image shows Megabyte reading a scroll - the top 50 SSD articles and recommended SSD blogs
popular SSD articles
pcie  SSDs - click to read article
PCIe SSDs ..
military storage directory and news
military storage

enterprise buyers guides since 1991

storage search
"leading the way to the new storage frontier"

SSD ad - click for more info ...

SSD news - April 15 - 22, 2011

SSD jargon
storage reliability
top 50 SSD articles
the SSD Buyers Guide
the 3 fastest PCIe SSDs list(s)
Surviving SSD sudden power loss
Megabyte's selection of storage news
Megabyte loves reading news
SSD ad - click for more info
Factors in sustaining write IOPS in PCIe SSDs

Editor:- April 21, 2011 - flash SSD Sustained Write Performance is the subject of a new blog by Jamon Bowen - Director of Sales Engineering at Texas Memory Systems.

Among other things Jamon discusses why there can be an optimal ratio of over-provisioning - and the relationship between the peak and sustained write IOPS peorformance in the company's popular PCIe SSD - the RamSan-20.

how fast can your SSD run backwards?
flash SSD capacity - the iceberg syndrome
flash SSD performance characteristics and limitations

IO Turbine gets funding for flash SSD IOPSware

Editor:- April 19, 2011 - IO Turbine is a new (to me) storage software company which is designing software for high IOPS virtual flash SSD environments.

The company popped out of stealth mode today and announced it has secured $7.75 million in funding led by Lightspeed Venture Partners, as well as Merus Capital and notable angel investors.

Editor's comments:- I don't write much about startup software companies any more after tracking hundreds of them with business plans which rarely went beyond the aspiration to get acquired. There's a big reality gap between "hello world!" and GOOG.

There haven't been many startup software companies with anything interesting to say about the SSD market. The only other one that springs to mind is NVELO - who announced their intention last summer to launch an ASAP like software suite for the notebook SSD market.

Their team comes from an impressive array of heavyweight enterprise companies. I asked some basic questions about the company's business plans today and you can see the answers in IO Turbine's profile page.

STEC steps closer to independently marketing enterprise SSDs

Editor:- April 19, 2011 - STEC has acquired a software company in India that virtually no one had heard of before.

"The team of skilled software engineers from KQI has significant experience in such areas as system software development and virtualization," said Manouch Moshayedi, Chairman and CEO of STEC. "As the overall trend of hardware and software convergence in the storage industry continues, it is important for us to expand our product portfolio by creating increasingly intelligent storage solutions that accelerate the adoption of solid-state drives in enterprise servers. Establishing a presence in India provides us with strategic access to a global software hub with a pool of top engineering talent to cost-effectively meet our R&D expansion plans."

Editor's comments:- in recent days the nature of search activity for STEC followed a pattern that I now associate with companies which are the subjects or objects of acquisitions.

The other company which has been spiking in search news (but not so highly) is Violin Memory - which recently was named a cool vendor by Gartner.

STEC's acquisition looks to me like a much needed first step to a declaration of independently marketing its own enterprise SSDs and thereby closing an important gap in its routes to market.

Samsung exits shrinking HDD market

Editor:- April 19, 2011 - One alternative way of looking at Seagate is as one of the world's leading storage market analysts - when it comes to the subject of hard drives.

In this unsung role Seagate today published a report (pdf) - which among other things includes this useful total market size info - related to the most recent quarter.
  • enterprise HDD market - 13.8 million units - (up 10% year on year)
  • client HDD market - 115 million units - (down 7% year on year)
The company also reported that its revenue had declined 11% year on year and that it has entered into an agreement to buy Samsung's HDD business for $1.375 billion.

Samsung will supply NAND flash to Seagate's SSD products (no surprise there as Samsung is a strategic supplier to countless SSD companies already) and Seagate will supply hard drives for Samsung's PCs and notebooks (no surprise there either as Samsung was probably the biggest customer of its own HDDs).

