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IP-Maker

IP-Maker provides products and design services for embedded storage systems. The company develops and licenses intellectual properties. Their standards IPs are optimized for high performance storage applications (e.g. enterprise SSDs). Services include customized IPs and IP integration. IP-Maker is located in Aix en Provence, France. IP-Maker is a NVM Express specification adopter.

see also:- IP-Maker news, IP-Maker mentions on StorageSearch.com


Who's who in SSD?- by Zsolt Kerekes, editor StorageSearch.com

IP-Maker is one of over 30 SSD I/P SoC companies listed here on StorageSearch.com.

The company entered the PCIe SSD market in 2012.
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IP-Maker mentions in SSD market history

In January 2012 - IP-Maker released a data transfer manager core - for use in NVMe compatible PCIe SSD designs. It fits between the media and the flash controller.

In May 2015 - IP-Maker announced that its NVMe data transfer manager design passed the UNH-IOL compatibility tests. IP-Maker's IP supports performance in the range of 350K IOPS and 10µs latency in a Gen2 x4 configuration.

In April 2017 - IP-Maker released an FPGA IP which enabled embedded systems with low power CPUs to utilize high performance NVMe SSDs as buffers for video and other streaming IO. Aimed at the industrial and embedded market the technology was described in a paper - Allowing server-class storage in embedded applications (pdf) .
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what's the hold up in 2.5" MIL SSDs?
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I've been looking at different aspects of power loss data integrity schemes in mission critical non volatile memory systems for over 30 years.

But every time I revisit this vast topic and compare fresh examples from the market - I learn something a little bit new.

My new blog on this theme - Zero to three seconds - demonstrates the extreme range of hold up times now in the market inside leading edge 2.5" military flash SSDs. Is more better? That depends. ...read the article
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now Cinderella industrial systems with "no-CPU" budgets and light wattage footprints can go to the NVMe speed-dating ball
Editor:- April 19, 2017 - A dilemma for designers of embedded systems which require high SSD performance is how can you get the benefits of enterprise class NVMe SSDs for simple applications - which integrate video for example - without at the same time escalating the wattage footprint of the entire attached micro server?

A new paper published today by IP-Maker - Allowing server-class storage in embedded applications (pdf) discusses the problem and how their new FPGA based IP enables any NVMe PCIe SSD to be used in embedded systems to provide sub-microsecond latency using "20x better power efficiency, and 20x lower cost compared to a CPU-based system."

image shows where the FPGA IP fits in the context of an embedded low power system using fast NVMe SSDs

The company says the NVMe host IP - which is now available - can be used in an FPGA connected between the PCIe root port and the cache memory, internal SRAM or external DRAM. It fully controls the NVMe protocol by setting and managing the NVMe commands. No CPU is required. It supports PCIe gen 3 x 8 interface.

Michael Guyard, Marketing Director said that - among other things - applications include:-
  • military recorders
  • portable medical imaging
  • mobile vision products - in robots and drones
...read the article (pdf)

Editor's comments:- Now Cinderella embedded systems with low cost budgets and low wattage footprints can go to the enterprise NVMe performance ball. The new magic - in the form of the FPGA IP released today by IP Maker - has the potential to transform the demographics and class of SSDs seen in future industrial systems.
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There are several variations possible in the future implementation of NVDIMMs which aim to replace DRAM with tiered DDR-4 flash.

Design approaches which leverage the motherboard DRAM in other sockets on the same motherboard - such as Memory1 from Diablo - have more flexibility in their flash to DRAM ratio than "all in one" designs which place all the memory and the controller in the same single package.

The latter approach carries the same market risks as the old hybrid SSD-HDD drives in the notebook market.

They are optimum ratios for only a very limited set of applications and configurations.
controllernomics and user risk reward with analytics "flash as RAM"

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IP-Maker releases Gen 3 NVMe PCIe reference design
storage glue chips
storage glue chips
Editor:- July 11, 2016 - for designers of PCIe SSDs - IP-Maker has released its new Gen 3 NVMe PCIe reference design which is based on the VC709 evaluation kit by Xilinx.

It's integrated with Xilinx's Virtex-7 PCIe Gen3 hard IP and a soft DDR3 controller. The UNH-IOL NVMe compliant design uses a x4 lanes configuration.

See also:- SSD controllers, SSD glue chips
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