| leading the way to the
new storage frontier||...|
popular SSD articles
the Top SSD Companies
what's the state of DWPD?
pressures and projections in enterprise flash
applications developers do about all the possible permutations (interface and
memory technology) emerging in the market for persistent storage class memory?"|
|That question is posed by Nisha Talagala,
VP Engineering - Parallel
Machines who goes on to discuss the technical design challenges and
suggests strategies in a recent
In order to be widely adopted, any general
abstraction solution has to embrace the business ambition of delivering
competitively useful performance.
Nisha tackles that concern head on
"Persistent memory can be mapped in multiple ways
depending on the hardware. We need to ensure that each memory type is default
mapped to the optimal model possible for its physical attach."
paper compares and notes the performance boundary choke points of several
popular interface and memory (hybrid DIMM,
server RAM) and suggests that transparent tiering between PM and flash is a
viable software architecture approach which can deliver near optimal
performance for local and remote PM. ...read
blog re cost of DRAM for big inmemory users |
|Editor:- November 13, 2015 - The use of the word "unfortunately"
made me smile when I saw it in a new
published yesterday by Riccardo
Badalone, CEO - Diablo
The blog is about how the cost of DRAM impacts
users who want to run large datasets in memory (using thousands of servers to
get the memory they want).
Among other things Riccardo writes this - "Intel
and Micron, for example, cited the DRAM issue when they announced a new 3D
XPoint memory substrate that they say will be significantly denser and less
expensive that current DRAM. Unfortunately, their technology won't be
ready for a number of years."
Editor's comment:- I would
say it's unfortunate for Intel and Micron - but extremely fortunate for Diablo
that it won't be ready for years.
Diablo's solution for the same
DRAM cost problem - Memory1 (see my
about this) - uses flash instead of exotic new nvm.
Re - "wont
be ready for a number of years" if you're wondering about how much to
trust that assessment - it's for the obvious reason that even if the new 3D
XPoint memory does exactly what is claimed - it will take years to collect the
type of reliability data needed to convince the enterprise market to adopt it
in mission critical roles.
Riccardo's blog -
Surprising Role in the High Cost of Data Centers is a good read - but
doesn't contain any new ideas. It just goes over the same ground (and uses the
same examples) as Diablo cited in their Memory1 product launch in
role for a Radian Memory SSD?|
|Editor:- November 11, 2015 - My first
instinctive impressions about new SSD products are mostly absolutely right -
but sometimes they can be dead wrong. |
That's why I test my
riskiest SSD assertions in reader one on ones before simply casting them
onto the web.
If you're interested you can see some of the internal
processes at work in my new blog -
what's the role for a
Radian Memory SSD?
Radian Memory was one
of several interesting SSD companies which emerged from stealth this year and
their software was awarded best software of the show award at the Flash Memory Summit.
was obvious to me from the first briefing email before FMS - that this product
set - which includes 2.5" NVMe PCIe SSDs was a market milestone kind of
But even after all the papers and pdfs and datasheets
there were still some questions which remained unclear to me concerning the
limitations in how system architects could deploy it? And what were the ideal
kinds of roles for this type of SSD? I got good answers from Radian's CEO - whom
I had previously spoken with 12 years before.
article to learn more
up DWPD |
|Editor:- October 28, 2015 - DWPD ratings have
become a useful shortcut to filter enterprise SSDs because there's an
industry-wide consensus that the number should somehow map into
application zones and price bands. |
This shows how optimistic the
SSD market mood still is today - when you factor in the jitter level
uncertainty of exactly how elastic that DWPD drive number really is (in the
minds of its creators) and how much it will get twisted around, modified and
stretched when it meets up with the
(is it really) DRAM,
software and SSD
array cousins with which it will cohabit life in the
well and good - and my reference article on
DWPD examples in the market
was already becoming quite popular earlier this year (which was no surprise -
as it's simply another way of talking about
when I got a wake up email (in April 2015) about a new military grade
industrial SSD which had a DWPD rating.
I didn't write about it at
the time because even though the product had been stealthily working its way
into designs it hadn't been publicly launched. Nevertheless I kept my eyes
open for signs that others might also be doing similar things.
similar things being:- the growing use of enterprise architecture in mobile
datacenters and portable and remote rugged systems.
