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SmartSSD: more intelligence to storage

The first thing, before entering the matter, is to clarify that When I speak of SmartSSD I am not referring to SMART technology (Self Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology) that you will already know, and whose main function is to constantly monitor the status of compatible storage units (either HDD or SSD), in order to identify possible failures early, and thus prevent the Loss of data that these could cause, since it alerts the user to make a backup copy of the same.

This news is not about said technology, but about SmartSSD, which is the fruit of a collaboration carried out by Samsung and Xiling, and whose objective is to provide more intelligence to storage units. For that end, the unit has a Xiling FPGA, an integrated device that will, at the same time, speed up the tasks of the device, since many decisions will be made in it and, therefore, alleviate the workload of the system in which it is installed.

Specifically, the SmartSSD, whose full name is SmartSSD CSD (Computational Storage Drive), iIntegrates Xilinx Kintex UltraScale + FPGA package, made up of more than a million logic cells, around 2,000 DSPs (digital signal processors) and 330 LUTs (Look Up Tables). We are talking, therefore, of an integrated with a great processing capacity in relation to the device it accompanies, so it is expected that the improvements in its performance will be more than evident.

And what exactly does this Samsung and Xiling SmartSSD offer? One of its key points is undoubtedly the intelligent compression of the content stored in it. And is that if the physical storage capacity of the unit is four terabytes, thanks to the technology developed by the two technological is capable of storing up to 12 terabytes. Yes, you read that right, it can triple its storage capacity.

SmartSSD: Samsung and Xilinx bring more intelligence to storage

And now, at this point, most veterans will probably remember DoubleSpace and DriveSpace, the MS-DOS utilities that used software compression of the contents of the hard disk. And I say that you will remember it because, unfortunately, performance problems and, although to a lesser extent, also data loss, were much more frequent than would have been normal. I bring this memory to the present to clarify that SmartSSD technology has nothing to do with that.

A fundamental difference is, of course, the integrity of the data. Since it is the unit’s electronics that is responsible for space compression and optimization, we eliminate from the equation the problems that can be caused by failures in the software responsible for these operations. And in terms of performance, since all the intelligence is displayed in the SmartSSD, and that its electronics are optimized for this purpose, We will be able to obtain speeds of up to 3,500 MB / s and 3,200 MB / s in reading and writing respectively, eliminating the bottleneck problem that, in certain tasks, the storage unit supposes.

More information: Xiling