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Data Storage Hardware

OCZ Couples SSD, Mechanical Storage On a PCIe Card 201

J. Dzhugashvili writes "We've seen some solid-state drives on PCI Express cards before, but OCZ's RevoDrive Hybrid may very well be the first solution to combine solid-state storage and a mechanical hard drive on a single PCI Express x4 card. Using Dataplex caching software from Nvelo, the RevoDrive Hybrid uses its solid-state component (a RAID 0 array of SandForce-based SSDs) as a cache for an onboard mechanical hard drive. The caching scheme is reportedly so effective that "a 5,400-RPM drive can be used without sacrificing much performance," according to The Tech Report's coverage. OCZ hasn't hashed out all of the details yet, but it expects the RevoDrive Hybrid to start at $350 this July. The base configuration should couple 60GB of solid-state storage with a 500GB mechanical drive."
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OCZ Couples SSD, Mechanical Storage On a PCIe Card

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  • by yuhong ( 1378501 ) <> on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @12:28AM (#36304922) Homepage

    Do anyone remember the old ISA hardcards?

  • Not new (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @01:20AM (#36305160)

    There are at the very least two other solutions that do the same thing, that were out there before this one:

    HighPoint RocketHybrid: exactly the same, an expansion card with connectors for one ssd and one hdd.

    Intel Smart Response Technology: Software on top of the Z68 chipset that uses an SSD of up to 60GB as cache for a different drive or raid.

  • Garbage Brand (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @01:39AM (#36305264)

    OCZ just recently swapped their NAND for cheaper, denser, slower NAND. They didn't even change the model #. When enough complaints came in, they were forced to RMA everyone's drives or face a bait&switch lawsuit.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @02:07AM (#36305414)

    > J. Dzhugashvili writes

    That's pretty offensive for a large part of the world population!

    Just for the record: Josif (Vissarionovich) Dzhugashvili was the birth name of Stalin, the soviet communist dictator, who was more interested in sending people to the Gulags for hard labor, to give them bad memories, rather than hard drives combined with memory chips. Around 25 million did not return, in total.

    Wonder if an austrian painter, Adolphus Shicklgruber will report next time about the new USB 4.0 draft standard or so.

  • by im_thatoneguy ( 819432 ) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @02:17AM (#36305458)

    I think ReadyDrive has failed mostly because it was left to the drive controller to handle the caching.

    My understanding is that with Win8 they're moving the logic to the OS and divorcing the hardware from the equation freeing you to buy any old spinning medium and any old fast SSD/Raid to act as your cache.

    I like this idea since I can 'upgrade' my existing drives to ReadyDrive by just buying a SSD and I can still have my multiple disks but just the one SSD between them.

  • Re:Garbage Brand (Score:4, Informative)

    by the_jone ( 2198276 ) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @02:36AM (#36305522)
    I don't know if they're a garbage brand, but OP is certainly right. You can read OCZ's own announcement [], or read Anandtech's analysis [] in their Vertex 3 review. Storagereview did a comparison [] of the 32nm and 24nm Vertex 2's which is also worth a read. .
  • by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <> on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @04:44AM (#36306020) Journal

    But how long does it ACTUALLY last. I'm not talking those MTBF numbers that the manufacturers pull out their butt, but some cold hard "lets see how long it'll go" kind of in the trenches numbers.

    Because from what I've seen while SSDs may be satanically fast they also seem to die pretty damned quick. Even Jeff Atwood at coding horror [] has posted you need to use a "Hot/Crazy scale" for SSD, as in how much money and data/downtime are you willing to risk for the crazy speeds.

    Frankly between all the horror stories and watching my two gamer customer blow several hundred on drives that barely lasted them two years I've been telling my customers unless there is a specific reason for needing SSD, such as mobile devices that are gonna get slung around a lot, not to bother with the SSDs at this time. Frankly the HDD tech has gotten so good that often I'm pulling perfectly working drives as people upgrade for increased space long before they kill the drive, hell I have a drawer full from 20Gb on up to 200Gb, all working perfectly.

    Also if the article I linked to and the gamers I worked for are any indication SSDs don't "fail gracefully" or give you plenty of advanced warning like HDDs do. With every HDD I've had fail short of being dropped there was plenty of time to get the data off as SMART gave warning long before the point of no return. With both of the gamers it was "flip the switch and its gone" no warning at all.

    So does anybody out there have some real world experience and not just the MTBF numbers? I'm sure there are plenty of geeks here at /. that have pounded the hell out of SSD looking for boosted performance, how did they hold up? Are they still running? If not did you get warning before they died? Because if the drive can't be counted on to last at LEAST 3 years reliably in my book it isn't worth messing with or giving to my customers.

  • by deroby ( 568773 ) <> on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @05:38AM (#36306176)

    I beg to differ.
    I've been using one since september last year and it beats the crap out of the standard HDD. In my team we're all having pretty much the same machine with the same software installed. Because I do a lot of database stuff and also like to have my music collection and some games to carry around I got fed up with the limited capacity of the standard drive and out of frustration bought my own 500Gb Momentus XT. The thing boots *much* faster than all the other machines around me. Outlook takes seconds to start, it takes about a minute for my neighbour. Same for Visual studio.

    There's plenty of Youtube vids around that show the impact of the Momentus XT and I can only confirm them. more cache might have been better, but 4Gb sure does a great job !

  • Re:Love for OCZ (Score:4, Informative)

    by dbIII ( 701233 ) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @06:22AM (#36306340)
    I tried to mirror a vertex1 and 2 - they use different types of memory and the 240GB vertex2 drives are actually quite a few GB smaller and unfortunately the data I was going to put on there would thus no longer fit. I ended up striping the things but it took three attempts to get a stripe size with performance equal to or better than a single drive. Attempt 1 and 2 were dog slow with writes and not good for reads, third attempt outperformed both single drives for reads and isn't too bad for writes The moral of the story is the obvious one of using identical drives, but at the time of the original drive getting two of them would have been a bit too expensive.

Q: How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job? A: Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.