Subject: Storage | May 28, 2013 - 10:47 AM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: ssd, crucial m500, mlc, marvell 9187, RAIN
Before discussing the impressive price point of Crucial's M500 drive their are two features worth mentioning about this drive, RAIN and the Marvell 9187 controller. RAIN is Redundant Array of Independent NAND which offers data parity which will allow you to successfully recreate data after an uncorrectable error, something which might put the minds of those still leery of SSDs to rest. The new Marvell controller is the secret to the pricing of this drive, it allows the usage of 128Gbit (16GB) NAND dies as opposed to the more common 64GBit dies and is produced at a lower cost than other controllers. [H]ard|OCP tested the 512GB drive and does warn that the specifications of the two smaller capacity drives are different enough to require individual testing. However as you can pick up the 512GB drive for $400 you might simply opt for the largest drive which offers competitive performance at an amazing $0.78/GB.
"Crucial's M500 offers the lowest price per gigabyte for an MLC SSD with enterprise-class features not seen on typical consumer SSD data drives. With new 128Gbit MLC NAND paired with the Marvell 9187 controller the M500 should deliver great performance at a historically low price point. Is the Crucial M500's performance up to par?"
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- 240GB OCZ Vertex 3.20 Solid State Drive @ Benchmark Reviews
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 120GB SSD Review @ Techgage
- Solidata K8 1920E SSD Review - SandForce Driven and an Amazing 2TB Capacity @ SSD Review
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 Solid State Drive @ X-bit Labs
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB SATA III 2.5'' SSD Review @ Madshrimps
- OCZ Vertex 450 256GB SSD Review @ Legit Reviews
- OCZ Vertex 450 SSD @ Techspot
- OCZ Vertex 450 @ Hardware.info
- OCZ Vertex 450 SSD @ SSD Review
- OCZ Vertex 450 256GB @ Tweaktown
- SanDisk Ultra Plus 256GB SSD @ eTekinx
- Samsung SSD 840 comparison @ Hardwareoverclock
- Seagate 600 Pro SSD @ SSD Review
- Crucial M500 480GB SSD @ eTeknix
- Bang for Your Buck: Best 256GB Class SSD's under $200 @ Tweaktown
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB Solid State Drive Review @ OCIA.net
- Kingston SSDNow E100 Enterprise SSD @ Tweaktown
- Mushkin Chronos GO Deluxe 1.8″ SATA 3 SSD Review ? Lightning Speeds Ultrathin Design @ SSD Review
- HGST Travelstar 7K1000 1TB 2.5" Hard Drive @ Tweaktown
- 4TB Seagate Desktop HDD ST4000DM000 @ Benchmark Reviews
- WD Se 4TB Enterprise Hard Drive Review @ Techgage
- Western Digital Scorpio Blue (WD5000LPVT) 500GB HDD @ Tweaktown
- Seagate Laptop Thin SSHD 500GB review: 2.5-inch hard disk with SSD cache @ Hardware.info
- Seagate Desktop HDD.15 4TB Hard Drive Review @ Hardware Canucks
- ADATA DashDrive Elite UE700 USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- Kingston DT Workspace 64GB 'Windows To Go' USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- Adata DashDrive Elite UE700 32GB Flash Drive Review @ Ninjalane
- Kingston HyperX Predator 512GB @ Hardware.info
- 32 32/64GB USB 3.0 memory stick test: lots of differences @ Hardware.info
- Patriot Supersonic Magnum Flash Drive @ Benchmark Reviews
- Lexar Professional 128GB Compact Flash Memory Card @ Tweaktown
- Transcend 32GB Wi-Fi SDHC @ Tweaktown
- Kingston 64GB microSDXC SDCX10/64GB @ Bjorn3D
- WD My Passport Ultra 1TB Portable Storage Drive Review @ Legit Reviews
- ADATA DashDrive Air AE400 Wireless Storage Reader and Power Bank Review @ Madshrimps
- Rosewill RDEE-12002 USB 3.0 Hard Drive Enclosure @ techPowerUp
- Corsair Voyager Air 500GB Wireless Storage Device @ Tweaktown
- Transcend StoreJet Cloud 32GB Wireless Storage Device @ Tweaktown
- Kingston MobileLite Wireless Review @ Pro-Clockers
- Synology DS213j review: deluxe entry-level NAS @ Hardware.info
- Icy Dock FlexCage MB975SP-B 5x3.5" in 3x5.25" HDD Cage Review @ Hi Tech Legion
- Shuttle OMNINAS KD20 @ techPowerUp
- iStarUSA BPU-340SATA Military Grade Drive Enclosure @ NikKTech
- LaCie CloudBox 1TB Personal NAS @ Tweaktown
Subject: Storage | May 28, 2013 - 05:15 AM | Allyn Malventano
Tagged: Xe, western digital, wdc, se, RE, hdd
Today Western Digital did a slight rearranging of their enterprise product lineup:
Starting from the top down, the Xe series is essentially a SAS version of their 2.5" 10k RPM VelociRaptor form factor, available in 300GB, 600GB, and 900GB capacities. The Re series is the same 'RE' we are all familiar with, and is now available in both SAS and SATA. That bottom block, however, is something new:
The Se series is Western Digital's attempt at a lower cost Re series drive, and will be available in capacities up to 4TB.
