Subject: Storage | April 19, 2013 - 06:10 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: trim, ssd, sandforce 2281, sandforce, ROG, raidr, raid, PCIe SSD, asus
ASUS is reportedly adding two new PCI-E Solid State Drives (SSD) to its Republic Of Gamers lineup. Dubbed RAIDR, the new PCI-E SSDs use 19nm Toshiba MLC NAND flash driven by two SandForce 2281 controllers. In turn, the two SandForce drives are put into a hardware RAID 0 configuration for maximum speed. The RAIDR SSD internals are encased in a stylized EMI shield along with a ROG-branded back-plate. In all, ASUS’ RAIDR SSDs measure 157 x 120 x 20mm.
The ASUS RAIDR drives show up as a single disk driven by a standard AHCI controller, which allows the two RAID 0 SSDs connected via the PCI-E bus to be boot-able and support the TRIM command. Both RAIDR solid state drives also support Native Command Queuing (NCQ), SMART, Secure Erase, Windows 8 Secure Boot.
According to specifications provided by Sweclockers, ASUS is launching 120GB and 240GB versions of the PCI-E SSDs. Both capacities feature 100,000 IOPS, 128-bit AES encryption, and 620,000 MTBF ratings.
The 120GB RAIDR SSD supports up to 765MB/s sequential reads and 775MB/s sequential write speeds. On the other hand, the 240GB RAIDR drive supports up to 830MB/s sequential reads and 810MB/s sequential writes.
Additionally, ASUS is bundling its RAIDR drives with Kaspersky Antivirus 2013 and a number of ASUS utilities (including SSD TweakIt). The drives should be available sometime next month, but pricing is still unknown. Adding PCI-E SSDs is an interesting move by ASUS that should help the company diversify and expand its ROG branding. Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing how the drives stack up when they are released (and hopefully a PC Perspective review)!
Subject: General Tech | April 4, 2013 - 01:40 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: memristor, non-volitle RAM, mlc, PCIe SSD, hitachi, hp, dell
The Register assembled a brief look at the near future of flash storage products from HP, Hitachi, Dell and NetApp. HP expects to be shipping memristor based storage devices by the end of the year as well as photonic inter-node backplanes which will offer much faster transfer than copper based solutions. Hitachi Data Systems believes they have made a breakthrough in MLC flash and controller technology which will not only extend the usable life of the memory but they expect price parity with high end SAS HDDs by the end of 2015. Check out those stories as well as Dell's server plans and NetApp's new OS right here.
"In every minute;
- More than 600 videos are uploaded to YouTube
- More than 13,000 hours of music are streamed via Pandora
- 168 million emails are transmitted
- 695,000 status updates are added to Facebook
- 695,000 Google searches are also made."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Non-Volatile DIMMs To Ship This Year @ Slashdot
- How to Run Linux on ODROID-U2: A Monster of an ARM Machine @ Linux.com
- Customer designed ARM chips will give Intel headaches @ The Inquirer
- Open-Source 3D Support For NVIDIA's Tegra @ Phoronix
- A guide to Windows Blue / Windows 8.1 @ Hardware.info
- How to Install Windows 7 Guide @ OCC
Subject: Storage, Shows and Expos | February 25, 2013 - 02:12 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: ocz, ssd, PCIe SSD, CeBIT 2013, ZD-XL Accelerator
SAN JOSE, CA—February 25, 2013—OCZ Technology Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:OCZ), a leading provider of high-performance solid-state drives (SSDs) for computing devices and systems, today announced that it will preview a variety of enterprise storage solutions at next week’s CeBIT 2013 conference in Hannover, Germany. As a renowned global forum, CeBIT represents a great opportunity for attendees to be the first to see and experience the latest innovations in solid-state storage from an industry leader in enterprise SSDs, virtualization, and caching software. OCZ offers a complete suite of storage solutions that address VMware, Linux, and SQL Server platforms, and invites IT decision-makers who are evaluating or implementing solid-state storage in the data center to visit the Company’s exhibit in Hall 2, Stand E43, from March 5th through 9th.
