Storage

Micron announced its 9100 Series NVMe enterprise-class solid state drive back in April. The drives come in multiple flavors and form factors, with the Micron 9100 PRO series targeting read-centric environments, while the 9100 MAX targets mixed-use cases. Capacities for the drives in the Micron 9100 series range from 800GB on up to 3.2TB, though all of the drives are outfitted with similar controllers and NAND.Although news of the drives has been circulating for a couple of months now, it was just recently that we got our hands on one for some in-house testing. We’ve been experimenting with a Micron... Read more...
Samsung made some waves earlier this year with the introduction of its 850 Pro family of solid state drives and the first commercial use of 3D stacked NAND Flash memory. Micron is striking back today with a lower manufacturing process geometry in conventional NAND, however, and a new Flash technology it claims, will accelerate performance more effectively than other competing solutions. The new Micron M600 family of solid state drives will launch at capacities ranging from 128GB to 1TB across multiple form factors. Conventional 2.5” SATA drives, mSATA, and the PCIe-capable M.2 platform... Read more...
Despite being limited by the capabilities of the SATA interface, many solid state drive manufacturers continue to innovate and introduce new products that improve on previous generation products. For example, Micron recently released its M550 series of drives, which was an evolution of the previously released M500 series, but built around newer, 20nm NAND flash memory and featuring enhanced/updated firmware. The M550 proved to be an excellent all around performer, outpacing many competing products in a number of tests, but again, operating within the limitations of its SATA interface. Today, Micron... Read more...
Micron is announcing a brand new, enterprise-class solid state drive today, the RealSSD P400m. We have a looked at a number of Micron-built solid state drives in the past, including the ultra high-end RealSSD P320h PCI Express-based beast and the consumer-targeted RealSSD C300, but what makes the P400m somewhat different is that it was designed from start to finish by Micron’s NAND and SSD engineering teams to provide high endurance and reliability and superior data protection. That’s not to say Micron’s previous products lacked in those departments, but the P400m goes a... Read more...
We've often spoken about the future of SSD technology eventually evolving away from "bridged" interfaces like SATA and SAS, to direct-attached, native interfaces like PCI Express.  It just makes sense.  With the ultra-fast random access times and high IO bandwidth of solid state storage, it's not the storage media itself that's the limiting factor, rather, non-native interfaces get in the way and become the bottleneck. A SAS or SATA controller still has to have its protocol translated over to PCIe so the host can talk to it, which wastes precious bandwidth and adds latency.... Read more...
Looking at current solid state drive market, it's easy to draw some parallels with the early days of 3D on the PC. When 3D graphics cards first hit the scene (before the term GPU was coined), there were only a few major players, i.e. 3dfx, Tseng Labs, S3, etc. As the technology was more accepted by consumers, however, numerous other manufactures, like NVIDIA, ATI, 3DLabs, Matrox, Rendition, Number 9 and many others, wanted a piece of the pie as well and they all entered the fray with 3D processors of their own. Over time, the dust settled, the cream rose to the top, and we were left with only a... Read more...
You'd be hard pressed these days to find a small business or even family home that doesn't have at least a few computers being used by a number of different local users. This multi-user scenario poses at least a couple of potential complications for managing all the files and data that gets created, stored, and used by the different users: How do you share files with the other users on your network and how do you seamlessly back up files that are stored on the different user systems? Network-attached storage (NAS) is the answer, and the new Maxtor Central Axis Business Edition Dual-drive... Read more...
  End user demand for increased hard drive capacity is waning somewhat, now that we can store over 200,000 typical digital photos, or 60,000 music files, for less than a $100 street price. Sixty thousand music files could play for almost six months without repeating and you'd have to stay awake for almost 70 days straight if you look at each of those 200,000 photographs for 30 seconds each. That's not to say the need for increased storage capacity is waning in the enterprise, but given the choice of a faster 250GB hard drive or an average performing 300GB drive for desktop systems, more enthusiasts... Read more...
Now that the DVD format war is essentially over, thanks to the advent of Dual-Format drives, the market's next big push is towards Dual-Layer recording.  One of the most noticeable differences with the next generation of DVD drives is low pricing from the start, unlike the initial DVD offerings of years past.  This instant affordability helps entice users into making up their mind whether now is the time for a new recordable DVD drive.  With some drives selling for under $100 while offering double the capacity of single-layer DVDs, it can appear to be an easy decision.  However,... Read more...
A few years back, if you wanted the best of DVD playback and CD burning, you had to buy separate drives for each task.  With the advent of combo drives hitting the mainstream market, however, users can now get top-notch CD and DVD performance from a single optical device.  MSI's XA52P for example, reads DVD-ROM discs at 16x, writes CD-Rs at 52x and CD-RWs at 24x.   Supporting both interchangeable face plates and MiniForm design, not only will the XA52P fit whichever case you choose, but it should do a pretty good job of matching it as well.  In addition, MSI has also implemented... Read more...
  Maxtor's DiamondMax Plus 9 Serial ATA Drive Serial ATA Drives Mature By Dave Altavilla March 20, 2003   Our first look at a Serial ATA drive, quite frankly, was a little less than inspiring.  That is to say that, even though the SATA 150 standard offers a higher bandwidth interface and those tidy, thin little cables,  the performance of the first drive to hit our bench, a Seagate Barracuda V, was about on par with the average ATA100 or ATA133 drive on the market.  However, as we all know, in this game of technological leapfrog, it doesn't always pay to be too early to... Read more...
  The MSI CR52-A2 - 52X CD-RW Drive Breaking the speed barrier at 52X By Tom Laverriere March 14, 2003 The first CD-RW drive I ever bought was an 8X4X32X unit for around $200 beans and I thought it was amazing how fast that thing could burn CD's.  It took me only about 10 minutes to burn a full disc of songs.  I was loving life.  Back in the day (not so long ago actually), that was fast  It's amazing how far and how fast CD-RW drive technology has evolved.  First we saw a few 24X drives out there and then only a few months later we're looking at 40X and then 48X and... Read more...