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How did we get into such a mess - with SSD software?
Decloaking hidden preference segments in the enterprise
nice vs naughty - the epic saga of flash wars in the enterprise
"compared to EMC" - the dreams and illusions of AFA startups
90% of the enterprise SSD companies which you know have no good reasons to survive
In the home page blog on I look at drivers, mechanisms and routes towards consolidation in the enterprise SSD systems market along with some other outrageous and dangerous ideas. The conclusion?

"90% of the enterprise SSD companies which you know have no good reasons to survive."

Before publication - I discussed these ideas for about 3 months with strategically placed readers (big users, VCs and vendors) and since the article was published you won't be surprised when I tell you it has been the central core of many private conversations since. the article
SSD ad - click for more info

5 years ago in SSD market history
In May 2010 - SandForce announced a branding program for its SSD controllers - based around the concept of - "SandForce Driven SSDs".

At the time SandForce was already the best known SSD controller company.

I discussed these issues in an article - Imprinting the brain of the SSD

How the market went from:- Who cares? - to - You care! - about the identity of SSD controllers.

Toshiba demonstrates 3.5" ethernet hybrid
Editor:- May 18, 2015 - Toshiba today announced demonstrations of a new hybrid drive which combines HDD and flash in a 3.5" form factor with an Ethernet interface.
hybrid SSDs & HDDs click for articles and reports
hybrid drives

Editor's comments:- for reasons which were obvious to systems architects 10 years ago - and haven't changed today - you will always get better control of performance and cost by designing a hybrid storage array with distinctly separate HDDs and SSDs compared to combining both these functions in a single type of drive.

But the dream of combining these functions in a single drive to add value to hard drives does re-emerge in different guises from time to time.

The only merit I can see to such a product - as the new hybrid from Toshiba - is that if you have very simplistic and primitively designed systems software, combined with using large arrays in a single type of applicaton - then combining both the flash and magnetic storage in a single drive could simplify the high availability aspects of the design by spreading the risk and consequences of drive failures in a homogenistic way which makes writing the software easier.

In the consumer market - where we've seen most of the past market experiments with hybrid drives - it doesn't matter if the product is withdrawn from the market after a year or so - because the design costs only have to make sense for a brief window of market opportunity.

But in the enterprise market - the risks of committing an array design to a drive type which is single sourced and hasn't got an independently arguable credible future roadmap means that such system implementations are rare.

which market uses the highest capacity PCIe SSDs?
Editor:- May 12, 2015 - Unlike the enterprise market where nearly everyone uses technologies which are recognizably similar to everyone else - we don't hear so much about advances in embedded industrial markets - because a technique which pushes the state of the art for one industrial customer may be of no interest to nearly everyone else.

Now I'm hearing more stories in which increasing SSD capacity in confined rugged spaces is the difference.

Yesterday it was a customer story from Waitan about designing and supplying high capacity PCIe SSD modules for use on a drilling platform. That was an application where paying more for the SSD to fit the space was cheaper than making more space for the SSD.

This morning I learned that TCS (which is in the rugged industrial, space and defense markets) is working with Novachips to introduce high capacity HyperLink SSDs into their rugged SSD range.

If you've got something similar - particularly in the mobile datacenter context - send me an email with the details.

still the same positioning for new generation of SanDisk inside Fusion ioMemory PCIe SSDs
Editor:- April 28, 2015 - Back in the summer of 2012 - at which time the PCIe SSD market was already well served by many strong (and soon to be acquired) competitors (as you can see in this archived news page from September 2012) I came up with a short phrase to summarize the positioning of Fusion-io's products (in ads here) which ran like this...

"the standard for enterprise PCIe SSDs by which all others are judged:- ioDrives from Fusion-io".

About a year later (in about December 2013) when I was seeking for a way to refine that description - I updated that summary to...

"(still) the standard for enterprise PCIe SSDs by which all others are judged:- ioDrives from Fusion-io."

The reason I mention that is to show how phrases which appear in ads can stick in readers' minds years later and resurface in everyday conversations.

