Top SSD Performance Comes at a Price

Texas Memory Systems debuts a RAM-based product that's big and powerful, but definitely not cheap.

Texas Memory Systems (TMS) is debuting a RAM–solid state disk drive (SSD) today for enterprises able to say "price be damned" in exchange for intense performance, fast speed and high storage capacity.

Starting at $140,000 the RamSan-440 quadruples current available RAM-SSD capacity and can handle up to 600,000 inputs/outputs per second (IOPS), according to the vendor. The four-unit rack-mount chassis scales to 512 gigabytes of storage capacity.

The news comes as enterprises want greater power and capacity to handle increasing datacentric applications such as mission-critical databases.

"This kind of RAM-based SSD is at the top of the performance pyramid," Jeff Janukowicz, an IDC analyst who covers solid state drives & HDD components, told

"It's really about performance," he said. "There are always applications that require higher-level performance and datacenters that are looking to increase the number of transactions," he said.

The announcement is also another validation point for SSD technology, which is gaining prominence given advancements in flash-based SSD technologies.

Last July, an IDC report predicted SSDs were ready to hit the mainstream and that the technology's performance and mobility-related requirements will push SSD revenues from $373 million in 2006 to $5.4 billion by 2011.

The new system is aimed at environments in which downtime or processing lags aren't tolerated, according to experts. "That's where we expect TMS' solution to be implemented as it allows organizations to increase performance and manage high transaction volumes and larger numbers of concurrent users," explained Janukowicz, adding the product is attractive for several markets including financial, telecom, e-commerce and data warehousing.

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