Solid State Drives

Solid State Drives

Toshiba is an industry leader in both small form factor HDDs and in NAND flash technology (a type of non-volatile storage technology that does not require power to retain data), offering a broad range of digital media products based on innovative storage technologies. Toshiba storage products are used by every major brand of mobile applications such as notebooks, netbooks and external storage solutions.

A solid state drive, SSD, is a data storage device based on semiconductor memory called NAND flash memory, which was developed by Toshiba in 1987. SSDs are becoming increasingly popular in computer and other markets ranging from consumer electronics to enterprise and industrial equipment.

Unlike magnetic hard disk drives, the more common storage solution used today, SSDs have no moving parts and do not rely on magnetic fields to store data. Due to this fact, SSDs have plenty of advantages: They are exceptionally rugged, durable, reliable and offer a faster experience.

Solid state drives (SSD) and hard disk drives (HDD) have their individual attributes and strengths in terms of Input/Output per second (IOPS), capacity, sequential throughput, energy usage and cost. Because SSDs and HDDs address different needs in the market, they complement each other and will co-exist long term. Toshiba is an industry leader in both HDDs and in NAND flash-based SSD technology and will continue to provide both storage solutions to be adopted in applications for which each is best suited.

  • How SSDs Work
    • A SSD is basically comprised of a printed circuit board, a set of NAND flash memory chips, a DRAM cache, a memory controller, an interface controller and an interface connector such as IDE, SATA or SAS.

      The memory used in SSDs is non-volatile NAND flash memory and is produced in varying grades of quality. NAND is designed based on using either single-level cell (SLC) or multi-level cell (MLC) technology. SLC NAND stores one-bit-per cell, has longer endurance, but is significantly more costly to produce with higher capacities. MLC NAND uses two bits per cell. This flash technology has lower endurance, but holds larger capacities and can be produced at much lower costs.

       

      Architecture of SSDs

       
       
       
      Connector Controller DRAM NAND flash memory Connector Controller NAND flash memory Connector Controller NAND flash memory
  • SSD Features
    • Because SSDs have no moving parts, they offer several advantages for the mobile device market. The performance of the device is restricted only by the electrical characteristics and the time to access the addressed data. They can withstand considerable shock and vibration, and have excellent environmental resistance.

      The high data transfer rate and low power consumption that they offer means that SSDs are able to improve the performance of the devices with which they are used. Additionally, SSDs produce absolutely no mechanical noise at all, making them ideal for use in noise-sensitive devices.

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      Fast Read/Write Performance

      Speed is the biggest advantage of MLC Solid State Drives. They are much faster than conventional hard disk drives in two different ways: They do not suffer from the latency associated with conventional HDDs, that is caused by the spin-up time (the time required for the disk platters to reach full operational speed) and the seek time ( the time required for the read/write head to move to a specific data track). This is translated to a faster operating system boot up and improved random access performance.

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      Furthermore, SLC flash SSDs, which are optimized for very demanding and complex enterprise applications can store and deliver data even faster than MLC SSDs and also constantly, with a very low response time. They offer great speed improvements even compared with the fastest enterprise hard disk drive or even MLC SSD and deliver the highest level of performance, data integrity and the reliability which is need in this sector.

      Shock and Vibration Resistance

      Another major advantage of SSDs, is again due to their lack of moving parts. They are impervious to impact and provide stable operation and can, therefore, withstand considerable shock and vibration. This means that they work reliably even in locations exposed to high levels of vibration and are ideal for use in laptops and other smaller portable devices that require shock and vibration resistance.

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      Low Power Consumption

      Because SSDs are not equipped with a motor, they generate less heat and consume less power than HDDs, helping to extend a computer's battery life. This is not only a big advantage for notebooks; especially in high-performance enterprise applications such as large servers, where a SSD can replace several HDDs due to the significant performance advantages of solid state technology, the low power consumption is of high importance. With growing government regulation around the world, IT companies today are increasingly seeking ways to reduce power consumption without compromising performance. SSDs also generate almost no heat, reducing data center cooling requirements, which is not only better for the environment, but will result in substantial cost savings.

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      Lightweight and compact

      Toshiba Client SSDs (cSSDs) are lightweight devices that weight approximately 9g (Half Slim Module, mSATA Module). They are ideal for use with the increasingly lightweight mobile devices that are demanded. Many of the SSDs presently available come in 1.8- and 2.5-inch drive form factors to ensure that their shape allows them to be used as replacements for HDDs. However, because SSDs consist mainly of semiconductor devices, they offer greater design flexibility and can be designed to be directly plugged into a motherboard. Thus, SSDs help reduce product size and offer greater flexibility in product design.

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      Silent

      HDDs contain moving parts, which causes operation sounds when powered on. Another benefit of not having any moving parts like SSDs, is the silence. SSDs produce absolutely no auditable noise at all, making them ideal for use with noise-sensitive devices such as televisions, home cinema systems, digital audio systems and camcorders.

      120306_Graph_Noise2

  • Applications
    • We have the technology, the rest is your imagination!

      The high-level performance, ruggedness and reliability of Toshiba MLC and SLC NAND flash technology helps increase mobility, functionality and confidence in a wide range of mobile and enterprise products: Mobile computing, gaming, camcorders, home entertainment and industrial systems — the application list continues to grow as MLC technology enables higher capacities at a more competitive price.

      Toshiba SSDs are available in a variety of form factors, interface and capacities especially designed to be embedded in a variety of applications.

       

       

      cSSD's and eSSD's applications include:

       

       Servers  Biometrics  Broadcast Recording
       Camcorders  CNC Devices  Computer Servers
       CT Scanners  Desktop PCs  Electronic Musical Instruments
       HD Studio Camera  High-Speed Cameras  Home Theater
       Kiosk Terminals  Laser Printers  Medical Measuring Instruments
       Netbook PCs  Notebook PCs  Office Equipment
       Arcade Games  POS Systems  Professional Camcorders
       Set-Top Boxes  Studio Recording  Surveillance Cameras
       Telephone Exchanges  Televisions  Video Editing Systems

       

      Applications Applicable SSDs Characteristics
      Notebook PCs & high-end PCs HG Series:
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      The HG series combines multi-level cell (MLC) NAND flash technology and a high-performance flash controller to achieve improved storage capacity and performance. This series offers sufficient reliability for general-purpose PCs ranging from notebooks to high-end PCs.
      Camcorders, netbooks and other small high-mobility devices SG Series:
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      The SG Series is optimised for light use and configured to support small form factors. It provides low-power consumption, low capacity storage and low-cost.
      Servers and other critical enterprise applications MKxx01GRZB This series uses the enterprise grade single-level (SLC) NAND flash memory and a 6Gb/sec SAS interface. It delivers brilliant performance combined with industry-leading power efficiency.