OCZ will unveil the next-generation ZD-XL SQL Accelerator, a culmination of enterprise hardware and software converging as one tightly integrated and optimized solution. The ZD-XL Accelerator addresses SQL Server database applications to not only ensure that the data for this implementation is right, relevant, and readily available on SSD flash when the SQL Server needs it, but also that the data is accessed with the highest possible I/O performance. For simple deployment and ease of use, this tightly integrated, optimized solution features ‘implementation wizards’ to guide DBAs so they can optimally manage data cached to the flash. While showcasing the ZD-XL solution OCZ will invite enterprise customers to become beta testers for this exciting solution.
Also included in OCZ’s exhibition at CeBIT will be demonstrations to preview the upcoming VXL 1.3 Virtualization Software and LXL Acceleration Software with OCZ’s innovative Direct Pass Caching Technology, which not only addresses VMware but is also optimized for Linux applications. OCZ is one of the few SSD providers with a robust portfolio of virtualization and caching software that combine the power of flash acceleration with the power of storage virtualization. This enables multiple virtual server loads to run concurrently on a single physical host, not only increasing CPU and memory resource utilization, but also simplifying deployment, high availability (HA), and maintenance of the server loads.
The next-generation of workstation PCI Express (PCIe)-based SSDs will also be available soon as part of the Company’s award-winning Vector Series. These drives reside directly on the PCIe bus and will support four PCIe Gen2 lanes providing lower latency to data, faster file transfers and system boot-ups, expanded storage capacities, and an even quicker, more responsive experience over the already blazingly fast SATA 3.0-based Vector Series. The Vector PCIe Series will feature an advanced suite of flash management tools that deliver enhanced drive endurance and data, making it ideally suited for power computing, content creation, and workstation applications.
Subject: Storage | August 20, 2012 - 06:00 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: z-drive R4 CloudServ, talos 2, ssd, PCIe SSD, ocz, Intrepid 3, indilinx everest 2, flash memory
If you can get out of work and make it to Santa Clara, OCZ has some enterprise level SSDs to show you, in both standard drive format as well as PCIe SSDs. They are showing off performance under Linux as well as Windows, so no matter what your infrastructure is based off of you should be able to find something to accelerate your businesses data. All the information to get you there can be found on their Flash Memory Summit post.
SAN JOSE, CA—August 20, 2012—OCZ Technology Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:OCZ), a leading provider of high-performance solid-state drives (SSDs) for computing devices and systems, will showcase its latest storage products, encompassing a mix of both solid state drives and software solutions, at this year’s Flash Memory Summit, Booth #208, Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, California, from August 21st through August 23rd.
Demonstrating SSD products along with recent partner implementations, OCZ will showcase a comprehensive lineup of innovative solutions for business, server, and OEM clients. This includes product presentations of both the impending Intrepid 3 SATA III-based SSD solution based on the company’s Indilinx Everest 2 architecture, along with the company’s leading PCI Express (PCIe)-based Z-Drive R4 featuring new Linux Acceleration software (LXL) that unleashes the full performance potential of infrastructures that use this popular open source operating system. Live technical demos of LXL and Z-Drive R4 SSDs will include a VDI boot storm, efficient SQL CPU utilization, and vMotion and Fault Tolerance support.
Additional booth demonstrations will include OCZ’s acceleration of SQL Server 2012 databases using its leading Z-Drive R4 PCIe SSD with VXL Cache and Virtualization software. This combined hardware/software solution dramatically increases SQL Server 2012 transactional IOPS performance, reduces database read latencies, and improves query completion times. OCZ will also demonstrate Talos 2 Series SAS-based drives showcasing the performance advantages of a true full duplex, dual-port SAS 6Gb/s SSD in a Microsoft Cluster in a Box (CiB) solution, further leveraging the strengths of OCZ’s storage drives when paired with leading partner systems.
