2013 has not been kind to the SSD manufacturer OCZ, and it appears that is just what some companies were holding out for. Sources have told TweakTown that electronics giant Toshiba is taking a serious look at buying the floundering companies consumer storage division.
This could land Toshiba some very valuable technology that it would not have to license which could be very lucrative for the company. As for OCZ, this could be its saving grace, as the company continue to spiral downward towards a hard rock bottom. As soon as I saw this rumor come in, I messaged our Senior Storage Editor, Chris Ramseyer for his thoughts. "If the report is accurate this is a win-win for everybody. Toshiba will gain a controller to go with its flash and OCZ will escape from the low margin consumer market it created," Ramseyer Said. "OCZ CEO Ralph Schmitt recently stated that OCZ had issues in 2013 securing flash in large volumes. Toshiba 19nm NAND flash has been proven superior to IMFT 20nm flash yet most of OCZ's recent products shipped with IMFT 20nm flash due to Toshiba 19nm shortages."
Honestly, I have to agree with him, and I have not seen anything exciting come out of OCZ on the consumer side of things in many months now, and I feel that Toshiba could take the IP from OCZ and create a new product that would greatly improve its Laptop, Tablet, and PC business. If the deal also comes with a NAND flash deal for OCZ it would work out well for the company.
QNAP has just unveiled its new 10GbE line of NAS models, with the new TS-x70 series of NAS. The new TS-x70 series comes in the usual 4, 6 and 8-bay varieties, with all three models being powered by Intel's dual-core Celeron CPUs at 2.6GHz.
The three models in question are the TS-470, TS-670 and TS-870, with the aforementioned Celeron CPU, 2GB of DDR3 RAM and of course, the 10GbE connectivity. The super-fast network connectivity comes in the form of four GbE ports with an optional 10GbE expansion slot being available. All three models feature USB 3.0 and HDMI.
QNAP says that read speeds should hit at around 450MBps, with write speeds slightly behind at 423MBps with all four GbE links link-aggregated. The pricing on the new units isn't too bad, with the TS-470, TS-670 and TS-870 priced at $1000, $1200 and $1400, respectively.
Today Toshiba announced the all new Q Series Pro line of internal solid state drives. The Q Series Pro is designed to be a high-end, high-performance replacement drive for consumer grade PCs. Toshiba says that the new Q Series Pro SSDs are ideal for consumers who need to boost their PC storage in a reliable and safe manner.
"Toshiba's comprehensive ecosystem of devices positions the company at an advantage when understanding consumer needs for storage," said Maciek Brzeski, vice president of product marketing and development of branded storage products, Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc., Digital Products Division. "The Q Series Pro PC Internal Solid State Drive offers industry-proven caliber and authenticity with leading performance, speeds and capabilities."
The new Q Series Pro SSDs measure in at just 7mm thin and are very lightweight. The company says that this slim profile lends itself well to Ultrabooks and other lightweight notebooks that are popular today. Toshiba's Q Series is backed by a 3-year warranty, and is available in capacities ranging from 128GB to 512GB. MSRP is set at $159.99 and ranges up to $739.99 for the top end model.
This morning LSI announced that it has been awarded the prestigious Supplier of the Year award from IT giant Cisco. The Award recognizes LSI for its relentless and and consistent excellence in quality. The award was presented at Cisco's 22nd Annual Supplier Appreciation Event that was held on September 17th in Santa Clara, California.
"Our Supplier Appreciation Awards give us an opportunity to highlight excellent performances by the very best of our extended supply chain," said Gary Cooper, vice president, Global Supplier Management, Cisco. "Our strong relationships and close collaboration with our suppliers and partner ecosystem continue to drive excellence in innovation, productivity and efficiency."
The event is held by Cisco to thank its partners who helped contribute to its success during the fiscal year of 2013, and the company presented awards to several of its largest suppliers who continue to hold strong partnerships with the company. LSI designs semiconductors and software that accelerate storage and networking in enterprise settings.
