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[THG] Princeton: Replacing RAM with Flash Can Save Massive Power

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
http://www.tomshardware.com/news/fusio-io-flash-ssdalloc-memory-ram,16352.html
Implementation and Whitepaper: http://ssdalloc.cs.princeton.edu/technology.html
Quote:
The software they created, called SSDAlloc, turns Flash memory into an entity that can behave more like traditional and not like storage memory, which removes a bottleneck that is present when a program switches from DRAM to storage memory.
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post #2 of 7
A ram with limited number of writes on it. Well that's a novel idea.

On more serious note ram ofc will not last forever either ofc but it has a lot higher number of writes it can take, like several orders of magnitude more. That out of the way, however, probably some-kind of hybrid scheme would work pretty well as SSD is only approx 10x higher latency than RAM and even that can be further lowered if addressed specifically in the design. And as far as I understood from the whitepaper abstract thats exactly (I mean the hybrid scheme) what has been done.

Mainly intended for servers btw with large indexes or databases in RAM so mostly reads.
Edited by Carniflex - 7/25/12 at 10:20am
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carniflex View Post

A ram with limited number of writes on it. Well that's a novel idea.
On more serious note ram ofc will not last forever either ofc but it has a lot higher number of writes it can take, like several orders of magnitude more. That out of the way, however, probably some-kind of hybrid scheme would work pretty well as SSD is only approx 10x higher latency than RAM and even that can be further lowered if addressed specifically in the design. And as far as I understood from the whitepaper abstract thats exactly (I mean the hybrid scheme) what has been done.
Mainly intended for servers btw with large indexes or databases in RAM so mostly reads.


With SLC/eMLC, over-provisioning, redundancy, and ECC..... the limited write issue becomes less of an issue.


DBs already recommend using SSDs as a cache/temp space or even for primary storage. This would basically move the caching algorithm next to main memory instead of between memory and disk.


SLC is so expensive... but the real benefit is that motherboard/memory controllers have space limitations. Google, Facebook, etc data servers are mainly just large RAMDrives.

IBM Fusion-IO: $16,799 for 320GB ($52/1GB)
http://www-304.ibm.com/shop/americas/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/default/ProductDisplay?catalogId=-840&storeId=1&langId=-1&dualCurrId=73&categoryId=4611686018425093834&productId=4611686018426169594

ioDrive2 SLC: $11,445 for 400 GB ($28/1GB) <-- newer model after NAND price have dropped
http://www.solidstateworks.com/ioDrive2.asp

eMLC SSD: $12,999 for 400GB ($32/1GB)
http://www-304.ibm.com/shop/americas/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/default/ProductDisplay?catalogId=-840&storeId=1&langId=-1&dualCurrId=73&categoryId=4611686018425093834&productId=4611686018426343762

MLC SSD: $19,299 for 1200GB (~$16/1GB)
http://www-304.ibm.com/shop/americas/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/default/ProductDisplay?catalogId=-840&storeId=1&langId=-1&dualCurrId=73&categoryId=4611686018425093834&productId=4611686018426359323

DDR3: $499 for 16GB ($31/GB)
http://www-304.ibm.com/shop/americas/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/default/ProductDisplay?catalogId=-840&storeId=1&langId=-1&dualCurrId=73&categoryId=4611686018425093824&productId=4611686018426345447

DDR3: $2099 for 32GB ($65/1GB)
http://www-304.ibm.com/shop/americas/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/default/ProductDisplay?catalogId=-840&storeId=1&langId=-1&dualCurrId=73&categoryId=4611686018425093824&productId=4611686018426204449
Edited by DuckieHo - 7/25/12 at 10:52am
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post #4 of 7
Wow would something like this work on a consumer-based implementation?
    
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post #5 of 7
^ This is my question
 
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post #6 of 7
I'm confused. Didn't Microsoft do with already with windows vista? They called it ready boost.
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post #7 of 7
So is this like a flash based swap/page partition?
Are there any benefits to this over a ramdisc(other than power consumption)?

:Edit:________________________________________________________:Edit:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssdalloc.pdf(whitepaper) 
SSDAlloc exposes flash memory via the familiar page-based virtual
memory manager interface, but internally, it works at an
object granularity for obtaining high performance and for
maximizing the lifetime of flash memory.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssdalloc.pdf(whitepaper) 
Replace all calls to malloc with ssd malloc:
Application would then use the SSD as a logstructured page store and use the DRAM as a page
cache. Application’s performance would be better than when using the SSD via unmodified Linux
swap because it would avoid random writes and circumvent other legacy swap system overheads that
are more clearly quantified in FlashVM [23].

Optimized SSD swap. Cool stuff.
Edited by qwertymac93 - 7/25/12 at 5:17pm
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