Single page Print

On to 2PB
Our SSD Endurance Experiment has claimed many victims since it began over a year ago. We're not done yet, but we've already learned some valuable lessons. For example, modern SSDs appear to have more than enough endurance for typical client workloads. All six of our subjects wrote hundreds of terabytes without issue, which is far more data than even most power users will need to write during the useful lives of their drives.

When SSDs exceed their write/erase tolerance, failure can manifest in different ways. Most of our casualties at least provided warnings of their imminent demise, including the latest victim, Corsair's Neutron GTX. That drive didn't enter the read-only mode it was supposed to assume when running out of steam, but it still wrote 1.2 petabytes without generating any errors. Pretty impressive.

Among the survivors, the Samsung 840 Pro seems to be on track to outlast its rivals. The drive has reallocated thousands of sectors to circumvent worn-out NAND, but its SMART attributes suggest substantial reserves are still available. There have been no errors thus far.

In a sense, the 840 Pro has already won. The only other survivor, the Kingston HyperX that we're testing with compressible data, has suffered a couple of uncorrectable errors to date. Those hiccups haven't been enough to cause a complete failure, but they have left a black mark on the drive's permanent record. That record already had an asterisk to denote the fact that SandForce's DuraWrite compression scheme has dramatically reduced the amount of data actually written to the flash.

The 840 Pro and remaining HyperX are already on their way to 1.6PB. We're committed to killing them both, and we may have to write a lot more data to achieve that goal. Stay tuned for the next chapter.TR

Intel Optane SSD 900P drives deliver a big chunk of next-gen storage to desktops3D Xpoint SSDs descend from the data center 76
Toshiba's TR200 480GB SSD reviewedBiCS on a budget 26
Adata's SE730H 512GB portable SSD reviewedDurability meets next-gen speeds 6
The Tech Report System Guide: September 2017 editionHog heaven at the high end 100
Adata's SD700 portable SSD reviewed3D TLC in a rugged shell 7
Samsung's Portable SSD T5 reviewed64 layers on the run 12
Toshiba's XG5 1TB NVMe SSD reviewedA new type of 3D NAND takes the stage 12
Adata's Ultimate SU900 256GB SSD reviewedTwo bits per cell in three dimensions 11