Today Mellanox announced that it would be hosting its Annual Analyst Day on Friday, October 25th, 2013 in New York City. The event will last from 8:30AM until 2:00PM with members of Mellanox's executive team providing pverviews of the company's vision, stragety, business initiatives and more.
For the public and those unable to attend, Mellanox will steam the event live at the source link below. Mellanox urges everyone who wishes to view the live stream to visit the link at least 15-minutes early so they can download the player and audio software. If you miss the live stream, a recording will be available to view within 24 hours of the event being finished.
ADATA has just released a new addition to its DashDrive line of external hard drives. The new Choice HC630 is a USB 3.0 compatible external storage device that is wrapped in a beautiful mystic blue metallic finish. ADATA has bundled its HDDtoGo encryption and synchronization software with the drive to help keep customer data safe and secure.
The new DashDrive Choice HC630 weighs in at just 5.6 ounces and has a footprint of barely 4.5x3x0.6-inches. A raised lip around the perimeter helps prevent surface scratches from occurring, and a LED indicator light is present to inform the user of the HDD status. The external HDD is available in capacities of 500GB, 750GB and 1TB with a three-year warranty backing things up.
QLogic announced today that its FlexSuite technology will be providing the converged interface for Dot Hill's ninth-generation storage architecture. QLogic says that this technology will provide Dot Hill's OEM customers and channel partners with the industry's first mid-range 16Gb Gen 5 Fibre Channel/10Gb iSCSI converged networking storage solution.
"Customers want higher bandwidth and greater flexibility in their storage solutions, and we've responded with the launch of our
ninth-generation architecture," said Ken Day, chief technology officer, Dot Hill. "This platform takes advantage of the revolutionary QLogic(R)FlexSuite dual-personality adapter technology to provide our customers with the fastest Fibre Channel and iSCSI connectivity available today, all from the same hardware. Our converged interface architecture
delivers unparalleled flexibility, allowing organizations to instantly convert their storage from Gen 5 Fibre Channel to 10Gb iSCSI and vice versa."
QLogic designed their FlexSuite dual-port ASIC with the company's unique multi-port traffic isolation technology which lends greater reliability and security on implementations which feature dual-port solutions. This architecture features on-chip CPU and memory isolation, that ensures one port will continue to function securely should the other port experience issues. This technology is essential to enterprise level data centers, and assures the highest level of availability for mission-critical applications.
Today Super Talent announced the addition of a new SSD to its DuraDrive SSD line. The all new DuraDrive Zt3 offers enhanced quality, performance and reliability needed for today's enterprise storage environment. The ZT3 features a ZIF/IDE interface and conforms to the 1.8-inch form factor.
The new DuraDrive ZT3 is available in both MLC and SLC NAND configurations and features capacities from 16GB all the way up to 256GB. Super Talent says that the new drives are designed to withstand extreme environments that may involve socks, humidity, altitudes, and temperatures. This makes the DuraDrive ZT3 series ideal for the aerospace, medical, embedded, and industrial industries.
sTec announced this morning that it will be attending VMworld Europe 2013, and will be showcasing its PCI Express solid state drives by hosting a demo at their booth, #E406. The demonstration will be based around sTecs s1120 PCIe Accelerators that enable high-performance efficiency in a small footprint.
You might remember that Western Digital acquired sTec under its subsidiary HGST earlier this year for $340 million. The acquisition allowed Western Digital to quickly make its presence known in the solid state storage market, and bring forth an entirely new enterprise solid state storage division. During this years Flash Memory Summit, our own Paul Alcorn got a chance to sit down with sTec for an on-camera interview as well. You can find that interview here.
QNAP recently updated the QTS 4.0 Turbo NAS operating system for its business-class Turbo NAS products. QTS is the operating system that runs QNAP NAS devices. The software is Linux based, and has been designed to deliver high-performance applications and services that fulfill the clint's needs of file sharing, storage management, and backups. Solutions for virtual environments, multimedia, and surveillance are also built in.
