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Intel DC S3700 SSD Features New Proprietary Controller

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the brand-new dept.

Data Storage 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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Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five years (2)

tstrunk (2562139) | about 2 years ago | (#41885613)

The article makes me a bit suspicious:
"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."
sounds pretty bad actually, if I understand it right.
Per cell this means: 365*10*5 = roughly 20.000 write cycles per cell? Sure wear leveling algorithms are there, but 20.000 cycles is not exceptional, or am I wrong?

Don't misunderstand this post. I think Intel's SSDs are good.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (2)

etash (1907284) | about 2 years ago | (#41885687)

yes you are wrong, 20k cycles are very good for mlc.can't bring up any citations now -- too lazy, but the latest mlc nand cells ( 20nm ) are down to like 5k or less

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41885743)

20k was good 10 years ago. That number has only gone down... This is due to feature size getting smaller...

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41885747)

MLC write endurance is usually between 1,000 and 10,000 cycles.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (4, Interesting)

Wierdy1024 (902573) | about 2 years ago | (#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.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about 2 years ago | (#41886129)

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

...unless the disk is nearly full, in which case it'll be writing the same cells over and over again.

(unless the supply a utility which moves data from least-used cells to most-used...)

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41886209)

(unless the supply a utility which moves data from least-used cells to most-used...)

Except the wear-leveling firmware in the SSD should be doing that for you.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (2)

blueg3 (192743) | about 2 years ago | (#41886727)

...unless the disk is nearly full, in which case it'll be writing the same cells over and over again.

(unless the supply a utility which moves data from least-used cells to most-used...)

That happens even if the disk is nowhere near full, and performing wear leveling is a major part of what the SSD controller does. If you're on a system that doesn't support TRIM, a nearly-full disk could end up with write amplification problems, though.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (2)

Hal_Porter (817932) | about 2 years ago | (#41890665)

(unless the supply a utility which moves data from least-used cells to most-used...)

All SSDs do wear levelling, otherwise they'd die after a couple of days. That happens beneath the LBA address layer - i.e. LBA's are mapped to physical addresses and the mapping changes each time an LBA is written.

So you don't need to do wear levelling at the file system level. In fact the only thing you need to do there is to have a TRIM command which tells the SSD that a range of LBAs no longer contain useful data. That means the SSD can mark them as obsolete which gives the wear levelling a bit more elbow room.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about 2 years ago | (#41890931)

(unless the supply a utility which moves data from least-used cells to most-used...)

All SSDs do wear levelling, otherwise they'd die after a couple of days. That happens beneath the LBA address layer - i.e. LBA's are mapped to physical addresses and the mapping changes each time an LBA is written.

Point is: Wear levelers are only useful of they've got some free space to work with. If they haven't got any (ie. disk nearly full), ...then what?

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (2)

Hal_Porter (817932) | about 2 years ago | (#41891085)

You've always got a free erase unit, because at least one is reserved for wear levelling. It's easy to invent an algorithm that moves that free unit around the the disk by garbage collecting from a full unit to an empty one.

There are papers on this sort of thing. Look at the patents M Systems filed for example, or the documentation on TrueFFS. I've worked with embedded systems that used that and one of the first things we did after we got a socket driver working was to hammer a full disk and check that the wear levelling really did what it was supposed to.

And, sure enough if you log unit erases overnight they are evenly spread.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Tapewolf (1639955) | about 2 years ago | (#41886177)

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.

Data retention figures would be interesting too. Last I heard, the strategy for dealing with that at smaller feature sizes was to make the disk periodically rewrite all the data, which of course will eat into your write cycles.

[checks articles] ....ugh. Is that seriously it?Three months? [hothardware.com]

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#41886555)

This isn't unprecedented. When I looked into the 710 series models [2ndquadrant.com] it was the same trade-off: those drives were also only specified to save their data for 3 months between refreshes.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | about 2 years ago | (#41890757)

[checks articles] ....ugh. Is that seriously it?Three months?

Wear retention on flash is kind of a bummer for time capsules and Stargate style ancient repositories of knowledge. An old school PC with a bios in mask rom should be able to boot up given power in hundreds of years time, assuming the hard disks don't have some sort of failure mode that happens when they are un-powered.

A modern machine has firmware in flash and also a flash drive. Both of which would end up blank in a few years to a few decades depending on technology with more recent being worse.

If I were rich I'd pay for some mask Roms of Wikipedia and bury them around the world. That way if the shit hits the fan and we end up in a dark age people could dig them up when civilisation is rebooting.

