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storage news - October 2009, week 2

Megabyte's selection of storage news
Megabyte loved reading news stories
about the storage market
... Debunking Tier 0 Storage
After SSDs... What Next?
flash SSD Jargon Explained
the Top 10 SSD Companies
RAM Cache Ratios in flash SSDs
3 Easy Ways to Enter the SSD Market
how fast can your SSD run backwards?
Data Integrity Challenges in flash SSD Design
How Bad is the Fallout from Choosing the Wrong SSD Supplier?
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Emulex Offers Bridging Hand to SSD Designers

Editor:- October 13, 2009 - Emulex is expanding its InSpeed chip bridging technology to simplify the job of designing fast native SAS and Fibre-channel compatible flash SSDs.

"SandForce is working closely with Emulex to enable customers to build enterprise-class SSDs that connect to Fibre Channel or SAS systems," said Thad Omura, VP of marketing, SandForce. "Emulex's next generation InSpeed flexible bridging options enable our SATA-based Enterprise SSD Processor, to be used with either Fibre Channel or SAS systems. In initial testing, we've found the new InSpeed bridge technology provides a robust and high performance solution for SSD applications." SSD Controllers / IP

40 Years of Data Archiving

Editor:- October 13, 2009 -KOM Networks today celebrated 40 years of secure archiving.

"We may not be a household name" said Kamel Shaath, CTO of KOM Networks "but our customers are, and they rely on us to protect, preserve, secure, store and retrieve their most critical data."

KOM Networks is credited for the creation of the first software to manage optical disks in 1983, the first optical storage management software for Windows NT in 1995, and the first virtual file system with electronic file lifecycle management in 2001. storage history

Editor's comments:-
if KOM Networks makes 50 - they'll be supporting SSD archiving too. It will offer 20x faster recovery time than HDD or optical archiving. A few issues to sort out first though.

Fusion-io Slashes Costs for MySpace

Editor:- October 13, 2009 - Fusion-io published a case study showing how their ioDrive SSDs helped MySpace reduce servers, claim back 50% rack space while increasing application performance and massively decreasing electrical power.

The ioDrives performed much better than the legacy SAS disk arrays, but more importantly for MySpace, they did it with much less hardware. A single ioDrive allowed MySpace to replace a 2U HP DL380 server with 1U HP DL160 server.

In the initial phase of this deployment MySpace replaced 150 of their standard load servers, recovering 150U of rack space. Additionally, the ioDrives' phenomenal performance reduced its need for heavy load servers, allowing it to permanently end-of-life 50 of 80 heavy load servers. This allowed it to recover another 65U of rack space. Reliability also increased and the Fusion-io solution is greener. Estimates suggest that the power savings alone could easily pay for the ioDrives over their lifetime.

MySpace says it plans to replace another 1,770 2U servers with Fusion-io enabled servers as they reach their end-of-life.

"In the last 20 years, disk storage hasn't kept pace with other innovations in IT, and right now we're on the cusp of a dramatic change with flash technologies, with Fusion-io clearly leading this transformation," said Richard Buckingham, VP of technical operations for MySpace. "We looked at a number of solid state disk solutions, using many different kinds of RAID configurations, but we felt that Fusion-io's solution was exactly what we needed to accomplish our goals." the article (pdf)

Accusys Announces New iSCSI RAID

Editor:- October 12, 2009 - Accusys today announced a new range of rackmount IP SAN products.

Accusys iSCSI ExaRAID family includes 2U-12 bay, 3U-16 bay and 4U-24 bay RAID systems designed with active-active redundant controller support for high reliability and availability, link aggregation and jumbo frame support for maximizing bandwidth and performance over the Ethernet.

Dedupe Makes SSD Affordable - says WhipTail's CTO

Editor:- October 12, 2009 - WhipTail Technologies became the 1st SSD appliance company to market integrated in-line deduplication.

At SNW WhipTail announced it will ship its newly renamed Racerunner (6TB) NAS SSDs with Exar's Hifn BitWackr deduplication and compression solution in Q4 2009. Racerunner has demonstrated deduplication performance in excess of 1Gbps.

