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Toshiba Developing High-Density 1TB SSD 149

Posted by timothy
from the valentine's-day-is-over dept.
MojoKid writes "A new partnership between Toshiba and Tokyo's Keio University has led to the creation of a new technology that could allow SSDs up to 1TB in size to be made 'with a footprint no larger than a postage stamp.' The report states that the two have been able to integrate 128GB NAND Flash chips and a single controller into a stamp-sized form factor. They've even made it operational with a transfer rates of 2Gbps (or about 250MB/sec) with data transfer that relies on radio communication."
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Toshiba Developing High-Density 1TB SSD

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  • by FridayBob (619244) on Sunday February 14, 2010 @09:25PM (#31139330) Homepage
    ... it's reliability that's the real issue. SSDs are a great idea in theory, but in practice the only time I tried to build a server around one, taking great care to ensure that as little as possible would ever be ever written to it (e.g. turned off atime, while /var, /temp, /home etc. were located on hard disks), it ended up lasting only about a month.

    I would love to replace my hard disks, arguably the most critical and vulnerable components of my computers, with SSDs, but only if they are more reliable in the first place, and can thereafter be regarded generally as an improvement.
  • Re:Gaming? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by EdZ (755139) on Sunday February 14, 2010 @09:36PM (#31139432)
    It's more that they were on a ROM, i.e. Read Only. This uses re-writeable NAND flash, so would be hacked in a heartbeat. Never mind that cartridges dies out from being sodamned expensive to produce compared to pressing a disc.
    OK, maybe for consoles where for some reason you don't want to just pre-load content from a BD to an internal NAND-based SSD as you play, but it seems far less cost effective to distribute everything on it's own SSD. Hot-swappable SATA HDDs are faster than current optical media, and the per-GB cost is far lower than NAND flash. But I've never heard of see anyone suggesting distributing console games on individual HDDs.
  • Re:Gaming? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Sunday February 14, 2010 @09:49PM (#31139550) Journal
    I strongly suspect that cartridges would no longer be all that useful for DRM purposes. Doing a ROM dump from a cartridge takes some technical know-how and a bit of motivation; but downloading one from bittorrent doesn't and blank cartridges, fillable with those ROMs via USB, will likely be popping up on DealExtreme and the usual grey-market importers at about the same time the console comes out.

    You could always produce cartridges with embedded contactless smart cards, or some similar authentication measure, to try to raise the difficulty of cloning; but there'd be nothing stopping you from producing Blu-ray disks with a couple of contactless smart-card chips moulded right into the inner polycarbonate ring and getting exactly the same degree of protection with much cheaper storage.
  • Bah... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 14, 2010 @09:49PM (#31139556)

    Let me know when they make communication between chips using quantum entanglement.

  • by KillShill (877105) on Sunday February 14, 2010 @10:00PM (#31139644)

    I wonder what a useful device like the "minisec" would be without it being straddled to a crippled-by-design product like the iXXXX.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 14, 2010 @10:18PM (#31139784)

    Hard drive development just hasn't been keeping place with flash memory.

    I think you're confused. I happen to have a hard drive in a system that creates and deletes thousands of gigabytes of files a month. It's been doing that for seven years straight. Show me any SSD that can achieve the same. Hard drives and flash memory have different properties and that necessarily makes them more or less applicable to different usage scenarios.

  • by wernercd (837757) on Sunday February 14, 2010 @10:58PM (#31140074) Homepage
    People complain about $60 games... you seriously think $200 games would fly? It also seems you are comparing a single purchase game to an online game. WoW on a fast chip would still require a game server. So the comparison of MadeUpGame with a one time purchase vs WoW is far from valid. You should compare it to CoD, HL2, etc... a game that you buy once and play for years, $60 vs $200 simply to get faster load times? I'd pay $60 and load from an ISO if I really wanted faster load times.
  • by mark-t (151149) <markt@lynx.b c . ca> on Sunday February 14, 2010 @11:18PM (#31140208) Journal
    The total weight of the money that you spend on end-user storage exceeds the weight of the storage device itself.
  • by izomiac (815208) on Monday February 15, 2010 @12:26AM (#31140656) Homepage
    7 years * 12 months/year * 10,000 GB/month = 840 TB of data written/deleted
    10,000 Erases * 128 GB = 1280 TB of data written/deleted

    It seems like any SSD of appropriate capacity will do that. 10,000 erases is actually extremely conservative, most SSDs advertise 2-3 orders of magnitude more than that. It'd take continuous writing at maximum speed for more than a decade* to kill most modern SSDs. Or at least that's the theory, I'm sure someone has gotten a defective one that died in a month or something.

