| leading the way to the
new storage frontier||..|
|what kind of SSD world in
fast can your SSD run backwards?
where are we now
with SSD software?
hidden segments in the enterprise
re frequent flash flier comparisons with EMC|
|Editor:- January 28, 2015 - There's a new blog
on StorageSearch.com which
tells you what I really think about all those frequent flash systems "startups"
who regularly and proudly can't seem to stop comparing their "superior"
new products to systems from EMC.
There was a time when such comparisons were useful.
such claims tell us today?
If you are one of those offenders you may
not like what I say. ...read the
more volatility inevitable in enterprise SSD markets|
|Editor:- January 21, 2015 - "SDS (software
defined storage) is a good example of an illusory market idea for comfortably
bringing technologies together which due to its many incompatible incarnations
which will probably rip many business plans apart."|
That's one of
the things I say in my new blog - what
kind of SSD world 2015? - on StorageSearch.com
not saying that SDS isn't important...
In the very same blog I point
out that (due to their inherent flexibility) an installed base of server based
SSD storage systems will be among the few types of enterprise flash products
being marketed today which will still be reusable when many other so called "all
flash arrays" (which have been designed only for backwards looking
compatibilities) get sidelined and orphaned by future generations of
SSD everywhere software.
We're still a long way from having stable and enduring reference
platforms for the enterprise SSD age - which means more change is inevitable.
...read the article
designers have refocused and chosen the viable reality of excellence in selected
niches above the less feasible goal of having the best technology roadmap for
|12 key SSD
ideas in 2014|
|Western Digital invests in
Skyera's MRAM supplier|
Editor:- January 26, 2015 - Western Digital's
investment unit was among the investors in a $29 million series B funding
round in Everspin
President and CEO of Everspin said "With a leading worldwide foundry and
storage customer participating in Everspin's Series B investment round, the
entire industry spectrum is acknowledging ST-MRAM as the leading contender to
drive beyond the limits of current mainstream memory."
comments:- Everspin's MRAM is
tier of the non volatile caching technology used in
Skyera - and my guess is that this investment in Everspin is to take out some of
the risk of future availability of these memory parts at a time when an assured
supply at higher volume may soon be needed.
So you want x3 (TLC) and 3D?
Editor:- January 23,
2015 - Even if you already thought that
and DSP was an essential way for getting usable SSDs out of smaller 2D nand
flash - then there are even more reasons for using this technology on the
journey into 3D.
That's the conclusion you'll come away with after
paper (presented at the 2014 Flash
Memory Summit) called
Necessity for a Memory Modem in 3D Memories (pdf)
things in this paper:- DensBits says that the scope for inter-cell interference
grows from 8 identifiable routes in 2D to 26 for each cell in 3D.
memory modem technology (DensBits's branding for their collection of adaptive
R/W DSP IPs) will (over and above everything it already does for 2D)
intelligently decouple read operations according to the severity of read
operations expected in the new 3D architectures - and even supports the notion
of TLC (x3) within 3D. (Which "needs state of art decoder and signal
Their conclusion? - Memory Modem technology is
required for 3D NAND scaling ...read
PS - I know it's not new news - but I hadn't
mentioned this article before and I think this type of technology will have a
big impact on the SSD market in the next year or so as it weaves its way into
SSDs made by the licensees.
Diablo appeals shipment injunction
says court was misled
January 14, 2015 -
that it has appealed the court ruling (reported earlier this week - and
initiated by Netlist)
which had granted a preliminary injunction to halt Diablo's shipments of Memory
Channel Storage based chipsets.
Diablo's appeal explains that the
ruling is based on an erroneous interpretation of the contract and a failure to
recognize the technology differences among the products involved.
importantly, however, the court did not find that Diablo MCS uses
Netlist trade secrets.
Diablo says - to support the judgment, the
order effectively rewrites the language in the contract signed by the parties in
2008: the additional words included in the order changed the terms of the
contract significantly and imposed a new obligation that was not agreed between
the parties. In other words, there was no violation by Diablo of the original
contract. The court was misled about important technology distinctions:
court relied on Netlist's representation that their HyperCloud and Diablo MCS "are
used to perform the same function" which is not the case because the
HyperCloud is DRAM (memory) and Diablo MCS is a block storage device (disk).
The court also relied on Netlist's representation that the products
are competitive because they both "attach to the same memory channel."
Diablo also says "Netlist equates the 2 devices simply because
they use the same location and i/o channel; extending that logic would equate
all devices that reside in PCIe slots, which would be a similarly erroneous
"It is important that the facts of the case are well understood;
it should also be stressed that the court did not determine that Diablo uses
Netlist trade secrets," stated Riccardo
Badalone, CEO and co-founder of Diablo Technologies. "We offer an
innovative storage device that gives customers great performance advantages, but
with this injunction, the court is putting our company and our customers at
risk. With this appeal, we expect to reverse this decision and get back to
Editor's comments:- are Netlist's products functionally
different to those using Diablo's architecture?