This is something which (as I've got no formal qualifications in writing) I had never really thought about until I heard a lecture on this very point by Professor Brooks Landon in an episode of his audio series "Building Great Sentences" - a series which I dip into from time to time - originally triggered by the hope that I might learn some useful tricks I could apply to my scribbles on this site but a series which as I heard more episodes sustained my interest more so because it took me to unexpected panoramas of word writing virtuosity which have probably given me more pleasure as a spectator than the haphazard impressionistic experiments in recycling his word craft which I sometimes inflict on you .

So you can imagine my delight at seeing a recent press release from SanDisk about a new generation of Fusion ioMemory PCIe SSDs which among other things included this statement by John Scaramuzzo, senior VP and GM, Enterprise Storage Solutions, SanDisk.

"Fusion-io's technology fundamentally transformed expectations about data center performance when it debuted 8 years ago and it remains the standard by which all other PCIe products are judged.

Also in this news story we learn that over 250,000 of these accelerators have been deployed by over 7,000 customers. And that having been re-engineered to use SanDisk memory - the new models cost a lot less than the previous generation ioDrive2 product, and are 2x faster at reads.

from the SSD history archive
Toshiba samples 48-layer 3D nand

8TB 2.5" PCIe SSDs sampling soon from Novachips

SanDisk launches white box rackmount SSD - InfiniFlash
Avago acquires Emulex for $600 million

FalconStor's FreeStor enters SSD platform market

$34 million funded Springpath emerges from stealth

Northwest Logic provides FPGA support for Everspin's MRAM
Novachips acquires HLNAND

Toshiba shows 1st BGA PCIe SSDs

Netlist gets preliminary injunction on manufacture of ULLtraDIMM SSDs

Western Digital acquires Skyera

Kaminario gets another $53 million funding

Netlist revalidates core patent related to ULLtraDIMM's
Steve Wozniak joins Primary Data

Foremay readies 8TB 2.5" military SSDs
Netlist asks court to shut down SanDisk's ULLtraDIMM

Memblaze launches new 14S latency PCIe SSDs in Europe
A3CUBE - first US customer shipments soon

Samsung mass produces 3TB 3D 10 DWPD PCIe SSDs

Seagate reports low take up of hybrid drives
Samsung ships 10nm SAS SSDs

Diablo unveils DDR-4 flash DIMM SSDs

SanDisk launches ZetaScale (enterprise flash memory tier software)

NxGn Data exits stealth with promise of in-situ SSD processing
SanDisk to buy Fusion-io

IBM is #1 in rackmount SSD revenue
Seagate agrees to acquire LSI's flash business for $450 million

Kaminario guarantees amplified usable capacity
SanDisk samples 4TB 2.5" SAS SSDs

Violin enters the SSD integrated server market
Samsung says its 2.5" NVMe PCIe SSD are 3x faster than 12Gbps SAS SSDs
A3CUBE unveils PCIe memory fabric for 10,000 node-class architectures

Marvell samples 5K IOPS smartphone SSD (eMMC 5.0)
IBM revamps TMS rackmount SSDs and launches memory channel SSD servers (with SanDisk / Diablo inside)

Half Micron's nand flash now used in SSDs

InnoDisk's (MO-276) nanoSSD in full scale production

Netlist says ULLtraDIMM SSDs infringe its patents
LSI to be acquired for $6.6 billion

A New CEO for Violin

1st day for NMBL
Primary Data gets $50 million funding

Toshiba will buy assets of bankrupt OCZ

LSI samples the most ambitious design of a single chip SSD controller in SSD history.
Crocus seeks to annul core STT patents

McObject shows in-memory database resilience in NVDIMM

Toshiba chooses DensBits' adaptive flash IP
Violin does IPO

WD wants Virident

Cisco wants WhipTail

Micron samples first Hybrid Memory Cube devices
SMART samples memory channel SSDs

Skyera promises 2U petabyte SSD
Diablo launches Memory Channel Storage

SanDisk will acquire SMART
WD will acquire Stec

Samsung enters PCIe SSD market

Whiptail offers clues to Users playing the SSD box riddle game
Fusion-io's CEO and CMO both depart

