Microsemi Announces New Adaptec SmartRAID Storage Adapter Solutions — Now Including Integrated On-Board Cache Protection and Support For maxCrypto™ Secure Encryption

Microsemi, recently acquired by Microchip Technology Inc., is announcing two new additions to its line of Adaptec Smart Storage 12Gbps SAS/SATA adapters.  The SmartRAID 3162-8i now includes integrated on-board cache protection via a super capacitor mounted directly to the adapter, supporting write-cache data protection.  The 3162-8i/e debuts as the industry’s first off-the-shelf 12Gbps SAS/SATA RAID adapter with maxCrypto™, which is a line rate controller-based encryption (CBE) solution, and provides superior security and flexibility compared to encryption solutions that are disk-based.

According to Andrew Dieckmann, Microsemi’s vice president of marketing for data center solutions, “Flexibility, ease-of-use and security continue to be top priorities for our customers.  Our new SmartRAID 3162-8i ensures enterprise-level data availability in a highly integrated standard adapter form factor, providing all of the required cache protection hardware directly on-board.  Our turnkey maxCrypto encryption solution provides superior flexibility and security compared to the most common alternative solution, self-encrypting drives (SEDs), all within the easy-to-use Adaptec management tool suite.”


SmartRAID 3162-8i

Microsmei’s SmartRAID 3162-8i allows data centers to deploy an off-the-shelf RAID adapter that features a complete cache backup solution, yet in a single low-profile MD2 PCI Express (PCIe) Gen 3 server slot.  Data centers frequently use RAID caching to improve input/ouput (I/O) performance by writing data to a controller’s cache before it is written to disk.  An unanticipated power interruption can cause this write cache to lose this data that has not yet written to disk.  Microsemi’s Zero Maintenance Cache Protection (ZMCP) utilizes a super capacitor (instead of a battery) to provide power to critical components long enough for the entire write cache to finish writing all remaining cache data to NAND flash.  Once power is again available, the data is restored to the cache and normal operation is resumed.  Eliminating the lithium-ion battery also eliminates their associated hardware maintenance requirements.

blankThe SmartRAID 3162-8i also incorporates Microsemi’s newest (6th) generation of ZMCP.  The 6th generation integrates cache backup circuitry, NAND flash and the field-replaceable super capacitor all right onto the adapter, eliminating the need to tether an external capacitor to the adapter.  This results in additional space savings within the server, which is critical to deployment of high-density data centers.


SmartRAID 3162-8i/e

Encryption for data-at-rest is becoming more and more of a requirement across multiple markets, often driven by government legislation mandating privacy and security.  Microsemi’s SmartRAID 3162-8i/e with maxCrypto CBE allows data centers to select 256-bit XTS – Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) encryption for any logical volume managed by the SmartRAID 3162-8i/e, and at full line rate performance.  Microsemi’s maxCrypto CBE solution provides a higher level of security and improved flexibility over Self-Encrypting Drives (SEDs), which are the most prevalent alternative.

blankBoth the 3162-8i and 3162-8i/e are keyed toward enterprise storage applications requiring the highest levels of data availability in a more optimal footprint.  Important features include:

  •  Eight lanes of PCIe Gen 3 connectivity to the host
  •  Eight internal ports of connectivity to 12Gbps SAS or 6Gbps SATA drives, either direct or through an SAS expander, via SFF-8643 high-definition connectors
  •  2GB of DDR4 2100MHz
  •  Up to 1.45 million IOPS in RAID0 4KB random read operations
  •  Hardware RAID support for levels 0/1/5/6/10/50/60/1 ADM/10 ADM
  •  maxCache 4.0 with up to ~2TB of SSD cache
  •  Integrates with Microsemi Adaptec Tool Chain, including maxView Storage Manager GUI, ARCCONF, uEFI BIOS configuration utilities and the maxView Event Monitor

blankMicrosemi’s Smart Storage Stack, SmartRAID 3100, SmartHBA2100 and HBA1100 series of board level product families are all currently available in volume production quantities.  For more information, you can visit the Microsemi Smart Storage Platform products page here, or you can visit Microsemi at this year’s Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, California from August 7th – 9th, in booth #213.








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