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Data Storage Intel Hardware

Leaked Intel Roadmap Shows 600GB SSD 228

An anonymous reader writes "Solid State Drives have been trying to fill the mechanical hard drive niche for some time now. The problem is that while flash memory is faster than a spinning platter, it is also much more expensive per gigabyte. Over the weekend details leaked about Intel's SSD roadmap, and what's most interesting about it is that the capacities of Intel's SSDs are going to increase in a big way. First off is a refresh to the high performance X25-M range of SSDs. Currently available in 80GB and 160GB models, these will be replaced by a new design, codenamed Postville, which will come in 160GB, 300GB and 600GB variants."
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Leaked Intel Roadmap Shows 600GB SSD

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  • by Joe The Dragon ( 967727 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:10PM (#33266114)

    price still needs to come down!

  • by e065c8515d206cb0e190 ( 1785896 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:10PM (#33266124)
    Not trying to be ironic here, but do we have any idea on how those will behave in the longer run? Are there improvements from the previous generations? TFA doesn't have much information besides capacity.
  • by Kepesk ( 1093871 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:15PM (#33266190) Homepage
    Agreed, SSDs still have many cost and reliability issues to overcome, and I'm not going to get too excited till I see some improvements in those areas. Solid State is the wave of the future, but the wave is still way out there and is only just reaching the rocks off-shore.
  • by OrangeTide ( 124937 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:19PM (#33266230) Homepage Journal

    Why does it need to come down? Buy a spinning platter if price is such a huge factor for you.
    I found the 64GB SSDs to be quite affordable and sufficient for a laptop where I don't need my entire archive of mp3s and movie on it. One less noisy component in my laptop and a small but measurable power savings as well (added 15 minutes to my battery life when I did a simple comparison).

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:19PM (#33266234)

    Frankly, mechanical hard drives are so hilariously unreliable as well that I don't see how it would make a difference: you need a redundant array with frequent offsite backups either way, right?

  • Re:Beh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Pojut ( 1027544 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:31PM (#33266368) Homepage

    Agreed...if they keep the price points the same, but double capacity, I would be much more inclined to pick one up. I know you don't technically *need* alot of space for a system drive, but I don't like having such limited free space. 160GB would be the absolute bare minimum I would use for a system drive these days, and even that's kinda pushing it.

  • by gumbi west ( 610122 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:36PM (#33266448) Journal

    That criticism makes sense for a netbook drive where when it dies you just replace it and no need to backup--the email are already on IMAP and everything else was just caches. But for places where you really care about your data then there are all sorts of other questions: how does it crash? Does it crash in such a way that the RAID you are using keeps its integrity?

    In general, conservatives (in the sense of not wanting to change) are right to be conservative because of the long arm of the law of unintended consequences. People who try new things can end up with better results if things go as planed. But there are many more ways for things to go not as planed and for the project to crash and burn--leaving you at square one with nothing to show but lots of money/time spent on a cinder.

  • by arth1 ( 260657 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:41PM (#33266506) Homepage Journal

    Unfortunately, Intel seems to do like the rest, drop SLC in favour of MLC. That has a huge negative impact on both reliability and performance, but brings the price down and the capacity up.
    That said, Intel's MLC drives are pretty good for MLC drives -- the X-25M is best in class, but still far below the speed and reliability of the X-25E.

    If Intel could come out with a 128 GB X-25E, I would buy it immediately over a 600 GB X-25M at the same price. But they won't, because people don't want what's best, they want what's cheapest that still carries the "right" name.

  • by FuckingNickName ( 1362625 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:42PM (#33266524) Journal

    The manufacturer data sheet is pretty much the polar opposite of "real-world usage reports... under a range of... duty cycles".

  • by Lord Ender ( 156273 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @02:49PM (#33266588) Homepage

    Not really. Most users have been over-buying disks for ages. A 64GB SSD is big enough for most users and is nearly the same cost of the large mechanical disks they've been buying and wasting up until now.

