RamSan-620 Is 'World's Largest SLC Flash SSD'

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News Posted: Fri, Apr 24 2009 3:49 PM

We keep wondering when we'll finally stop seeing new SSD players on a near-weekly basis -- not that we're hoping that flow stops or anything, but it's definitely getting a little crazy. This week, we've got little-known Texas Memory Systems introducing the very enterprise RanSan-620. Explained as a complete, high-performance, reliable Flash system that delivers up to five terabytes of solid state storage in a single 2U chassis, this here device is for small businesses and affluent individuals who need speed and space -- and lots of both.

Designed to handle on-line transaction processing, data warehousing, high-performance data acquisition, batch processing, and video editing (just to name a few), the product is theoretically the highest capacity SLC Flash SSD on the market, even besting current offerings from Fusion-io. Also of note, the RamSan-620 is a green IT choice, occupying only 2U of rack space and drawing just 325-Watts of power. Texas points out that in order to achieve similar performance, HDD solutions would require as many as 500 drives, occupy 36 disk enclosures requiring almost three racks, consume upwards of 7,000 Watts, and cost over half a million dollars by the time the enclosures and controllers were included. We have our doubts about that being entirely factual, but we wouldn't say there's no truth at all there.



The RamSan-620 is a general purpose storage solution that can increase performance for applications and users in a shared network storage environment, and each unit can support 2 to 8 Fibre Channel or InfiniBand ports. The RamSan-620 is available now from Texas Memory Systems and its partner network, but we won't even attempt to guess how many thousands this will set you back.



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Put what are these super fast speeds they are talking about?

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acarzt replied on Mon, Apr 27 2009 10:32 AM

+1 how fast is it? Plus the whole 500HDDs and 2 racks thing is kind of stretching it... It might take that much to reach the same transfer speeds, but it would only take 3 HDDs to match and exceed the storage capacity.

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Halsaver replied on Wed, Apr 29 2009 11:44 AM

It can move random data at 3GB/s (reads), and 2GB/s (writes). It can also do 1/4 million random I/O's per second. Data isn't always about capacity, one also has to think about speed. For instance, in many database applications, only 2-3% of all files create 70-90% of actual RAID or I/O activity. SSD is best used by moving only those files (typically logs, table, tempspace and indexes) off to SSD and leaving all else on RAID. By putting just that 2-3% off to SSD, not only are the most active files on a device extremely faster than RAID, but the existing RAID will be much faster and better able to take advantage of the cache on both the controllers and the disks. Consequently, where most folks are seeing a deep dive of 10-40% over the last 2-3yrs on CPU utilization---because they've upgraded to multi-core and faster processors, as well as faster 10Gb ethernet, the effect of putting the "hot files" on SSD will make the CPU's run dramatically faster, because they are no longer waiting for the disk sets. This is an aid in not only more processing power, but in consolidating servers while attaining much higher performance. The costs saved in recurring software licenses on the servers consolidates are in many cases enough to offset the cost of the SSD.

Remember, it's not always cost per GB..or big capacity, it's how and what you do with the data. In most cases, it's actually how much does it cost be to do a transaction vs. cost per GB..where most folks only use a small portion of the disks anyway, to gain performance.

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