Fusion-IO has announced that they have successfully created a single PCIe based SSD offering record breaking bandwidth. In as recently as 2008, it required an entire server rack in order to achieve such speeds. In 2009, such speeds were obtainable from a single server. And as of today, such speeds are now going to be available in a single PCI-Express based card. Each of the ioDrive Octals is capable of 1 Million IOPS and provides 6.2GB/s of bandwidth and upto 5.7TB of linear-scaling capacity per PCI-Express slot.
While the majority of consumers will not necessarily benefit directly from the innovations achieved by Fusion-IO simply because of the price, they are constantly driving the potential of SSDs ever higher. Because of their advancements, they?ve forced other controller manufacturers to innovate in ways to compete with their products. Fusion-IOs products are effectively the pinnacle of solid state storage, but they are also the price pinnacle. As such, they can simply be seen as the leaders in high-performance solid state solutions that only large companies can afford. There?s a good chance, though, that these SSDs will find their way into some of the world?s fastest supercomputers and HPC setups. Because of this, there?s still a good chance that the advancements that these drives bring could affect our daily lives in the future.
Some of the example tests that were referred to during SC10 in New Orleans were the implementation of the new drives in LANL [Los Alamos National Laboratory]. The ioDrive Octal was used by LANL to process climate data as well as running a few tests to compare the ioDrives against traditional spinning disks. Upon running their tests, LANL determined that as a whole Fusion-IO?s drives were 500% faster than the traditional spinning disk solutions. Not to mention they drew less power and generated less heat compared to those drives. By implementing Fusion-IO?s Octal drives, many universities and research institutes will be able to transfer their data between servers/systems at a much faster rate. They will no longer be bottlenecked by the limitations of physically spinning disks. It is finally time for SSDs to enter the HPC space, now we await the other competitor?s offerings.