James Candelaria, CTO of WhipTail Technologies said "Once again, we're proving Tier 0 storage doesn't have to be expensive. By providing in-line de-duplication, customers can save money by investing only in the storage they need."

New article - Data Integrity Challenges in flash SSD Design

Editor:- October 12, 2009 - today published a new article called - Data Integrity Challenges in flash SSD Design - written by Kent Smith Senior Director, Product Marketing, SandForce.

Since bursting onto the SSD scene in April 2009, SandForce has achieved remarkably high reader popularity. How did a company whose business is designing SSD controllers achieve this? - especially when the direct market for its products today numbers less than 1,000 oems.

The answer is - that if you want to know what the future of 2.5" enterprise SATA SSDs might look like -you have to look at the leading technology cores that will affect this market. Even if you're not planning to use SandForce based products yourself - you can't afford to ignore them - because they are setting the agenda in this market.

Reliability is the next new thing for SSD designers and users to start worrying about. A common theme you will hear from all fast SSD companies is that the faster you make an SSD go - the more effort you have to put into understanding and engineering data integrity to eliminate the risk of "silent errors." the article

Sun Launches SAS SSD Rackmount

Editor:- October 12, 2009 - Sun Microsystems launched 2 new SSD product lines.
  • The F5100 Flash Array ($45,995 upwards) is a new 1U rackmount SSD - which has 16 SAS ports and provides upto 1.92TB capacity. R/W IOPS are upto 1.6M and 1.2M respectively (for a system populated with 80 SSD modules).
  • The FlashFire F20 is a 96GB SLC flash PCIe SSD with 100k read and 84k write IOPS. R/W rates are upto 1092MB/s and 501MB/s respectively. The card also includes a SAS controller.
Editor's comments:- I added the F5100 Flash Array to the directory of the Fastest SSDs. It rates that on throughput and IOPS. However, its latency is 20x worse than typical RAM SSDs and its performance per channel is low.

In some ways it looks like a product which has been engineered to look good in a benchmark - rather than to perform well in a range of real applications. So - as I advise everyone looking at their 1st SSDs - try before you buy.

The FlashFire F20, however, is totally unimpressive. It looks like a low capacity version of products which Fusion-io was shipping a year ago.

New Book - Oracle Performance Tuning with SSDs

Editor:- October 9, 2009 - some of the technical folks at Texas Memory Systems have contributed to a new book called - Advanced Oracle SQL Tuning - written by Oracle expert, Mike Ault.

This is part of an august collection of Oracle tuning books published by Rampant Press.

"Solid State Disk storage is changing the game for Oracle databases, and how we think about performance tuning," said Mike Ault. "Whereas in the past a poorly-designed database might take 6 months and $500,000 in consulting costs to repair, simply installing an SSD can mean the database immediately runs more than 10x faster for a fraction of the cost of repairing the source code. We wrote the book specifically for DBAs so that they could easily understand the benefits and limitations of SSD in their specific circumstances, and have all the tools they need to benchmark effectively. Any DBA who wants to keep their performance tuning skills relevant will read this book."

See also:-

Storspeed Unveils NAS SSD Appliance

Editor:- October 8, 2009 - Storspeed emerged from stealth mode and unveiled the SP5000 Application-Aware cache.

This is a NAS compatible SSD accelerator (base price $65,000 ) which uses a fat flash SSD environment integrated within a hybrid storage pool.

Storspeed says its patent-pending real-time traffic inspection engine identifies and dynamically accelerates user and application traffic automatically with no user intervention or complex tiering.

This is the 4th automatic SSD accelerator product to be launched in the past month.

today's storage news

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top news stories in recent weeks

September 2009

week 1 - PCIe SSD Searches 6x Higher
week 2 - Pliant samples fast 2.5" 3.5" SAS SSDs
week 3 - Foremay launches military SSDs
week 4 - Dataram eliminates waits for the "SSD Hot-Spot Engineer"

October 2009

week 1 - Active Media launches market's 1st USB 3 SSDs
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