TMS RamSan Bootable PCIe Flash Storage System Announced
Bootable PCIe cards alleviate need for hard disk drives in arrays.
Texas Memory Systems (TMS) announced that its RamSan PCIe storage systems, including RamSan-70 products, are now bootable storage devices.
Typically, all-flash arrays must use disk interfaces or RAID controllers to boot up. TMS is using a firmware feature that allows most common servers to load operating systems directly from a RamSan PCIe flash storage system.
Launched in 2011, the RamSan-70 has from 450GB to 900GB of capacity and features Toshiba's newest 32-nanometer single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash chips. It represents a 15% to 20% reduction in price-per-gigabyte over TMS's former PCIe card, the RamSan 10 and 20.
Last month, SanDisk also announced a PCIe flash card that could be configured as a bootable device. SanDisk's Lightning PCIe Solid State Accelerator (SSA) cards are being marketed for use in workstations and servers to provide an I/O performance boost for frequently used data and applications.
RamSan-70 products are capable of 1.5 million I/Os per second (IOPS), 2.5 GBps of bandwidth, and 30-60 microsecond latency. Bootability is available with the purchase of all new RamSan-70 PCIe storage systems, or as a firmware update with no hardware replacement necessary for RamSan-70 PCIe storage customers.
"Customers have been enjoying industry-leading performance from our PCIe Flash storage systems for over three years, and now with this firmware upgrade, we can allow large-scale customers to simplify and consolidate everything around flash," TMS President Dan Scheel stated in a news release.
The bootable PCIe cards support 64-bit x86-compatible computers that implement Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) 2.1 or later. Supported operating systems include most Linux distributions. Windows and VMware support is expected by the end of the quarter, TMS said.
Smaller servers are taking over data centers, but Intel believes the future is also bright for powerful big-iron servers, thanks to companies' embrace of machine learning, which requires a lot of horsepower to process complex algorithms and large data sets.
Dell is offering to helping cut business' reliance on Windows PC hardware with a new management appliance, which could serve up virtual Windows desktops to Chromebooks.
EMC will release its ViPR Controller storage automation and control software as an open-source project, letting third parties develop their own services and applications on top of it and possibly make ViPR work with more parts of enterprise storage environments.
SAP is deepening its partnership with Google and will collaborate with the search giant on new projects focused on business analytics and enterprise applications.