Micron samples new hot-swappable 2.5" PCIe SSDs

LSI is #2 in PCIe SSD shipments in US
Diablo names SMART as flash partner for memory channel SSDs

Fusion-io and Astute Networks make (different) moves to make solid state cheaper in the iSCSI storage market
Violin entered the PCIe SSD market

InnoDisk's iSLCT technology repurposes MLC cells to SLC
remote PCIe SSD data sharing / caching introduced separately by Virident and Intel
Skyera entered the top 5 SSD companies list

RunCore is 1st to announce BiTMICRO OnBoard
35 years of SSD history

SSD market analysts

hold up capacitors in 2.5" MIL SSDs

do you really need them?
image shows Megabyte's hot air balloon - click to read the article SSD power down architectures and acharacteristics
0 to 3S
Editor:- March 31, 2015 - I've been looking at different aspects of power hold up schemes in mission critical non volatile memory systems for over 30 years.

But every time I revisit this vast topic and compare fresh examples from the market - I learn something a little bit new.

My new blog - Zero to three seconds - demonstrates the extreme range of hold up times now in the market inside leading edge 2.5" military flash SSDs. the article
PR Agencies

PR Agencies - which aren't scared of mice

Once upon a time it was useful for so called "startup" enterprise SSD companies to make detailed EMC bashing product comparisons with pre-existing EMC systems. What do we learn when such comparisons are made today?
Zsolt Kerekes, editor - in his blog - some random SSD thoughts about EMC


"Don't place too much credence in what SSD companies tell you about the present or the future of the SSD market."
Survivor's Guide to Enterprise SSDs
Seagate logo - click for  more info


SSD news

OCZ's programmable power envelope 2.5" hot swap NVMe SSDs

OCZ 2.5 inch hot swap PCIe SSDEditor:- May 20, 2015 - OCZ today revealed more details about the new models shipping in its NVMe compatible PCIe SSD family - which was first announced last September. We had already heard before these new models include 2.5" hot swappable versions.

Today OCZ said this model - the Z-Drive 6300 SFF will be available with usable capacities of 800GB, 1.6TB and 3.2TB (in this quarter) followed by 6.4TB (later this year).

R/W performance is upto 2.9GB/s and 1.4GB/s respectively. Random R/W IOPS are 700K IOPS and 120K IOPS. Latencies are 30µs (write) and 80µs (read). Endurance options are 1 or 3 DWPD.

high availability and reliability features

The new Z-Drive 6000 models are dual ported so that 2 host systems can concurrently access the same SSD.

Additionally, the Z-Drive 6000 Series supports hot swapping of 2.5" drives, pre-set power thresholds and temperature throttling to support many types of enterprise ecosystems.

Editor's comments:- for various reasons to do with a combination of standardization efforts and changes of ownership for nearly every major enterprise PCIe SSD company in the market - you've had to wait 3 years since the idea of this kind of product was first discussed seriously on these pages and at conferences.

What has become clear to systems architects is that these new products offer far more flexibility in their roles than merely performance upgrades to high end SAS SSDs and traditional storage arrays.

Among other things these new types of products will enable lower cost mini SSD server clustering at PCIe latencies which will spur growth in the SDS market. At the high end - they could become the new building blocks inside the world's most powerful computer arrays.

Power consumption and heat in these NVMe SSDs?

I know from talking to systems architects that the electrical power and thermal footprints of 2.5" NVMe SSDs is a critical detail when considering the design of dense storage arrays so I asked Scott Harlin, OCZ for more information these factors. Here's what Scott said.

