Future Servers to control solid state drives flash memory through software!

Fujitsu laboratories has announced that its researchers have developed a solid state drive in which the flash memory can be controlled by server software. By optimizing data positioning for access from an in-memory database, three times faster performance processing can be achieved than seen in ordinary SSDs.

Generally, in-memory databases, which enable high-speed analysis by loading data onto servers on a type of memory called DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory), when the volume of data exceeds the capacity of memory, lags in access to storage and other factors reduce processing speeds.

As a result, there has been a desire for technology that could expand memory using high-speed SSDs Fujitsu Laboratories have developed a SSD that enables read/write commands for each flash memory chip directly from software. It also developed a “read-ahead” feature that, in accordance with the access pattern, enables parallel data retrievals from multiple flash memory chips without the instructions interfering with each other. By loading data into DRAM before using the data from the in-memory database, data usage and data loading are processed simultaneously, enabling high-speed big data processing, with no access lags, even with limited DRAM capacity.

Details on this technology will be presented at the 27th Annual Computer Systems Symposium (ComSys 2015), which is scheduled to be held on November 25 at Ochanomizu University in Tokyo-Japan

On further success of this technology, the most beneficiary will be Big Data analytics industry which needs high speed processing. With in-memory databases, which achieve high-speed analysis by storing all data in DRAM on servers, large volumes of data that exceed DRAM capacity simply cannot be processed. One way of resolving this issue is to expand memory capacity by using high-capacity SSDs, and progress is being made on technologies for separately using DRAM and memory expansion.

The performance of memory expanded with SSDs depends on the performance of the SSD itself, and because this impacts analytical performance, there has been a desire for faster SSDs in big data analytics field.

But still a lot of experimentation has to be done on this and when succeeded, Fujitsu will be the first company to offer an SSD whose flash memory can be controlled through server software.


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