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Notebook SSD Unreliability Story is Unreliable.......
Editor:- in March 2008 - a CNET article insinuating high customer reject rates for Dell's SSD based notebooks was speedily dismissed as not true.

Stories about storage reliability can't always be taken at face value.

Flash SSDs came from the military and industrial applications where bad things can happen - but the SSDs have to survive. So don't assume from one little story that flash SSDs have intrinsic secret problems. The unsecret ones I'll tell you about.

I remember similar things happening with ST-506 interface 5.25" hard drives in the mid 1980s. In my own experience I had a batch with over 50% DOAs. But how many were dead when they left the disk factory - compared to how many had been killed by handling in our own factory was a moot point.

In the early 1990s a leading European PC maker Amstrad sued both Western Digital and Seagate for market damage allegedly due to unreliable hard disks. That bounced around for years and I can't remember how it ended. There were many other similar stories too. Eventually PC makers learned how to handle HDDs more gently and HDD reliability and ruggedness improved too.

A few months ago I predicted that many SSD customers could be unhappy with mis-sold products not delivering the anticipated application speedups. In that context I was thinking about EMC SSDs. Enterprises can only afford fractional capacity shifts to solid state. But if you don't put the critical files in the SSD you don't get a speedup - just the check. That means the human part of the integration process is critical to customer satisfaction. 2 different SSD wizards integrating the same rackmount SSD in the same customer site might get 2 different application speedups (or none at all.)

Back to today's story. I don't know the details - but I do know that the difference in performance between flash SSDs on the market today is like the difference in speed between a pushbike and a Porsche. Just buying something with wheels doesn't mean you'll get the ultimate speed. You have to see if it's got an engine. And make sure the wheels are screwed on tight.

The wheel falling off my wife's car because I didn't tighten it properly - is another story...

What's that rattling noise and vibration? - we both asked as the bolts started popping out and the whole car vibrated badly on our dash to catch the ferry for an island vacation.
storage reliability We didn't have time to stop. I thought it was air turbulence due to me ripping a hole in the underbody protection sheet when the jack (on our gravel drive) had slipped. So I wasn't too worried. But I should have been.
see also:-

Increasing Flash Solid State Disk Reliability
93 more Articles, FAQs, Case Studies about SSDs
Z's Laws - Predicting Future Flash SSD Performance
Why Consumers Can Expect More Flaky Flash SSDs!
Understanding Data Failure Modes in Large SSD Arrays
1.8 inch storage drives
1.8" storage drives
It was hard to see the uniforms on the little
storage drives in the trenches down below.

user installable notebook SSDs  from RunCore - click for more info
user installable notebook SSDs
from RunCore
Are MLC SSDs Ever Safe in Enterprise Apps?
This is a follow up article to the popular SSD Myths and Legends which, a year earlier demolished the myth that flash memory wear-out (a comfort blanket beloved by many RAM SSD makers) precluded the use of flash in heavy duty datacenters.

This new article looks at the risks posed by MLC Nand Flash SSDs which have recently hatched from their breeeding ground as chip modules in cellphones and morphed into hard disk form factors.
which technology to choose? - read the article It starts down a familiar lane but an unexpected technology twist (which arrived in my email while writing this article) takes you to a startling new world of possibilities. the article
storage history (1949 till last week) STORAGEsearch SPARC Product Directory ACSL - the publisher