So the Se is an Advanced Format version of the Re, designed for reduced workloads. Throughput is slightly reduced due to differences in track geometry, though WD let me know they expect final shipping Se's may be closer to the Re spec than the slide indicates. The Se carries the same RPM as well as StableTrac (where the spindle is supported at both ends), RAFF (where accelerometers compensate for chassis vibration), and TLER (where IO request timeouts are adjusted to play nicely with hardware RAID).
The key to the success of the Se will be just what sort of reduced cost Western Digital is able to price the drive at. That information, as well as a full review of an Se, will be coming later today, just as soon as our next batch of samples arrives.
Introduction, Specifications and Packaging
Last month OCZ introduced the Vertex 3.20, which took their popular Vertex line to 20nm flash territory. The Vertex 3.20 used the same tride and true SandForce controller used in previous iterations of that line. The older Vertex line was starting to show its age, and the move to 20nm didn't really help the issue. We knew it was just a matter of time before they brought 20nm to their Indilinx Barefoot line, and that time is now. The new model suggests OCZ may abandon the Vector name, and resurrect the performance of their flagship product line by shifting their Indilinx Barefoot 3 (BF3-M10) over to a newly dubbed Vertex 450:
Lets jump right into the specs:
- Capacity: 128, 256GB, 512GB
- Sequential read: 540 MB/sec
- Sequential write: 525 MB/sec
- Random read IOPS (up to): 85 k-IOPS
- Random write IOPS (up to): 90 k-IOPS
Subject: Storage | May 21, 2013 - 07:01 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: hgst, western digital, 500GB platter, 1.5tb drive, mobile hard drive
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (HGST, which is now owned by Western Digital) has developed a new 2.5” mobile hard drive called the Travelstar 5K1500. The hard drive uses three 500GB platter drives for a total capacity of 1.5TB. HGST claims that the drive is the highest capacity 9.5mm mobile drive on the market. Additionally, the company has stated that the new drive is faster than its existing two-platter hard drives according to the PCMark Vantage and PCMark 7 benchmark suites.
The 1.5TB Travelstar 5K1500 is a 5400 RPM hard drive with 32MB of on-board cache, a 6Gbps SATA III interface, and shock protection features.
The new mobile drive will be used in external hard drives, all-in-one systems, and notebooks where storage space is valued more than pure performance. It will be available sometime in June for an as-yet-unannounced price point. Another version of the Travelstar 5K1500 that offers automatic encryption of data will be available in Q3 2013.
Subject: Storage | May 14, 2013 - 02:53 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: sshd, cache, western digital, Black SSHD, Hybrid Drive
The Tech Report sat down with Matt Rutledge, Vice President of Western Digital's client computing group to discuss the software behind their new HDDs with an SSD cache. Sandisk will be providing the hardware and WD who will be providing the custom caching software which will not be coded into the hardware but will function at the driver level. Matt mentioned that this software can also make use of the system's memory and incorporate it into the cache as well though it was not completely clear if there will be many user editable settings. Check the interview out.
"WD revealed that its hybrid drives will use SanDisk iSSD flash components. The announcement was devoid of details on how the caching system works, but we can now shed new light on the software-managed scheme."