    Those who really need terabytes of space would be best-served by using external drives.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 16, 2010 @03:07PM (#33266802)

    you know windows 7 can suck up 16-20 gigs by itself, that really does not leave a ton of room for modern computing

    get me a 80 or 120 gig for under 50 bucks then we can talk

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 16, 2010 @03:13PM (#33266892)

    That's right, because dick [sic] size is the only metric there is! Let's ignore seek time, streaming read/write performance, MTBF [wikipedia.org], power efficiency, shock resistance or any other number of characteristics that might be weighted in different levels of importance between laptop users, desktop users and server architects.

  • by ddegirmenci ( 1644853 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @03:34PM (#33267110)

    Not to mention gaming...

  • by peacefinder ( 469349 ) <alan@dewitt.gmail@com> on Monday August 16, 2010 @03:41PM (#33267184) Journal

    Not really. (Different version.)

    With a new SSD, one can sometimes remove a substantial performance bottleneck in an otherwise adequate older machine. Dropping a few hundred bucks on a new SSD drive might delay the purchase of a whole new machine by a year or two. From there, it's pretty easy to see why people wil be willing to pay pretty stiff prices for SSDs and also why Intel would be extremely motivated to not miss out on that market.

  • What the?! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Sits ( 117492 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @03:55PM (#33267356) Homepage Journal

    While I can somewhat agree with your sentiment (64GBytes isn't a lot when you are saving media data) I feel you have exaggerated a bit in the OS numbers:

    • The OS I'm typing this on (which is on a Intel Core 2 laptop with 4GBytes of RAM) is taking up 6GBytes and has various development tools and libraries installed on it. The OS on my EeePC takes up 3GBytes.
    • Even on the bigger computer the current Chromium cache size is 437MBytes. Perhaps it scales with disk size?

    On all but the most unusual of setups (I know people who do FPGA development whose tools take up 20GBytes by themselves) it's going to be "user data" that is taking up the vast majority of the disk space - not the operating system and applications (given that most operating systems still ship on no more than a single 4GByte DVD you would need compression of about 8:1 to fill up the disk from that alone). I have no doubt that if you take photos or have a big movie collection 500GBytes is not going to see like all that much though.

  • Re:Beh (Score:2, Insightful)

    by EvanED ( 569694 ) <evaned@gmail. c o m> on Monday August 16, 2010 @03:57PM (#33267374)

    BTW I don't want to say "oh, everyone will have huge games like this" and whatnot, but at the same time, it's also way of an overgeneralization to say "80 GB is plenty".

    And to continue my last thought, you could say "just put what you need" on the SSD, but that presents its own problems. How do I decide what to put on there? Do I need to be installing and uninstalling programs as I change which ones I use more? How much more of a pain is this with Steam, where you can't choose an install directory? (BTW, are you listening Valve? Add this feature.)

    These sound like a huge pain, which is why I'm holding off on an SSD for a little while longer. When I can have a magnetic "media" drive for huge stuff that doesn't need fast transfers (videos, rips of my CDs as FLAC, etc.) but have an SSD for *all* or basically all my programs and most small personal data, I'll get one. In the meantime, even though I do want one, they basically seem like they'd be a bit of a pain. (I'd guess the former will happen in more than one and less than two years, but we'll see.)

  • by EvanED ( 569694 ) <evaned@gmail. c o m> on Monday August 16, 2010 @08:35PM (#33270372)

    A quick scan of Newegg shows that a SDD costs ~$2.21/GB, where a comparable traditional HDD costs only ~0.33, thats quite a difference, I'm not sure if 15 minutes of battery life, and perhaps (very generously) a second a day in seek/read/write time is worth that much.

    I'm generally somewhat with you... waiting for SSDs to halve in price another time or two before I jump in.

    That said, you're underselling SSDs a lot here -- a second per-day is not even remotely realistic in terms of saved seek time, and that even ignores the fact that good SSDs now beat most hard drives in raw transfer as well.

    There are multiple people out there (including Linus Torvolds, Jeff Atwood, and some random poster in this story) who say that changing from a magnetic hard drive to an SSD is about the biggest single upgrade you could make to a reasonable system today. The random /. poster I mentioned said that upgrading to an SSD was the single biggest speed increase of any upgrade he's ever done. Of course YMMV and this is workload-dependent, but don't understate the benefit of a good SSD either.

    To cover all of this with an SSD would cost significantly more than my full computer (which isn't a slouch hardware wise).

