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Data Storage Intel Hardware

Intel DC S3700 SSD Features New Proprietary Controller 54

crookedvulture writes "For the first time in more than four years, Intel is rolling out a new SSD controller. The chip is featured in the DC S3700 solid-state drive, an enterprise-oriented offering that's 40% cheaper than the previous generation. The S3700 has 6Gbps SATA connectivity, end-to-end data protection, LBA tag validation, 256-bit AES encryption, and ECC throughout. It also includes onboard capacitors to prevent against data loss due to power failure; if problems with those capacitors are detected by the drive's self-check mechanism, it can disable the write cache. Intel's own high-endurance MLC NAND can be found in the drive, which is rated for 10 full disk writes per day for five years. Prices start at $235 for the 100GB model, and capacities are available up to 800GB. In addition to 2.5" models, there are also a couple of 1.8" ones for blade servers. The DC S3700 is sampling now, with mass production scheduled for the first quarter of 2013."
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Intel DC S3700 SSD Features New Proprietary Controller

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  • by Wierdy1024 ( 902573 ) on Monday November 05, 2012 @04:28PM (#41885803)

    This is about right. MLC flash normally is rated for between 1k and 10k cycles. Newer flash is generally less as transistor sizes are shrunk to fit in more gbytes in the same die area.

    A home PC will only write a couple of gigs a day under typical workloads, which turns out to about 5 full writes a year for even the small sizes. That would last you 4000 years assuming ideal wear leveling...

    Basically, what they're saying is this will be absolutely fine for everything except outgoing mail servers and a few other specialist things.

    The capacitor backup and write cache make wear leveling much much easier, since all frequently written to cells can be cached in ram, and only written once on shutdown, and the capacitor backup means even an unclean shutdown will save your data.

  • by Kjella ( 173770 ) on Monday November 05, 2012 @09:48PM (#41889207) Homepage

    Except the "dirty little secret" of the industry is its NOT the cells dying that gets you, the controller dying is what bites you in the ass. if it was just the cells since when a cell fails it just ends up read only that wouldn't be so bad, but when the controller fails you flip the switch and...nothing. Not even the BIOS/UEFI detects the thing, its just gone.

    You forget that in a file system you typically write to more than one cell to store some data, what happens when some writes succeed and others fail? Major file system corruption and fast. I've managed to wear out one of the original OCZ Vertex drives - don't know how, I wrote maybe 5 TB to it and ideally it should take 1200 TB @ 10k writes/cell but SMART data was pretty clear. I had a broken file system and each run of fsck made everything worse, I had to stop trying to fix it, mount the thing read-only and salvage what I could. Even that failure mode is not graceful.

Loose bits sink chips.