STEC Extends Data Centre SSD Range

Solid-state drive (SSD) specialist STEC has expanded its ZeusIOPS SSD family to include an ultra-high-endurance model.

Purpose-built for write-intensive enterprise applications, the company’s ZeusIOPS XE (Extreme Endurance) SSD is a Multi-Level Cell (MLC) flash-based drive that uses STEC’s CellCare technology to enable at least 30 full-capacity writes per day for five years.

Offered in MLC capacities of 300GB and 600GB, the XE SSDs support latency responses up to 50 microseconds and have a 6Gbit serial-attached SCSI (SAS) interface.

Heavy Duty

From a performance perspective, both the 300GB and 600GB capacity drives support up to 500MB per second (sustained read throughput), up to 275MB per second (sustained write throughput), up to 115,000 input/output operations per second (IOPS) for read operations, up to 70,000 IOPS for write operations and 38,000 IOPS for 8K random read/write operations (70 percent/30 percent).

The XE SSD uses a combination of STEC’s fourth-generation ASIC-based SSD controller and its proprietary CellCare technology, which when applied to MLC flash, extends the performance, reliability and endurance capabilities of these drives. As a result, STEC can fully write about 33 petabytes of data over the working life of a 600GB drive (a workload of writing the full capacity of the drive 30 times per day for five years).

“Enterprise networks and data centers need to develop innovative ways to address the issues caused by the enormous and growing amount of data being created,” said Jeff Janukowicz, research director for solid-state storage at IDC. “Solid-state solutions, such as STEC’s SSD family with its CellCare technology that improves MLC flash endurance, enhance MLC SSD performance and reduce media access error rates for consistent performance over the entire useful life of the drive, and are increasingly being leveraged to solve these issues and help IT organisations optimise their storage in a fast, reliably cost-effective manner.”

One of the most notable features of STEC’s CellCare technology is its ability to measure and manage the wear of the drive using adaptive flash management algorithms and advanced signal processing techniques. As MLC flash will wear out faster over time if not properly monitored and managed, CellCare technology proactively manages the way the flash wears throughout the life of the drive. The additional use of advanced error-correction code (ECC) techniques enables higher protection against media errors and improves SSD endurance for write-intensive workloads without limiting the performance of XE SSDs.

Enterprise Endurance

To further improve MLC SSD reliability, XE SSDs incorporate STEC’s Secure Array of Flash Elements (S.A.F.E.) technology that prevents data loss associated with MLC flash. It also provides the ability to recover from NAND flash page, block, and die and chip failures while maximising the mean time between failure (MTBF) and mean time to data loss (MTTDL).

“Our XE SSD solution is a direct response to the growing customer demands for ultra-high-endurance solutions that address high write activities associated with caching and logging applications,” said Scott Stetzer, STEC’s VP of technical marketing. “We’ve engineered our new ZeusIOPS XE MLC flash-based drives to deliver extended enterprise endurance for the demanding write-intensive applications and provide our OEM customers with a superior choice for a cost-effective enterprise-class SSD that they can rely on.”

Nathan Eddy

Nathan Eddy is a contributor to eWeek and TechWeekEurope, covering cloud and BYOD

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