    * 5,000,000 Erases * (256 GB / 100 MB/sec) = 405 years
  • SSDs and Cost (Score:3, Insightful)

    by yoshi_mon (172895) on Monday February 15, 2010 @02:56AM (#31141396)

    I really like the idea of a device that does not need to be constantly de-fragmented. To me, above the moving parts issue/noise/heat issues, it is paramount. However I need my data storage to be reliable and right now SSDs still don't have the track record.

    I understand that there are those people who are running 2-4x SSD drives in a RAID0 that are fully happy. But mostly they are gamers who don't care if they have to do a reinstall if that array fails. And or don't really have any sort of long term data that they mind wiping at the drop of a hat.

    I personally deal with end users who care a lot about their digital pictures, email, and other assorted crap. As it stands right now those ol' spinning platters still offer us all the best reliability at the lowest cost point.

  • by bertok (226922) on Monday February 15, 2010 @05:08AM (#31142074)

    ... it's reliability that's the real issue. SSDs are a great idea in theory, but in practice the only time I tried to build a server around one, taking great care to ensure that as little as possible would ever be ever written to it (e.g. turned off atime, while /var, /temp, /home etc. were located on hard disks), it ended up lasting only about a month.

    I would love to replace my hard disks, arguably the most critical and vulnerable components of my computers, with SSDs, but only if they are more reliable in the first place, and can thereafter be regarded generally as an improvement.

    You either used a really cheap drive meant for netbooks, or you simply got a broken drive and didn't do a burn-in period. It's not like mechanical drives never fail, so just because you had a bad experience, once, that doesn't mean you should give out bad advice based on an anecdote.

    Even a decent desktop drive can be overwritten at least a thousand times, and most 'enterprise grade' drives are rated for 100,000 or more. At the high-end, look at the products made by FusionIO or EMC, you'll get drives that might go to a million rewrites, and will actively report degradation so you can replace them before they die.

    Also keep in mind that smaller drives are both slower and wear out faster. It's worth getting larger drives or striping several smaller ones to spread the write wear.

  • Re:Gaming? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TheLink (130905) on Monday February 15, 2010 @05:14AM (#31142090) Journal
    The latest bleeding-edge SSDs aren't that reliable either. Intel has had pretty bad bugs with their SSDs.

    Most SSD manufacturers do a fair number of tricks to maintain high performance while doing wear-leveling.

    The technology hasn't got to the "boring ho-hum" stage yet.
  • by dnaumov (453672) on Monday February 15, 2010 @05:34AM (#31142164)

    ... it's reliability that's the real issue. SSDs are a great idea in theory, but in practice the only time I tried to build a server around one, taking great care to ensure that as little as possible would ever be ever written to it (e.g. turned off atime, while /var, /temp, /home etc. were located on hard disks), it ended up lasting only about a month.

    You had a broken/faulty unit, this can happen with any kind of disk. Even cheap USB flash sticks easily last over a year of the kind of use you describe. Intel X25-M SSDs for example, are specced for 24/7 use with 100gb of data being written to disk EVERY DAY and this is a consumer MLC SSD. Enterprise SLC disks are much more resilient then that (albeit a lot more expensive).

  • by GargamelSpaceman (992546) on Monday February 15, 2010 @11:51AM (#31144716) Homepage Journal
    It would be wasted. That's what always happens to excess capacity. ( Hmm, I don't know if I might be interested in the entire contents of your storage thingy, so I'll just copy it onto mine in it's entirety. ) Of course you've copied many other people's thingies, onto yours and they've copied each other's and through six degrees of separation there's a copy of my thingy of a few versions ago already on your thingie that I've just recopied onto mine. I could clean it out, but I won't because it's more work than it's worth since I have excess capacity.

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