Dell gets in a state over SSD claims
Slams 'wholly inaccurate' report
Dell has slammed an analyst's claim that a large number of disgruntled customers are returning the vendor's flash drive-based notebooks due to high failure rates.
Avian Securities managing partner Avi Cohen said in a report earlier this week that the rate of return on Dell notebooks using solid-state drives ranged from 20-30 per cent.
He claimed buyers couldn't justify the additional cash splurge on Dell's expensive Samsung SATA II Drive-based mobile PCs because they failed to live up to performance expectations.
The computer giant said today that Cohen's claims were "unfounded and wholly inaccurate, by orders of magnitude".
Dell insisted in a statement that: "Feedback from customers indicates they are pleased with the value they have realised from these benefits, especially the increased reliability."
In addition to being lighter than a hard drive, an SSD also consumes a fraction of power and transfers data to the host system more quickly. It's also much better able to survive sudden impacts.
However, critics have grumbled that flash drives, given their expensive price tag, fail to provide a better overall experience for the customer.
Cohen also found that the rate of return due to other technical problems with SSD notebooks was running at 10-20 per cent, much higher than the one per cent to two per cent reported for HDD-based mobile PCs. ®
wear and tear
there are so many different opinions on how long an ssd will last.
as soon as there is a story on el reg re mass failure of eeepcs, then we will all know for sure how long an ssd lasts, in the mean time, shut your holes because no one really knows!!!!
My Dell XPS 1330
Is great although there are several niggles with it. They could either be down to an intermittent hardware fault or Vista or a mixture of both. I may have had an issue with the SSD when some kind of file corruption locked me out of the machine and I had to rebuild it when the password restore didn't work.
Anyway, it's a keeper as far as I'm concerned. Roll on bigger drives though.
Dell EqualLogic blogger
I'm Marc Farley from Dell (EqualLogic). I don't work with the laptop SSD folks, but I became instantly interested in this story because it seemed so outrageous. I found the SSD group and checked out the story and - low and behold - was utter rubbish. We keep ORT reports for all this stuff and the flash SSDs are doing extremely well. They were sold initially for high mobility and rugged environments - a hard place for any storage to survive and they have better failure stats than disk drives. And that was for the first generation product. Early failure stats for 2nd gen SSDs are spectacular.
As to wear out. Yes, we use wear leveling algorithms to alleviate this, but at some point, there will be some statistical distribution of cells that can't be written to. Mind you, this takes some time. Anyway, the point is, Dell SSDs are designed to convert to read only devices when this happens. I don't know how this is done or at what point - but the main thing is that data is preserved, not lost.
This whole thing is so overblown and reckless. The technology is already highly reliable and getting even better. This will be born out over time.
Wear Leveling Calculation Example
This is a ST Microelectronics Application Note on Flash wear leveling. Even with improvements in the numbers of writes, wear leveling is still usually a good idea. In the example in the application note, the Flash lifetime is extended from about 0.5 days to almost 50 years through wear leveling.
Flash memory hasn't worn out since the early 90s. Get over it.
"You can't write to flash as many times as a hard disk"
New types of flash memory together with wear leveling means the SSD will probably last much longer than a hard drive.
Please apply the appropriate upgrade patch to your brain to stop the knee-jerk posting to message boards every time somebody mentions "SSD" (you and all the other morons who are doubtless busy typing as we speak).
"which probably won't work too well with NTFS (it fragments quite a bit) as it writes in sequential order to even out the wear on the flash blocks."
SSDs have zero seek time so fragmentation isn't any kind of a problem on SSDs (in fact it's a good thing as it works as a natural kind of wear levelling).