Fusion-io: An enterprise SAN in your hand

At DEMOfall 07, Fusion-io introduced the next big thing in storage, a NAND flash PCI Express card with up to 640 gigabytes that offers performance at DRAM bandwidth, a thousand times faster than a disk drive, according to David Flynn, CTO and co-founder of the company. "The ioDrive collapses an enterprise SAN to a PCI Express card," he said.

At DEMOfall 07, Fusion-io introduced the next big thing in storage, a NAND flash PCI Express card with up to 640 gigabytes that offers performance at DRAM bandwidth, a thousand times faster than a disk drive, according to David Flynn, CTO and co-founder of the company. "The ioDrive collapses an enterprise SAN to a PCI Express card," he said.

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The ioDrive doesn't require a RAID controller and has the benefit of no moving parts. It's ideal for applications such as transaction processing, I/O intensive tasks and creating more virtual machines per server. Transaction rates can increase up to 25 times because the NAND is more directly attached to the "arteries" of the computer, Flynn said. The company claims that its technology performs 200 times better than Ultra SCSI, SAS, 2 gigabit-per-second Fiber Channel and Solid State Disks for sustained data rates and 8K random reads.

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Fusion-io is developing strategic relationships for its technology, and is a solution partner for HP's BladeSystems. Pricing will be around $30 per gigabyte retail, Flynn said. With NAND prices dropping by about half each year--mostly due to the volume of thumb drives--the ioDrive will become even more economical.

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