Hi Zsolt – you are correct – the 2.5" drives can get a little toasty packing in the higher densities into this form factor -- typical power consumption of the Z-Drive 6000 series is 25W active and 9W idle. So we included a few items to address these concerns:

1. - Temperature sensing and thermal throttling to maintain consistent operating conditions even under adverse temperature variances

2. - User-selectable power envelopes, in 15W, 20W and 25W settings, reduces wasted power when maximum performance is not required while efficiently addressing temperature requirements in support of a variety of ecosystems

3. - An innovative 'flow-through' case design enables more airflow to critical components, keeping the device cool while reducing airflow requirements

Editor's comments:- that user selectable power envelope- in graduated steps - seems like a really useful design attribute. So I'll be watching out for it in future arrayable SSD launches.

Coho adds all flash SSD nodes to its hybrid product mix

image shows mouse at the one armed bandit - click to see VC funds in storage
VCs in SSDs
Editor:- May 20, 2015 - Coho Data today announced it has closed $30 million in Series C funding, bringing its total funding to nearly $67 million.

The round was led by March Capital Partners, with additional participation from HP Ventures and Intel Capital as well as existing investors Andreessen Horowitz and Ignition Partners.

Coho Data also announced the general availability of its first all-flash storage node, the DataStream 2000f a 2U server based system which uses Intel's P3600 2.5" NVMe SSDs and conventional SATA SSDs.

Coho says that using a judicious mix of its variously populated SSDservers (which includes micro-tiered hybrid systems as well as the new pure SSD nodes) "empowers customers to efficiently support any application at any scale, all from a "single pane of glass" management interface, and all at less than $0.10/GB usable per month."

Caringo gets patent for adaptive power conservation in SDS pools

image shows software factory - click to see storage software directory
SSD software
Editor:- May 19, 2015 - Caringo today announced it has obtained a US patent for adaptive power conservation in storage clusters. The patented technology underpins its Darkive storage management service which (since its introduction in 2010) actively manages the electrical power load of its server based storage pools according to anticipated needs.

"The access patterns and retention requirements for enterprise data have changed considerably over the last few years to a store-everything, always accessible approach and storage must adapt," said Adrian J Herrera, Caringo VP of Marketing. "We developed Darkive to help organizations of any size extract every bit and watt of value while keeping their data searchable, accessible, and protected."

See also:- petabyte SSDs, the big market impact of SSD dark matter

53% of SDS users say that flash is less than 10% of their storage

Editor:- May 12, 2015 - What percentage of the capacity in virtualized SDS environments is already flash?

An interesting picture is given in a recently published survey the State of SDS (pdf) by DataCore - which includes results from 477 IT professionals who are currently using or evaluating SDS technology. Among the findings:-
Datacore survey re flash in SDS 2015
  • Less than 9% said that flash already acccounts for 40% or more of their storage. And nearly half of all participants said that flash is less than 10% of their storage capacity.
  • Over 70% have flash in their budget in 2015.
  • 16% of those who had used flash felt they hadn't got the apps acceleration they expected.
  • 19% said that storage failures had caused unforeseen outages.
Editor's comments:- You can interpret these results in different ways. I see it as showing that there's still a many times bigger future market for enterprise flash compared to what has already been installed.

cooling fans essential for high speed operation of Samsung's new M.2 PCIe SSDs

Editor:- April 12, 2015 - Samsung's M.2 PCIe SSD - the SM951 - launched in January - is the subject a new evaluation in the SSD Review.

Among other things it was interesting to see how much the temperature of the SSD heated up when operating at high speed and heavy workloads and the importance of accurately designed heat extraction if you plan to use this SSD in such a way.

See also:- other reviews of this product, M.2 SSDs, temperature considerations in SSDs (pdf), industrial SSDs

Diablo's MCS supported by more slots in new Lenovo servers

Editor:- May 6, 2015 - Diablo Technologies today announced that Lenovo's new 8U x3950 X6 servers now support upto 32 eXFlash DIMMs (memory channel SSDs) per system.

new power fail safe file system for tiny memory IoT

Editor:- May 5, 2015 - Datalight today released a preview version of Reliance Edge, a power fail-safe file system for FreeRTOS which allows developers building IoT devices to reliably store and quickly access data in embedded SSDs. It requires as little as 4KB of RAM and 11KB of code size.

