Fusion-io Atomic Series PCIe cards double server flash capacity


Fusion-io Atomic Series PCIe cards double server flash capacity

Antony Adshead

Server-side flash pioneer Fusion-io has launched a new range of PCIe server flash cards, the Atomic Series, which double their capacity by using the latest-generation NAND flash chips.

The Atomic Series comes in two lines: the SX series of products is biased towards capacity over performance, while the PX line is optimised for performance.


Four server-side flash cards are available in each of the SX and PX lines with capacities ranging from 1TB to 6.4TB, the latter being a doubling of maximum capacity over previously available Fusion-io flash cards (3.2TB).

The ability to double the amount of data on the card results from using the latest 19/20 nanometer (nm) chips instead of the previous generation’s dies with 24/25nm cell size.

Fusion-io’s Atomic Series server flash is aimed at database, cloud applications, big data analytics and hyperscale workloads.

PCIe server flash drives connect to server PCIe slots and offer latency figures in the tens of microseconds, with write speeds typically faster than read. PCIe flash bypasses the need for a SAS or SATA controller in the server and so latency is much lower than the equivalent SAS/SATA-connected solid-state disk.

Fusion-io also claims increased performance for the Atomic Series with specific applications.

For example, it claims a 4x performance increase in Microsoft SQL Server 2014 use cases by compatibility with Microsoft’s Buffer Pool Extension functionality, which allows flash storage to integrate with database operations.

The Atomic Series also incorporate atomic writes functionality, which was announced by Fusion-io for its PCIe cards last year. This enables write efficiency to be boosted and latency reduced by eliminating unnecessary steps in database operations. You can read more about that here.

Finally, Fusion-io claims a doubling of usable capacity by using NVM Compression with MySQL databases. This utilises compression algorithms designed to streamline MySQL commands for flash architectures.

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