Seagate Ships Pulsar XT.2 Enterprise Solid State Drives
The solid-state drive (SSD), a new type of hard drive that uses flash memory chips instead of spinning disks and mechanical arms, is becoming more and more important. Thus, companies traditionally known for producing hard drives to start building SSD drives too in order to stay competitive in the storage market. Seagate, considered one of the oldest HDD manufacturers still in operation, is one of those companies, and they've just started to ship to OEMs a new set of solid state drives (SSDs) for the enterprise market.
Dubbed the Pulsar XT.2 Series, the second generation models feature 6Gb/s SAS interfaces, Samsung-made single-level cell (SLC) flash memory, a memory controller of Seagate's own design, and three different capacities, all packed in a 2.5” or 3.5” form factor.
Seagate unsurprisingly trumpets the XT.2's performance and reliability, claiming the designs can handle “consistent high performance for complex, I/O intensive, mixed workload enterprise environments”. They have features like “advanced media-management technology” that “helps protect against unexpected data change or loss”. I guess those that will be purchasing the drives will just have to see about that, huh? These definitely aren't your standard SSDs – they are designed for 24/7 around-the-clock operation in servers and high-end workstations, where better-than-average reliability is a must and high performance is highly expected. (A lot like the enterprise hard disk market, in other words.)
Anyway, the Pulsar XT.2 family is offered in 100, 200 and 400GB capacities per drive, with the option of self-encrypting drive technology on each. Read and write speeds are apparently 360MBps for the former and 300MBps for the latter. Seagate is also preparing a lower-end Pulsar.2 series for release on July 29, with capacities of up to 800GB and similar specs to the XT.2, but with less durable and slower (but cheaper) multi-level cell (MLC) flash memory under the hood instead of SLC, and the option of a SATA 6Gbps interface instead of SAS 6Gbps.
Like most SSDs, you can expect these to be very expensive, especially that 800GB Pulsar.2, and the flagship XT.2 400GB+Encryption model, but many companies may find the price to be well worth it for the reliability.
UPDATE: The Pulsar XT.2 family of drives in now available on Amazon and other retailers.