"Designing a file system which met the high reliability standard set by our (high performance) Reliance Nitro and could fit into tiny microcontroller based systems presented a challenge – and I love a challenge," said Jeremy Sherrill, architect of file systems for Datalight. "Reliance Edge offers a rich set of features in a highly efficient architecture."

Reliance Edge can work with a broad array of storage media—including NOR and NAND flash, eMMC, SD/MMC, NVRAM, USB storage, and SATA (or PATA) SSDs. Datalight plans to release new pre-ported kits for other small-kernel OSes over the coming months.

How much 3D flash in 2015?

Editor:- May 5, 2015 - TrendForce estimates that 3D will make up just 7% of NAND flash's average annual output for 2015.

See also:- flash memory, market research

who's who in ReRAM? - IHS article

Editor:- May 1, 2015 -Who's doing what re the commercialization of ReRAM - one of the seldomly heard from NVM cousins - can be learned in a new article - Taking Embedded ReRAM to 28nm - written by Peter Clarke which appeared in IHSElectronics360.
Flash Memory
flash & nvm

Among other things re ReRAM - Peter Clarke says - "It has been the subject of much research over the last decade because it had been predicted that NAND flash memory would fail to scale beyond critical dimensions of 20nm."

The article tells you which companies are still in this technology and discusses current memory densities and controllers. the article

See also:- 12 years of "MRAM will soon replace flash"

WD's enterprise SSD revenue up 67% yoy to $224 million / qtr

Editor:- April 29, 2015 - When I do eventually get around to publishing my promised $B/year enterprise SSD companies list - Western Digital will be one of the many companies listed in it.

That point was neatly clarified in an earnings conference call (transcript) yesterday - when Stephen Milligan - President and CEO said WD's enterprise SSD revenue in the recent quarter had grown to $224 million

Diablo resumes shipments of MCS following legal victories

Editor:- April 27, 2015 - Diablo has resumed business as usual in the shipment and development of its memory channel storage technology following months of impediments related to legal wrangles. Among other things the company today announced that the US District Court for the Northern District of California has ruled to completely dissolve a preliminary injunction enacted in January 2015.

Violin warns users about "effective" capacity

Editor:- April 22, 2015 - Violin Memory says that "effective storage capacity is a terrible measurement on which to make any firm plans (for buying flash storage arrays)" in a new blog - Where's My Capacity? Effective, Usable and Raw Explained.

Why's it terrible?

Because Violin goes on to say - "You simply cannot know what the effective capacity of a storage system is until you put your data on it. And you cannot guarantee that it will remain that way if your data is going to change."

atrological pricing
new age enterprise
flash pricing
So Violin advises - "Never, ever buy a storage system based purely on the effective capacity offered by the vendor – and always consider whether the assumed data reduction ratio is relevant to you. (Also, be very careful to read the small print when a vendor offers a guarantee regarding data reduction ratios.)"

Editor's comments:- This is a direct retaliation aimed at competing vendors - who using unfair tactics - such as the crowd sourced intelligence which enables them to have a pretty darn good guess how "effective" will translate for you (based on similar customers) are willing to take bets on Exiting the Astrological Age of Enterprise SSD Pricing.

It's the kind of bet which is easier to finance when you've already proved it works and when you're picky about which customers you offer it to. Which you can only do with focused and segmented marketing analysis. Effective capacity promises are safer with effective marketing.

enterprise business veteran joins Kaminario's board

Editor:- April 21, 2015 - Kaminario today , announced that Jim Dawson, a veteran of the storage industry, has been appointed to the company's board of directors.

high availabaility SSD arrays
"The flash storage industry can be a small world, and I've had the privilege of watching and admiring Kaminario from a unique perspective inside this ecosystem," said Dawson. "Businesses are in the midst of a transformative change in how they structure their data centers..."

Dawson is a partner at Menlo Ventures where he focuses on defining and executing successful sales strategies in the enterprise technology space. Prior to that, Dawson was chief sales officer and executive VP at Fusion-io. And before that Dawson was VP of worldwide sales at 3PAR. He was also a VP at Data General responsible for the Clariion storage business internationally.

