Written By: Coen van Eenbergen | Techzine
Most manufacturers of high-end SSDs are also the ones who produce the flash themselves. That manufacturer’s main goal is to sell more chips. They do make high-performance NVMe SSDs, mainly for generic use. At SmartIOPS, they are developing the very fastest SSD in the world with the goal of making enterprise applications and databases perform better. In addition, they are working on Functional Storage Device. We visited the company in Silicon Valley.
SmartIOPS uses high-end flash memory from major manufacturers. Think Kioxia, Micron and SK Hynix. However, it develops its own drivers, NAND firmware and controller. That software stack it calls TrueRandom technology is what makes SmartIOPS interesting. It also gives it complete control over how the flash is used and controlled, as well as the form factor of the card you end up plugging into a server or workstation.
SmartIOPS consists of a group of experts coming from Sandisk and Juniper. So there is a tremendous amount of NAND knowledge in the company but also network technology knowledge. That combination of NAND and networking knowledge provides the right mix to develop even faster SSDs, according to SmartIOPS. Those would be 2 to 3 times faster than the well-known high-end SSDs from the major manufacturers, which SmartIOPS says is mainly due to consistency of design and software.
The amount of IOPS for a NAND SSD on PCIe Gen4 with 8 lanes is theoretically 3.48 million, SmartIOPS said. However, most manufacturers are between 1 and 2 million IOPS. At SmartIOPS, they can deliver 3.4 million IOPS.