Storage News Ticker – November 12

A DCIG blog by Lead Analyst Ken Clipperton claims “The DRAM era of memory — volatile, scarce, and expensive — is drawing to a close. The era of big memory — large, persistent, virtualized, and composable — is about to replace it.” It declares “We are in the early phases of a persistent-memory-enabled revolution in performance, cost, and capacity. Multiple vendors are now shipping storage class memory in their enterprise servers and storage systems. Now that storage class memories are available in production volumes, the ecosystem is coming together. The revolution has begun.”

Seagate announced the retirement of Steve Luczo from its board of directors effective October 20, 2021. He served as the company’s chair from 2002 to 2020 and has served on the board since 1998. Mr Luczo joined Seagate in October 1993 as SVP of Corporate Development. In September 1997, he was promoted to the position of president and COO. He became CEO and a member of the board of directors in July 1998. After resigning as CEO in July 2004, he remained as chair of the board of directors, and was later again appointed as Seagate’s president and CEO in 2009, serving in the role until 2017. It’s the end of an era at Seagate.

Stephen Luczo.

Luczo will be remembered for running a tight disk-focussed ship, and also for what he did not do: get Seagate into the flash and SSD business. The ongoing increase in demand for nearline storage means that Seagate has been able to weather the SSD cannibalisation of the PC, notebook and mission-critical 2.5-inch disk drive markets. But Seagate is, for now, a one-trick, 3.5-inch, nearline disk drive pony.

SK hynix has received an ISO 26262: 2018 FSM (Functional Safety Management) certification — the international standard for functional safety in automotive semiconductors. It was awarded by the global automotive functional safety certification institute, TUV Nord. It claims this certification provides SK hynix with a solid foundation to lead the automotive semiconductor memory market forward.

Reuters reported Toshiba has announced a plan to spin-off two component businesses: its energy and infrastructure business, and its device and storage business. Toshiba itself would still own a 40.6 per cent stake in NAND Flash and SSD maker Kioxia and aim to sell that — either through a Kioxia IPO, or sale — and return the cash to its shareholders. This plan is an attempt to return the company to health after a series of disasters such as the Westinghouse nuclear power station building problems that led to Kioxia being divested in 2018 and to activist investors getting their hooks into the company.

As promised in yesterday’s Ticker, we have a confirmed winner in the “fastest storage vendor to reach exascale” stakes. WekaIO has an exabyte under management in just under four years, but the title goes to Infinidat. The latter announced in 2017 that customers had deployed two exabytes from the time the Infinidat product was introduced a couple of years before that. Weka CMO Barbara Murphy graciously said: “Congratulations to the Infinidat team for their phenomenal growth.”

We understand that Infinidat actually sold 2EB of storage where Weka’s 1EB is managed and so includes all the data on object/cloud tiers.