Editor's comments:- normally I truncate the bio details in news stories because you can see them for yourself in linkedin. But in this instance I thought it worth leaving this in. Lest we forget DG and Clariion were just as disruptive in their time as Fusion-io.

CoreRise ships new smaller BladeDrive PCIe SSD

Corerise E24 PCIe SSDEditor:- April 20, 2015 - CoreRise today announced customer shipments of a new version of its BladeDrive family of gen 2 x8 PCIe SSDs - the E24 - which has a smaller form factor than the earlier E28. Its ASIC based implementation supports upto 1.6TB capacity, 275K IOPS (4KB) and 2GB/s throughput in half-height half-length. Software support includes Windows Server, Linux and virtualization such as Xen, Hyper-v, as well as TRIM.

SanDisk comments on apparent customer drift away from its PCIe SSDs and redesign in its SAS models

Editor:- April 16, 2015 - in a quarterly results related conference call (transcript) this week SanDisk's President and CEO - Sanjay Mehrotra - said that in the enterprise market it was seeing some of the business which had traditionally been implemented by its customers using PCIe SSDs was moving towards arrays of SATA SSDs.

click to see directory of SAS SSD companies
Among other things the company also reported on delays in customer qualifications of its SAS SSD products - despite which SanDisk still expects to maintain its position as the 2nd biggest supplier.

Editor's comments:- despite recent acquisitions and some unique strengths SanDisk still has big holes in its enterprise SSD product spectrum - among which 2.5" NVMe SSDs is the most obvious example. Although SanDisk says this gap will be fixed in 2016 (pdf).

You should be careful not to misconstrue SanDisk's statement about enterprise PCIe SSD replacement by SATA SSDs as a general trend for all customers and all types of PCIe SSDs.

These things are decided by infrastructure, latency architecture, user roadmap and risk assessment preferences and business economics.

On the other hand the move towards inplementing arrays of SATA SSDs as server accelerator upgrades to displace PCIe SSDs can occur in the least expected places.

SanDisk's own first generation ULLtraDIMMs - for example - have 2 embedded SATA SSDs inside.

A3CUBE shows shape of R/W in remote shared memory fabric

Editor:- April 14, 2015 - There was a disproportionately high amount of reader interest in A3CUBE in 2014.

A3CUBE was one of those rare companies which entered the Top SSD Companies list within a single quarter of exiting stealth mode or launching their first product. At that time they hadn't shipped any production products so we had to make some guesses about how the architecture would work with different R/W demands.

R/W performance of 4 node remote PCIe shared memoryWith any remote memory caching system there are always some types of R/W activities which work better than others and now we can get an idea of the headroom in A3CUBE's remote PCIe shared memory from a new slidedeck released by the company (Fortissimo Foundation - all NVMe solution some benchmarks) which is based on a 4 server node configuration.

In this 13 slide presentation - the most interesting for me was #12 - which shows random writes. A3CUBE says "This test measures the performance of writing a file with accesses being made to random locations within the file."

The throughput range is typically 700MB/s to 8GB/s. The low end is more impressive than it first appears - when you consider that it's a 4KB record changed within a remote 64KB file. ...see the presentation

Sonnet launches "Fusion PCIe Flash Drive"

and some notes re the Fusion brand in storage

Editor:- April 13, 2015 - Last week I raised the subject of the possible confusion which I thought could arise from a company called Sonnet Technologies having chosen the name Fusion for a new PCIe connected SSD.

In pursuance of that story I received some useful clarifications about this SSD branding issue which I'm publishing as a correction / elucidation story below.

My original post began like this...

Sonnet launches "Fusion PCIe Flash Drive"

Editor:- April 7, 2015 - In a move which I think will lead to inevitable confusion - Sonnet Technologies has today launched a new consumer storage module called the "Fusion PCIe Flash Drive."
sonnet pcie ssd
"The Fusion PCIe Flash Drive leverages the latest advancements in PCIe SSD design and Thunderbolt 2 technology, enabling Sonnet to offer a storage device that fits neatly in the palm of your hand yet delivers the blazing-fast performance of a multi-drive RAID storage system many times its size," said Robert Farnsworth, Sonnet Technologies CEO. "We think this will become an indispensable accessory for the creative professional."