"Our previous release of QTS 4.0 for home-class Turbo NAS models has been a great success with tremendous positive feedback from our users," said Tony Lu, product manager of QNAP. "Now we are pleased to bring forth the QTS 4.0 for QNAP's business-class Turbo NAS models that we believe will greatly benefit business applications of the Turbo NAS,"
The update brings forth advanced functions for SMB users, including 400TB scale-up solution, intelligent Storage Manager, flexible volume management with thin-provisioned volume supported, SSD cache, SMART data migration, VMware VAAI and Microsoft ODX support and more, and greatly enhancing the efficiency in storage management, expansion, data process, and management in virtualization environments.
QNAP recently launched five new business-class, SAS-enabled Turbo NAS models including three devices that support 2.5-inch high-density drives. The new TS-EC1679U-SAS-RP and TS-EC1279U-SAS-RP support SAS and SATA 6Gbps hard drives while the SS-EC2479U-SAS-RP, SS-EC1879U-SAS-RP and SS-EC1279U-SAS-RP feature support for 2.5-inch hard drives.
All five of the new models feature a quad-core Intel Xeon processor that is clocked in at 3.4GHz, and things are kept nice and smooth by 8GB of DDR3 ECC RAM. Each of the new Turbo NAS devices feature a 10GbE network connection, SSD caching, and enterprise level SAS hard drives.
"The new SAS-enabled Turbo NAS models support enterprise-level SAS hard drives that will greatly satisfy performance-demanding businesses," said David Tsao, product manager of QNAP. "The new models also support lower cost high-capacity SATA hard drives for large data archiving and high-speed, high stability SSDs for I/O-intensive operations. With the new SAS-enabled Turbo NAS, businesses can enjoy great flexibility in hard drive selection."
Buffalo has just announced the launch of a new line of external hard drives featuring capacities up to 4TB. The new HD-LCU3 series of external hard drives are featured in white (up to 3TB) and black (up to 4TB) and weight about 2lbs each. Each HDD features an active cooling system, and anti-vibration technology, to help keep things cool and quiet.
The HD LCU3 series also features TurboPC EX2 software that can be enabled to automatically compress data to enable more data to be stored on the drive. The series will be offered in 1TB, 2TB, 3TB, and 4TB capacities and will retail for $134, $169, $225, and $397 respectively.
Some of our readers may be shocked to hear that the car they drove to work this morning may have a hard drive under the dash. With today's vehicles featuring more and more technology, we have to have somewhere to store all that data, and HGST has been leading the way for years now.
Earlier this week, HGST announced that it has began shipping the sixth generation of its automotive friendly HDDs. The new Endurastar J4K320 line of hard drives feature a single platter design that has been refined for the automotive infotainment and telematics market. With capacities up to 320GB, the new Endurastar drives are built to survive the rugged environment that automobiles not only reside in, but also create.
The hard drives have to be able to withstand extreme temperatures with very fast fluctuations between hot and cold, while at the same time retaining enough rigidity to handle the stray pothole or speed bump the vehicle may encounter. The Endurastar hard drives can handle altitudes up to 18,000 feet, and can operate in temperatures from -22F all the way up to 185F. Shock loads up to 300Gs will not phase the drive either.
Western Digital owned Virident Systems, has announced that it has pushed the capacity boundaries past their limits, and developed a new low-profile PCIe-based SSD that features 4.8TB of storage space. The new 4.8TB FlashMax Capacity card more than doubles the capacity of the current FlashMax II while still retaining all of the features that made the previous model such a success.
"Flash has firmly entrenched itself as the storage of choice for the increasingly demanding workloads being seen in the enterprise," said Jason Walker, senior network architect, IPFS Corporation. "However, until now the relatively limited capacity of PCIe flash cards has made it less efficient for capacity storage FlashMAX Capacity's 4.8TB of flash storage matches the capacity of a traditional HDD drive and doesn't require managing and integrating multiple tiers of storage. The combined capacity and performance Virident will provide is a big step forward for the storage industry, supporting the acceptance of, and move to, an all-silicon data center."
