The future of storage is heading away from the spinning magnetic disks inside most of our computers and towards solid state drives.
Besides the advantage of being much more reliable and durable, solid state drives (SSD) also have the advantage of being quicker to deliver data. SanDisk detailed today a new technology that it hopes to cement SSD as the performance choice, coupling it with new metrics.
SanDisk explained its new file system technology for SSDs, which it calls the ExtremeFFS, at WinHEC 2008 in Los Angeles and boasts that it could boost random write speeds by up to 100 times over existing systems.
The “FFS” in the brand stands for Flash File System (not the other use of the acronym) and the Extreme, of course, relates to SanDisk’s brand of premium flash products.
SanDisk appears to have geared its technology towards the needs of Windows Vista. ExtremeFFS operates on a page-based algorithm, which means there is no fixed coupling between physical and logical location. SanDisk explains that when a sector of data is written, ExtremeFFS puts it on the SSD where it is most convenient and efficient. This should result in an improvement in random write performance by up to 100 times in best case scenarios.
The memory company explained, “ExtremeFFS incorporates a fully non-blocking architecture in which all of the NAND channels can behave independently, with some reading while others are writing and garbage collecting. Another key element of ExtremeFFS is usage-based content localization, which allows the advanced flash management system to "learn" user patterns and over time localize data to maximize the product’s performance and endurance.”
Rich Heye, senior vice president and general manager for SanDisk’s SSD Business Unit, said, “This feature might not show up in benchmarks, but we believe it is the right thing to do for end-users.”
SanDisk products with ExtremeFFS are expected to ship in 2009.