August 10th, 2017 by Adam Armstrong
Intel Unveils New SSD Form Factors At FMS
At Flash Memory Summit (FMS) 2017, Intel unveiled some new form factors for its SSDs as well as some other changes to its data center SSD lineup. Intel unveiled a “Ruler” form factor SSD that, as the name implies, is long and skinny. Intel announced dual port Optane SSDs as well as dual port 3D NAND SSDs. And the company updated several of its SSDs for the data center with an eye on replacing enterprise HDDs.
Getting more capacity in the same or smaller footprints has long been a goal of vendors and customers alike. While there have been several advancements around increasing the density of known form factors, there is always some sort of limitation, be it technology or price of the technology. Instead of cramming more NAND packs onto a 2.5” SSD or going for a larger 3.5” form factor, Intel is doing something completely different. Intel’s “ruler” SSD is a long skinny form factor that takes advantage of PCIe slots. The shape allows for much higher density (up to 1PB in a 1U space) and comes with low power and cooling needs. Intel will sell both 3D NAND and Optane drive in the ruler form factor.
Intel is introducing new dual port SSDs, including both its Optane and 3D NAND versions. The dual ported version come with redundancy and failover that is critical to applications that require high-availability. Intel also statest that the new dual port drives (including updated DC D4500, D4502 and D4600 Series) will have lower latency, more IOPS, and higher bandwidth that other SAS SSDs and HDDs that these drives will be replacing.
The ruler form factor is set to come to market in the “near future” and the dual port SSDs will be available in the third quarter of this year.