Hitachi Global Storage Technologies has published the first images of its enterprise-class solid-state drives on its web-site. Unfortunately, the company neither revealed specifications of its first SSDs nor announced precise availability dates.
Hitachi-GST's solid-state drives, as previously announced, are based on flash memory produced by IM-Flash as well as controller designed by Intel Corp. The initial drive that Hitachi demonstrated uses Serial Attached SCSI interface, has special DRAM cache to boost performance and special connectors that should allow to boost its capacity. One of the mysteries about the SSD is the fact that both controller as well as flash memory chips were made in late 2009 and may already be outdated.
Back in late 2008 Hitach-GST and Intel announced collaboration to jointly work on enterprise-class solid-state drives and promised to deliver the first actual products in the first half of 2010. The new SSDs will be branded and exclusively sold and supported by Hitachi GST and use Intel NAND flash memory and SSD technology. Perhaps, the global economy crisis has impacted the execution of the roadmap, but earlier this year HGST vowed to start shipments of the new SSDs in the second half of 2010.
At present solid-state drives with FC and SAS interfaces are only sold by STEC, hence, Hitachi will be in a pretty favourable position on that market. But it should be noted that Hitachi-GST is also the only hard disk drive (HDD) maker that does not produce its own SSDs for consumers, workstations and other markets.