Top 10 tips for buying an enterprise SSD

5. NAND memory types

SSDs replace the platter found in hard drives with NAND flash memory chips. While other types of flash memory exist, NAND flash currently has the right balance of price, performance and reliability to make it the preferred choice in SSDs.

NAND flash memory consists of cells, which can be layered. Single layer cell (SLC) NAND flash can store a single bit of data whereas multi layer cell (MLC) can store multiple bits in a single cell meaning storage density can be greatly increased.

Traditionally, consumer orientated SSDs featured MLC NAND flash due to its significantly lower cost and increased storage capacity. In the past MLC NAND flash had considerably lower read/write cycles and lower write bandwidth compared to SLC NAND, but significant investment in MLC NAND development has mitigated performance and endurance worries.

SSDs using SLC NAND flash have all but evaporated from the market due to the aggressive development of MLC NAND flash. Even in the enterprise market, which was once dominated by SLC-shod SSDs, conservative vendors such as Intel have moved towards MLC to leverage its price andand capacity benefits.

MLC NAND

6. TRIM / Operating system

SSD's biggest problem is the drop in performance over time. Hard drive performance varies given the location of data on the platter, whereas SSD performance decreases as the NAND cells go through read/write operations.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

TRIM is a command that was developed to mitigate the performance degradation by performing garbage collection and executing a wear-levelling algorithm so that all the cells in the SSD receive an even wear rate. Although TRIM is a command implemented at the SSD controller level, operating system and file system support is needed for proper operation.

Microsoft supports TRIM with NTFS in Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. The Linux kernel has supported it since version 2.6.38, though not all file systems support it. Apple's Mac OS X 10.7 supports TRIM on the SSDs used by the firm.

TRIM support is almost ubiquitous throughout the SSD market, but it is vital to ensure the operating system supports this feature otherwise the performance degradation will become noticeable within months for heavy workloads.

Featured Resources

What you need to know about migrating to SAP S/4HANA

Factors to assess how and when to begin migration

Download now

Your enterprise cloud solutions guide

Infrastructure designed to meet your company's IT needs for next-generation cloud applications

Download now

Testing for compliance just became easier

How you can use technology to ensure compliance in your organisation

Download now

Best practices for implementing security awareness training

How to develop a security awareness programme that will actually change behaviour

Download now
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/policy-legislation/data-governance/354496/brexit-security-talks-under-threat-after-uk-accused-of
data governance

Brexit security talks under threat after UK accused of illegally copying Schengen data

10 Jan 2020
Visit/security/cyber-security/354468/if-not-passwords-then-what
cyber security

If not passwords then what?

8 Jan 2020
Visit/policy-legislation/31772/gdpr-and-brexit-how-will-one-affect-the-other
Policy & legislation

GDPR and Brexit: How will one affect the other?

9 Jan 2020
Visit/web-browser/30394/what-is-http-error-503-and-how-do-you-fix-it
web browser

What is HTTP error 503 and how do you fix it?

7 Jan 2020