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- Seagate SSHD Thin 500GB Review @ Hardware Canucks
- Seagate Desktop HDD.15 4TB vs WD Black 4TB Hard Drive Review @ Legit Reviews
- Toshiba MK3001GRRB 300GB SAS 6Gb/s HDD @ NikKTech
- Intel 525 Series 120GB & 180GB mSATA SSD @ Hardware Canucks
- PNY Prevail Elite 240GB SSD @ Tweaktown
- Crucial M500 480 GB @ techPowerUp
- 120GB OCZ Vertex 3.20 Solid State Drive @ Benchmark Reviews
- Seagate Desktop HDD.15 4TB Review @ Techgage
- Crucial M4 256GB SATA III SSD Review @ PCSTATS
- Corsair Neutron 128GB and 256GB (2013 Hynix Edition) @ TweakTown
- Kingston Wi-Drive 64GB @ Kitguru
- Western Digital My Book Live 1TB Personal Cloud Storage @ Tweaktown
- OWC Envoy Pro EX USB 3.0 Bus-Powered Portable SSD @ SSD Review
- PQI Tiffany 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- 64 GB Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate 3.0 G3 Flash Drive @ TechARP
- Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate 3.0 G3 32GB Flash Drive Review @ Legit Review
- Patriot Supersonic Magnum 256GB USB 3 Flash Drive @ SSD Review
- PQI i-mini USB 3.0 32GB @ techPowerUp
- LSI MegaRAID 9271-8i PCIe Raid Controller @ Funky Kit
- Icy Dock FlexCage MB975SP-B Tray-Less 5 x 3.5" HDD Dock @ Tweaktown
- SilverStone DS322 Dual-Bay RAID Enclosure @ Tweaktown
- Western Digital My Passport Enterprise 500GB USB3.0 External Hard Drive @ eTeknix
Seagate recently announced and released their third generation of laptop Solid State Hybrid Drives. Originally thier hybrids carried the Momentus (laptop HDD) name forward, tacking on 'XT' to denote the on-board caching ability. The Momentus XT was intriduced in a 500GB (1st gen) and 750GB (2nd gen) model. The new line gets a new and simple title - Laptop SSHD.
In addition to the new name, we now have two capacity points available. The 'Laptop SSHD' retains the old 9.5mm form factor and now pushes a full 1TB of capacity, while the 'Laptop Thin SSHD' drops a platter and reduces availabile capacity to 500GB. The bonus with the 500GB model is that it maintains similar performance yet shaves off some thickness, making it Seagate's first 7mm Hybrid.
Today we will take a look at the new Thin SSHD, comparing it to the performance of the older generation Seagate Hybrids, as well as to Intel's RST caching solution:
Subject: Storage | May 10, 2013 - 12:48 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: ramdisk, ram drive, ram, radeon ramdisk, amd
In light of AMD’s latest memory release and Radeon RAMDisk push, I decided to take a look at the latest version 4.1.0 of the RAMDisk software to see what had changed since the last time I tested it out. Improved installation and logging along with a couple of new features are all part of the new RAMDisk software.
AMD has simplified the installer since the previous version to the point that only a few clicks are necessary to get setup. Although you can jump into the advanced settings and change the installation path, the default options are basically just to accept the ToS and click next. Other GUI tweaks include a new Logging tab that scans the last 1,000 entries in the Windows Event Log and shows only those related to the RAM Drive.
The biggest change is the addition of new options in the load/save tab. Because of the nature of RAM, the RAMDisk created by the software is not persistent across reboots. However, you can save the disk image to a file on persistent storage (a hard drive, SSD, et al). Then, you can save the RAM Drive and its contents to a file and reload that disk after a restart.
The paid version of Radeon RAMDisk takes this a step further by allowing background updating of the RAMDisk data. With the Load in Background option, the RAMDisk will be immediately available to the operating system after a restart. The software will automatically start transferring data from the image stored on the hard drive to the portion of RAM set aside for the RAM disk instead of making the user wait fro the entire disk to be recreated before it can be accessed. Any data requested that has not yet been transferred to the RAM disk will be transparently pulled from the hard drive image.
Further, AMD offers up a background update option that will run in the background and continuously write RAMDisk changes to the *.img file stored on the hard drive. This eliminates the need to wait for the entire RAMDisk to be written to disk before shutting down the computer or stopping the RAM Drive. Considering the wait times to read and write data from/to the hard drive is one of the major limitations of RAM drives, this is a really useful feature that certainly adds some incentive to springing for the paid version.
The free version doesn’t get background updating, but it does still have the AutoSave feature that will write data out to the image file periodically which will help prevent data loss due to power failure or kernel panic.
Heh, the SSD is pegged but the RAMDisk utilization peaked at 4% when copying a 1.51GB Kerbal Space Program (with a few mods installed) folder from an Intel X25-M to a 4GB RAMDisk ;).
In my brief testing yesterday, I had some trouble getting the software to create a FAT32 formatted disk, where it kept changing to unformatted before creating the disk. Eventually I opted to format the drive myself using Windows’ Disk Management utility. Aside from that hiccup, I think the new version is worth updating to if you have not already--especially if you have the paid version (so that you can get the background data transfer features).
