Print 33 comment(s) - last by Laitainion.. on Feb 7 at 6:46 AM

BiTMICRO ratchets up SSD capacities, speeds

BiTMICRO is a name that should be familiar to many regular readers of DailyTech. When most companies announced 64GB or 128GB solid-state drives, BiTMICRO was there to wow the audience with 416GB and 832GB SSDs.

BiTMICRO is looking to impress again today with a new entry in the enterprise storage arena. The company announced that its E-Disk Altima Ultra320 SCSI SSD will now be offered in capacities ranging from 16GB to 1.6TB.

The SSDs uses ultra-fast, single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash chips to offer sustained transfers of 230MB/sec -- burst speeds can reach a maximum of 320MB/sec. In addition to incredible speed, BiTMICRO's E-Disk Altima Ultra320 SCSI SSD feature BCH Error Correction Code and advanced wear-leveling to alleviate fears of premature data corruption.

BiTMICRO's drives are targeted at aerospace, military and industrial applications, so data integrity is of high importance. BiTMICRO says that its SSDs can operate in temperatures ranging from -40C to 85C and can withstand shocks of up to 1,500 Gs.

"Ruggedness has always been the strength of flash SSDs in the military market, and the forthcoming addition of the E-Disk Altima Ultra320 SSD to BiTMICRO’s line-up will shore up the company’s support for I/O intensive and high-capacity applications," said Rudy Bruce, BiTMICRO's Executive Vice President for Marketing and Sales.

BiTMICRO expects to sample the new SSDs during the second quarter of 2009. Volume shipment of the drives -- including the aforementioned 1.6TB model -- will begin during the third quarter.

As for pricing, you probably shouldn't even ask unless you have access to a budget like this.

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SCSI and not SAS?
By amanojaku on 2/5/2008 11:56:24 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe I'm off base, but why SCSI? Working as a consultant I see my customers flocking to SAS in droves. I look at SCSI as the ex-girlfriend who rocked my world (fast bus speeds,) and simultaneously drove me crazy (SHARED bus, terminators [before self-termination,] need to set IDs, and huge freakin' cables.)

I want to see a SAS version of this drive soon.

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By amanojaku on 2/5/2008 12:19:21 PM , Rating: 2
Saw it already. It doesn't mention anything about the capacity. A little digging on the web indicates it DOES support the same capacity as the SCSI variant, but it should be listed on the official site to be considered trustworthy.

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By DerwenArtos12 on 2/5/08, Rating: 0
RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By DerwenArtos12 on 2/5/2008 2:45:29 PM , Rating: 1
My bad, clicked on the 2.5" please rate down and ignore.

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By Fritzr on 2/6/2008 10:27:56 AM , Rating: 2
Fibre Channel version: Max 1.6TB
SAS version: Max N/A
SCSI U320 version: Max 1.6TB
SCSI-N version (2.5"): Max N/A
SATA version: Max 1.6TB
ATA-133 (2.5"): Max 416GB

Planned products
6U VME version: Max 640GB1.1 TB
PMC version: Max 160GB
Transit (SCSI removable) LP Max: 640GB
Transit (SCSI removable) HP Max: 1.3TB
ATA-133 (3.5"): Max N/A
SCSI-N version (3.5"): Max Not N/A

Note form factor affects the capacity. There are notes on several that state 1" height is available with a reduced max capacity. The 3.5 drives also seem to have higher max capacities than their 2.5" counterparts.

Judging from the variety offered, the only thing preventing a particular interface from being offered is lack of demand :)

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By Fritzr on 2/6/2008 10:29:59 AM , Rating: 2
6U VME should be 640GB/1.1TB. This capacity reflects one or two slots used.

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By ImSpartacus on 2/5/2008 12:47:43 PM , Rating: 2
Is that model a 1.6tb model?

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By bhieb on 2/5/2008 12:29:29 PM , Rating: 3
Probably so you don't need new hardware. Most legacy servers already have a decent SCSI controller, and if it is aimed at the government I doubt they have adopted SAS yet (they tend to be slow to change). My guess this was done specifically for a customer that is ready to buy. Sure releasing a SAS or SATA one that we can ooh and ahh over the benchmark is great, but if you have a military contract out there saying they want 5000 if only they had SCSI guess what you bring to market first.

RE: SCSI and not SAS?
By amanojaku on 2/5/2008 12:55:57 PM , Rating: 3
My post wasn't meant to say that SCSI should not be supported, but that a SAS variant should exist, as well. The jury is still out as to whether an equivalent model exists because the Bitmicro site doesn't actually list the capacity for the 3.5" drive. I would assume the SAS drive offers the same capacity as the SCSI, but I've been surprised before.

I can see this drive making its way into the recently announced SSD SANs, which use FC or SAS. I doubt there is a SCSI SAN left in the wild. You are correct about the older SCSI servers, however.

A SATA version would be stupid. No true server runs SATA (yes, some poor shops do it for data storage,) and this drive is clearly not marketed for the home user.

By dcalfine on 2/5/2008 12:48:07 PM , Rating: 1
BiTMICRO says that its SSDs can operate at temperatures ranging from -40C...

Don't they mean -40 F ?