The other option would be some optical disks.

http://www.cd-info.com/archiving/kodak/index.html [cd-info.com]

If the industry standard specification of BLERmax less than or equal to 220 had been used as the end-of-life criteria, then this same analysis would predict that with 95% confidence, 95% of the population of Kodak Writable CD discs will have a data life of greater than 12,000 years.

Aw yeah! 12,000 years is about the time from neolithic revolution [wikipedia.org] to now.

Then again a masked Rom in one of those wikipedia readers [thewikireader.com] seems like you have the advantage of not needing to find or build a working CD Rom drive. Mind you, whoever digs it up is still going to have to work out how to build a display because I don't see any display technology lasting for 12,000 years underground.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (3, Informative)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#41886469)

The small amount of RAM on Intel's SSDs are not used to cache writes in a significant quantity. The idea that you'll only have to write the most popular cells once per shutdown is a dream. The main benefit of having a bit of reliable capacitor backup is that the drive can be less aggressive about forcing an erase of a large cell just to write a fraction of it out, therefore improving the write amplification [wikipedia.org] situation on the drive. You can even see limiting small writes as a factor in the claimed longevity of the drives if you dig into their spec sheets enough. I did an article comparing the 320 vs 710 series lifetimes [2ndquadrant.com] , approaching from the perspective of one of those specialist things you allude to--database server operation. One of the things that I noticed there is that the longer lifetime of the 710 came with the restriction that you couldn't do nearly as many small random writes per second (write IOPS) and still hit the claimed lifespan target. If the cache was larger and really effective at postponing writes, that trade-off wouldn't exist.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (3, Informative)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 2 years ago | (#41888557)

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.

That is why even though this article is a year old [codinghorror.com] I'd urge those thinking of diving into SSD to read it, especially the comments where you see guy after guy getting bit in the ass by dead controllers. brand make a difference, OCZ being worst and Intel best, but ALL have this problem to a degree, and when it happens to you? Well lets just hope you have a VERY recent backup.

This is why I tell my customers there are some places SSDs make sense but NOT all. If its mobile, not mission critical, and you religiously stick to a backup schedule? No problem there, if its just an OS drive with the data on HDD? No problem there, just make sure you have recent disc images so you can just clone onto the replacement, but in anything mission critical, or for those that won't stick to a rigid backup schedule? then SSD is NOT the way to go, it'll bite them on the ass and leave them in a bad way.

They really need to come up with a second controller, one that will simply take over in the case of failure and leave the drive in a read only state. this would at least insure that when the main controller does fail you can get the data off, and its those failure rates that are keeping a lot of people (myself included) from switching.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (3, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | about 2 years ago | (#41889207)

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.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

deroby (568773) | about 2 years ago | (#41891543)

So basically, you got "lucky" and some of the cells failed. From what I've heard it's more often the controller that gives up causing the disk to change overnight from a nice piece of electronics into a shiny paper-weight. No hope for recovery at all; the thing simply won't show up in the BIOS. Because of this it's also impossible to read the SMART info so it's hard to say if the controller failures are related to some cells being end-of-life confusing the hell out of the controller or if it's something else... But regardless of its true cause : (further) messing up the filesystem is the least of your worries at that point.

PS: Yes, I have an SSD and I think it's the most efficient 'upgrade' I've ever done to a machine; I would advice it to everyone given they understand the risk (*). On top of that I really don't try to be 'gentle' to it either (**) : I've bought it to get work done quicker and don't see good reason to cripple that performance in the hopes that it will last 10 years instead of 5. In fact, I'm kind of *expecting* the controller will give up first, so it might actually not be relevant how many bytes were written to the cells as the cause is something 'unrelated' (e.g. something in the power-board that says poof). Hence, might as well make the best of it.

And yes, I do backup on a more-or-less regular basis so when I get bitten it won't hurt THAT much... (RedoBackup to an external HDD (eSata), takes 1 hour to image the entire disk).

(*: it's not like HDD's are fail-proof either! At best you get a bit of a warning, question is if the user is able to tell the signs...)
(**: Swap en hibernation file are both on the SSD and I do a LOT of database stuff on it. SMART tells me I've managed to R/W 3.74/3.77 TB respectively in the past (almost) 9 months. I did switch off the 'last accessed' option in the filesystem though, don't see much use in it anyway.)

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about 2 years ago | (#41891431)

I have a question. Have you heard about Greenliant? How are their controllers?

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 2 years ago | (#41891485)

Sorry friend but I never heard of them. My gamer customers tend to go for the fastest drives and I can tell you that while Intel fails less often they DO fail, and OCZ drives fail like fricking mad. i have one customer whose on his 7th drive in 3 years thanks to controller failures.

