Posts Tagged 'memory'

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.

Kingston to make SSD’s too

Kingston plans to resell drives made by Intel, which makes flash memory chips. Kingston is set to provide technical support, testing and sell the drives to the likes of Hewlett-Packard Co., Dell Inc., IBM Corp. and others.

Intel makes two flash drive models-one that goes into business laptops and another for servers on corporate networks.

The drives are set to ship in the fourth quarter, Leong said.

Kingston has a long history with Intel.

“We have had both an engineering and marketing relationship with Intel for more than a decade,” Leong said. “We work together because we are all part of the same ecosystem.”

Kingston’s main business is buying memory chips and assembling them onto circuit boards that boost the performance of computers. It also makes memory cards that store photos, songs and data on consumer electronics. (link)

SanDisk Extreme getting 50% faster

SanDisk Corporation today set a new speed record of 30 megabytes per second1 for SD™ flash memory cards with the introduction of the SanDisk Extreme® III 30MB/s Edition line of SDHC™ Cards. The new cards, expected to be available worldwide in September in 4-gigabyte (GB)2, 8GB and 16GB capacities, are designed to deliver peak performance when used with the new digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, Nikon D90.(link)

Toshiba comes out with 32GB flash memory chips

Toshiba tonight upgraded its onboard flash memory with a new, 32GB module destined for smaller portable devices. The storage combines eight 4GB NAND flash chips built using a smaller 43 nanometer manufacturing process and makes a single package, fitting twice as much capacity into a similar space as before. The design also builds in its own controller to manage its data traffic and would let device makers drop the new package in without reengineering their hardware.

The combined storage is explicitly intended for cellphones, portable media players, video cameras, and other devices where a large amount of storage is necessary in one package. Toshiba doesn’t name individual customers, but is a key supplier of Apple and through the design would enable a 32GB iPhone as well as a 64GB iPod touch. Toshiba also produces its own electronics, including Gigabeat media players, and frequently sells its memory for competitors and manufacturers of MMC and SD cards. (link)

Power failures can still corrupt data

When the power fails, no individual component gets a clean shutdown command; power is just removed. When this happens, some parts of the machine may last longer than other parts. One of the first things that will happen, is that the memory DIMMs will no longer be refreshed properly (DRAM needs to be refreshed constantly otherwise it will lose its data) and very rapidly, the memory will contain only garbage. The hard drives and DMA controller however, will run a bit longer; so if data is being written to disk, the DMA controller will keep reading data from memory, but it has no idea that this data is corrupted. Some file systems are more sensitive to this kind of failure, because of the different kinds of journaling they do.

There are certain machines which are protected against this type of data corruption, by having the power supply send an interrupt to the operating system when power fails, but ordinary class PC hardware does not. (link)

SanDisk develops WORM (write once read many) memory cards

SanDisk Corporation today introduced the SanDisk® SD™ WORM card, a Write Once Read Many (WORM) digital memory card intended for professional uses such as police investigations, court testimony, electronic voting and other applications where data files must be protected from alteration or deletion.

Analog recording media such as film and audio tape are rapidly becoming obsolete, driving demand for a solution suitable for today’s digital devices. But conventional rewritable memory cards do not meet legal requirements to prevent data tampering.

Digital data written to SanDisk SD WORM cards is effectively locked as soon as it is recorded; there is no physical way to alter or delete individual recorded files. Yet viewing the data is simple, because the cards are readable in any standard SD slot attached to a computer or other SD-compatible device.

SanDisk SD WORM cards also offer 100-year archive life1, when kept under appropriate storage conditions. (link)


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