Exiting the hard drive business is a no-brainer for Samsung who within the next 5 - 9 years must transition its entire memory business over to SSDs when the SSD market is big enough.

I'm not sentimental about the end of hard drives - having written enough articles about that subject already.

Robin Harris has written a nice article which brings the HDD oem headcount (pun intended) into historical context.

...Later:- April 20, 2011 - Western Digital also reported a year on year decline in revenue for the recent quarter (15%).

So you may well ask - what happened to the great 2011 for HDD revenue that both the world's biggest hard disk makers were predicting not that long ago? Here's an explanation.

"The March quarter in the hard drive industry was impacted by 2 significant developments - the delayed supply of industry CPUs to PC makers and the tragic events in Japan," said John Coyne, president and CEO. "While demand for hard drives in the quarter got off to a slow start, it later picked up as availability of CPUs improved and as fears took hold of component shortages related to the events in Japan."

TMS announces 15% price drop in flagship SLC SSD

Editor:- April 19, 2011 - Texas Memory Systems today announced that new customers of its flagship RamSan-630 (a fast rackmount SSD) will be the first enterprise SSD users to benefit from the performance improvements and greater cost efficiencies provided by a new generation of 32nm SLC flash memory chips designed by Toshiba.

"Texas Memory Systems continually evaluates all major flash memory suppliers' product offerings to determine the 'best of breed'," said Charles Camp, CTO at Texas Memory Systems. "The significant engineering effort put forth to validate the devices is essential in order to guarantee our users receive the best quality and performance from the RamSan."

The result is a 15% lowering of the system price. New pricing starts at $50K list.

Editor's comments:- in an interview last December TMS explained why it was sticking with SLC rather than MLC for the foreseeable future. And in another interview (January 2011) which revealed performance boosting features inside the RamSan-630 I learned that out of the many (double digits) of SSD product generations which the company had designed this particular family included many hallmarks of a classic product. Today's announcement is an indication that the RamSan-630 is going to stay around for some time.

$50k is a magic door opener for high end mission critical enterprise SSDs. That's something which Kaminario's CEO Dani Golan told me recently when they launched their K2 (a competitor to Texas Memory Systems's RAM SSD product line). Both companies say that in addition to the traditional large enterprises who have always bought SSDs - they're now getting business from small new companies in the pure internet economy.

New update to Top 20 SSD Companies List

Editor:- April 18, 2011 - today I added a new footnote to the recently published edition (Q1 2011) of the top 20 SSD companies list - which answers a question I've often been asked by marketers in SSD companies during the 4+ years that this series has been running - "how much difference does advertising make to these lists?"

Unless you work in sales or marketing you won't be interested in reading the new details - because whether I include or exclude advertising data I still get exactly the same companies in the top 10 list - just ranked in a slightly different order.
SSD ad - click for more info
SSD ad - click for more info
the Problem with Write IOPS in flash SSDs
the "play it again Sam" syndrome

Flash SSD "random write IOPS" are now similar to "read IOPS" in many of the fastest SSDs.

So why are they such a poor predictor of application performance?

And why are users still buying RAM SSDs which cost an order of magnitude more than SLC? (let alone MLC) - even when the IOPS specs look similar.
the problem with flash SSD  write IOPS This article tells you why the specs got faster - but the applications didn't. And why competing SSDs with apparently identical benchmark results can perform completely differently. the article
SSD ad - click for more info

"SSDs will change the way computer products are designed - so that by 2015 nearly all products will be designed to be SSD-centric - instead of HDD-centric as they have been for over 50 years."
...from - what's the big picture message re SSDs?

SSD ad - click for more info

storage search banner

1.0" SSDs 1.8" SSDs 2.5" SSDs 3.5" SSDs rackmount SSDs PCIe SSDs SATA SSDs
SSDs all flash SSDs hybrid drives flash memory RAM SSDs SAS SSDs Fibre-Channel SSDs is published by ACSL