Personally if you were my customer i'd tell you just like I wrote in the previous post, if its not mission critical and losing a little data won't hurt? go for it. if it IS mission critical or losing data would cause serious pain? Do NOT go for it. Its the same mess we saw when HDDs and DVD burners first came out, it took a good 6 years before HDDs became really reliable, around 4 for burners. With new tech comes new hassles and sadly they seem to be more interested in a race to the bottom than in quality right now, which is why we are seeing Intel drives failing too.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

abigsmurf (919188) | about 2 years ago | (#41891607)

I had an OCZ drive fail on me. Was working perfectly fine, the day before. Turned on my PC, and the BIOS couldn't find the drive so it wouldn't boot. Booted up the old windows installation I still had on another HDD, nothing I could do could get any OS or the BIOS to even recognise I'd connected the SSD. All the data, completely unrecoverable with no advanced warning (after just 6 months of usage). Just to rub it in, I had to pay £20 to return the £160 drive to OCZ (and trust that they'd responsibly dispose of any data on the drive).

I'm extremely reluctant to buy another SSD after that and will never buy another OCZ product.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about 2 years ago | (#41904719)

Actually the brand really makes NO difference as they ALL have this problem, OCZ drives just seem to have it worse. I have gamer customers that are on their sixth and seventh SSDs, all different brands from Intel to Samsung to OCZ and NONE of them have any kind of warning before controller fail, just flip the switch one day and the drive is poof! Completely gone.

And of course if its under warranty you have the option of sending the dead drive with ALL your data, as you found out, and hope some asshole in whatever third world country they dispose of them in doesn't get your data off, or say fuck the warranty and just eat the cost of the drive.

This is why I tell my customers if they are going SSD to NOT put anything they care about or would care if the world saw it, not if they want to actually use that warranty because they WILL have the drive fail before it goes out, I've seen customers baby the hell out of them, even put coolers on the drive in the hope lack of heat would fix it...nope, they ALL have this bug.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41896729)

I didn't realize platter based drives were infallible, lol. Seriously unless the failure rate of SSD's is significantly higher than the failure rate of platter based HD's, it's a non issue. Data stored on any kind of hard drive is at risk of total loss at any time, unless you have a backup.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (2)

PipsqueakOnAP133 (761720) | about 2 years ago | (#41901801)

Not quite correct either.

It's not the controller hardware dying, it's the controller firmware crashing and burning.

A few days ago, my Crucial C300, a drive I've been running like mad for 2 years, finally critically failed to read back a sector. And instead of returning an disk error, the entire drive froze. After waiting 15 minutes to see if it'd come back, it didn't. Rebooting, then rereading resulted in the same drive crash. Overwriting the sector with dd made it force a remap and allowed me to fully image my drive.

What does this tell us?

1) A 2nd controller doesn't help. It'll just do the same thing.
2) In the normal block failure mode, it'll return a disk error and we can overwrite it.
3) There exists bugs in the firmware where the block tracking metadata gets into a state where the controller can't handle it anymore. My guess is that maybe it ran out of memory trying to clean itself up or something. Whatever the case, if you hit something like this, there needs to be a way to escape without losing the entire drive. Perhaps a debug mode or memory-optimized read-only mode toggled by a jumper or something.
4) I should have noted the rare occasional stutter in the past month as a sign that things were not great.

Anyhow, I backed everything up, issued an ATA secure erase to hope the drive cleans its metadata too, and then loaded everything back on from the disk image. Works perfectly.

(relavent equipment: OSX 10.6, no TRIM enabled, ~2.5 year old drive, primary build/dev environment, all firmware updates have been loaded)

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

godrik (1287354) | about 2 years ago | (#41885935)

Assuming 6Gbps and assuming you never stop writing, you crash the disk in one month. It is indeed pretty low. Most SSDs would last a couple years at full write speed.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (1)

Chuck Chunder (21021) | about 2 years ago | (#41888735)

Doesn't sound like "marketing speech" to me, it sounds like trying to express the life in a fashion more useful to a human being. The term "Marketing speech", at least when used derogatively, suggests obfuscation or hiding reality.

Here what they are saying is clear. As someone considering the drive I can easily say (without doing any sums) that my use case is nowhere near as "bad" as the pathologically SSD unfriendly situation they describe and quickly conclude (to the extent I trust their information) that I don't need to worry about wear being an issue for the expected service lifetime of the disk.