SSDs have been
used in such systems for over 25 years - but often this was essentially a
repackaging exercise to place a rack of industry standard stuff into a
dustproof, ant-fungus treated, drop resistant box with an invertor so it could
run off batteries while keeping the weight and size down so it could be
lifted onto a truck or plane and survive long enough to do useful
data-capture and analysis in the field.
The modern aspirations of
these engineering systems are to do more of the same old things in less
space but also to do entirely new things in widgets which you'll probably see
in season 20 of NCIS.
That's why you're going to see more military
grade, secure, rugged, industrial SSDs coming onto the market with full fledged
It's no longer just an enterprise market parameter.
DWPD rated SSDs are
|What were the big SSD ideas of 2015?|
Editor:- November 25,
2015 - StorageSearch.com
has published a new home page blog -
SSD year 2015 -
the 3 big ideas.
IHS names 3 enterprise SSD billion dollar revenue companies
November 20, 2015 - Earlier this year I promised you a $billion / year
enterprise SSD companies list (which I haven't done yet).
can't wait (and like short lists) then IHS
has done this already for enterprise SSD drives (which excludes
IHS's list of enterprise SSD billionaires include 3
can see the numbers in a new article
Among other things it says "IHS
forecasts that the SSD market to pass $13 billion in revenues this year and will
surpass HDDs in revenue by 2019 with $20.8 billion versus $19.6 billion."
As you may recall I said something similar (the SSD market will be
bigger in revenue than the HDD market ever was) in my 2012 article -
How will the hard
drive market fare... in a solid state storage world?
Netlist allies with Samsung to codevelop flash-as-RAM DIMMs
November 19, 2015 - Netlist
how it's going to enter the storage class memory SSD DIMM wars market. This by
way of a 5 year joint development and license with Samsung which also
brings to the table $23 million of funding. The companies expect to sample
products in 2016.
Editor's comments:- 2015 was a signficant
kick-start year for the server memory market.
retiering enterprise DRAM was one of the three big SSD ideas of the year.
See also:- what's RAM
Themis ships rugged mobile datacenter platform
November 17, 2015 - Themis Computer
immediate availability of a rugged
rackmount SSD system - called
integrates scalable SDS architecture software from Atlantis Computing
with 4 ruggedized, 8 hot pluggable SSD drive, RES-XR5-1U rack mounted servers
(with 1.5TB to 16TB raw capacity per node) to run virtualized applications
for rugged mobile datacenter applications.
"With the Hyper-Unity
solution, Themis and Atlantis Computing are changing the way that the DoD buys
and consumes storage" said Bill Kehret, president and CEO of Themis
Computer. "The DoD requires enhanced reliability, ultra-fast,
cost-effective storage from a trusted source on hardware built to survive
the rigors of demanding environments..."
hybrid arrays and HA - an INFINIDAT customer perspective
November 17, 2015 - How
hybrid storage arrays?
Here's a neat quote from INFINIDAT from one
who said - "We conducted numerous failure tests, ranging from taking out a
node to pulling multiple disks, and the
InfiniBox didn't blink an
Micron prefers Persistent Memory to hybrid DIMMs
November 11, 2015 - On the subject of
SSD names which sell
products more effectively - Micron this week
seemed keen to emphasize the newer term "persistent memory"
instead of the more common (but slightly ambiguous) "NVDIMM" in
the text of its
release about a new 8GB DDR4 model in this category (more precisely called
flash backed DIMMs
and also other things).
"Persistent Memory" is a better
SEO honey trap and brand differentiation warmer to anticipated future
stories from Micron about its (look Ma - no flash!)
XPoint (or whatever other name it may have when it eventually appears in
Western Digital partners with UNIS to mine datacenter
opportunities in China
Editor:- November 9, 2015 -Western Digital today
an agreement with UNIS to form a
joint venture to market and sell WD's data center storage systems in China
and to develop data center storage solutions for the Chinese market in the
Editor's comments:- in recent years we've seen China
becoming the dominant market for adopting innovation in many types of
large scale data systems. And because of that many
companies have strategically seeded more of their forward looking SSD
architectural thought assets in that direction (if they didn't originally come
from there in the first place).
