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Adtron's 96GB SATA SSD
Adtron's solid-state discs will offer read speeds of up to 70MB/sec

Flash solid-state discs (SSDs) have generated a lot of interest from mobile users in the past few months. SanDisk has showed off its 32GB 1.8" SanDisk SSD Ultra ATA 5000 back in January, while Ritek plans on launching 16GB, 32GB and 64GB SSDs later this year. Adtron is upping the ante with a 160GB SSD which will be available in SATA and IDE versions.

"New geometries and chip densities in SLC NAND enable Adtron to significantly expand the capacities of its industry leading high performance products," said Alan Fitzgerald, CEO of Adtron. "In addition, the economics of these new flash drives combined with the increased capacities in standard form factors, greatly expand the applications among our historic flash disk customers in the industrial and defense markets, as well as addressing bandwidth intensive server and storage acceleration applications in a much broader emerging market previously the domain of HDD products."

The IDE (I25FB) and SATA (A25FB) versions of Adtron's SSDs use SLC NAND flash memory and will be available in a standard 2.5" notebook form-factor. The I25B IDE SSD offers read speeds of up to 70MB/sec and write speeds of up to 60MB/sec. The A25FB is just a tad bit slower at 65MB/sec and 55MB/sec respectively.

The drives also feature the ArrayPro Performance Engine which enables the fast read/write speeds as well as Erasure Data Security which provides military-level protection. "ArrayPro separates an Adtron flash disk from the low-end single array SSD’s and those that employ caching technologies that require battery back-up and whose performance are highly application dependent," said Alan Fitzgerald, Adtron Chief Technology Officer.

There is no word on pricing or availability for Adtron's SSDs, but be prepared to shell out some big bucks. For reference, SanDisk's 32GB drive is pegged at around $600 while Ritek's 32GB drive will likely come in slightly below that figure so you do the math.



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When the f are they coming?
By Mudvillager on 2/25/2007 6:08:08 PM , Rating: 5
There's been like one million SSD HDD announcements like this one in the past few months but I haven't seen a single one in stores. SSDs are easily the thing I'm looking most forward to in 2007, so PLEASE let there be availability soon!

BTW, 160GB SLC? Wouldn't that be unbelievably expensive?




RE: When the f are they coming?
By Captain Orgazmo on 2/25/2007 6:19:36 PM , Rating: 2
70MB/s read speeds are extremely good for flash. Couple that with nonexistent seek times, and no moving parts, and I think we are looking at a real, viable HDD replacement here. Of course, just like when new HDD technologies and densities came out years ago, this new technology will be quite pricey. I remember when 1GB HDDs were over $3000. I can easily see the 160GB version costing that much or maybe even more. Of course its target market (military/commercial) has that kind of dough to fling about, so it should sell well for now. However, I don't see this coming within reach of consumers for at least 2 years, and mainstream for 5 years. Hopefully by then that newfangled "phase change" flash technology will become practical.


RE: When the f are they coming?
By MrTeal on 2/25/2007 6:53:14 PM , Rating: 2
Obviously the noise performance of a SSD is no comparison to that of a standard HDD, but does anyone know how the thermal dissipation compares to a standard 160GB HDD?


RE: When the f are they coming?
By sandytheguy on 2/26/2007 2:17:51 AM , Rating: 3
Flash memory uses much less power than a HDD therefore it will give off much less heat. So the thermal dissipation is negligible.


RE: When the f are they coming?
By AlmostExAMD on 2/26/2007 4:37:31 AM , Rating: 1
No moving parts, Means no friction and less power = less heat! It's all good, Only price and capacity are the issues.


RE: When the f are they coming?
By pnyffeler on 2/25/2007 6:20:14 PM , Rating: 5
He said it might be $600 for 32GB and suggested us to do the math. 5x32 = 160, so we might be able to get this for the low low price of $3K, give or take.

At that price, a vendor might sell you the drive and throw in a laptop to house it for free....


RE: When the f are they coming?
By daftrok on 2/25/2007 7:03:20 PM , Rating: 3
I don't know if you were being sarcastic or not but that just might happen.


By theapparition on 2/25/2007 10:06:14 PM , Rating: 3
Just for a frame of reference, I am currently using a 250GB flash drive on a project. That single drive costs over $15,000.