RE: chiste
By rcabor on 2/5/2008 12:53:52 PM , Rating: 2
I dont think so. The mil-spec is usually -40C

RE: chiste
By MasterTactician on 2/5/2008 12:55:56 PM , Rating: 5
Does it really matter?
-40C=-40F :)
Aren't conversions fun :P

RE: chiste
By Shadowself on 2/5/2008 12:56:58 PM , Rating: 3
Same difference.

-40C = -40F

RE: chiste
By joex444 on 2/6/2008 12:18:47 AM , Rating: 2
lol @ science teachings

RE: chiste
By DingieM on 2/6/2008 3:07:01 AM , Rating: 2
Nope, they really mean -40 to 85 degrees celcius, international standard.
So, they can be almost cooked :-)

RE: chiste
By Laitainion on 2/7/2008 6:46:05 AM , Rating: 2
Plus 85°F is ~29°C [Tc=(5/9)*(Tf-32)], which is just rediculously low for electronic equipement.

cheap ssd
By Nyu on 2/5/2008 11:44:16 AM , Rating: 3
I'd be happy with just a small 16-32 GB affordable SSD drive for my windows install, when will that happen? =/

RE: cheap ssd
By Demon-Xanth on 2/5/2008 12:52:48 PM , Rating: 1
RE: cheap ssd
By Nyu on 2/5/2008 2:41:10 PM , Rating: 2
nice, is there no version for SATA?

RE: cheap ssd
By Demon-Xanth on 2/5/2008 3:10:46 PM , Rating: 2
Just get an SATA-IDE adapter.

As far as I can tell, that card doesn't do DMA, so fast it is not. I'm using a 2GB non-DMA card in my router and wishing I sprung the $5 more to get one that for sure did DMA.

...and unlike the expensive SSDs, these aren't going to be rockets.

RE: cheap ssd
By wetwareinterface on 2/6/2008 2:23:11 AM , Rating: 2
the dma transfer mode isn't supported by any cf card, it would need to be supported by your cf to ide adapter. dma mode is supported by a logic board/chip to allow the drive to communicate with the memory controller without waiting for an interrupt request to hit the cpu.

basically the cpu says it needs data at xxx location on device yyy and sends the request to the memory controller that then handles all the requesting and waiting for the eventual data to arrive again before sending an additional irq signal to the cpu to notify the cpu that the data is here now at address zzz in local memory. it saves several cpu cycles and time by not having the cpu handle the mundane task of telling the memory subsystem all the little tasks to perform along the way, that portion of the logic is now in the memory controller and the individual devices that can communicate using dma.

RE: cheap ssd
By Demon-Xanth on 2/6/2008 8:47:57 AM , Rating: 2
That's incorrect, the CF interface is basically IDE in itself, and that adapter contains a voltage regulator, but no logic whatsoever. The card I linked supports the PIO mode, but other cards such as this:

DO support UDMA4.

By zolo111 on 2/5/2008 1:39:06 PM , Rating: 2
Shouldn't Seagate, WD, Hitachi...etc be worried about this? I've always wondered about it since SSD seems like the future. Not that I'd consider buying one of those bad boys in the near future though, but still I don't see Seagate jumping on the SSD bandwagon.

RE: ....
By JoshuaBuss on 2/5/2008 3:16:09 PM , Rating: 2
I don't understand why samsung isn't putting up more of a fight.. they already produce so much flash memory it seems silly that they're not trying to get into this market before everyone else.

The first company to put a decently priced 65gb SSD is going to be freaking rich.

RE: ....
By bigboxes on 2/5/2008 3:41:47 PM , Rating: 2
I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that I believe that when the time is right the major data storage companies will be buying up the SSD companies. Of course this is after the SSD companies have done all the R&D and have gotten all the kinks worked out. It is the future so I can't see the major data storage companies staying out of it for much longer.

RE: ....
By spluurfg on 2/6/2008 12:30:59 AM , Rating: 2
It probably wouldn't be very hard for them to do so -- flash memory is a large, commoditized business requiring massive capital investment in fabs. Only truly large players can manufacture the flash memory itself in any meaningful quantity. Once the technology matures and memory prices drop low enough it would not be a great challenge to simply buy the IP and start seriously churning out great numbers of these things.

Name that price
By Cullinaire on 2/5/2008 11:41:49 AM , Rating: 2
I bet $75K for the 1.6tb.

RE: Name that price
By pomaikai on 2/5/2008 12:47:41 PM , Rating: 2
Of course. Its targeted to military which will pay anything to get what it wants.

RE: Name that price
By HrilL on 2/5/2008 8:52:13 PM , Rating: 2
I think more like 100K wasn't the 800GG around 54K? Top models always have a price premiums

By s12033722 on 2/5/2008 1:21:21 PM , Rating: 3
18 months is a fairly long development cycle for a product. They can't be more than 3-6 months into the development. Doesn't that seem a wee bit premature? Strange business practices these guys have.

By exanimas on 2/6/2008 1:42:24 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with you that it seems stupid, but strange? What part about hyping something up months before release is strange for a business? More or less everyone does it and it usually works pretty well to get people talking about whatever the product may be.

By Truxy on 2/5/2008 11:42:50 AM , Rating: 2
including the aforementioned 1.6GB model


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