With this agreement WD is following a
well established trend - as the speed of its market reactions have been
slugged in the past due to regulatory issues arising from the legacy of its
dominance in the hard
dual port GbE and USB in the same M.2 SSD from InnoDisk
November 3, 2015 - InnoDisk
a product first for the M.2 SSD
market in the shape of a dual port isolated GbE compatible model -
EGUL-G201 - which also has a USB
3 interface, and fits in a 22x60mm footprint. InnoDisk says the ethernet modules
have strong electrical isolation, ESD and surge protection.
the Top 40 SSD articles in October
2, 2015 - For the past 12 months there has been a low priority reminder
nagging away at my internal to-do list. Note to self - must update the list
SSD articles on StorageSearch.com. There was always something with a higher
priority. Anyway I've done it now.
3D X-Point could shrink DRAM market by 1/3 in 5 years- says
Editor:- October 23 , 2015 - Coughlin Associates
has recently published a new
report on Emerging Non-Volatile Memory and Spin Logic (163 pages,
The memories addressed in this report
(pdf) include PRAM, RRAM, MRAM, STT MRAM as well as the recently announced
3D X-Point Technology.
X-Point Technology will have a big impact on
DRAM growth (with DRAM
sales down $6.7 billion to $15.6 billion due to XPoint by 2020) with XPoint
revenues of $663 million to $1.5 billion by 2020.
MRAM and STT MRAM
revenue is estimated at $1.4 billion to $3.2 billion by 2020. Manufacturing
equipment revenue for MRAM and STT MRAM production is estimated to be between
$159 million and $294 million by 2020.
market research directory,
SanDisk hops into WDC's flash shopping basket
October 22, 2015 - Following weeks of speculation and leaks came the
yesterday that Western
Digital has indeed agreed to acquire SanDisk in a deal
valued at $19 billion.
If all goes as planned the transaction is
expected to close in the 3rd calendar quarter of 2016.
comments:- From an SSD server storage competitive landscape perspective I
think this is more significant than the
Dell deal. Because it
will impact the design, availability, competitive market health and future
direction of many classic SSD product types in a far reaching way which could
only be matched if Dell were to acquire
play a big factor too.
Looking back at past acquisitions by WDC
you shouldn't expect anything to come out the other end of the digester
before the end of 2017.
And in that time - 2 years hence - many things
in the SSD market will be different.
Some of SanDisk's best known
enterprise SSD product lines (PCIe, SAS and SATA cloud) are already looking as
if they were designed for a different movie generation.
got a perfect Bogart lookalike for a remake of Casablanca, but
webscale casting is hooked on an idea more like Tyrion Lannister
in Game of Thrones.)
In PCIe server sockets SanDisk has
the curve in NVMe, while in 2.5" storage arrays - new adaptive
intelligence flow symmetry
- which is emerging in many different forms - means that in the extreme case
of cloud deployments -
a single SSD with customized firmware - can replace 2 old style SATA SSDs.
the other hand - SanDisk has more than amply demonstrated its willingness and
capability to integrate flash memory in the enterprise outside traditional SSD
comfort zones:- in server based DIMMs and analytics scale big data memory.
Those market experiments haven't generated much revenue yet but
are the early steps on a learning curve which all memory makers will have to
explore. The combination of that software capability and access to consumer
scale, low cost flash will probably be more use to WDC than any single
What happens in the meantime?
As we've seen
before in such long drawn out acquisitions - it's inevitable that some
SanDisk product developments will slow down and wither on the vine.
the other hand - there will also be pressure to accelerate new product
introductions too. You could say - it will be business as usual - but without
so many distractions coming from the investor angle.
Looking ahead to
a post WDC SanDisk...
WDC has a track record of swiftly EOLing
perfectly adequate SSD products which came bundled in the shopping basket but
didn't have high volumes and market scale.
This is a story which
you'll be reading about for a long time to come.
Permabit shrinks data in new flash boxes from BiTMICRO
October 20, 2015 - Permabit
that its inline dedupe and compression software is used in BiTMICRO's new
rackmount SSD white boxes - which include a 1U iSCSI appliance (20x 2.5"
TB SSD shown at FMS) and a 3U
fast SSD server (8x PCIe SSDs) which is due to be shipped this quarter.
What happened before? - See the
SSD news archive