New Micron SSD Takes On Big Data


DRAM and flash memory vendor Micron Thursday unveiled a solid state drive intended to help data centers more effectively store the massive amounts of unstructured data being spurred by the big data trend.

The new Micron P400m SSD is a high-endurance SATA caching and storage solution aimed at data center servers, appliances and storage platforms tasked with managing petabytes of both unstructured and structured data. According to Micron, the P400m can not only store these massive amounts of data, but ensure the reliability of that data and maintain fast system response times for accelerated throughput.

"The P400m is targeted at data center storage -- a tier within the broader storage hierarchy that manages big data," said Kevin Kilbuck, Director of Strategic NAND Marketing at Micron, in an email to CRN. "We look at 'big data' really as a term to describe the amassing of petabytes of structured and unstructured digital information that is processed and stored every day. The P400m is our first product aimed at this segment, and you can expect to see more products from us with different interfaces, endurance and performance that meet the needs of this segment."

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Micron said the P400m leverages its next-generation Extended Performance and Enhanced Reliability Technology (XPERT), which both extends drive life and optimizes the SSD for write-intensive workloads. The P400m is designed to achieve 10 drive fills per day for five years, a rate Micron said is equivalent to the 400-GB drive writing every picture posted on Facebook every day for 311 days, or about 78 billion photos.

In addition, the XPERT technology is said by Micron to deliver enhanced data protection with features such as onboard power loss protection, and allows the P400m to consume significantly less power than hard-drive disks, while requiring "almost zero" cooling.

The P400m, which is currently in production, comes in 100-GB, 200-GB and 400-GB capacities, and a 2.5-inch and 7mm form factor Micron said serves a "wide range of markets."

Boise, Idaho-based Micron is one of several semiconductor companies plotting its course into the burgeoning big data market. Chip maker AMD, for instance, recently rolled out its SeaMicro SM15000 servers aimed largely at the big data and cloud computing markets, while rival Intel has made several big data-related investments, including funding the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's new Big Data Research Lab.

PUBLISHED JAN. 24, 2013

This story was updated on Jan. 24, 2013, at 11:20 a.m. PST, to correctly attribute a quote to Micron's Kevin Kilbuck, not Micron spokesperson Melinda Jenkins.