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What is Flash Storage?


As with the progression of technology, types of computer memory continue to evolve along with it to meet the needs of advancing devices. Preceded by a host of other memory types such as RAM, DRAM, ROM PROM, EPROM, and EEPROM, Flash storage like most of these, is a type of system that allows us to store computer data. We have Fujio Masuoka of Toshiba to commend for an improved type of storage that could erase content “in a flash.” Flash storage takes an approach that relies on flash memory to store computer data for long periods of time. Let’s break it down another level. Because this type of storage is found in most computing devices, small and large, we require flash storage technology to quickly access our data using a safer, less vulnerable solution.  

The Basic Inner Workings of Flash Storage

When we think of flash storage, we call on electrically-erasable programmable read-only memory (EEPROM), with some differences from than that of standard EEPROM. Flash memory is block-based rather than bit-based when it comes to erasure to make room for new microchip data. In other words, power is not essential for storing data when a system is powered down. No data is lost. When high-capacity storage is required, a flash memory called NAND is used to describe this process.

HDD To SDD

You may remember the day of the hard disk drive (HDD) used for storage. While HDDs were known to be more cost effective, flash drives offered better performance. Flash storage, called solid state storage (SDD) is generally more efficient in terms of power consumption, reliability, and compactness when it comes to the types of storage needed in modern devices. SDD stores data that uses a charge on a capacitor, and this represents a bit. Flash microchips are usually packaged and sold on a printed circuit board. A typical flash drive consumes up to 50% less power than that of a typical HDD. Speeds are shown to increase more than 500mb a second in consumer drives. Accessibility is microseconds as compared with HDD’s milliseconds in which to retrieve data.

In recent years, Flash storage has become most prevalent in small devices such as mobile phones, notebooks, tablets, wearables, cameras, and so much more, while it continues to show growth in significant storage systems as well. Flash storage systems are generally comprised of memory chips for storing data along with a flash controller for managing storage access.

After Flash—NAND and NOR

Server Coding

With the creation of flash memory and improvements made again by Toshiba’s Masuoka, we were introduced to NAND and NOR flash memory. NAND flash memory is described as a non-volatile storage system that requires no power in order to save data. The main goal of NAND development is to reduce costs (per bit), increase chip capacity, and offer a competitive advantage over magnetic storage such as hard disk devices.

NAND technology further shrinks memory chips by removing signal lines and altering the method for communication. NAND flash uses only one “word” line per page as opposed to thousands of bits, resulting in increased speed and lower costs. As technical improvements were made involving larger individual cell sizes, NOR was created and could replace EEPROM and ROM based firmware. Ultimately, NAND flash memory is generally the go-to solution for high-speed storage on devices such as personal electronics while NOR flash memory is the solution for mobile phones and personal electronics, for storing executable code.

Trends in NAND Flash Memory

The good news for NAND flash memory is that demand is up! Naturally, rising prices and heightened lead times are the downside, but the future looks promising. There is no mystery behind the demand, as new generations of devices require more NAND capacity for added features, storage, and apps. Notebooks, data centers, and the Chinese smartphone market are all active markets, with SSD sales expected to be over $173 million in 2017 and increased capacity projected at almost 23%.

A transition from linear 2D NAND to 3D NAND is also presenting some new challenges as facilities attempt to upgrade to accommodate the latest technologies while there is still much demand for present technologies.

Flash Storage Built To Scale

Circuit Board

Modern flash storage servers by Premio are built for scalability and designed to provide high speeds and superior performance. Clients expect no less than speeds of 20gb per second and input/output at 3.5mm. As an Intel-Direct Platinum Partner, Premio offers customers top-of-the-line Intel PCSD server boards in a flash storage server solution that is hard to find.

Premio’s built-to-scale flash storage server Flachestream product line is made for small or enterprise level requirements. While speed, performance, and durability are the major features when you are ready to make a decision in a reputable flash storage provider, there are a number of considerations when you need to design a computer storage strategy for your enterprise:

  • Desired Chipset
  • Supported Central Processing Unit (CPU)
  • Supported Random Access Memory (RAM)
  • Number of Expansion Slots
  • Type of Storage System
  • Network Compatibility and Requirements
  • Operating System (OS) Drive Bays
  • Power Needs
  • Cooling Needs

Your flash drive specifications can be matched with the acoustical and environmental properties to align with your server room rack space. With Premio, you select from flash storage servers, high-availability servers, general purpose servers, or high-density servers to meet your company needs. Premio offers over 25 server solutions to choose from, with a reputable team of experts to help you align with your unique business storage requirements. When you require flash storage built to scale, Premio is your go-to flash storage provider.

Why the Premio Solution?

Flash Storage Server

Pictured: Flash Storage Server - FlacheSAN1N4C-D4

Premio is known for the design, production, and distribution of innovative and revolutionary digital products for many worldwide industries. As technology continues to advance at a rapid rate, the Premio services portfolio has become a necessity to many. Specializing in a broad range of ODM/OEM products and services, we stand behind world-class solutions that range from enterprise servers to embedded systems and digital signage products. Premio supports a diverse range of worldwide technology companies.

When you choose Premio solutions for your business, you sign up for more than an out-of-the-box toolset. You sign up for a strategy, an experience, and a suite of business services for success. Our proven solutions are satisfying customers on a national level, and we are prepared for the business challenges in today’s technological landscape.

At Premio, our mission is to, “go to extraordinary lengths to solve the most formidable challenges faced by our customers.” We become more than a partner to our customers; we are their ‘Inside Outsource’—we call this an extension of their business, and we rely on agility, speed, and precision to do so. Our state-of-the-art facilities are located in both North America and Asia and as well we partner with leading technology companies including Intel, Microsoft, and DELL.

Let the Premio team serve as your trusted OEM and ODM for your computer storage requirements. Together, we’ll find the solutions that align with your goals, and you’ll receive the highest quality parts and best products and services on the market for your servers, systems, and digital needs. Premio's proven success rate will help you make the right choice!