SSD news - October
1-11, 2012 this month - 3 of the Top 10 SSD Companies - STEC, OCZ and
Virident - changed their CEOs
|2012 SSD market will be $7.5 billion - says
Editor:- October 11, 2012 - iSuppli today
its projections indicate that the SSD industry will finish 2012 with $7.5
billion in revenue and 41 million units in shipments.
target is being reached 2 years sooner than iSuppli had projected in
an earlier report released in March 2011.
Oracle users evenly split between server and SAN when it comes
to SSD speedup
Editor:- October 11, 2012 - Among other
in a survey of 400 attendees (pdf) which was run by Kaminario at the
recent Oracle OpenWorld
event - it was found that among the 30% of those who had already used flash
SSD acceleration - the use of internal (server based) and external (SAN rack
based) SSDs was split nearly evenly - 48% and 52% respectively.
are we now with SSD software?,
capacities in the server and SAN
SSDs and boats and planes
Editor:- October 11, 2012
- a recent blog by Pure
Storage asks -
the risk of over promising and under delivering with hybrid storage arrays?
this blog talks about
meaning - in this context - is flash and HDD hybrid boxes - not flash and
PCM or some other combination of faster and slower SSDs.
things - the article says "...now imagine if you showed up to board your
international flight, and they put you on a ship instead?" ...read
SSD ASAPs news
(hybrid arrays. auto-tiering, caching etc.)
Smart's MLC SAS SSD beats SLC rivals - says StorageReview.com
Editor:- October 10, 2012 - The performance of some leading
SAS SSDs were compared
in a recent
published yesterday in StorageReview.com which compared the latest
technology based MLC drives from Smart Storage
with older SLC SAS SSDs from SanDisk, HGST and Toshiba.
review said Smart's Optimus was the performance leader in nearly all tests,
although there was one serious blip and performance outage which looks to me
like it may require a firmware fix.
A serious flaw in this review
was, however, the absence of any modern MLC products from
that the performance comparisons of these 6Gbps drives does convincingly
demonstrate that overall enterprise SSD design is more important than raw
memory type (one of the tenets in the
SSD survivor's guide).
How important is this review? Anyone who's
already shipping boxes populated with merchant market SAS SSDs will already
be aware of the potential suppliers - but it might give them another reason to
look at Smart to prune their costs. But when it comes to performance? - I'm not
so sure it's useful - as 12Gbps SAS SSDs have already having been demonstrated
by several vendors in prototype form earlier this year and that's the
direction oems will be looking at for ultimate SAS performance in the
future... Apart from those who are thinking about switching to
2.5" PCIe SSDs.
A month later - StorageReview.com did publish a
of STEC's MLC SAS SSD - the s840. In this comparison Smart beats STEC on
peak performance - but STEC's performance is more consistent. However, STEC's
SSD doesn't fit into the same low profile space.
OCZ delays filing quarterly results
10, 2012 - OCZ is
in the news again for reasons unrelated to the cleverness of its SSD
The company today
a delay to its SEC filing while it reviews factors described as contributing
to "a significant net loss for Q2'13" due in significant part to the
negative impact of customer incentive programs. In a conference call earlier
today investors asked questions about inventory, status of bank lines of credit
and the company's CEO search process.
Unsurprisingly - OCZ said that
to address future profitability it will rationalize its product line which
today is aimed at too many diverse markets and will focus more at the high
end of the client SSD market and the enterprise SSD market.
its earlier statements about flash supply problems OCZ said that some of its
flash parts were single sourced - and its own internal demand forecasts had
turned out to be too low. There wasn't enough slack and flexibility in this
supply chain to meet the shortfall. But OCZ had learned its lesson and would
improve its planning, logistics and supply dependencies.
the Top SSD Companies in Q3 2012
Editor:- October 5,
2012 - StorageSearch.com
today published the 22nd
quarterly edition of the
Top SSD Companies List
which lists the top SSD companies based on search volume in the 3rd quarter of
The fastest climber rose a staggering 14 places. Who was it? And
why? And who are the most important companies in the SSD market today?
New to me - Ramaxel
Editor:- October 4, 2012 -
every week I learn about new SSD companies.
This varies from
interesting companies who are (and want to stay) in stealth mode, others who
have launched products but are in accidental stealth mode - because they don't
have anything interesting to say or don't know how to
communicate with the SSD market.
But there's another category too - of interesting companies which
are new to me - but already well known to many other people. This just
goes to show how big the market is. Because just when you think you know where
all the surprises will come from you realize you don't.
In the category
of - new to me - and why didn't I come across them before? - is a company
Technology - which among other things has products in the
PCIe SSD market.
aren't making any big annoucements right now - but they're worth watching out
for and have the potential to get their SSD business much better known to more
people (and mice) too.
the next big SSD idea
Editor:- October 3, 2012 -
is the theme of my new blog on the home page of StorageSearch.com
Skyera recruits heavyweight business development talent
October 2, 2012 - This isn't LinkedIn
- so you won't see a news posting every time an SSD company recruits someone.
But there are some exceptions.
recruited someone to lead
their corporate and business development.
This is a subject I
discussed with the
company's CEO in August. Didn't sound like a difficult job to me.
