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Fusion-io Leverages NAND as DRAM Extension

By - Source: Fusion-io | B 10 comments

Fusion-io has developed a subsystem technology called Extended memory, which enables developers to take advantage of NAND Flash memory as an extension of DRAM.

The idea is to move frequently accessed data pages to DRAM while rarely accessed data pages are transferred from DRAM to Flash. Thus, the overall available capacity for DRAM can indirectly be increased.

Fusion-io said that the technology, which was created in collaboration with Princeton University researchers, allows software developers to simply assume that their entire data set is kept in-memory all the time as NAND is a much more cost-effective memory solution and can reach much greater capacities than DRAM.

“The Fusion ioMemory architecture is uniquely suited to innovation like the Extended Memory subsystem,” said Chris Mason, Fusion-io director of kernel engineering and principal author of the Btrfs file system for Linux, in a prepared statement. “Since Fusion ioMemory has moved beyond legacy disk-era protocols, we can integrate new features like the Extended Memory subsystem to truly advance application performance for enterprise computing in ways that are simply not possible with traditional SSDs.”

Developers can access the Extended Memory feature via Fusion-io's developer community.

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  • 2 Hide
    drwho1 , July 12, 2012 3:10 PM
    “Since Fusion ioMemory has moved beyond legacy disk-era protocols, we can integrate new features like the Extended Memory subsystem to truly advance application performance for enterprise computing in ways that are simply not possible with traditional SSDs.”

    In other words, this is simply an SSD format that can't hold data like a normal SSD.
    It will flush the data every time that you turn off or reboot your system, just like RAM does.

  • 4 Hide
    ashinms , July 12, 2012 3:16 PM
    Ha. I thought this was about AMD getting into the storage business...
  • 1 Hide
    fb39ca4 , July 12, 2012 3:40 PM
    How quickly will it wear out?
  • 1 Hide
    JocPro , July 12, 2012 3:42 PM
    Extended memory existed since DOS... Himem.sys anyone?
  • 2 Hide
    MauveCloud , July 12, 2012 4:22 PM
    And this is different from a swapfile on an SSD how?
  • 5 Hide
    dalethepcman , July 12, 2012 6:39 PM
    Quote:
    data set is kept in-memory all the time as NAND is a much more cost-effective memory solution


    LOL

    FisionIO Octal 5.12TB
    $95,000.00


    4x16 64GB DDR3 server memory
    $690 x80 (to make 5.12 TB) = $55,200
  • 0 Hide
    A Bad Day , July 12, 2012 11:08 PM
    fb39ca4How quickly will it wear out?


    I'd give it about a year in a server environment.
  • 2 Hide
    tsnor , July 13, 2012 12:20 AM
    WOW they've reinvented PAGING! Imagine that, you put the seldom referenced pages on AUX, keep the heavy used pages in DRAM. Shocking 1960s technology. Bet they get a patent on it.
  • 2 Hide
    billyboy999 , July 13, 2012 12:27 AM
    dalethepcmanLOL FisionIO Octal 5.12TB $95,000.004x16 64GB DDR3 server memory $690 x80 (to make 5.12 TB) = $55,200

    The 320 sticks of RAM would take up a lot of space. Plus, you would need some device to plug them into. The small form factor, and the fact that it's a complete solution more than make up for the double cost.
  • 0 Hide
    mamailo , September 2, 2012 12:23 PM
    MauveCloudAnd this is different from a swapfile on an SSD how?


    In the fact that you only need to call allocmem in your program and decide witch tids and bits will be accelerated instead just bulking.
    Pretty useful in mission critical or high volume server environments.