Technology as a way of life

Life is the art of drawing without an eraser...

On Monday, Western Digital announced it had acquired SiliconSystems Inc. in a $65 million cash deal. The new deal will give WD the means with which to form its own solid state disk (SSD) product divisions; effective immediately, SiliconSystems will be known as the WD Solid-State Storage business. SiliconSystems is a bit of a dark horse as far as an acquisition target goes; the company was founded in 2003 and has focused on building business relationships with the Enterprise System OEM market.

According to the company, "SiliconDrive products are designed to exceed the rigorous demands of applications in the netcom, industrial, embedded computing, data center, military and medical markets."

Part of SiliconSystems' focus has been on developing a series of in-house tools and capabilities. It's hard to tell how much of the company's work is genuinely new vs. a different version of what everyone else is doing, but we've lined up the bottles of special sauce for your viewing pleasure:

  • PowerArmor Technology: Supposedly eliminates the number one cause of storage failure—drive corruption from an improper power-down. Details here for PATA, SATA, and USB devices is here.
  • SiSMART: Advanced monitoring tools meant to give the system operator a block-level update on drive status any time he or she cares to have one. SiSMART also calculates the drive's MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure) based on current usage patterns.
  • SolidStor: ECC algorithms, wear-leveling, bit-flip error elimination, data integrity, and data transfer speeds all fall under this category. Unfortunately, SS doesn't provide much detail on how its systems work.
We'll likely see Western Digital shipping SSD products sooner rather than later, particularly if the enterprise market is a major target. As for the VelociRaptor, the VelociRaptor II, whenever it appears, will likely be a hybrid drive in both its consumer and enterprise editions.


Post a Comment