HP offers SSDs in ProLiant server line

One SSD can replace between four and 40 hard disk drives

HP has announced it will offer 60GB and 120GB solid-state disk (SSD) drives as an option across the full range of HP ProLiant G6 servers, as well as in select ProLiant G5 servers.

The serial-ATA (SATA) SSDs, from Samsung Electronics, are aimed at supporting virtualized environments and I/O intensive applications where the latest HP ProLiant G6 servers are often deployed, the company said. Virtualized environments require significant memory, data storage and network connections to optimize server performance.

"Using SSDs as the primary storage medium in enterprise servers will provide optimal value for data centers, with their exceptional low-power attributes, long-term reliability and outstanding performance," Jim Elliott, vice president for memory marketing at Samsung Semiconductor Inc., said in a statement.

Sun Microsystems Inc. and IBM announced earlier this year they are offering SSD in their server lines.

The SATA SSDs are made with single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash memory chips and are rated by Samsung to execute random read commands at 25,000 input/outputs per second (IOPS) and random writes at 6000 IOPS. The drives have a sequential read speed of 230MBps and a sequential write speed of 180MBps SLC NAND stores one bit per cell versus multi-level (MLC) NAND flash memory, which stores two or more bits per cell. While MLC is more dense than SLC memory, SLC natively has 10 times the lifespan and better performance.

HP qualified Samsung's SSDs for what it's calling the "green" option across its server line to give customers a way to minimize power consumption, saving money while boosting performance. Samsung claims the SSDs can significantly cut power use in HP's ProLiant servers and offer 40 to 50 times the performance over traditional hard drives, depending upon the application and computing workload. Samsung said.

In HP ProLiant servers, Samsung said its SSD's power consumption is 1.9 watts when writing to the drive and 1.5 watts when reading to it - about one-fifth that of a conventional enterprise hard drive. Power use in idle mode is 0.1 watt.

"Samsung's latest SSD technology coupled with HP ProLiant servers delivers energy-efficient server platforms to enable customers to slash their power usage and reduce costs," Jim Ganthier, vice president of marketing for HP's Industry Standard Servers division, said in a statement.

The SSD drives can also free up data center space because, depending upon the application, a single Samsung SSD can replace between four and 40 15,000 RPM SAS HDDs in a server array, Samsung said.

Neither Samsung nor HP offered any pricing on the new drives.

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