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Monstrous 60TB SAS SSD by Seagate but in 3.5-Inch Form Factor

And 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD

Seagate Technology plc announced at Flash Memory Summit conference two new flash innovations that extend the limits of storage computing performance in enterprise data centers to unprecedented levels.

The new products include a 60TB SAS SSD – the largest SSD ever demonstrated – and the 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD.

These two new products represent the high performance end of Seagate’s enterprise portfolio – an ecosystem of HDD, SSD and storage system products designed to help customers manage the deluge of data they face and move the right data where it’s needed fast to meet rapidly evolving business priorities and market demands.

The 60TB SAS SSD and 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD are the newest additions to Seagate’s data center portfolio and are designed to help enterprise IT leaders obtain more value from the expanding amount of data they must contend with, even under the most demanding application requirements.

The 60TB SAS SSD features twice the density and four times the capacity of the next highest-capacity SSD available today – equivalent to the capacity needed to accommodate 400 million photos on a typical social media platform, or 12,000 DVD movies. This single controller architecture also delivers the lowest cost per gigabyte for flash available today.

The 60TB SAS SSD also simplifies the configuration process of accommodating ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ data, enabling data centers to use the same enterprise HDD 3.5-inch storage form factor. This eliminates the added step of separating out different types of data for near-term availability versus long-term storage – largely based on estimations or best-guesses of future data usage. Instead, data centers can rely on an SSD that helps address their need to quickly accommodate and ensure accessibility of increasing large amounts of data without having to add additional servers or incorporate additional management steps. And, because of the drive’s flexible architecture, it also provides a pathway for data centers to easily grow from the current 60TB capacity to accommodate 100TB of data or more in the future – and all in the same form factor.

Similarly, the 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD can accommodate the hyperscale needs of today’s data centers seeking to easily grow with their data without losing the ability to quickly access and process it – a scenario commonly seen in applications involving HPC, scale-out databases and big data analytics, such as scientific research and weather modeling.

It features a single PCIe interface for high-speed data transfers and four separate controllers, providing processing power up to four times faster than comparable drives, but without the higher cost, power levels and latency required from a PCIe switch or bridge. Applications can process more transactions faster using the highest bandwidth through one PCIe slot, and without having to invest in more hardware. Additionally, the technology integrates into all-flash system arrays.

AccelStor’s core focus is on providing all-flash arrays that offer tremendous performance and reliability to meet the demands of the fast-growing cloud and enterprise markets. Critical to achieving this, though, is having the right building blocks – including exacting solid-state engineering and software innovation,” said Dr. Charles Tsai, president, AccelStor, Inc. “AccelStor works with Seagate Technology to seamlessly integrate our state-of-the-art FlexiRemap software technology with Seagate Nytro NVMe SSDs. The result: we’re able to translate SSD performance into complete all-flash arrays that help data centers extract the most value from their data.”

The 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD will be available through channel partners in calendar Q4, 2016.

Future availability of the 60TB SAS SSD, currently a demonstration technology, is anticipated for some time in 2017.

The explosion of data can translate into more value for enterprises, if they have the right means to accommodate that data,” said Brett Pemble, Seagate’s GM and VP of SSD products. “If anything is certain, it’s the fact that across industries, the limits of data growth are boundless. Seagate is committed to staying on top of this growth and, in turn, ever-changing customer needs, and providing new and varied technologies to help customers stay ahead of the data management curve. New products like the 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD and 60TB SAS SSD are testament to that.”

Given the demands on today’s data centers, optimal technologies are those that can accommodate an immense amount of data as needed-and without taking up too much space. As such, we are constantly seeking new ways to provide the highest density possible in our all-flash data center configurations,” said Mike Vildibill, VP, advanced technologies and big data, Hewlett Packard Enterprise. “Seagate’s new 60TB SAS SSD offers an exciting possibility for customers to achieve higher server storage performance and capacity configurations never seen before.”

Flash Memory Summit: Product Demos and Keynote Presentation
Seagate demonstratex the 8TB Nytro XP7200 NVMe SSD and 60TB SAS SSD – in addition to the recently announced enterprise products including the 2TB Nytro XM1440 M.2, the Nytro 7102 PCIe AIC and the Nytro 1230 SATA SSD – at the Flash Memory Summit 2016 conference.

Phil Brace, president of Seagate cloud systems and silicon group, will present the FMS keynote address, Design Efficient Storage Systems with Both Flash and HDDs, on Wednesday, Aug. 10. The presentation will address the role of flash memory and HDDs in meeting the storage and management needs of today’s data centers.


60TB into one SSD! Nobody has done it before but this exceptional capacity comes from the form factor of the Seagate's unit: 3.5-inch, a key information not published in the press release and that we got at Flash Memory Summit at vendor's booth where a working drive was demonstrated.

We also learned that the unit was based on Micron 3D NAND and it was confirmed that Seagate will be able to increase the capacity to 100TB in the future. The controller is manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor.

Seagate is not the only vendor in the world with such a big form factor for SSD. At FMS, Nimbus Data revealed a 4U ExaFlash C-series all-flash subsystem with a 3.5-inch removable SSDs at 50TB each, apparently from its own design.

Nearly all the other ones offer only 2.5-inch form factor or less. Several years ago 3.5 inch was a popular volume for SSD to get the possibility to reach higher capacity at a time where the flash chips were much larger and 3.5-inch form factor popular in the industry.

What's the interest of a new monstrous 3.5-inch SSD today? First, it's a way for Seagate to claim to have the highest capacity flash drive in the world. Secondly users will be able to reach petabytes of data with less drives and power consumption. At Seagate, the maximum capacity  of a 2.5-inch SSD is 3.8TB (6.4TB for Memblaze and OCZ, 16TB for Samsung) or 16 times less.

But wait for much more in standard 2.5-inch form factor. Samsung is supposed to ship next year a unit at world's largest capacity 32TB with SAS interface, 64-layer V-NAND and 15mm height, twice the capacity of the company's PM1663a SSD, which shipped last March. Samsung also expects that SSDs with more than 100TB of storage capacity will be available by 2020, thanks V-NAND technology. On its side, Lenovo said it was just developing a 48TB device in the space of two 2.5-inch units including several SSDs, planned to be released by the middle of next year. More that that, Toshiba presented at FMS event quad level cell technology to reach 100TB, in the near future according to the company.

Price of the Seagate 60TB SAS SSD was not revealed. But who is going to buy such a drive at a price that can be estimated between $15,000 and $16,000 considering the current price per gigabyte of SSDs? And Jim Handy, director and chief analyst, Objective Analysis, guesses it will be more: around $20,000.

Few of today's storage subsystems or servers are able to accept 3.5-inch volume for drives.

Also we don't see SSD - too expansive - becoming a storage media for cold data in the next future.

Seagate, now in SSD for a long time, continues to be a small player in the market and this 60TB announcement is not going to change drastically its ranking. But it's a nice PR stunt.

Furthermore, with this 60TB unit, Seagate took another step to kill its own enterprise 10,000 and 15,000rpm HDDs and it will compete with its highest capacity 3.5-inch  at "only" 10TB, six times less.

We doubt that other manufacturers will enter into 3.5-inch SSDs that is going to be a niche market.