Yes! The differences
are so great that the 2 products are listed in different directories here on
Channel Storage SSDs - which encompasses low latency, fast flash SSDs which
plug into DIMM sockets and transfer data via interfaces which were originally
designed for DRAM.
The fact that standards organizations and some vendors have
historically used the term "flash DIMM" in the context of both types
of products - has contributed to industry confusion.
- hybrid DIMMs, NV
DIMMs, flash backed DRAM DIMMs - which includes DRAM modules which
automatically save their contents when electrical power drops to an integrated
non volatile memory from which the data is reloaded after normal power is
But the term -
flash DIMM - is a description of the physical form factor - and tells you
nothing about the operation and functionality of the device from a data
architecture point of view.
The differences are vast and immediately
obvious to anyone who's technical. But I was wondering how would I explain the
gulf of difference to someone who doesn't know anything about computer design.
analogy goes like this... Suppose someone offered you the choice of 2 types of
backpack when you started a balloon ride.
One is a parachute, the
other is a jetpack.
They both perform different functions - although -
until you activate their functions they both might look the same.
I know you need a higher skillset to operate the jetpack.
also need a much more developed
SSD software support
ecosystem to deploy memory channel SSDs too.
California Court halts sales of ULLtraDIMM SSDs
January 13, 2015 - Netlist
that the US District Court for the Northern District of California has granted
Netlist's motion for a preliminary injunction against Diablo Technologies for
controller chips used by SanDisk
in its high-speed ULLtraDIMM SSD product line.
Under the court's
order, Diablo and SanDisk are prohibited from manufacturing and selling the
controller chipset used by SanDisk in the ULLtraDIMM and as a result, from
further sale or distribution of the ULLtraDIMM itself.
Rogers - also rejected SanDisk's motion for reconsideration, asking
that it be allowed to sell existing inventory of the enjoined products.
The court advanced the trial date to March 9, 2015, for Netlist's claims upon
which the motion was decided, including claims against Diablo for trade secret
misappropriation, breach of contract, and other causes of action related to the
components supplied by Diablo for the ULLtraDIMM.
The court's order
specifically identifies the ULLtraDIMM as well as the eXFlash modules from
IBM, although the
injunction affects all modules containing Diablo components.
comments:- the possibility of such a injunction has been discussed in
before. At the heart of the dispute are whether an earlier design collaboration
between Netlist and Diablo included the rights for both companies to use a
critical interface design in the DIMM bus facing part of Diablo's memory channel
storage design. A patent ruling on
December 29, 2014
upheld Netlist's patents related to this.
The court case related to
the injunction stems from Netlist's argument that if Diablo did not have the
right to use the interface technology - then it follows that any design - such
as the ULLtraDIMM SSD - which relies on such internal technology - should only
be disallowed - pending any future agreement about licensing such a technology.
(Which it may not choose to do.)
Netlist wants to create a low latency
memory channel SSD product line of its own.
And even though Netlist
is more than a year behind the productization of this integrated technology
(compared to the first generation ULLtraDIMM designed Diablo and
SMART Storage -
which was acquired by SanDisk) the case from Netlist is that the market must
wait for its own design or any designs for which it grants licenses.
the Diablo side - its argument has been that they thought they had an
agreement which allowed them to use the DIMM interface technology (in whose
implementation they participated) in products which were different to Netlist's
flash backed DIMMs.
stake is a future market for server based accelerators which could be worth a
low double digit percentage of the entire
enterprise PCIe SSD market.
inconceivable that a small company like Netlist or Diablo would be able to
satisfy such demands on their own - especially given the fact that neither has
any core IP related to
But future licensing partners (or wouldbe
acquirers) need to be satisfied that the core technology they're using - is
patent troll proof.
Greenliant enters enterprise PCIe SSD market
January 12, 2015 - Greenliant
Systems - has entered the entry level enterprise
NVME PCIe SSD market -
of its new G7100 (pdf)
series MLC gen 2 x4 PCIe SSDs - upto 2.75 TB raw capacity, Full Height, Half
Length form factor, 130K / 60K
of upto 10 DWPD for 5
Internally Greenliant's new PCIe SSD has a
RAID protected array of
miniature NANDrive SSDs which use the company's own controllers.
our in-depth flash memory knowledge and volume-proven NAND controller expertise,
Greenliant is addressing the industry's increasing need for higher reliability,
higher performance and larger capacity flash-based storage solutions," said
CEO of Greenliant Systems.
Editor's comments:- ever since the
company was founded - in 2010 - Greenliant's focus has been on the
embedded SSD market. So it's surprising to see this new product aimed at
the "enterprise" market. However it's part of an
trend in the market.
