That’s one way of putting it. I’ve noticed current SSD drives are not being listed as SLC, MLC or eMLC, but instead Intel, for example, call their new 510 drive models “multi-level cell compute-quality components”.
Now in my reading that’s MLC-based NAND flash.
However drive vendors are moving away from SLC/MLC variants towards eMLC (Enterprise MLC). This new memory is supposed to give approximately a 30% write-endurance improvement over the original MLC derivative.
Complicating matters further is the fact that vendors are moving towards higher-density memory (34nm, 25nm, 18nm) which apparently reduces the life span of the memory.
All of this leads to a confusing time for the end user. What drives are right by my enterprise system? What drive technologies should I steer clear of for my mission-critical server?
As it stands at the moment, those are pretty hard questions to answer. My only hope is that somewhere down the track we can just move towards a single standard for SSD drives, and a standardised measurement method for read speed, write speed and endurance. The disk vendors seem to have this fairly well organised for spinning platters – so why can’t the SSD boys get their act together.
I know this is a fast-moving market segment, but I’m sure vendors are losing sales in the enterprise space simply because customers can’t work out whether a certain drive will in fact be safe to use in their servers.
Come on lads – remember the KISS principle.