If the numbers were more borderline then expressing it as write cycles might be more useful as people would need to do the sums for their individual use case. However because they are so large it makes sense to describe them in a way that obviates the need to do any sums for 99.999% of realistic use cases.

Re:Marketing Speech? 10 writes per day for five ye (0)

arglebargle_xiv (2212710) | about 2 years ago | (#41889705)

The article makes me a bit suspicious: "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." sounds pretty bad actually, if I understand it right. Per cell this means: 365*10*5 = roughly 20.000 write cycles per cell? Sure wear leveling algorithms are there, but 20.000 cycles is not exceptional, or am I wrong?

With an Intel SSD you never actually get anywhere near the total number of write cycles. Because of a special Intel wear-levelling feature called BAD_CTX 0000013x the drive will brick itself periodically [intel.com] , forcing you to erase it and resetting the write config. It's a clever feature of Intel SSD products that I haven't seen other manufacturers implement yet.

Proprietary (0)

mcover (1653873) | about 2 years ago | (#41885705)

What is "proprietary" supposed to tell me about hardware?

There is just so much wrong with calling things "proprietary" and thinking it'll make the reader perceive the product as superior.

Re:Proprietary (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about 2 years ago | (#41885805)

It's like the Colonel's 11 secret herbs and spices. If you trust the brand, it's a plus - if you think that KFC is including human remains as a "spice", it's a negative. In this case, it lets you know that there is something unique about this new Intel SSD that no other brand has. Whether that is good or bad depends purely on your feeling about Intel's level of competence in designing SSD controllers.

Re:Proprietary (1)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#41886593)

"Original recipe is people!" This reminds me of the urban legend [snopes.com] that fast-food burgers were made with worms that I remember hearing back in the late 70's.

Re:Proprietary (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 2 years ago | (#41885927)

What is "proprietary" supposed to tell me about hardware?

There is just so much wrong with calling things "proprietary" and thinking it'll make the reader perceive the product as superior.

TFS does a terrible job of, um, summarizing the situation; but it does actually make sense in context:

Intel's initial entry into SSDs(X-25) was based on an in-house controller, which(with the exception of the unpleasant 8MB firmware bug) was generally quite well regarded. Then it stagnated. They did a few tepid bumps and firmware updates; but no successor controller appeared. With SSDs actually able to saturate a 3GB/s SATA bus, the fact that Intel had nothing on the table for 6GB/s SATA began to become an issue.

More recently, Intel began shipping 3rd party controllers (most recently Sandforce, possibly some Marvel at some point) on everything but their enterprise gear.

Now, after the thick end of four years, they've brought out their first new SSD controller architecture. Whether it does, in fact, turn out to be better is not known; but it is news after such a long hiatus.

Re:Proprietary (1)

poetmatt (793785) | about 2 years ago | (#41886407)

Point is, they're behind the competition. There are faster (and cheaper) drives out there now.

So, this may work in the long term - but they're just another competitor in the mix at the moment.

Re:Proprietary (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41887173)

there are NOT faster and cheaper drives in the market with these features, there's nothing out there right now, to my knowledge, with is capacitor-backed cache and end-to-end integrity.

for the price intel is asking, its quite reasonable as well.

Re:Proprietary (1)

poetmatt (793785) | about 2 years ago | (#41894173)

samsung 840.

done in one.

Re:Proprietary (1)

PipsqueakOnAP133 (761720) | about 2 years ago | (#41901877)

Intel was shipping their own controllers for the low end, and using Marvell's for the high end with the 510.

Then Sandforce for the 520.

Re:Proprietary (2)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#41886211)

What "proprietary" means to me here is "untested and likely to be very buggy". I've helped people cope with losing terabytes of lost data eaten by Intel's early X-25 models, when they first played this game. The “BAD_CTX 13x Error” AKA 8MB size bug sucked; so did their flat out deception about the drive's write cache [mysqlperformanceblog.com] in order to cook benchmark results.

At least they're honest about which drives do and don't care about cache integrity now, and firmware reliability of the models that do that right (the 320 and 710 series) seem pretty solid now. But since getting firmware right for a complicated SSD takes a lot of field testing, that they've switched to this new proprietary controller means the odds of data loss due to firmware bugs on this model are going to jump right back up again. Firmware seems to be the least reliable part of a typical SSD, so brand new firmware surely equals very high risk, even if the hardware is executed perfectly. Doesn't matter how well the flash cells work if you hit something like the "oh, the drive reports it's 8MB now" sort of bug--and that problem haunted multiple generations of drives in Intel's past firmware before they exorcised it. Now it seems they want to start over again. Didn't like that movie the first time, would not watch again.

