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Design for Scalability in Enterprise SSDs


Design for Scalability in Enterprise SSDs
Cost: No Charge
Date: Tuesday, September 02, 2014
Time: 11:00
Location: UVIC, EOW 430
Mr. Arash Tavakol, Sharif University of Technology

Speaker: Mr. Arash Tavakol, Sharif University of Technology Abstract: Solid State Drives (SSDs) have recently emerged as a high speed random access alternative to classical magnetic disks. To date, SSD designs have been largely based on multi-channel bus architecture that confronts serious scalability problems in high-end enterprise SSDs with dozens of flash memory chips and a gigabyte host interface. This forces the community to rapidly change the bus-based inter-flash standards to respond to ever increasing application demands. In this work, we first give a deep look at how different flash parameters and SSD internal designs affect the actual performance and scalability of the conventional architecture. Our experiments show that SSD performance improvement through either enhancing intra-chip parallelism or increasing the number of flash units is limited by frequent contentions occurred on the shared channels. Our discussion will be followed up by presenting and evaluating a network-based protocol adopted for ash communications in SSDs that addresses design constraints of the multi-channel bus architecture. This protocol leverages the properties of inter-connection networks to attain a high performance SSD. Further, we will show and discuss that using this communication paradigm not only helps to obtain better SSD backend latency and throughput, but also to lower the variance of response time compared to the conventional designs. In addition, greater number of flash chips can be added with much less concerns on board-level signal integrity challenges including channels' maximum capacitive load, output drivers' slew rate, and impedance control.