As a complete solution provider for the enterprise, offering both leading edge storage hardware and complementary software products,, OCZ continues to deliver enterprise-class solid-state solutions with higher endurance, cutting edge performance, increased reliability, unparalleled security and reduced total cost of ownership (TCO) for large scale data centers and IT infrastructures worldwide. Join OCZ Technology at this week’s FMS 2012 to see the latest drives, software, and partner solutions designed for enterprise server and storage customers.
Subject: General Tech | August 10, 2012 - 02:50 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: micron, ssd, PCIe SSD
Micron has really jumped into the SSD business, which makes sense given that they have been creating flash-based storage for quite a while now. They do not feel that simply producing flash memory is enough however and have branched into storage controllers to not only make their SSDs faster but also to bring new functionality to them. The Register recently witnessed a company presentation that discussed their plans for the near future as well as enlightening customers about existing products they may not be familiar with such as their PCIe SSD cards. On the client side (read consumer) they will soon be releasing C400 series SSDs using 29nm to 20nm process moving onto a sub-20nm process soon after that. On the Enterprise side you will see the P400m SATA and P410m SAS arrive, both likely using a 25nm process. Check out the full release and see what else Micron has in store for the competition.
"The semiconductor-maker has flash foundries and delivers both solid state drives (SSDs) and PCIe-connected flash cards – the single level cell P320h for example, which is used by EMC in its VFCache product. A hot-swap version of the P320h has been adopted by Dell for server use."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Nvidia signs a deal with Lenovo for a Windows 8 RT device @ The Inquirer
- TSMC 40nm supply tightens on growing demand from MediaTek @ DigiTimes
- TSMC July sales up 12% @ DigiTimes
Subject: Storage | July 3, 2012 - 12:21 AM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ssd, slc, server, sandisk, PCIe SSD, flash, enterprise, caching
Flash storage company Sandisk has recently jumped into the world of enterprise PCI-E caching SSDs – what they are calling Solid State Accelerators. Currently, they are offering a 200GB and 400GB model under the company’s Lightning PCIe series. The SSDs feature a proprietary Sandisk controller driving 24nm SLC NAND flash, a PCI-E 2.0 x4 interface, and maximum power draw of 15 watts.
The Lightning Accelerators use the NAND flash for Sandisk’s own foundry and offer a large performance boost for servers and workstations over hard drives and SATA SSDs. It is capable of 410 MB/s sequential reads or 110,000 IOPS. Further, when using 4KB and 8KB blocks, the drives can reach 23,000 and 17,000 read/write IOPS respectively. Other specifications include an average response time of 245 microseconds, and less than 30 millisecond maximum response times. The Solid State Accelerators also feature sustained read and write latencies as low as 50 microseconds.
Sandisk has built the drives so that they can be configured as boot drives, storage drives, or caching drives. The company supports up to 5 drives in a single system, for a maximum of 2TB of flash storage. In addition, Sandisk is offering up its Flashsoft software that allows the Lightning Accelerators to be used as caching drives on Windows-based systems. Unfortunately, that is an additional cost which is not included in the already pricey SSDs (good thing for corporate expense accounts!).
Speaking of pricing, the 200GB LP206M has an MSRP of $1,350 while the 400GB LP406M has an MSRP of $2,350. Both cards have five year warranties and a MTBF rating of 2 million hours. You can find more information on the Sandisk Website.
It will be interesting to see how this Sandisk accelerator stacks up to the likes of the Intel 910 and FusioIO drives! The FusionIO FX, for example, gives you 420GB of QDP MLC NAND for $2,495, which works out such that Sandisk has a slightly lower cost-per-gigabyte value and SLC flash. We will have to wait for some independant reviews to say which drive is actually faster, however.
Subject: Shows and Expos | May 31, 2012 - 12:21 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: thunderbolt, ssd, ocz, lightfoot, computex 2012, z-drive R4 CloudServ, SandForce 2581, PCIe SSD
OCZ will be showing off some of the same things they showed off at CES though they are much closer to release. Lightfoot is their external Thunderbolt enclosure which will house SSDs that can utilize the extra bandwith provided by the new external transfer technology. They will also being showing off Enterprise class PCIe SSDs, the brand new Intrepid line of SSDs and software designed to replace SANs in a network environment. Keep an eye out for more details as Computex grows nigh.