Granted, it's rated for harsh enviroments, and it has a FiberChannel interface, rather than IDE or SATA, but it gives you a clue how expensive they are right now.

What I'm really looking forward to on the desktop sector is hybrid HDD's. Vista supports them, but I am curious if there is any difference between that and ReadyBoost.


RE: When the f are they coming?
By Mudvillager on 2/26/2007 4:35:30 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah but they are probably using MLC chips = much, much cheaper.


RE: When the f are they coming?
By tinyface on 2/25/2007 11:26:48 PM , Rating: 2
The cost for this drive may not seems that high if you look at today's market price (www.dramexchange.com) of about $1/Gb SLC. Then 160GB=8*160Gb -> $1500 for the flash memory in this drive. Give it 3 years, you will be talking about maybe $500 for such a drive.

PS: I am working for a memory manufacturer, so I really don't wish Flash price to drop to 10% its current value 3 years later like what happened in the past two year. So I guess a reasonable entry point for flash to penetrate into laptops, UMPC, portable media player (like IPOD video) is at density of 32or 64GB for a price within $200.


`
By semo on 2/25/2007 7:30:07 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Flash solid-state discs (SSDs) have generated a lot of interest from mobile users in the past few months
so what about us desktop users? maybe i didn't get the memo we weren't interested.

why are all new mass storage technologies unleashed on laptops first? apart from the extra 30 mins battery life that new stuff also improves performance. i'm willing to bet there are more desktop users that spend more money to get more performance than the average big money spender laptop user.




RE: `
By Zelvek on 2/25/2007 8:47:09 PM , Rating: 4
I would guess it is because you can by a few adapters and still use them on a desktop but you can't do the same for a laptop.


RE: `
By semo on 2/26/2007 10:35:07 AM , Rating: 1
RE: `
By MonkeyPaw on 2/26/2007 11:21:21 AM , Rating: 3
It's perfectly reasonable to make SSDs for notebooks first. Think of the abuse that notebook HDDs undergo everyday. A desktop drive sits in a secure, ventilated case on a stable, level surface. 2.5" drives are crammed in with a bunch of other poorly cooled components that get collectivly slung around almost everyday. While spinning, a 2.5" drive has to deal with people moving around--rarely is the drive running at the same plane for very long, unless it's on a desk/table. It's amazing 2.5"s last as long as they do.

Also, notebooks are taking away from the desktop market, so it makes sense to design for 2.5" first. Notebooks are also a place where companies can charge more for their products. Desktops are not as limited by room for extra capacity, and several solutions are available for fast, stable access to data (iRam, RAID arrays, using multiple HDDs). Add to that the fact that the price and capacity of HDDs for desktops is far more appealing than an SDD equivalent, and it makes the SSD desktop market really really small. Why buy one 160GB SSD when you could purchase 10-20 300GB HDDs for the same price? You could have a dozen backups of your files and still be more economical!

I'm not saying that we will never see SDDs for desktops, but rather we will not see many of them until they can offer comperable capacity as HDDs while being sold for less than $500.


RE: `
By jak3676 on 2/26/2007 2:56:08 PM , Rating: 2
If you need that kind of performance on a desktop, just look to a nicely RAID'd system. A few 10K or 15K SAS drives should do the job. When you don't really need to be concerned about space then the performance/price or performance/capacity comparisons are about equal. The reason SSD is aiming a the notebook market first is that you can't get the kind of performance elsewhere - and still fit it into a laptop.


RE: `
By CascadingDarkness on 2/27/2007 3:28:49 PM , Rating: 2
A good reason to start with laptops is the fact spinning HDs shouldn't be beaten around. Yeah, they have improved settings to stop them when they could be damaged.

Tell that IT personnel dealing with one DOA failed HD a day. We've got 3,000 sales reps to support, and every day they are down is lost revenue. I sure wouldn't mind DOA HD to be a rarity in future.


I hope these become mainstream soon
By electriple9 on 2/25/2007 7:11:47 PM , Rating: 2
I hope it wont take three years for us to afford ssd drives. I dont really mind getting a fast ssd drive with even 8 gig.
This drive is fast, but not affordable at all. No noise at all, and I am guessing is almost no where. Also curious life with these drives be.
Thanks




RE: I hope these become mainstream soon
By Max G on 2/25/2007 10:50:51 PM , Rating: 2
No problem if you are just looking for 8GB SSD.

