One of the most compelling keynotes at the Flash Memory Summit last August was presented by SSD controller maker FADU Technology and social media giant Meta (Facebook). These two companies were advocating a new way of managing SSDs called: “Flexible Data Placement.” The SSD Guy believes that these two companies’ findings are pretty remarkable and well worth sharing.
Ross Stenfort from Meta presented a timeline showing that since 2019 Meta and Microsoft (Azure) have been working Continue reading “Flexible Data Placement Means Better SSDs”
For a long time, The SSD Guy has been talking about Write Amplification without explaining what It is. This post is intended to fix that.
Write amplification is an internal issue for NAND flash SSDs that arises from the way that NAND chips work. It doesn’t exist in standard HDDs, nor did it exist in DRAM SSDs before we had NAND ones. In a nutshell it’s the Continue reading “What is Write Amplification?”
Mardi Gras is a good time for The SSD Guy to bend your mind. It’s the day before Ash Wednesday kicks off Lent, which is the official start of the Easter season.
And it never seems to happen on the same date.
I will compare SSD garbage collection to the timing of the Easter season. There are surprising similarities.
Very few people understand Continue reading “Mardi Gras vs. SSD Garbage Collection”
Micron presented something really interesting during the company’s Investor Day Conference last week, but it didn’t seem to get any press coverage. The company naturally repeated its plan to become a more important supplier of data center SSDs, but what The SSD Guy was most interested in were a few comments they gave for choosing to make vertically-integrated SSDs. Micron now makes not only the NAND and the DRAM internal to its SSDs, but also the controller.
Why would a company Continue reading “Smarter NAND for Better SSDs”
There’s something really odd about Nimbus Data’s colossal 100 terabyte ExaDrive DC SSDs, and it’s not their sheer capacity (although that’s pretty remarkable by itself!) The strange thing is that they can’t be worn out. It’s physically impossible.
At first glance that may seem wrong-headed. NAND flash wears out, and that was the cause of a lot of Continue reading “An SSD You Can’t Wear Out”
It seems not so long ago that there were frequent press releases, and showings at trade shows, of “Hero” SSDs. These demonstration models (which weren’t always released as products) always had some unique and impressive attribute. They may have had a higher capacity than any SSD known to humankind, or perhaps they had phenomenal endurance. Some broke the IOPS barrier.
The SSD Guy doesn’t remember anyone Continue reading “Whatever Happened to “Hero” SSDs?”
Micron recently briefed The SSD Guy on its new 7450 SSD series, a range of high-capacity data center SSDs offered in an impressive number of capacities and form factors spanning M.2, U.3 and E1.S. The 7450 is a mainstream drive targeted at a wide variety of data center applications, including common, mixed, and random workloads.
The 7450 series is an evolution of Micron’s 7400 series which was first introduced at 96 layers and was based on Continue reading “Using 176-Layer NAND for High-Capacity Data Center SSDs”
For a long time The SSD Guy has meant to write something about the budding use of AI in SSDs. It’s an interesting approach whose time has come.
If you’re not conversant with AI, and maybe find the whole subject to be daunting, don’t worry. AI comes in many forms, and some are very simple. When major Internet firms like Google and Facebook use AI to Continue reading “Using AI to Manage Internal SSD Parameters”
There’s an idea that has been kicking around for a number of years, and it seems now to be gaining traction. The idea is to use the inherent smarts and high available bandwidth within an SSD to perform functions that would normally be done by a server’s processor thereby reducing the load on the processor while minimizing the amount of data that needed to make a round trip from the SSD to the processor and back for some trivial function.
Such data movement is said to consume a very Continue reading “Computational Storage Hits the Mainstream”
There have been numerous changes to SSDs since they moved into the mainstream 15 years ago, with controllers providing increasing, then decreasing endurance levels, and offering greater, then lesser levels of autonomy. What has been missing is any ability for the system to determine the level of performance that the SSD provides.
Recently Kioxia, the company formerly known as Toshiba Memory, announced Continue reading “What’s Software-Enabled Flash?”