Armed With 10TB Drives and 3.2TB Flash, HGST Aims to Own Data Center Storage

Company out with six new data center storage infrastructure offerings, including NVMe-compliant PCIe SSDs and more Intel NAND Flash technology.

John Rath

September 11, 2014

3 Min Read
Armed With 10TB Drives and 3.2TB Flash, HGST Aims to Own Data Center Storage
HGST’s 1.8TB Ultrastar 10K hard drive for data centers. (Image: HGST)

HGST (formerly Hitachi Global Storage Technologies), a Western Digital (WDC) company announced six new data center storage infrastructure offerings, including NVMe-compliant PCIe SSDs and an extension of  the use of Intel NAND Flash technology. HGST says that in response to exponential growth in storage and the need for it to be accessible, elastic and fast, the company has developed innovative methods to extract increased efficiencies, performance and reliability through advanced software and firmware that provides tight end-to-end integration of underlying device capabilities with higher level functions at the subsystem, system and application level.

For server-side clustering and volume management software HGST launched Virident Space, which the company says will provide clustering of up to 128 servers and 16 PCIe storage devices to deliver one or more shared volumes of high performance Flash storage. With capacity for more than 38 TB the Virident Space offering looks to replace SAN environments for shared storage applications like Oracle RAC and Red Hat Global File System. HGST adds Virident Space to its vision for a Flash fabric suite, to its existing Virident ClusterCache for SAN acceleration and Virident Share solutions.

HGST said it is now shipping an 8TB Ultrastar He8 hard drive, joining the 6TB Helium hard drive launched last year. The HelioSeal platform by HGST is a hermetically sealed, helium-filled hard drive aimed at delivering maximum capacity and high density for OEMs, enterprise and cloud customers. Also introduced was a data center class 10TB hard drive for cloud and cold storage applications. Utilizing the HelioSeal technology and Shingled Magnetic Recording the new 10TB drive aims to lead the way for cost per terabyte and watts per terabyte metrics.

“At every step, we are innovating with purpose and pace to exceed the expectations of our customers by offering the broadest portfolio of SSDs, HDDs, software and solutions in the industry,” said Mike Cordano, president of HGST. “By providing complete solutions for both performance and capacity centric environments, we’re enabling our data center customers and partners to focus on developing new services and capabilities that drive competitive differentiation and profitability for their businesses. The products and solutions announced today ensure that HGST sustains its heritage as the most trusted provider of innovative data storage offerings to maintain market leadership.”

Going on the attack after those still using tapes in the category of active archives, HGST says it will offer hard drive solutions to provide a 10x increase in storage density and power efficiency compared to traditional enterprise data center solutions and a 5x increase in storage density and power efficiency compared to commonly used scale out cloud data center solutions. Although the archive platforms can be configured for a complete range of storage architectures the company says the greatest cost and efficiency gains are made in extremely large capacity environments.

HGST launched a new series of NVMe-compliant Ultrastar SN100 PCIe SSDs, which integrate Toshiba’s current MLC NAND Flash, and the company says these SSDs will enable broad system interoperability and ease of deployment, resulting in lower cost of ownership. The Ultrastar SN100 series of SSDs will be offered as a half-height, half-length (HH-HL) add-in card, as well as in a standard 2.5-inch drive form factor, with up to 3.2TB. To help integration and ease of use the company says it will make NVMe-compatible extensions aimed at delivering new levels of application integration by enabling value-add software layers to interface with the PCIe SSD’s NAND flash management.

HGST also announced it has extend the use of Intel NAND Flash technology as part of a cooperative agreement with Intel on Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) solid state drives (SSDs). After four generations of HGST SAS SSDs the products will be marketed and sold exclusively by HGST for another three years.

Rob Crooke, corporate vice president and general manager of Intel’s Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group said “our work with HGST underscores the importance we place on developing the best SSD solutions for high-performance enterprise workloads. This product development effort advances our NAND Flash technology innovations into the important SAS SSD market by addressing critical data center pain points related to scalable and flexible solutions that help deliver system compatibility and ease of integration into new and existing system designs.”

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