I guess it is harder than you might think at first to create a process for
filtering through the flood of inquiries you get when you say you're going to
change the world of enterprise SSD and cherry pick those who can pay as well as
in the SSD software golf challenge who's got a similar handicap
Editor:- October 2, 2012 - last week I was asked
by a reader (who didn't want to be named here) if I could suggest any
companies which have SSD software as powerful and far reaching as that of Fusion-io.
thought it would be much too simplistic to answer with a list of names taken
out of context - so instead I said there are several different levels at
which you can view and analyze this:-
- communicating intelligence between the API and raw flash level
- working between different storage systems and software components (caching,
tiering, virtualization, data protection etc)
After using a lot more words in my email than I've
used here - the end result was a reply to my reader with a list of companies
which you wouldn't be too surprised to see if you looked at the list of top
enterprise SSD companies and correlated that with who's acquired or developed
their own software. The list ran something like this:-
- working in different markets -
consumer? - you ask - I thought we were talking about Fusion-io?
mentioned a few years ago Fusion-io's software is applicable to
It's simply a commercial decision not to pursue that avenue in the current
unprofitable state of the consumer market. But in the long term it's one of the
reasons that the company is rated as being so valuable - because its technology
can span solid state storage from the level of Ultrabooks (with PCIe inside)
(acquired by SanDisk) -
have the makings of a serious industry platform.
- GridIron -
probably has the most sophisticated
SSD ASAP software in
the industry. (In my email I said - shame it's tied to their hardware -
an SSD HDD hybrid box. But this week - that has changed. See the notes below
for more about this.)
between the hardware layers to optimize the system within enterprise racks and
arrays - the ability to hop in with intelligence gained from another level to
tweak performance and reliability - is a genuine efficiency asset.
- SANRAD (acquired by
OCZ) is also a contender.
- Virident -
have several layers of intelligence in their PCIe SSD software. They don't like
to talk too much about the details. But it's one of the things which makes
their offering stronger than many others.
- Nimbus - started
out using a standard SSD controller in their 2.5" SAS arrays - but have
added some firmware level access points which they leverage from higher levels
And in the consumer software space I suggested:-
- Skyera - is
probably the hottest example of this. They dive in at many levels to increase
efficiency of the way they use flash.
The only real surprise in the list above to
regular readers - might be GridIron - which because they haven't been a true
pure SSD company (their main product is hybrid SSD and HDD boxes) don't get so
many mentions on these SSD pages.
- EasyCo - the very
first enterprise SSD software company which was bumped aside by the
technology wave - has found a new market opening selling their
and performance enhancing software to makers of cheap flash storage for phones
and consumer devices. It's no longer world beating IP - but it has its uses.
(And maybe attractive for future patent trolls.)
Anyway - I was reminded about the
above email exchange when I saw GridIron's
release in my email this morning regarding their
GT-1500 Data Accelerator Appliance - a 2U 12TB SSD ASAP - which can
accelerate upto 120TB of back end storage.
In one way this can be
regarded as an extrapolation of
- which was launched 3 years ago. But the difference is in the detail and
sophistication of the hotspot algorithms - which GridIron describe as "multi-zone
behavior profiling (pdf)"
GridIron have a new (to me)
marketing tagline - "Tier 0 Performance at Tier 2 Pricing" -
I don't like SSD
tiers myself - I prefer the idea of
application silos. But GridIron's summary of what they do is better than
Going back to the original question at the start of today's
Do I know any vendors whose SSD software can match or
Overall - the answer is - No. But in many important
areas the answer is - Yes.
In my ramblings today (remember this
started out as a much longer rambling email) you can see that the
SSD software market is
alive, healthy and just as competitive as the flash hardware business.
Apologies to all the other companies I could have named but left out. You'll get
your turn later.
IBM completes acquisition of TMS
Editor:- October 1,
2012 - IBM today
it has completed its acquisition of Texas Memory Systems.
"Flash technology is a game changer for our clients and IBM is
committed to delivering industry-leading Flash-optimized capabilities as a
cornerstone of our Smarter Storage strategy," said Brian Truskowski,
General Manager, IBM System Storage and Networking. "The TMS solutions
extend our broad portfolio of Flash-optimized storage arrays and flash
optimization software, providing our clients unmatched value."
Kaminario does that 20GB/s SPC thing
October 1, 2012 - Kaminario
a new industry-leading
1 benchmark performance in a single cabinet 60TB usable MLC-based
storage system - which costs just under $0.5 million (including 3 years
Kaminario also said that in a forthcoming report
Taneja Group will
validate that this K2 configuration can deliver more than 2 million IOPS and
20GB/s throughput with under 1 mS latency.
funding these public benchmarks is expensive. Kaminario - which last week
additional investments by Mitsui
- has received almost $70 million in funding.
Segmenting the Fastest SSDs List
1, 2012 - When I started publishing a regularly updated list of the
Fastest SSDs list
here on StorageSearch.com over 5 years ago - the format was designed
for a much simpler market than we have today.
One of the weaknesses -
which has been pointed out to me by many readers is that the rackmount SSD
section - which only used to show a single product in each U-size - was
domiunated by RAM SSDs
- whereas what most people actually buy is flash SSDs. I've changed the format
of this article to segment it by
market silo - and
I've increased the number of companies shown to at least 3 - to give readers a
broader starting point.
I haven't forgotten the much more important
Top SSD Companies List either. The new edition - based on the quarter ended
September 30 - will be published later this week.
SSD market research