8GB CompactFlash cards are already available for years and are becoming affordable these days. Couple it with a CF-IDE adapter and you get immediate 2.5" SSD drives. Check out http://www.pcengines.ch/cflash.htm

12GB and 16GB versions are also introduced not too long ago. Check out http://www.sandisk.com/Products/Catalog(1024)-SanD...


RE: I hope these become mainstream soon
By Max G on 2/26/2007 12:51:42 AM , Rating: 2
Oh yeah... there's one more universal CF-IDE adapter with pricing here http://www.sealevel.com/product_detail.asp?product...


RE: I hope these become mainstream soon
By corduroygt on 2/26/2007 11:39:28 AM , Rating: 2
With your link, I realized that 8 GB CF costs about $80. Add a CF-PCMCIA adapter for around $10 and you have a super fast SSD drive.
When I disable hibernation, disable virtual memory (I have 2 GB in my notebook), and move the C:\Documents and Settings\corduroygt folder to D:\corduroygt (MS has a kb article telling how to, it is a 5 minute process), my C drive with office 2007 and some apps is about 6 GB.
Can I just make the 8GB PCMCIA CF my C drive, which will reside on the PCMCIA slot that I dont use in my notebook, and for everything else I can use the D drive, which is the 2.5" HDD in the notebook? This sounds very doable, only if XP supports booting from PCMCIA CF, which I couldn't get much info on by googling. Would there be many rewrites (ruining the CF) on C, if there was no swap file and the user profile folder was in a different drive?

I think that would be the best of both words for now, cheap cost and I believe windows booting times and general responsiveness would increase.
Anyone try it?


By Hawkido on 2/26/2007 12:27:29 PM , Rating: 2
Windows boot time may decrease slighly. The bulk of the boot time is hold-off-timers for your devices to respond, so drivers can load correctly. your HD's really don't hit that often on boot up, only right before your sign-on and right after.


By mindless1 on 2/27/2007 3:23:33 AM , Rating: 2
Warning! The CF-IDE adapters you linked appear to only support PIO mode. That is substantially slower than a CF-IDE card that supports UDMA, ATA66 with a CF2.0 spec'd CF card.

If you just want one of the cheap cards that does PIO mode, you can get those on ebay direct from the orient for about $4 a pop.


fyi
By jaybuffet on 2/25/2007 7:25:53 PM , Rating: 2
RE: fyi
By semo on 2/25/2007 7:38:25 PM , Rating: 2
am i reading this right?
$15k for 56gb? god damn. it's obvious they're targeting the military.


RE: fyi
By ElJefe69 on 2/26/2007 12:06:50 PM , Rating: 3
yeah where they can waste my money and still not accomplish much.

military = pwnd


RE: fyi
By Hawkido on 2/26/2007 12:37:00 PM , Rating: 1
Wow man, way to talk through your anus. Blame your congressman for the way the military is forced to spend its budget. The military has been crying for years to change the "spend it or loose it" budgeting system.

As to wasted money... You can only make that statment because there is a military. no policeman nor fireman nor congressman took a bullet so some megalomaniac couldn't come over here and make you live your life by their rules.

*note* policmen have taken bullets for civil liberties, and they should be celebrated. Certain congressmen have at one point been in the military. But you get my point.

Never has an enemy backed down because the police squirted them with a fire hose nor have they backed down because a congressman talked to them. They have backed down because of fear of destruction by our military, else they were destroyed by our military. Period end of story debate over.


RE: fyi
By PandaBear on 2/26/2007 5:23:15 PM , Rating: 2
It depends on the application, I don't think it is a waste just because it is $15k. Imagine if you are putting it on a space shuttle or in a fighter jet's engine controller. Mechanical drive can't tolerate the G it generate when accelerate and decelerate, the air pressure, the heat, and the radiation.

Now try to custom build another solid state storage in house, it will for sure cost way more than $15k.


eh hrm
By ElJefe69 on 2/26/2007 12:04:39 AM , Rating: 2
From what I understand, flash drives in general can wear out in terms of writes on them. infinite reads but have a lifespan that is not near a spinning disc hd.

anandtech said this last year.




