CES 2015 -Samsung had several enterprise SSDs on display in their meeting rooms, highlighting the wide range of storage options they provide. Samsung has all the connectivity bases covered for SATA, SAS, and PCIe.
NVMe SSDs always attracts my immediate attention. NVMe is a hot topic, as outlined in our Defining NVMe Article. Pairing the refined and efficient interface with exciting new NAND technologies is exciting, and the SM1715 comes with massive capacities of 1.6 and 3.2TB. The SM1715 comes in the familiar HHHL form factor, and cramming all of that capacity into such a small space is made possible by Samsung's 3D V-NAND. Readers can find deeper analysis of V-NAND in The V-NAND Paradigm Shift Whitepaper. The SM1715's obligatory feeds and speeds are 750,000/185,000 random read/write IOPS and a sequential read/write speed of 3,000/2,200 MB/s, but NVMe advantages of reduced CPU overhead, in-box driver support in leading operating systems, and refined latency performance are also a big attraction.
M.2 offers the same NVMe goodness in a slimmer form factor , which is generating incredible interest for hyperscale deployments. The Samsung SM953 packs 480GB of 1x nm planar MLC NAND flash, but this inaugural design will likely be augmented with 3D V-NAND in the future. The UBX controller delivers sequential read/write speeds of 1,750/750 MB/s, and random read speed weighs in at 250,000 IOPS. Random write speeds haven't been disclosed as of yet, but the SM953 also features power loss protection. The race is on for the first datacenter-class M.2 SSD to hit the market, and look to these pages soon for an evaluation of the first one to hit our labs.
CES 2015 - Plextor officially announced the M6e Black Edition at CES, a product we broke an exclusive story on just a few weeks ago. The M6e Black Edition is a gamer focused version of the original M6e PCIe 2.0 x2 SSD released one year ago at CES 2014.
The new model will ship in three capacity sizes, as shown from our suite high up in the MGM Grand on the beautiful Las Vegas Strip.
Enhancements include a new black and red aluminum cover that doubles as a heat sink, allowing the new drive to perform well in systems without a lot of air cooling.
Warner Bros. certainly has form in the area of splitting films unnecessarily, as seen with 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows', and 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies' which is currently steaming it's way to a billion dollars at the international box office, so today's news that the upcoming sequel to 'Man of Steel' might be split into two film releases does have more than a whiff of authenticity about it.
Currently pegged for a March 25, 2016 release date, FlickeringMyth is reporting that Warner are poised to announce that the Superman sequel, which has morphed into a trojan horse to launch the Justice League as a fully fledged franchise, will be split into two films - the first ' Batman v Superman Part I: Enter the Knight' coming on October 23rd 2015, with 'Batman v Superman Part II: Dawn of Justice' to be released on the original release date of March 25th 2016.
With a theatrical teaser attached to next month's release of the Wachowski's 'Jupiter Rising', it won't be long before this rumour is confirmed either way - but I'd put my money on happening.
CES 2015 - Despite the new M6e Black Edition with PlexTurbo 2.0 software just hitting the market, Plextor was prepared to talk about a future M7e SSD that doubles the available bandwidth of the just announced M6e Black Edition.
The new M7e moves the PCIe AHCI SSD to PCIe 2.0 x4. This doubles the theoretical bandwidth from the M6e and M6e Black Edition. Users will need to balance the fact that the M6e Black Edition is available now with the performance increase offered by the new model available in six months or so.
The new M7e is build with the Marvell Altaplus controller we first broke cover on in an exclusive report at CES 2014.
CES 2015 -Phison is poised to make waves with their new PS5007-E7 controller. This new controller will power enterprise NVMe SSDs in both the M.2 and 2.5" form factors, with the latter sporting the new SFF-8639 connector. The controller will provide plenty of bandwidth with a PCIe 3.0 x4 connection. The new controllers support capacities from 16GB all the way up to 2TB. Sequential reads are rated for 2,800 MB/s, and sequential writes come in at 1,500 MB/s. The controller also features random read/write speeds of 350,000/300,000 IOPS.
The controller supports both AHCI 1.3 and NVMe 1.1 (covered in our Defining NVMe article). Current designs do not include power capacitors, but power loss protection will be included in the final designs. It is also only rational that an NVMe controller with this type of grunt power will eventually make its way to a standard PCIe form factor product, but we did not receive official confirmation of that possibility. The M.2 form factor is starting to pop up in roadmaps of more manufacturers for enterprise applications, so there is definitely an emerging customer base for these products as well.