SAN JOSE, CA—May 31, 2012—OCZ Technology Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:OCZ), a leading provider of high-performance solid-state drives (SSDs) for computing devices and systems, will showcase the Company's latest client and enterprise storage solutions at Computex 2012 in Taipei, Taiwan June 6 through June 9 at the Taipei International Convention Center.
Continuing to demonstrate leadership in both the enterprise and consumer markets, OCZ will display a comprehensive lineup of its innovative SSD products. For high-end business, server, and OEM clients, OCZ will showcase PCI Express (PCIe) SAN acceleration and replacement solutions, and unveil the impending Intrepid 3 SATA III SSD Series based on the Everest 2 architecture. Live demos at the booth will include both the current industry-leading Z-Drive R4 CloudServ PCIe SSD that delivers over one million IOPS, and the highly anticipated Z-Drive R5 Series based on the co-developed OCZ-Marvell Kilimanjaro platform that raises the bar in performance, reliability, and endurance. OCZ will also showcase the VXL Storage Accelerator software that enables large scale deployment of a virtualized environment for businesses to eliminate the need for costly tier-1 SANs in a wide range of enterprise IT infrastructures.
For client storage, OCZ will showcase the flagship Vertex 4 SATA III SSD, along with the upcoming ‘Lightfoot’ portable SSD designed with the Intel Thunderbolt platform that excels in data transfer speeds and offers high capacity for multimedia professionals.
Subject: Storage | May 11, 2012 - 12:07 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: SandForce SF-2281, PCIe SSD, owc, Mercury Accelsior, Marvell 88SE9230
For a company which used to only be known as a storage provide for Apple, OWC is really hitting its stride with the PCIe SSD market. Their newest Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD family will come in four sizes, a 120GB for $359.99, $529.99 for the 240GB, $949.99 for the 480GB and the largest is 960GB at $2079.99. If you can't afford the biggest version then you will love the fact that this PCIe SSD is upgradeable with mPCIe SSDs, assumedly specifically designed for the device. These mPCIe SSDs use Toshiba 32Gb 24nm Toggle Mode MLC flash with a SandForce SF-2281 controller and you can think of the cards its self as a RAID card; essentially it uses a Marvell 88SE9230 to put the two SSDs into RAID0. SSD Reviews testing of the 480GB model saw sequential reads and writes hit well over 500MB/s.
Don't expect to boot from this card but the upgradeablilty and ease of installation certainly make this RAID card PCIe SSD combination very attractive.
**UPDATE** After hearing from an OWC rep, it would appear that this does not suffer from Al's least favourite attribute of PCIe SSDs, it is indeed bootable both on Mac and PC without even needing third party drivers. You should probably back up your OS before upgrading the Accelsior though!
"It was only a matter of time before the idea of expandable storage was introduced into the world of PCIe SSDs and, although we have seen a few prototypes in the last year, none have quite made it to market just yet. Our analysis of the OWC Mercury Accelsior 480GB PCIe SSD not only opens the possibility of upgradeable capacity sizes, but also, it just so happens to be only the second consumer targeted PCIe SSD on the market right now and is both Mac and PC ‘plug and play’ compatible."