For specific details on exactly what has changed, an AMD-provided change log is below:
Feature Highlights of AMD Radeon™ RAMDisk release 4.1
- Updated GUI improvements .NET
- Updated installer package – Fewer clicks required to install
- Improved GUI event logging
- Improved management of options when setting Load/Save
Performance Highlights of AMD Radeon™ RAMDisk release 4.1
- Performance gains on AMD Radeon™ RAMDisk 32GB and 64GB
- Vastly improved load and save mechanics allowing for background update and background loading of the RAMDisk. Reduces wait times for load and save. “Background Update” and “Load in Background” enabled (registered users only)
- Faster PC startup and shutdown while RAMDisk is enabled.
Improved IO performance on multi-processors and multi-core systems
- Evenly distributed load among the CPUs. Allows for more system efficiency.
Subject: Storage | May 7, 2013 - 03:31 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: x8 accelerator, virident, ssd, seagate 1200, Seagate, pci-e
In addition to its recently-announced 600 and 600 Pro consumer line of solid state drives, Seagate has unveiled two new drives aimed at the enterprise SSD market. The Seagate 1200 series is a 2.5" SAS SSD and the Seagate X8 is a PCI-E based accelerator card.
Unfortunately, details are extremely scarce on both upcoming enterprise drives. Performance, specifications, pricing, and availability are still unknown. Seagate has officially confirmed there existence and shared a few tidbits of information, however.
The Seagate 1200 SSDs are 2.5" form factor drives with a 12Gbps SAS interface, which suggests that they will be at least somewhat faster than the consumer versions due to Seagate implementing the faster drive interface. The most important detail however, is that Seagate will be using its own custom SSD controller in the 1200 series. The new controller is still a mystery, but it is developed by Seagate and not Link A Media with customized firmware like the 600 and 600 Pro drives. I am especially interested to find out more about this aspect of the drive. Hopefully the new controller is successful and will trickle down to the company's next-generation consumer SSDs.
Meanwhile, Seagate's X8 Accelerator card is a half-height, half-length expansion card with up to 2.2TB of flash memory. The new PCI-E based drive is based on technology from Virident and can be used to accelerate applicators or database operations in servers. It will be available in capacities ranging from 550GB to 2.2TB. The SSD controller/management duties are handled by the host system's CPU and maintenance operations like garbage collection can be scheduled for periods of downtime when the server is not being hit hard by things like database requests for a popular web application. According to Seagate, each X8 Accelerator will be capable of up to 1.5 million IOPS.
Both of the new enterprise solid state drives will be released later this year.
Seagate has officially moved into the solid state drive (SSD) market with two new consumer drives: the 600 and 600 Pro series. The new drives come in capacities ranging from 100GB to 480GB. Both series utilize the Link A Media (LAMD) LM87800 SSD controller and 19nm 2-bit per cell MLC NAND flash from Toshiba. Seagate has not provided pricing or availability dates, but pricing should be in-line with existing drives, and reviews are already available around the Internet.
The Seagate 600 series is the lowest-tier solid state drive. It will be available in 120, 240, and 480GB capacities. Seagate is using 128GB, 256, and 512GB of NAND flash on 2, 4, and 8 channels respectively. In addition to the LM87800 SSD controller (which features custom Seagate firmware) and NAND flash, Seagate is including 1MB of DDR2-800 DRAM per 1GB of NAND flash for a total of 128, 256, and 512MB of DRAM on the 120, 240, and 480GB capacity drives.
The 600 Series is rated at up to 500MB/s peak 128KB reads and 400MB/s writes (limited to 300MB/s on the lowest-capacity 120GB drive). Further, Seagate states that the 120GB drive is capable of 80,000 random read and 60,000 random write (4K) IOPS, while the 240GB and 480GB drives can reach up to 80,000 random read and 70,000 random write (4K) IOPS.
Also note that the 600 series comes in both 7mm and 5mm form factors, which makes it compatible with most laptops. Seagate provides a 3 year warranty on the 600 series.
The Seagate 600 Pro series steps things up a notch by adding overprovisioning, capacitors for power-loss protection, and a longer 5 year warranty. The 600 Pro series will come in 100, 120, 200, 240, 400, and 480GB capacities. The 100, 200, and 400GB versions of the SSD offer additional overprovisioning which gives the SSD controller more space to work with. The capacitores are intended to provide enough power in the event of a PC power loss to write all data to the NAND flash and prevent data loss.
