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Storage news - May 2010, week 1

SSD jargon
2.5" PCIe SSDs
top 100 SSD articles
the SSD Buyers Guide
Surviving SSD sudden power loss
RunCore samples SAS SSDs

Editor:- May 7, 2010 - RunCore is now sampling (its previously announced) 2.5" and 3.5" SAS flash SSDs for the enterprise server market.

The Kylin II product line, available with MLC, EMLC or SLC flash, has R/W speeds upto 270MB/s and 260MB/s respectively, R/W IOPS of 30,000 and 25,000, upto 400GB capacity and 3 years warranty.

STEC's results show weakness of marketing strategy

Editor:- May 6, 2010 - STEC confirmed that its revenue for the 1st calendar quarter of 2010 decreased 39% (to $38.8 million) compared to the year ago period.

Poor results had been anticipated and flagged in guidance due to the company's over strong dependence on a single oem customer - EMC - which while being one of the world's biggest vendors of hard disk arrays - has a comparatively weak pitch to offer buyers of rackmount SSDs - evidenced by technical performance comparisons and poor showings (in reality non appearance) in SSD search volume rankings.

STEC does not sell enterprise SSDs directly to users, instead its route to market has been to rely on oems to design its SSDs into their systems - and wait for the sales ramp to happen.

The initial advantage of that approach (when the SSD market was smaller than it is today) is that the company did not have to invest in developing its own routes to market and related marketing competencies.

The current disadvantage - is that the company is vulnerable to being swapped out in design sockets or bypassed altogether. Additionally - STEC is poorly positioned to acquire expertise about user value propositions related to rackmount SSDs - because the company doesn't supply integrated solutions.

Themis launches 1U rugged RAID box for its military servers

Editor:- May 4, 2010 - Themis Computer has launched the RES-XStore - a 1U (17" deep) storage system for mission-critical applications in harsh environments.

The RES-XStore includes 4 hot pluggable canisters, each containing 3x 2.5" drives. The RES-XStore communicates with the host server, via an add-in HBA and PCIe x8. The RES-XStore includes a RAID controller that supports RAID levels from 0 to 60. Each canister is hot pluggable. As with all products in the Rugged Enterprise Servers family - the new storage enclosure is designed to operate in the most challenging environments.

"Themis is re-defining 'rugged computing solutions' to mean rugged servers and rugged storage from the same vendor. Our rugged server and storage systems provide enhanced RAS, as well as industry leading SWAP", stated William Kehret, president of Themis Computer.

StorSimple fills "missing link" in cloud storage DNA

Editor:- May 4, 2010 - StorSimple has exited stealth mode - announcing a bunch of collaborative customer supply agreements - and disclosing info about its Armada storage appliance - which is designed to reduce the cost and simplify the integration of cloud storage within datacenter applications and infrastructure.

Editor's comments:- Just as application specific SSDs are the future for the SSD market - StorSimple's Armada system can be regarded as an application specific SSD ASAP which includes features such as real-time dedupe and cloud data encryption.

The simplest way to think about it is as "the missing link" between the promise of cloud storage and its practicality. The companies which have agreed to be named in StorSimple's company launch press release (Amazon, AT&T, EMC, Iron Mountain, and Microsoft) seem to think it's a noteworthy part of cloud storage DNA too.

IBM endorses SandForce's MLC in enterprise benchmark

Editor:- May 3, 2010 - SandForce announced that its SSD SoC technology had been used in a TPC-C benchmark recently published by IBM.

The system used 10.5TB of MLC flash SSD capacity - implemented by 56 SSDs that use SandForce SF-1500 SSD processors.

"SSD" search volume grew 53% year on year

Editor:- May 1, 2010 - Pageviews of's popular SSD Buyers Guide in April 2010 were 43% higher than a year ago.

Incoming searches for "SSDs" to this site grew 53%.

Overall site readership for increased 18% year on year (across all subjects - not just SSDs).

The SSD form factor race? - Pageviews of PCIe SSDs in April 2010 were 18% ahead of those for 2.5" SSDs. The gap narrowed from 40% in March.

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"...the SSD market will be bigger in revenue than the hard drive market ever was."
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SAS SSDs - from OCZ - Talos C Series
Talos - from OCZ

(a Toshiba group company)
SSD Data Recovery Concepts
It's hard enough understanding the design of any single SSD. And there are so many different designs in the market.

Have you ever wondered what it looks like at the other end of the SSD supply chain - when a user has a damaged SSD which contains priceless data with no usable backup?
broken barrel image - click to read this data recovery article If so - this article - written by Jeremy Brock, President, A+ Perfect Computers - who is one of a rare new breed of SSD recovery experts will give you some idea. read the article

One thing which hasn't changed since the early days of enterprise flash - is the concept of a "naughty" type of flash memory - which sensible, cautious types point at saying - that's never going to be reliable enough.
the evolution of enterprise flash - a 10 year history

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