The 4.8TB FlasMAX Capacity model boast the same features as the FlashMAX II, and includes the same sustainable and predictable performance of its predecessor. Virident says the drive is compatible with the FlashMAX Connect Suite that allows users to extend the FlashMAX family of products with features such as Shared Storage Management and Data Management.The FlashMAX Capacity will arrive in the latter half of Q4 2013.
This month, Thecus will begin phasing in the popular Plex Media Server software into its product offerings with a new 7-bay, Top Tower, and rackmount NAS. Additionally all existing Thecus customers, the Plex Media Server app will be offered free of charge through the Thecus App Center.
For those who are unfamiliar with Plex and its products, Plex Media Server has became the de facto standard in home media streaming in recent years. The software makes managing a vast digital library of Movies, Videos, Music and Photos quick and easy, while the Plex Media Client app allows streaming from the server to any supporting device. The Plex client is featured on many of today's smart TVs, Xbox 360, Android, iOS, Linux, Windows, Mac, and even the Raspberry Pi.
I have been running the Plex Media Server software as my personal media server for over a year now, and honestly can not imagine life without it. It makes organizing, managing, and playback of my digital library so easy that I forget its running sometimes. With Thecus adding the Plex Media Server app to its offerings, the company has just moved to the top spot of my list!
Micron Technology has just announced that it has began shipping the first engineering samples of its new 2GB Hybrid Memory Cube DRAM modules. The company says that the new Hybrid Memory Cube (HMC) represents a dramatic step forward in memory technology and has been designed for applications that require high-bandwidth access to memory.
HMC utilizes what Micron calls advanced through-silicon vias, which are basically tiny conduits that transfer electricity through a stack of individual chips. Micron's HMC is a 2GB memory cube that is composed of a stack of four 4Gb DRAM die, which provides an amazing 160GB/s of memory bandwidth while consuming 70 percent less energy per bit than current technologies.
"The Hybrid Memory Cube is a smart fix that breaks with the industry's past approaches and opens up new possibilities," said Jim Handy, a memory analyst at Objective Analysis. "Although DRAM internal bandwidth has been increasing exponentially, along with logic's thirst for data, current options offer limited processor-to-memory bandwidth and consume significant power. HMC is an exciting alternative."
FMS 2013 - Richard Petersen, the Director of Marketing Management at SanDisk, stopped by the booth to explain the benefits of server-side caching with the FlashSoft solution from SanDisk. Richard gives us a high-level explanation of the software, and then drills down on some of the new features with the latest release of FlashSoft.
FlashSoft utilizes innovative caching technology to deliver the performance of enterprise flash with no disruption to applications, servers, or storage. FlashSoft works with any vendor's enterprise solid state technology, and supports all enterprise storage architectures.
We have conducted extensive testing with FlashSoft in our lab, and one of the most impressive aspects is the ease and simplicity of deployment. FlashSoft also provides the ability to utilize a whole host of SSD solutions for workload acceleration. Any flash solution can be used, with SSDs, RAID volumes and the always-exciting PCIe SSDs providing explosive acceleration of SAN and NAS workloads.
OCC has just released a revised version of its popular Deneva 2 series of enterprise-grade SSDs. The new Deneva 2 SSDs are based on MLC 19nm NAND flash and feature a SATA III 6Gb/s interface.
OCZ says that the drives also feature a "completely new power architecture that was designed from the ground up to optimize server backplane functionality, provide enhanced management of in-rush current and power fluctuation." The company says that the resulting product delivers an SSD that delivers superior performance, endurance, and reliability.
"Our Deneva 2 has been a popular SSD series among IT professionals not only as an HDD replacement but to dramatically accelerate I/O access of such popular enterprise applications as OnLine Transaction Processing, database warehousing, read intensive data caching and server boot-ups," said Daryl Lang, SVP of Product Management for OCZ Technology. "By implementing new features and the latest NAND flash process geometry we are able to deliver an optimal balance of I/O performance and cost-efficiency to our customers."