SanDisk spins off NexGen
Editor:- January 8, 2015 -
clarified that "Hybrid systems incorporating hard-disk drives are not part
of SanDisk's strategic focus."
This strategy direction statement
by Sumit Sadana,
executive VP and chief strategy officer, SanDisk was part of an
today that SanDisk has completed the spin-out of Fusion-io's
ioControl (hybrid SSD systems) business as a separate company called NexGen Storage.
has agreed to be a supplier of
PCIe flash storage
technology to NexGen but will not maintain an ownership interest.
will be led by John
Spiers who was co-founder and CEO of the original NexGen company before
by Fusion-io in April
2013 (for $119 million).
Editor's comments:- In
retrospect Fusion-io's acquisition of NexGen was a mistake.
didn't have enough cash or people resources to invest in bootstrapping 2
entirely new systems businesses (one in the fast SSD rackmount market, and the
other (based on NexGen) in the
hybrid SSD appliance
market) at a time when both markets were already becoming much more
Can NexGen succeed as a standalone company?
Hundreds of other companies are also competing in the hybrid market
- so you can ask them. Most likely NexGen will get acquired again.
Toshiba shows early version of BGA PCIe SSD
January 7, 2015 - Toshiba
it will showcase a prototype of the world's first PCIe single package SSD -
with up to 256GB in a single BGA package at
CES this week. The NVMe compatible device
fits into 16mm x 20mm x 1.65mm and weighs under 1g. See also:-
InnoDisk's ServerDOM wins excellence award
January 7, 2015 - InnoDisk
it has received the 2015
Taiwan Excellence Award for its
(SATA SSD) which can
be used as a boot drive in 1U servers.
storage space for enterprise servers is a precious resource. InnoDisk's
ServerDOM (20mm x 31mm x 7mm) fits onto the
SATA connector of
modern enterprise servers (from which it draws power). A 2nd failover drive can
be snugly fitted - as shown above - if needed for
Samsung mass producing gen 3 PCIe SSDs for notebooks
January 7, 2015 - 19 months after launching its first M.2 PCIe gen 2 SSDs
aimed at the
(pdf) in June
2013) - Samsung
said it is now mass producing the follow-up SM951 - which supports gen 3
Samsung says - "For ultra-slim notebooks and workstations
the SM951 can read and write sequentially at 2,150MB/s and 1,550 MB/s
The SM951 is the first SSD to adopt L1.2 low
power standby mode (the PCIe
SSD equivalent of the power saving
mode in SATA SSDs) .
When hibernating in
mode, the SM951's power consumption is less than 2mW.
Cactus SSDs helped over 100,000 drivers avoid getting lost
January 6, 2015 - Cactus
it has shipped over 100,000 units of its
Series (32GB MLC) - 2.5"
PATA SSDs - to a
German automotive OEM company for use in their infotainment (integrated audio
entertainment and GPS navigation) systems.
OCZ unveils new controller
Editor:- January 5, 2015
it would showcase its new JetExpress SSD controller this week at
JetExpress will be the
heart and soul of OCZ's future product line. JetExpress silicon is native SATA
and PCIe/NVMe and will support multiple form factors including M.2, 2.5-inch
SATA, and SFF-8639 which enables
PCI Express speeds in
a compact 2.5-inch form factor.
Web-Feet sizes 2015 industrial SSD market
January 4, 2015 - Help is available if you're trying to grapple with estimating
the size and likely shape of the
it has released a report ($5,550) which includes forecasts for Industrial
Markets and Applications.
What's in it? Among other things - the
report's author Alan
says... "Within each of the 6 commercial sub-markets:
Networking/Telecom, Connected Home, Automotive, Industrial, Medical, and
Avionics/Aerospace/Military the forecast of SSDs, Embedded Flash Drives (EFD),
and Flash Cards are quantified for over 40 end-use applications. This forecast
provides a separate breakout for SSDs by form factor including modules and
another section for EFDs and Flash Cards by form factor for units and average
capacity and revenue. Geographic splits are also included."
WD demos 3.5" PCIe hybrid HDD
2, 2015 - "WD is committed to working with the industry to push the
boundaries of what you might expect from a traditional
hard drive," said
Rutledge, senior VP , Storage Technology, WD recently as the company
the demonstration of a prototype 3.5"
WD's 4TB 3.5" hybrid hard drive includes upto 128GB flash cache
and looks like a single volume to the application.
what's up and upcoming at StorageSearch.com?
January 1, 2015 - SSD readership and article downloads on StorageSearch.com increased 10%
and 20% respectively in December 2014 compared to the year ago period.
While it's nice for me that both are up - it's better that stickiness is up
|In January 2000 - Memorex
entered the CompactFlash market with a range of cards offering upto 128MB
capacity - which was priced at $399.95|
Michelangelo was looking for David.
was looking for the inner SSD.
SSD news icon on StorageSearch.com since