Posts Tagged 'flash'

Kingston says “FIRST”

What do you get for the person who just picked up the LaCie 2big USB 3.0 NAS and seemingly has everything? How about a Kingston USB 3.0 flash drive? The styling’s a bit bland (*cough, UGLY!) but it’s way better than your regular USB 2.0 flash drive. 80MB a second read speed and write speeds of up to 60MB a second. It also comes with a compatible cable for those computer ports with USB 2.0, sooo last month. Well, everyone can’t be as trendy as you now can they? Comes in 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB flavors. Ooh, with a lanyard to boot! Warranty is 5 years, let’s hope you don’t lose it before then.

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This USB will self destruct in 5 seconds …

If this doesn’t lock up government contracts, I don’t know what will. Ironkey has raised the bar when it comes to confidential data on USB flash drives. Their latest offering comes well protected in a metal casing that’s waterproof, tamper proof, and any other “proof” you can think of. Hardware encryption, optional virus/malware scanner, remote access and auto self destruct.

Wait, what?

Self destruct? As in blow it’s self up? Um, no. I’m guessing a built in self secure wipe chip built on to the circuit board. Although, I’m sure the “high ups” asked if that was an option. Hey, it’s even got Mac support … LOL. Ok, seriously, what soldier in the field, in his right mind uses a Mac?

“I’ve got the intel right here … on my Macbook” soldier #1
“What? How are we going to transfer to the data to my Vista laptop?” soldier #2
“err, no problem. Let’s visit the nearest Apple store! They can transfer the data, no problem!” soldier #1

Um, yeah. Good luck with that. Seriously though. Nobody in the field, uses a frickin Mac. The only Apple products dodging bullets is maybe an iPod.

Gadget: MicroSD CF raid adapter

Confusing title? Indeed. For those of you amateur photographers still living in the dark ages using compact flash as your media of choice this little gadget may be for you. I’m sure (like everyone) you have a collection of microSD cards just lying around going to waste. Make that flash memory relevant again by plugging them into this fancy compact flash adapter. What’s so special? It’s a mini RAID 0 adapter. That’s right. You plug in your microSD cards, and it makes it one big CF storage unit. Yay! Your DSLR camera from the last decade is useful once again.
(but won’t the read/write speed be slow? you ask … yes, yes it will. Let me distract you by shaking my car keys in your face …)

Big storage, tiny package

I got your 128GB flash storage, right in my pants baby! No seriously. The new Kingston data traveler stores 128GB in a tiny flash storage device. Take your porn collection with you where ever you go (because we all know you can’t live without it). Just be prepared to spend a bit of money. An alternate option might be just buying a whole laptop. Are we getting ridiculous yet?

I don’t know about you but the most data I’ve ever had to move around has been 8GB. Haven’t even had the need for a 32GB flash usb drive. Here’s a thought, why not use that external drive you’ve got sitting around? It won’t fit in your pocket but it’s a whole hell of a lot better than spending $900 on a little usb thingy. However, if you’re a rich bastard than why am I even talking to you.

Flash Storage: The End Is Near

All good things come to an end … yes, even digital storage capacity. According to a SanDisk executive the countdown is about 5 years when we run out of electrons. Flash storage capacity has doubled 14 times in the last 19 years. However flash storage seems to have a unique problem, one is electrons and the other is age. Eventually the technology used to control the billions of electrons simply breaks down and become less exact. That “1” should have actually been a “0”. Multiply the errors and the data you stored on that little 256GB USB key is suddenly useless.

That’s what R&D is for. Come on crack scientists! Develop a new way to control those feisty electrons or build a better flash storage cell. So is SSD at it’s end or the beginning? Are early adopters regretting their choice in data storage? In my mind flash is still temporary while hard drives are 3 – 5 years, and DVD/CDs are 10 – 15 years. Which reminds me, I should probably start going through those old CDs to see if the data is still good. I guess it’s true, more data, more problems.

MLC NAND technology to put SSDs in every household

MLC (multiple level cell) NAND technology allows for higher density of data storage capacity. This could greatly lower costs for data centers by up to 4 times. There are still some performance, reliability, and endurance issues to work out but the technology looks to make solid state drives a household product.

SLC (single level cell) NAND memory can store 1 bit per cell. This allows for higher read/write speeds and up to 100,000 write cycles. MLC NAND memory is capable of 2,000 to 10,000 write cycles but can store multiple bits per cell meaning more storage capacity. As well in order for MLC to function properly complicated firmware is required to handle data allocation and organization. (link)

The main problem with SSDs has been write performance. The fixed block sizes forces inefficient handling of data storage. Data is spread out evenly across the flash memory but slows access time and increases wear and tear. Adding RAM buffers can speed up read/write times.

SanDisk flash USB backup drives

Such a hassle to have to plug a thumb drive in and copy stuff over. Well SanDisk is taking “all” of the work out of the backup process. Enter SanDisk Ultra Backup. A simple button does the trick by backing up your data up to 64GB. As well the little unit supports AES hardware encryption for all of that porn you don’t want the airport guy to see. Should be out first quarter of 2009.

However despite the new product line demand for NAND memory chips is expected to fall. SanDisk and Toshiba temporarily shut down their facilities for 2 weeks during the holidays and planned to run their facilities at 70% capacity until the economic situation improved. So far no announcements from the other NAND producer Samsung. Expect memory prices to go up this year.


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