The 600 Pro drives offer the same 6Gbps SATA interface, LM87800 controller, and 1MB-to-1GB DRAM to NAND ratio. The Pro drives do not come in the 5mm high form factor, so laptop compatibility is limited.
Further, the 600 Pro Seagate SSDs are faster drives. According to Seagate, the Pro series offers up to 85,000 and 30,000 random read and write (4K) IOPS on the overprovisioned drives and p to 85,000/11,000 random IOPS on the 240 and 480GB drives. The 100 and 120GB drives are slower than the other drives though due to less NAND flash and channels between the flash and controller. The chart below details the rated specifications for all of the announced drives.
|Series||600 Pro||600 Pro||600 Pro||600 Pro||600 Pro||600 Pro||600||600||600|
|Random 4K r/w KIOPS||80/20||80/8||85/30||85/11||85/30||85/11||80/60||80/70||80/70|
|128KB r/w sustained sequential||>500/>300||>500/>400||>500/>400|
|128KB peak sequential r/w||520/300||520/300||520/450||520/450||520/450||520/450|
Blank areas indicate that rated specifications were not available.
Fortunately, the reviews available online (such as AnandTech's) do seem to support the new drives as far as performance is concerned. The drives are stacking up nicely versus the competition, which is interesting given the controller choice. For example, the sequential read speed looks promising.
The 600 and 600 Pro drives are looking like solid drives so long as the pricing is competitive. I'm excited to see where Seagate goes from here.
Subject: Storage | May 3, 2013 - 04:32 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: LAMD, corsair, neutron, ssd, asynchronous NAND, 22nm
Still featuring the Link_A_Media Devices LM87800 controller but with all new 22nm SK Hynix Synchronous NAND the refreshed Corsair Neutron SSD series just arrived on [H]ard|OCP's test bench. The refresh brings both good and bad attributes, while the 22nm NAND proves a little slower than the original 25nm it also brings a much lower price. That lower price paired with a 5 year warranty should make this drive attractive to users that are holding off on picking up an SSD because of fears that the drive will stop functioning in a few years, or who have a hard time spending well over $1/GB for storage.
"Corsair keeps pace with continuing innovation in the NAND market by switching from 25nm IMFT NAND to the rarely seen 22nm SK Hynix NAND. This NAND provides a lower price point and extra capacity. Today we take a look to see if the Neutron Series performance remains and how this new SSD build stacks up to the competition."
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- ADATA XPG SX900 128GB SSD Review Redux @ [H]ard|OCP
- Crucial M500 480GB Solid-State Drive Review @ Legit Reviews
- Comay Pluto SC3 Enterprise SSD @ Tweaktown
- ASUS RAIDR Express 240GB PCI-Express SSD review: is this the future? @ Hardware.info
- Corsair SSD Toolbox Software Overview - Better than Never @ Tweaktown
- Top SSD Recommendations For May 2013 - Samsung TLC Dethrones the SanDisk SSD Family @ SSD Review
- The SSD Optimization Guide Ultimate Windows 8 (And Win7) Edition @ The SSD Review
- OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB SSD w/20nm Flash @ FunkyKit
- OWC Mercury Accelsior E2 PCIe SSD @ SSD Review
- Transcend MSA720 128GB mSATA SSD Review @ Legit Reviews
- Seagate Laptop Thin SSHD 500GB Review @ Techgage
- SanDisk Extreme Pro 128GB Compact Flash Memory Card @ Tweaktown
- ADATA DashDrive Air AE400 Wireless Storage @ Benchmark Reviews
- takeMS LumX 4GB USB Flash Drive Review @ Madshrimps
- SanDisk Extreme Pro SDHC and microSDHC Memory Card @ Tweaktown
- Corsair Flash Survivor Stealth 64GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- ADATA DashDrive Durable UD310 32GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive @ eTeknix
- Synology DS213+ High-Performance 2-Bay NAS Server for SMB Review @ Madshrimps
- Corsair Voyager Air 1TB Wireless Hard Drive @ eTecknix
- Patriot Supersonic Rage XT 64GB Flash Drive @ FunkyKit
- Mach Xtreme MX-ES 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive @ Tweaktown
- Transcend Wi-Fi SD Card @ Hardware.info
- PQI Air Bank 500GB External Wi-Fi Hard Disk Drive @ Tweaktown
- Asustor AS-604T 4-Bay NAS @ Tweaktown
- QNAP's TS-EC1279U-RP 12-bay Flagship Rackmount NAS @ AnandTech
- nfortrend EonNAS Pro 510 NAS @ Tweaktown
- Asustor AS-606T @ Legion Hardware
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