PMC Debuts PCIe Storage Switches at Flash Memory Summit

Posted on August 10, 2015 By Pedro Hernandez

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At this year's Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, Calif., PMC is betting big on PCIe flash in data center storage environments.

The company today unveiled its Switchtec PSX line of storage switches for PCIe solid-state drives (SSDs). As the first enterprise-grade switch of its type, according to the company, the hardware could help mainstream PCIe SSD-based storage systems in data center environments.

Derek Dicker, vice president of PMC's Performance Solutions Group, said in a statement that his company came to the realization that "was no reliable way to connect and scale many of them in a single enclosure" after working on the first NVM Express SSDs. "In partnership with the industry’s most forward-thinking hyperscale and all-flash array customers, PMC created a new PCIe storage switch category with our Switchtec products to deliver the high port count, low power, resilient storage features that the industry needs."

PMC's Switchtec PSX switch line ranges from 24 lanes to 96 lanes and provides up to 48 ports and 48 non-transparent bridges. Additionally, the hardware supports up to 24 switch partitions. Compared to existing PCIe switches, systems with Switchtec PSX switches consume up to 60 percent less power.

PMC also unveiled its second-generation Flashtec NVMe controllers that set the stage for SSDs with capacities exceeding 20 terabytes (TB) and are capable of squeezing one million input/output operations per second (IOPS) out of an SSD's flash chips. Incidentally, Flashtec supports several types of flash technologies, including 3-D, TLC, Enterprise MLC (eMLC), MLC and SLC NAND.

Also at Flash Memory Summit, Viking Technology will be showing off the fruits of its collaboration with Sony. The companies are readying new non-volatile DIMM (NVDIMM) products for servers using resistive random-access memory (ReRAM).

The technology is finally ready for data center workloads, indicated Terushi Shimizu, senior vice president and deputy president of Sony's Device Solutions Business Group, in a statement.

"At this stage in ReRAM development, we are looking ahead to the implementation of this technology accelerating real-world cloud data center applications such as In-Memory Databases and Real Time Analytics," he said. "This will prove to be an exciting new chapter in the decade long development of our ReRAM memory technology."

To help organizations get consistently brisk performance out of their flash storage investments, ioFABRIC is demoing its Vicinity quality-of-service storage automation software.

In addition to helping keep applications running optimally, the software-defined storage offering can help fast-track flash storage migration projects, the company claims. "With Vicinity, users can seamlessly add flash to their data centers with no manual migration and the assurance that only their most-important data is using their most-expensive storage media," said Steven Lamb, co-founder and CEO of ioFABRIC in a statement.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InfoStor. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.


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