    Of course, you wouldn't do this; you'd come up with some split between what should be on fast SSD and what should be on a slow magnetic media, and have one drive for each.

  • by fnj ( 64210 ) on Monday August 16, 2010 @08:41PM (#33270448)

    My guess is that O.P.'s native language is English. I looked at a bunch of his posts, and he seems very fluent and adept. I think you will find O.P. is an example of a very intelligent and capable individual who is the product of a badly failed educational system (in this particular example, failed teaching of English language is noted). Hardly any memorization is taught any more. The rule that "oo" is pronounced as in "ooze" and "o" is pronounced as in "foe" is successfully taught, but the table of exceptions to the rule is not taught successfully at all. Judging by the results, it is not taught at all, or only very peremptorily. Geography and history are two other subjects the scope and quality of whose teaching has dropped to a very low ebb. I think you will find a far better quality of English teaching in India than in the U.S.

    Admittedly we are both fixating on a single misspelling, but in the case of this particular single misspelling, what was for a great many years successfully taught, has in fairly recent years become almost universally not so. The word is misspelled almost as often as it is correctly spelled.

    Check out the 8th grade final exam from 1895 from Salina, Kansas. This is just the grammar portion:

    1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.
    2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.
    3. Define verse, stanza, and paragraph.
    4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principle parts of "lie," "play," and "run."
    5. Define case; illustrate each case.
    6. What is punctuation? Give rules for principle marks of punctuation.
    7. Write a composition of 150 words and show therein that you understand the principle rules of grammar.

    And a portion which was called "orthography:"

    1. What is meant by the following: alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?
    2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
    3. What are the following, and give examples of each: trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, and linguals?
    4. Give four substitutes for caret "u."
    5. Give two rules for spelling words with final "e." Name two exceptions under each rule.
    6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
    7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, and mono.
    8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
    9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
    10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

    Even though the above does not much demonstrate very specific memorization, I believe it serves to make the point that standards have fallen very far. Not only could virtually no present day U.S. 8th grader pass that test, I submit few college seniors could; even those who major in journalism.

    The geography section is also an eye opener:

    1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
    2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
    3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
    4. Describe the mountains of North America.
    5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.
    6. Name and locate the principle trade centers of the U.S. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each.
    7. Why is the Atlantic East coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
    8. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
    9. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inbclination of the earth.

  • by EvanED ( 569694 ) <evaned@gmail. c o m> on Monday August 16, 2010 @08:43PM (#33270464)

    There are multiple people out there (including Linus Torvolds, Jeff Atwood, and some random poster in this story)

    BTW, if you want citations:

    Linus [blogspot.com] on his Intel:

    In fact, I can't recall the last time that a new tech toy I got made such a dramatic difference in performance and just plain usability of a machine of mine. ...
    Everything performs well. You can put that disk in a machine, and suddenly you almost don't even need to care whether things were in your page cache or not. Firefox starts up pretty much as snappily in the cold-cache case as it does hot-cache. You can do package installation and big untars, and you don't even notice it, because your desktop doesn't get laggy or anything.

    Jeff Atwood [codinghorror.com] (admittedly, where I saw Linus quoted):

    And, frankly, I was blown away by the performance difference compared to the 300 GB Velociraptor I had in my system before. That drive is not exactly chopped liver; it's incredibly fast by magnetic platter drive standards. ...
    In my humble opinion, $200 - $300 for a SSD is easily the most cost effective performance increase you can buy for a computer of anything remotely resembling recent vintage. Whether you prefer the 80 GB X25-M SSD or the 128 GB Crucial SSD, it's money well invested for people like us who are obsessive about how their computer performs.

    Trust me, you will feel the performance difference of a modern SSD in day to day computing. That's far more than I can say for most of today's CPU and memory upgrades. The transition from magnetic storage to solid state storage is nothing less than a breakthrough.

    Random /.'er rabtech [slashdot.org]:

    I can tell you that installing an SSD in my work laptop was the single greatest (relative) performance jump I've ever seen, starting with my 8086/1MB/CGA machine until the present day, including all processor/memory/graphics upgrades I've ever done.

This restaurant was advertising breakfast any time. So I ordered french toast in the renaissance. - Steven Wright, comedian