Hitachi’s New 2nd Generation SAS SSDs

Hitachi UltraStar SSD400S.BToday Hitachi announced the company’s second generation Ultrastar SSD400S.B family, which Hitachi claims to be the industry’s first 25nm SLC enterprise-class SSD family.

This comes only two days after Intel announced a 25nm MLC SSDIntel‘s highest-performance SSD to date.

The new Hitachi SSDs support a SAS 6Gb/s dual port interface. SLC NAND flash was chosen for its high write performance and endurance.

Maximum sequential read speeds of 536MB/s and a sequential write speed of up to 520MB/s with 57K random read IOPS and 25K random write IOPS help to give ultra-fast access to data.

Continue reading “Hitachi’s New 2nd Generation SAS SSDs”

Fast New Intel SSD: The 520

Intel's 520 Press PictureIntel has announced a new SSD for the Enthusiast/Gamer market.  Intel’s fastest drive to date, this SSD, formerly known as “Cherryville” but now called the 520, is the first Intel SSD to use a SandForce/LSI controller and is made using Intel’s own 25nm flash.

Intel worked with SandForce for  a year and a half to produce an SSD that met Intel’s rigorous standards, and made hundreds of changes to SandForce’s firmware.  Users of SandForce controllers can differentiate their SSDs through the addition of features in the SSD controller’s firmware.  Intel did this by tapping into its expertise in end-to-end data protection (something the company learned when working with Hitachi to introduce that company’s Intel-based enterprise SSDs) while harnessing Intel’s deep understanding of its own NAND flash and of the I/O needs of the PC.

End-to-end data protection is not a trivial feature: Continue reading “Fast New Intel SSD: The 520”

Victorinox’ Terabyte-in-Your-Pocket

Victorinox 1TB SSDAt The Consumer Electronics Show this week, Swiss army knife maker Victorinox introduced a one-terabyte SSD in a form factor similar to a fat Swiss army knife.  Yes, that is right – a terabyte of NAND flash in your pocket.  The company tells us that the device’s dimensions, including the connector, are a scant 52x18x10mm.

Some of the other features include the use of an eSATA connector (to allow the product to be plugged into either a SATA port or a USB socket), AES256 encryption (any army would like this), and a bi-stable LCD to tell how much free space remains on the device.

But let’s look at the difficulty of building a 1TB flash SSD in such a small space:

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Fusion-io’s Billion IOPS Monster

Meter Showing Fusion-io's Billion IOPS PerformanceLast night (1/5/12) at a DEMO Enterprise event in San Francisco Fusion-io unveiled a one billion IOPS (I/Os per second) storage system.  A billion IOPS!

The machine was built using 64 Fusion-io ioDrive2 Duos connected to eight HP ProLiant DL370 servers.

This came sooner than we anticipated.  It was only in July 2008 that the million-IOPS barrier was broken by IBM using 41 Fusion-io devices.

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SSD Presence Growing at Oracle OpenWorld

At Oracle’s October OpenWorld conference in San Francisco more exhibit hall space was dedicated to SSDs this year than  ever before.  That’s because Oracle runs faster on systems with SSDs than on systems without.

Even Oracle ships SSDs in its popular Exadata system, and the company recently announced that it had shipped over 1,000 installations since its introduction in 2009. Continue reading “SSD Presence Growing at Oracle OpenWorld”

Seagate’s Barracuda to Add Hybrids

On Tuesday, November 1, Seagate announced improvements to its flagship Barracuda line of 3.5″ HDDs for the desktop.

  • The 5,900 RPM Barracuda Green will be discontinued in February
  • The  7,200 RPM Barracuda XT will be re-named the Barracuda (without the XT designation, which indicates a “top of the line” speed)
  • A new Barracuda XT line will be introduced at a later date and it will  incorporate the hybrid design Seagate pioneered in the popular Momentus XT.

Capacities will range from 250GB-3TB. Continue reading “Seagate’s Barracuda to Add Hybrids”