What's stored in DRAM? (2)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41885723)

The article says this:

The controller has a 6Gbps Serial ATA interface, and a gig of DRAM rides shotgun.This DRAM cache never stores user data but is instead used for context and indirection tables.

That detail is important in light of the DC S3700's power-loss protection, which uses multiple onboard capacitors to ensure that in-flight data is safely written to the flash in the event of a power failure.

What are context and indirection tables?

Re:What's stored in DRAM? (3, Informative)

JDG1980 (2438906) | about 2 years ago | (#41885887)

What are context and indirection tables?

There are some details in this Anandtech article [anandtech.com] about the tables and the controller's use of DRAM.

Re:What's stored in DRAM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41886041)

Generally speaking, indirection tables are used to map virtual addresses to physical locations.

A simple example:
When a write to a physical block on a HDD fails, the data will be remapped to another block. That is done using a redirection table.

Re:What's stored in DRAM? (1)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | about 2 years ago | (#41886249)

Pointers and linked lists to disk structures

Re:What's stored in DRAM? (3, Informative)

gman003 (1693318) | about 2 years ago | (#41886265)

Here's the short version - for full details, look at the Anandtech article an above user posted.

An SSD presents itself to the system as just a flat storage device, but internally it does a lot of weird mapping to do stuff like wear-leveling. The indirection table is basically "when the CPU asks for page X, we give them flash cell Y". It used to be a rather clever B-tree, but they ditched that for a flat array to get more consistent latencies.

I'm not sure what the context table is.

Re:What's stored in DRAM? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41891029)

I guess that context table is the place where you store how many time each cell has been written to and cell status

The end of on-site backup? (1)

llZENll (545605) | about 2 years ago | (#41885867)

With this drive I would feel ok ditching my onsite weekly backup and only having a single off-site backup.

Re:The end of on-site backup? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41886071)

With this drive I would feel ok ditching my onsite weekly backup and only having a single off-site backup.

Why? The biggest SSD killer is firmware bugs, such as the infamous Intel 8MB bug where the drive booted up claiming an 8MB capacity and requiring a full wipe to reboot.

Re:The end of on-site backup? (2)

greg1104 (461138) | about 2 years ago | (#41886275)

At the beginning of its release cycle, the odds of firmware bugs eating all your data is massively higher on this drive than the models that re-used existing controllers/firmware and have been out a while. The new controller means they've basically started over again with a firmware rewrite. PC hardware and software has so many possible configurations to test, it's impossible to get that right without beta testing the hardware in the field to see what problems the sucker early adopters get nailed by. The only way I'd feel comfortable relying on one of these during its first year of life, while that's getting ironed out, is to have even more backups than the current generation of hardware needs to be considered safe enough.

Warning Will Robinson ! Warning (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41885963)

end-to-end data protection,

Where have we heard this before ?

Oh that's right, when Hollywood tried to sneak that sort of shit onto the drive controller..

Beware !

Re:Warning Will Robinson ! Warning (1)

mlts (1038732) | about 2 years ago | (#41886115)

That is a concern, but AES encryption is not for yet another descendant of CPRM... it is because a lot of companies and government organizations require DAR (data at rest) encryption. Having this done at the HDD controller level is the best for performance reasons, and with the latest version of BitLocker, drives are recoverable (recovery info is stored in an AD schema), but still secure if someone decides to "borrow" a few drives out of a drawer.

Re:Warning Will Robinson ! Warning (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41886171)

Also, because you can 'wipe' the entire disk by just loading a new AES key.

Re:Warning Will Robinson ! Warning (1)

mlts (1038732) | about 2 years ago | (#41894571)

That makes sense -- it also prolongs the cell life when just the AES key is zapped and only new data forces an erase, as opposed to overwriting every block when a ATA secure erase command is given.

Faster as well.

Slashvertisement out the wazoo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41885971)

This is a slashvertisement of the highest order.

Re:Slashvertisement out the wazoo (1)

Amouth (879122) | about 2 years ago | (#41886189)

But as a nerd, this is news. I'm a big fan of Intel controllers and am looking forward to taking this for a test drive.

You what I think... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41886281)

Back to the future....they only need to add the flux.

Why SATA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41886317)

Can we have NVM Express, pretty please?

http://www.nvmexpress.org/

Thanks,
Anonymous Coward

Proprietary = back door. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41888865)

If you want to make sure your data is safe from prying eyes,
choose another drive.

Posted anonymously because doing otherwise would jeopardize my job.

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