Extending Memory Lifespan Attempts To Breath New Life Into TLC Viability – FMS Update

FMS officially opened today with a lecture on Enterprise SSDs that included Sean Stead of STEC, Bernie Rub of Smart Storage Systems and Scott Shadley of Micron.

All offered their opinions on where things appear to be going for flash and the key teaching point was software and firmware benefits, Micron of course having the ability to tout that ‘owning the process is the key’ as they do hold the advantage of owning the fab.

The central idea expressed by all, however, was extending memory life and Bernie spoke of TLC-EE (Enhance Endurance) where with TLC memory, the total write cycle could be extended from 3000 to 40000 total writes.  In demonstrating the lifespan of TLC, MLC and TLC-EE memory at one drive write per day, the TLC EE drive had a lifespan of five years compared to the MLC drive of two years and TLC of two months.

Scott Shadley spoke of their eMLC solutions and the ability to pull their 30,000 lifespan to over the 100,000 mark, however, centered in on the thought that even with longer life expectancies, misused data management will still leave your drive with shorter life.  Scott and Micron hit the point dead on in their ideal that controller technologies, coupled with the expertise in firmware development, were the necessary elements for success in the future.

From a personal perspective, as much as the industry has tried to tout the value of TLC in the marketplace, the ability of companies like Micron to produce and provide a fair price point for their memory is what will keep TLC memory in the board rooms and away from products that we will all eventually have in our hands.  It is times like these that we realize the true value of owning the fab.

One comment

  1. very cool ideas, TLC is much cheaper to make and if they somehow pull this off making TLC 40k write cycle, or even 10k write cycle, i would move purely into SSD external storage.

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