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- OCZ Vertex 4 SSD - Progress in the Firmware (testing with v1.4RC) @ Tweaktown
- OCZ Vertex 4 SSD revisited with FW 1.4RC @ Guru3D
- Zalman F1 Series 120GB SSD Review @ HardwareLOOK
- Kingston SSDNow V+ 200 120GB @ Tweaktown
- Crucial m4 256 GB Review @ HCW
- OCZ Vertex 4 128GB @ Tweaktown
- Kingston SSDNow V+ 200 120GB Solid State Drive @ Pro-Clockers
- Intel 910 Series 800GB PCIe Review - Amazing Performance Results In Both 400GB and 800GB Configurations @ SSD Review
- Corsair Performance Pro Series 256GB @ Overclockers Online
- Our Take On Western Digital's New 1 TB VelociRaptor @ Tweaktown
- Western Digital VelociRaptor 1TB Hard Drive @ Bjorn3D
- Akitio MyCloud Duo NAS @ Tweaktown
- Akitio Taurus Mini Super-S LCM External RAID Storage Review @ TechwareLabs
- SilverStone DS321 Dual-Bay HDD Enclosure Review @ HardwareHeaven
- Verbatim 500GB USB 3.0 Store 'n' Go Portable Hard Drive Review @ Legit Reviews
- Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner Review @ NikKTech
- IOSafe Rugged Portable @ LanOC Reviews
- LaCie 5big Office+ review @ Hardware.Info
- Verbatim Store ‘n’ Go Traveller: USB 3.0 750GB @ Rbmods
Subject: General Tech, Mobile | April 24, 2012 - 01:37 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: thunderbolt, PCIe SSD, pcie, mlink, apple
California based company mLogic LLC debuted a new “mLink” Thunderbolt enclosure at the NAB 2012 show that will allow users to connect PCI-E based cards to computers using Thunderbolt connections. Unfortunately, enthusiasts wishing to slap a graphics card into the enclosure are out of luck. The incompatibility is due to graphics cards not having Thunderbolt aware drivers and may be something that is rectified in the future but currently not an option.
Right now, there are only a few storage devices and networking NICs that are compatible with the mLink enclosure including Apricorn and OWC PCI-E SSDs, Atto Technology’s Fiber Channel network cards, and Atto Technology’s SAS RAID controller cards. (The full list of compatible devices is located here.) Not terribly exciting, but some users will find it very useful. The design is very streamlined and sleek, though its worth mentioning that it comes at a cost of $400 USD.
Enthusiasts wanting to add more graphics horsepower to their notebooks will have to look elsewhere, but for users that need super fast storage in a sleek industrial design enclosure it is an interesting option. The price will be something that turns many people off of it, however. It is slated to release in June with pre-orders being accepted now. More information along with photos of the device is available here.
It sure looks nice, but is this something people will actually use? Let us know in the comments!
Subject: Storage | April 2, 2012 - 05:10 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: RevoDrive 3 X2 240GB, PCIe SSD, ocz
The thing which most caught The Tech Report's eye when they examined the OCZ RevoDrive 3 X2 240GB PCIe SSD was the complete lack of bridge chips. When they inquired as to just how the SuperScale storage controller manages this they didn't get a precise answer, as that would be giving away secrets, but were told it "combines processing and full DMA cores, as well as internal PCIe, SATA and SAS interfaces." Putting that mystery aside, they installed the SSD to see just how four SSDs on one card perform in real world and synthetic tests. The tests will impress you but keep in mind the cost of the card, at $2.83/GB it does not come cheap.
"Using virtualization voodoo, the RevoDrive 3 X2 combines four SandForce-based SSDs on a single PCIe card purportedly capable of transfer rates up to 1500MB/s. We take a closer look to see if the Revo is as impressive as it sounds. "
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- OCZ Releases Arowana SSD Firmware @ SSD Review
- LSI Nytro Product Family Overview - New WarpDrive XD Revealed and more @ Tweaktown
- Plextor M3 Pro 256GB @ Tweaktown
- Super Talent RAIDDrive upStream 220GB PCIe SSD @ SSD Review
- Transcend SSD720 128GB @ Kitguru
- BIWIN S836 Elite SATA 3 120GB @ SSD Review
- OCZ RevoDrive Hybrid 1TB @ Bjorn3D
- Runcore ProV Max 240GB 6Gbps SSD @ SSD Review
- Samsung 830 Series SATA 3 512GB @ SSD Review
- Micron RealSSD P400e 200GB Enterprise SATA III SSD Review @ Legit Reviews
- OCZ Synapse 64GB SSD Cache Drive Review @ Hardware Canucks
- QNAP TS-879U-RP 10GbE NAS Server @ Benchmark Reviews
- Synology DiskStation DS1512+ NAS @ TechSpot
- Western Digital My Book Live Duo (4TB) Review @ TechReviewSource