Texas Memory Intros RamSan-20 PCI-Based Storage

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Texas Memory Systems introduced today its RamSan-20, a complete storage system on a PCI-e card, leveraging SSD and Flash technology to bring customers increased capacity and performance.

Texas Memory Systems’ new RamSan-20 delivers a complete storage system on a PCI-e card, allowing solution providers to offer customers increased capacity and performance that installs in minutes.

SSDs (solid-state disks) are becoming increasingly popular in data centre deployments, and improvements in flash technology and pricing are creating demand for different form factors and connectivity options, says Woody Hutsell, president of Texas Memory Systems.

Customers have a variety of options when it comes to drives, Hutsell says. RAM offers the highest performance but the lowest data density, while HDDs (hard disk drives) offer much greater capacity but are very slow.

“Many companies outgrow how much can be stored in RAM, and then they have to rely on HDD-based storage, which is expensive,” says Hutsell.

“At some point, customers find they’ll either max out their ability to add more RAM to servers or find that their HDDs are just too slow,” Hutsell says. “SSD offers a compromise—higher capacity and lower cost than RAM and faster performance than hard disks.”

The RamSan-20 is a PCIe card storage system that uses flash technology to minimise latency between the server’s processor and storage. As a PCI card, it’s easily installed in minutes and provides 450GB of usable flash, says Hutsell.

“We’re putting storage inside the server that’s flash-based. It looks just like a hard disk to an operating system, but it’s hooked into a PCI slot so customers are unbound from the bandwidth and latency issues that happen with traditional hard disk solutions,” he says.

The RamSan-20 offers solution providers the ability to increase customers’ performance and capacity while lowering costs simply by introducing the product into their data centres.

“The RamSan-20 simply snaps into the PCI-e slots on midtier servers and storage appliances, so as many PCI slots as customers have, that’s how many of these cards you can use,” says Hutsell.

The solution’s simplicity and affordability will allow solution providers to bring high-performance storage solutions to not only midtier and enterprise customers, but to SMBs as well, he says.

Solution providers will find the RamSan-20 a great fit for customers that need to accelerate server-resident applications that require large, fast buffer areas and those that are random-access intensive, Hutsell says. This means any customers whose systems involve large databases, digital video, financial services and Web applications, for example, he says.

“More users are looking to SSD as they demand greater application performance,” Hutsell says.

Texas Memory Systems has only one major competitor in the SSD market, startup Fusion IO, says Hutsell, and Texas Memory has an established history and strong solution provider channel that gives the company an edge.

“We have established customers, an established channel and partner community, and have been chasing this market for eight years,” he says.

Texas Memory Systems will start taking orders for the RamSan-20 March 10, according to Hutsell, and the product will ship to solution providers within 30 to 60 days.