Pliant Technology Unveils Lightning LS300, LS150 and LB150 Flash Drives

Pliant Technology, developer of Enterprise Flash Drives (EFDs), a new class of high-performance, high-reliability storage drives, today announced the availability of its first family of products. Pliant’s Lightning© EFDs integrate an advanced software architecture and a proprietary ASIC controller design to dramatically improve performance and reliability of storage and IT systems, while significantly reducing cost, space requirements and energy consumption.

Pliant’s Lightning EFDs enable enterprise data centers, financial services organizations, high-performance computing (HPC) environments, and digital media applications to ‘do more for less,’ by providing IT managers and system architects with breakthrough levels of performance, reliability and efficiency. Lightning EFDs deliver the industry’s highest sustained performance with the most predictable performance profile across a wide range of read/write workloads, and have been specifically designed for demanding, mission-critical 24×7 applications.

Lightning EFDs are the first flash-based storage devices to feature a cache-less design to prevent data loss on power interruptions, and a number of advanced data reliability features to deliver complete end-to-end data protection. These performance and reliability features combine to make Lightning EFDs an ideal solution for write-intensive enterprise applications, unlike existing SSDs that require limiting the workload.

"Flash-based storage has the potential to impact data centers in very positive ways, but cost and reliability concerns persist among enterprise IT managers seeking to leverage SSD technology," said Jeff Janukowicz, research manager for Solid State Drives at IDC. "SSD solutions, such as Pliant’s Lightning EFDs that can help address these concerns by delivering high reliability, efficiency and predictable performance, will help fuel the mainstream enterprise adoption of flash storage over the next few years."

The Lightning EFD Product Family
The Lightning EFD family includes the Lightning LB and Lightning LS models. They are designed around the standard 2.5-inch (LB) and 3.5-inch (LS) form factors to integrate seamlessly into existing Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) enterprise storage and server systems, without requiring modifications to existing applications, operating systems or infrastructure.
Pliant’s Lightning EFDs feature:

Highest sustained performance:

  • o Input/Output Per Second (IOPs) of 160,000 (LS) and 120,000 (LB)
  • o Predictable performance profile across enterprise workloads, with read/write mix varying from 90 percent/10 percent to 60 percent/40 percent
  • o Data throughput (read/write): >525/340 MB/sec (LS) and >420/220 MB/sec (LB)
  • User capacities: LS (3.5-inch) = 300GB and 150GB; LB (2.5-inch) = 150 GB
  • Full duplex, fully independent, dual-port SAS interface for high performance and data reliability
  • Write cache-less design eliminates data loss on power interruptions and delivers consistent performance across the widest range of workloads
  • Unlimited writes: No restrictions limiting the frequency of writing over the lifetime
  • Complete end-to-end data protection and reliability features: including background Patrol Read and Memory Reclaim, extended ECC, triple-redundant ECC protected metadata, and support for the T10 Data Integrity Field (DIF) standard
  • Industry-standard SLC NAND flash memory technology
  • "The exceptional performance and reliability features of Lightning EFDs allow IT managers to address the most significant challenges they’re facing today, namely, keeping up with continually increasing storage demands with fixed budgets, limited data center floor space and the ever growing cost of power," said Amyl Ahola, CEO of Pliant Technology. "Our Lightning EFDs will dramatically expand the capabilities of current and future enterprise computing systems in new and innovative ways, enabling IT managers to do more with less: deliver maximum performance with less power, lower cost and a smaller footprint."

Lightning EFD Availability
The Pliant Lightning LS300, Lightning LS150 and Lightning LB150 are being delivered for OEM evaluation and qualification, and will be available via authorized channel partners in September 2009.



Lightning EFD Family
The Pliant Lightning EFD product family is based on an advanced controller design and software architecture that delivers dramatic I/O performance and reliability improvements over existing solid state drive (SSD) technology, and exponentially higher performance and lower energy consumption than multiple traditional high-performance hard drives and the current generation of SSDs. By replacing many high RPM HDDs with a few Lightning EFDs, storage solutions deliver significant cost savings, improved performance flexibility, and substantially reduced energy and space requirements. In addition, Lightning EFDs fit into existing infrastructures without requiring changes to current storage management solutions.

The Lightning family of EFDs is available in 3.5-inch and 2.5-inch standard form factors, capacities from 150GB to 300GB and all with Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) interface to fit a range of storage and server systems requirements.  Pliant Technology provides two sizes and three models of EFDs:Pliant Lightning Family
Model    Capacity    Form Factor    Interface
LS 300    300 GB    3.5 inch    SAS
LS 150    150 GB    3.5 inch    SAS
LB 150    150 GB    2.5 inch    SAS


Lightning LB 2.5-Inch

Server systems embraced the 2.5-inch drive form factor for high performance, lower power and more configuration density (drives per shelf).  A single Lighting LB will replace many hard disk drives and still deliver the same or greater I/O performance with simultaneous multiple read/write transactions and transferring data via both (dual) ports.

The Lightning LB Enterprise Flash Drive is designed to the industry standard 2.5-inch drive form factor and has a Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) interface.  The LB drive does not require changes to the existing software or hardware infrastructure. This makes integration into existing storage solutions, as well as enabling new optimized solutions seamless and simple for IT managers.

Lightning LS 3.5-Inch

Historically, storage systems have favored the 3.5-inch drive form factor for superior capacity (GB/drive) and therefore lower cost/GB.  The Lightning LS is based on an advanced controller design and software architecture that delivers dramatic I/O performance and reliability improvements over existing SSD technology, and higher performance and lower energy consumption than multiple traditional high performance HDDs.

The Lightning LS Enterprise Flash Drives (EFDs), a new class of solid state storage devices,  is available in a 3.5-inch industry standard drive form factor with capacities from 150GB to 300GB and all with a Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) interface.  Lightning LS fits into existing infrastructures without requiring changes to current storage management systems.



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