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SMART Modular / SMART High Reliability Solutions

SMART Modular is a leader in the design, manufacture and supply of specialty memory and storage solutions. Combining leading-edge design and manufacturing with proven world-class support, SMART Modular leverages its deep expertise in DRAM and Flash architectures, with customer-specific design focus. SMART Modular delivers high-quality, high-reliability solutions to a broad customer base, including computing, networking and telecom OEMs as well as printer, storage, automotive, mobile and industrial customers. SMART Modular is part of the SMART family of global companies. See for more information.

See also:- SMART SSD related overview pages

who's who in SSD? - SMART group

by Zsolt Kerekes, editor - - October 29, 2014

SMART Modular operates in the industrial SSD market (with an emphasis on smaller and tiny form factors), and also in the hybrid DIMM and RAM markets - whereas SMART High Reliability Solutions provides SSDs (mostly 2.5") aimed at the military market.

The current SMART product ranges were based on an earlier company SMART Modular Technologies - which was reorganized by its owner Silver Lake during 2011 - 2012 into 2 parts:-
  • a memory and rugged embedded SSD business - which was the core of the current SMART activities
That still left the current SMART in possession of a strong heritage in enterprise memory IP and rugged SSD design - but without the adaptive R/W flash management technology which enabled SMART Storage to use consumer grade flash in enterprise systems - which had been the prime motivator behind that acquisition by SanDisk.

In a recent conversation with key product managers in SMART Modular - the company told me...

"We don't use TLC flash and have no plans to do so. The only flash we use is SLC or MLC from known good die and from sources we trust and processes we have characterized."

Coping with the reality of what the company acknowledges is a very fragmented industrial market - SMART Modular also does custom design work - and for those customers who want extra confidence in their embedded memories and SSDs - they can be screened via burn-in - and made according to agreed BOMs which specify the exact original source of critical parts such as memory.
SMART mentions in SSD market history

April 2001 - Centennial (a leading supplier of PATA flash) changed its name to SMART Modular Technologies.

In February 2008 - SMART acquired Adtron - which had been one of the Top 10 SSD companies in Q4 2007.

In August 2011 - SMART Modular Technologies was acquired by private equity company Silver Lake.

In September 2012 - SMART Modular Technologies announced that it had commenced litigation for patent infringement against Netlist against its HyperCloud DIMM products (flash backed DRAM DIMMs)

In October 2013 - SMART Modular announced that its DDR3 Non-Volatile DIMMs (NVDIMMs) were fully compatible with and automatically recognized by the BIOS on new Supermicro X9DRH-iF-NV server boards.


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SSD ad - click for more info
In 2015 a reader asked me why was it so hard to find suppliers of RAM SSDs? And sure enough - when looking at past product lines - they all seemed to have reached a dead end. Aha! There was a simple explanation.
flash backed DIMMs

SSD ad - click for more info

"People look at retail ads for microSD cards and see a 4GB card for ~$5, whereas an industrial grade part is many times that amount.

"Many, younger designers (and older ones too) think you are trying to pull a fast one on them because the parts look identical and function in the same socket."
Steve Larrivee, Cactus Technologies in reply to a question about SSD education - and the differences between SLC and MLC for embedded industrial projects - (April 8, 2014)

click here for more info about the Guardian SSD
highest integrity 2.5" military SATA SSDs
with SnapPurge and AES-256 encryption
TRRUST-STOR - from Microsemi

Acquisitions reported in 2014 seemed to indicate that SSD companies aren't worth as much as they were before.

It seems perverse - given that the overall market opportunity for SSDs is now generally assumed to be much larger than it was before.
10 key SSD ideas which became clearer in 2014 is published by ACSL