Editor's comments:- Inside the box - is an M.2 SSD. If it had anything to do with Fusion-io - the best known brand in the PCIe SSD market - then I think we would have heard about it before.

I often wonder what goes through the minds of product marketers when they name new SSD products. Many of the clever words have already gone as you can see in my SSD brand name archives.

Later corrections and clarifications

I contacted Sonnet's CEO - Robert Farnsworth about this name confusion issue.

I said - "Robert is there any connection between your new Fusion PCIe drive and Fusion-io? I would be surprised if there was. Didn't you anticipate confusion when naming this product?"

Robert told me - "Sonnet Technologies has been using the Fusion name for our storage product since before Fusion-io existed as a company. None of Fusion-io products carry the Fusion name because Sonnet owns the trademark."

I got more of the background history about the Fusion storage trademark issue from Greg LaPorte, VP Sales and Marketing - Sonnet Technologies - whose detailed notes make interesting reading.

Greg said - "Sonnet was actually the first to use, and trademark, Fusion' in association with storage back in 2005 and have since used it for all Sonnet storage products. With respect to Fusion-io, yes, Sonnet began using the trademark Fusion' for storage products before Canvas Technologies became FusionMultiSystems in June of 2006 and well before they named their first ioDrive in September 2007. Later they evolved to Fusion-io for a company name but did not name their actual products with Fusion. They tend to use "io" in the majority of their product names."

Greg's email also included this related story.

"When Apple came out with the Fusion Drive, we brought this to their attention; Was Apple infringing on a Sonnet trademark? Their answer was that Fusion is so commonly used for product names, they felt it fell into the non-trademarkable category. We... dont agree with that assessment but we have a good relationship with Apple."

One cache to bind them

image shows megabyte waving the winners trophy - there are over 200 SSD oems - which ones matter? - click to read article
top SSD companies
Editor:- April 2, 2015 - SanDisk - which in the past 4 years has acquired 4 companies listed in the Top SSD Companies List (published by - recently announced the availability of acceleration bundles which integrate 3 of the most recent. Among other things these include:- "We have built our enterprise flash business to offer the broadest range of storage acceleration solutions to address customers' changing needs," said Ravi Swaminathan, VP and GM, Systems and Software Solutions, SanDisk. "The new hardware-software bundles offer the best of both our hardware and software portfolios in a single solution."

Editor's comments:- when I first spoke to FlashSoft in June 2011 - they were already talking to many of the industry's leading fast SSD makers about supporting their drives. And in my 2011 year end summary (SSD software has started to become real and useful) - I said - "Think of SSD software as being able to convert raw SSD gold into SSD jewelry. If enough users like the style the end-result is worth a lot more than the scrap value."

But in the years immediately following there was a lot of uncertainty for enterprise users who relied on any particular SSD software solution - as most such companies couldn't be relied on to continue support for your favorite SSD if they were acquired by a competitor of that SSD. And in many cases - the investment and roadmaps for the acquired caching products fizzled out.

The new FlashSoft bundles will appeal to some types of enterprise users who like this style of roadmap continuity - where the personality of their SSD (software and controllers) come from the same source.

On the other hand - for oems and big users who want to differentiate their systems by using COTS SSDs from any source and their own choice of software - this kind of bundle will be seen as a strategic threat and will incline many of them to look instead towards vendors who are seen as more "software agnostic" - such as Seagate, Micron and Intel.

See also:- decloaking segmentations (and user preferences) in the enterprise SSD market.

What happened before? - See the SSD news archive


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SSD jargon

Surviving SSD sudden power loss
Why should you care what happens in an SSD when the power goes down?

This important design feature has a strong impact on SSD data integrity and operational reliability.
image shows Megabyte's hot air balloon - click to read the article SSD power down architectures and acharacteristics If you thought endurance was the end of the SSD reliability story - think again. the article