 3.0 in industrial/embedded markets. Certainly, the most hyped topics, at the FMS for instance, were 3D NAND and NVMe but for both we do not yet see any sufficiently mature products or any massive adoption in our markets"

Susan Heidrich, Sales & Marketing Manager - Hyperstone

what were the big SSD ideas which emerged in 2016?
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Hyperstone brings enterprise-class write attenuation to industrial USB controllers
Editor:- February 19, 2015 - When I see an assertion about 100x better flash endurance - I smile and think back to an article my SSD care scheme is the best - in May 2012 - which discusses this marketing idea and some of the unerlying technologies. So why mention it again today?

A recent press release from Hyperstone (about their new flash management technology for industrial SSDs) contains this exact phrase.

"hyMap reduces Write Amplification by a factor of more than 100 in fragmented usage pattern and for small file random writes. Thereby, the reduction in effectively used write-erase-cycles results in higher performance, longer life and shorter random access response times. As a result, in many applications hyMap together with Hyperstone controllers and MLC flash enables higher reliability and data retention than other controllers using SLC. hyMap does not require any external DRAM or SRAM."

In the same announcement - Dr. Jan Peter Berns, Managing Director of Hyperstone - acknowledges that while these issues have already been discussed intensively for several years in the enterprise market. Hyperstone's new hyMap controller technology brings this kind of improvement into smaller, low power SSDs such as SD/MMC and USB which don't have the same kind of budgets for DRAM and CPU power as enterprise SSDs.
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"I'm not surprised to see DWPD ratings in otherwise identical controller based industrial SSDs vary even when nothing has actually changed in the BOM."
what's the state of DWPD?
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Surviving SSD sudden power loss
This article will help you understand why some SSDs which (work perfectly well in one type of application) might fail in others... even when the changes in the operational environment appear to be negligible.

If you thought endurance was the end of the SSD reliability story - think again. ...read the article
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