OCZ's Deneva 2 Series utilize an LSI SandForce SF2281 controller that delivers superior performance with 19nm Toggle NAND. OCZ says that the new Deneva 2 SSDs support read bandwidth up to 550MB/s and write bandwidth up to 520MB/s. The Deneva 2 SSD series is available in 120GB, 240GB, and 480GB capacities now.
Earlier today, HighPoint announced that it has began shipping the RocketU 1144C, which it says is the world's fastest USB 3.0 controller. The USB 3.0 controller card is powered by HighPoint's per-port performance architecture and a fast PCI-E 2.0 x4 host interface that is combined with UAS technology, which is responsible for this controllers abnormally fast speeds.
The RocketU 1144C delivers unprecedented levels of performance when paired with UAS capable storage devices, such as the RocketStor 5422 USB 3.0 Storage Dock. UAS (USB Attached SCSI Protocol) enables USB 3.0 devices to store and process multiple commands in parallel; significantly reducing wait time and streamlining data transfers. The speed and efficiency advantages provided by UAS technology are ideal for multi-tasking and performance-hungry applications.
Today, Mellanox announced the immediate release of its MetroX TX6100 solution that enables InfiniBand and Ethernet RDMA connectivity between data centers. Mellanox says that "MetroX allows for rapid disaster recovery and improve utilization of remote storage and compute infrastructures across long distances and multiple geographic sites."
"A common problem facing data-driven researchers is the time cost of moving their data between systems, from machines in one facility to the next, which can slow their computations and delay their results," said Mike Shuey, HPC systems manager at Purdue University. "Mellanox's MetroX solution lets us unify systems across campus, and maintain the high-speed access our researchers need for intricate simulations -- regardless of the physical location of their work."
Purdue University recently deployed MetroX TX6100 over six kilometers to connect their computational clusters to storage facilities thus providing access to its remote-based supercomputers and allowing Purdue University to organize limited access to data center space more efficiently resulting in higher facilities utilization.
LSI Corporation announced they are working closely with VMware to deliver breakthrough desktop density for VMware Horizon View deployments. VDI can be a challenging environment for the storage infrastructure with its 'bursty' random write workloads. For HDD-based solutions, be they SAN, NAS or direct attached storage, these workloads closely mirror the absolute worst-case scenario for an HDD. Throwing more spindles at the problem isn't the best of solutions, as this leads to drastically over provisioned storage resources to tackle a problem that can be addressed with a simple slip-in solution that provides lower power consumption and exponentially better latency performance.
Many administrators mistakenly think that throughput and IOPS can address every performance challenge, but the secret to maximum performance actually falls to the latency of the storage solution.
Enter the LSI WarpDrive, which brings a healthy helping of flash and places it as close to the processor as possible, delivering massive performance improvements with a minimum of configuration. Above we can observe the VSImax rating of 280 obtained before the system maxed out the CPU.In collaborative testing with VMware Horizon View using a single LSI Nytro WarpDrive application acceleration card, the WarpDrive comfortably delivers concurrent support for 200 active virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) workloads on a two-node cluster with no storage latency.
VDI environments can present performance challenges from a multitude of angles. Many companies simply test the bootstorm environment, which is an important aspect of VDI performance, but there are many more use-cases in the day-to-day management and use of VMware that can benefit from flash acceleration.
Here we see that the time to deploy linked clone pools can be drastically reduced.
VDI environments benefit more from low latency than sheer IOPS, and here the WarpDrive delivers with 150 desktops per ESXI node.
What is most amazing about these results is that the CPU became the bottleneck before the WarpDrives ran out of steam, meaning that with optimized infrastructures there is the possibility of even more performance than demonstrated in this test. Of course, it always boils down to TCO. The benefits of a flash solution are numerous, from the lowered power consumption, the small form factor and the removal of a whole layer of devices associated with the deployment of a SAN or NAS. The LSI Nytro WarpDrive delivers enough endurance to provide long-term acceleration, and the addition of compression technology provides maximum performance in VDI environments.