Mainstream SSDs were transforming from PCIe Gen 3.0 x4 to PCIe Gen 4.0 x4 at the end of 2021, when the support of more CPUs and controllers was available in the PC OEM market. This was especially true for the updates and iterations of high-performance PC applications. This year, some first-tier PC OEMs have begun to stop the introduction of PCIe 3.0 platforms and are gradually marching toward the "main battlefield" of PCIe Gen 4.0 x4.
Recently, FORESEE's SSD team conformed to the mainstream trend of the industry, actively improved the "market compatibility" of the SSD product line, and presented FORESEE XP2100 PCIe SSD, its first PCIe Gen 4.0 x4 SSD.
Brand New Gen 4 Flagship Product
Enable More PRO PC Performance
Adopting a DRAM-less architecture, FORESEE XP2100 PCIe SSDs boast capacity options from 256GB to 1TB. They adopt the mainstream NVMe 1.4 protocol, and have passed the UNH-IOL certification. They are also expected to pass Intel's Modern Standby, as well as certifications of Google, AMD, and others in the near future. Leveraging advanced algorithms, FORESEE's SSD R&D team has managed a sequential read speed up to 5,300MB/s, a sequential write speed up to 4,900MB/s, and an input/output operations per second (IOPS) up to 800K for XP2100, the next-generation flagship SSD product, to dramatically boost the performance of PC terminals.
(Main parameters and applications)
From PCIe 3.0 To PCIe 4.0
PC OEM Market Embraces a Dynamic Force
Since the introduction of PCIe 3.0 in 2010, PCIe standards have gradually become popular in PCs and servers to meet the performance requirements of high-speed storage devices. PCIe 3.0 allows a maximum transmission speed of 8GT/s × 4 = 4GB/s, while PCIe 4.0, the new standards developed by PCI-SIG in 2017, has doubled the data transfer speed of the previous generation (PCIe 3.0) from 1GB/s per lane to 2GB/s per lane, providing users with a total of 32GB/s in a 16 lane configuration. Furthermore, PCIe 4.0 provides up to 16GT/s per lane when compared to the previous generation's 8GT/s. PC OEMs can enjoy more choices when purchasing storage components thanks to different grades, speeds, capacities, master controls, and other designs.
(The development journey of PCIe standards)
NVMe 1.4 Protocol
A Breakthrough in the Bottleneck of Latency
Users often neglect the NVMe protocol, a key point for SSD products. Released in June 2019, the latest NVMe 1.4 version includes one of the most important new features – I/O Determinism, which consists of NVMe Set and PLM that can provide technical support for professional needs of commercial PCs, servers, data centers, and other facilities.
① NVMe Set improves the "division of work" during writing and "divides a large hard drive into multiple small ones" to draw a clear line between partitions, eliminate interferences, and prevent I/O delays from causing performance fluctuations.
Take a 4TB SSD as an example. When the NVMe 1.3 protocol is adopted, the SSD will be regarded as a single 4TB space, even though it has 4 lanes. Consequently, lanes in any write spaces tend to be jammed and the performance is affected. However, things are different when the NVMe 1.4 protocol is adopted. It divides the 4TB into four 1TB spaces and has each of them independently controlled by 1 lane to effectively reduce latency.
② The advantage of Predictable Latency Mode (PLM) is that it provides memory-level speed and low latency. Even if the power is cut off, it can still retain the data, thereby improving the QoS of the system.
PLM divides the system into a Deterministic Window (DTWIN), and a Non-Deterministic Window (NDWIN). The SSD provides deterministic latency for read and write instructions inside DTWIN to boost the QoS of the system, while the deterministic latency is not provided in NDWIN to finish GC, TRIM, and other operations inside the SSD.
This year, the FORESEE SSD product line will continue to improve the product and service quality of all its SSDs. It will attach equal importance to the quantity, quality, speed, and efficiency. With the help of 2400MT/s NAND Flash, the XP2100 PCIe SSDs will probably realize a read performance up to 7,000MB/s. We believe that such products will come out soon, so please stay tuned.
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