RE: eh hrm
By livelouddiefast on 2/26/2007 1:14:27 AM , Rating: 1
as i recall, every drive has tech on it to prevent it from writing over the same spot unless absolutely necessary, as with all flash drives. Solid state drives are typically much more reliable than anything with moving parts.

Soon enough, hard drives will cease to be a bottle neck (phase change anyone?)

The question is- will hard drives ever become fast and stable enough to defeat the purpose of ram?


RE: eh hrm
By rippleyaliens on 2/26/2007 3:36:41 AM , Rating: 2
Well, i see no one has mentioned the ABSOLUTE killer with SSD drives.
It is the INSANE Disk I/O. We are talking about >6000 ips' per second. To give you an example, a cheetah 15k, the .4 series, pumps out data transfer rate of 130MB per second,But the IO of that drive is around 130-150. Give or take.
With a 6000 IO Rating, we are talking about DB queries, taking seconds versus min.. 2u Exchange servers, able to handle 1000's of users.
A typical exchange server for 1000 uers, needs about 50-70 drives. Just for the Disk I/O.
One user mentioned a 250gb SSD array. Most likely that is for a high End Database, Where I/O, is the performance booster.


RE: eh hrm
By Hawkido on 2/26/2007 12:23:43 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
A typical exchange server for 1000 uers, needs about 50-70 drives. Just for the Disk I/O.


Uh, I call BS on that statment.

I ran an AirForce Base's Exchange servers. ~7000 mailboxes on 9 servers (including 2 bridgehead servers which hosted no mailboxes) the mailbox servers only had 8 drives each. and hosted 500 to 1500 boxes on each. They ran fine, disk IO was no problem, and that was Exchange 5.5. Exchange 2003 was no problem either.

The argument that maybe we weren't fully ulilizing the e-mail is bogus. The Wing King (Base General) had my cell phone number and would call me within the minute if I took his mailbox server down (Damn Blackberry musta always be in his hand!)

If you think 1000 users is too much for your exchange server then I suggest you RTFM on how to configure your exchange hard drives and info stores.

mirror pair for os
mirror pair for logs
raid 5 for infostore
single drive (fat32) for Virtual Memory

You'll never have a problem with Disk IO.

Otherwise I agree with your statment. Great Show! Awesome Job!


It's a start
By mechBgon on 2/25/2007 8:15:45 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder what the access times are like. Really fast mechanical HDD's can almost double the 70MB/sec (Cheetah 15k.5 tops out at over 130MB/sec) but low access times are important too.




RE: It's a start
By Harkonnen on 2/25/2007 9:28:30 PM , Rating: 2
Flash drives have access time in the nanoseconds. Traditional hard drives have access time in the milliseconds. Much faster.


RE: It's a start
By mark2ft on 2/26/2007 3:06:43 PM , Rating: 2
Well, but sustained read/write speeds are important, too.

But yeah, I wouldn't mind 60/MB sec. I don't handle large files anymore within my HD because I just burn them to DVDs.


SATA and IDE model numbers reversed
By ProviaFan on 2/25/2007 6:01:02 PM , Rating: 2
The SATA and IDE model numbers in the DT post are reversed from what's on Adtron's website. That in itself isn't a big deal, but I am disappointed that for whatever reason the SATA drive is slower than the IDE drive.




By Brandon Hill (blog) on 2/25/2007 6:02:49 PM , Rating: 2
**Fixed**


Typo....
By Souka on 2/25/2007 10:12:32 PM , Rating: 2
last line of first paragraph....

"SATA and IDR versions."

IDR? think its supposed to be IDE... but I was actually asking myself, "IDR? Hmm...infrared-drive-xxx, no thats silly...maybe fIrewire-Drive-responder?" Heh...had me thiniing for a few secs...




RE: Typo....
By Souka on 2/25/2007 10:21:39 PM , Rating: 2
oh, forgot to mention...

a few of us are using 32GB flashd-drives in our thinkpad T60p or HP Pavillion laptops. That along with either 5400rpm 160GB or 7200rpm 100gb 2.5" drives in a caddy.

Typical setup: The 32gb is used for booting and swap file useage. the drives in caddies are used for storage of our VMs and data.

VERY nice improvement in performance as HD's in notebooks is a MAJOR bottleneck.

We do have a VM ESX servers at work, but often we found ourselfs needing VMs onthe road....so we came up with this solution...works pretty well I do say. :)


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