SAN JOSE, Calif. - A collection of companies have announced the so-called Solid State Drive (SSD) Form Factor Working Group to advance Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) storage drives through standardization.
The new working group includes promoter members Dell, EMC, Fujitsu, IBM and Intel as well as contributor members Amphenol, Emulex, Fusion-io, IDT, Marvel Semiconductor, Micron Technology, Molex, PLX, QLogic, STEC, SandForce and Smart Modular Technology.
Missing from the group are Samsung, Toshiba, among others.
To help customers, the SSD Form Factor Working Group is dedicated to advancing technology standards in three technology areas:
1. A connector specification which will promote interoperability of several storage protocols, supporting SAS/SATA 3.0 as well as PCIe 3. This allows greater user choice and flexibility.
2. A form factor which builds upon the current 2.5-inch standard to enable enclosure flexibility while supporting the new connector definition and expanding the power envelope in support of higher performance.
3. The support for hot-plug capability to create high-availability and serviceability benefits.
Connector specification and hotplug need a fix sooner rather than later. A consolidation of connector will avoid consumer carrying 10 different cables. Hotplug will keep data from losing. It is the biggest problem so far to my experience. Cache may help too. What else do you think is important?
There are a lot of directions that this can take. Keeping the SSD defined as a mass storage device means maintaining a file system, but it might be quite different than the traditional ones (NTFS, etc.). The SSD could also morph into an extension of main memory with an appropriate execute-in-place definition.
I'll be watching this with great interest.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.