CES 2015 - Crucial announced a new 'SSD Toolbox' type software at CES 2015. Officially, the new software is called Crucial Storage Executive. The software installs on your system and then is browser based for quick and easy management. It works with all SSDs back to the M500 model.
The interface looks really good and scales to the resolution of your browser window. This is just the above the fold image on a 1920x1080 display with the browser set to 50% size.
The menu system was thought out well and shows you information on every drive in your system, not just the Crucial SSDs.
Sony Pictures managed to release "The Interview" to the Internet on Christmas Eve and in theaters on Christmas, but it continues to be a bumpy road for the movie studio. The Guardians of Peace hacker group compromised SPE servers, took all the data, and then "wiped them clean" so Sony no longer had backups.
The initial breach took place shortly before Thanksgiving, and the movie studio's networks are still down - and likely won't be back online for a few more weeks, at the earliest.
"We are the canary in the coal mine, that's for sure," said Michael Lynton, Sony Pictures CEO, in an interview with the Associated Press. "There's no playbook for this, so you are in essence trying to look at the situation as it unfolds and make decisions without being able to refer to a lot of experiences you've had in the past or other peoples' experiences. You're on completely new ground."
Companies struggle to keep their networks secure, and are becoming frustrated by cyberattacks and data breaches. Despite some interest in launching retaliatory attacks, there are a number of hurdles that make it difficult, legal issues aside - not only would it be ineffective because it could escalate the matter further, but there are concerns victims would launch cyberattacks against the wrong targets.
The topic came back to life after JPMorgan Chase may have recruited hackers to launch attacks in retaliation for a cyberattack. Cybersecurity experts and the US government don't recommend companies seek revenge, as US infrastructure has the most to lose - and it'll likely end poorly for the victim either way.
"The technical sector is the backbone of the American economy, and if we start engaging in these kind of behaviors, in these kind of attacks, we're setting a standard, we're creating a new international norm of behavior that says this is what nations do," said former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, in a an interview that PBS Nova will publish soon.
CES 2015 - Two themes stuck out this year in the consumer SSD world at CES 2015, Silicon Motion and 3bit per cell NAND flash.
At the ADATA suite we found these two topics merging together in the new ADATA SP320 SSD, the first retail branded product with a SMI SM2256 controller. Paired with the new Silicon Motion controller is 3bit per cell (TLC) NAND. ADATA didn't tell us what flavor of TLC rests under the cover. At this time the pool is fairly shallow but in the coming months several NAND flash fabs will deepen the pool.
The SP320 will ship in four capacity sizes, read up to 560 MB/s and write up to 510 MB/s, both sequential . No word on the random performance or price but we expect both to be low considering the low cost consumer placement of this product.
In 2015 the trend is to focus on higher SSD adaption rates, trying to displace HDDs and that can only be achieved by giving consumers larger capacity at better prices than what we have now. The SP320 puts ADATA on the right track to make that happen.
CES 2015 -ADATA had a working reference Seagate SandForce SF3700 SSD on display at CES 2015. The SF3700 has run over the expected release date, but with manufacturers highlighting the SF3700 in working demo's we know the controller is coming closer to market. Speculation is that shipping products will be ready around June, which is around the Computex trade show.
The demonstration was powered by a SandForce SSD placed on a PCB adapter board which allows an M.2 SSD to work over a standard PCIe slot. The SF3700 controller on display, commonly referred to by the code-name Griffen, communicates over a PCIe 2.0 x4 connection, though a x2 variant is also under development. The Griffen controller can communicate via either the AHCI or the NVMe protocol across the PCIe connection.
An important distinction between earlier demo's is the fact that the working demo was running without a heat sink. This points to continued optimization of the power consumption metrics, which relate directly to heat generation. The SF3700 has several key technologies, such as DEVSLP functionality, to allow it to operate within a very low power and thermal envelope.
The Jaguar codename on the demo board refers to a reference PCB design offered by SandForce, not the actual Griffen controller. The board contains 512GB of Toshiba A19nm flash. The SF3700 controller itself still bears LSI branding, a holdover from SandForce's parent company before the Seagate acquisition.
Read on for the performance results...