Welcome to the Era of NVDIMM cards
posted on August 23, 2015 by Amit Golander
Non-volatile DIMM (NVDIMM) cards are on the rise. They have been around for a few years, but were a complex technology to work with until recently. We barely got it to work on DDR3 in early 2013. Fortunately, thanks to Intel, JEDEC, ACPI, SNIA and others, the NVDIMM hardware ecosystem is finally reaching maturity.
Maturity via standards was presented in the Flash Memory Summit earlier this month (Aug. 2015), when a single system with multiple DDR4 NVDIMM cards from different vendors was demonstrated. NVDIMM-N cards to be exact.
NVDIMM-N, previously known as NVDIMM type 1, is a persistent memory mapped device, thus it is byte or cache-line addressable and can be accessed at near-memory speeds. This is different from NVDIMM-F, which is a Flash device that resides on the memory interconnect. NVDIMM-F can have a larger capacity, but it is a block-based device with Flash characteristics that are exposed when the access misses the small front-end cache. This post focuses on NVDIMM-N, because it is a stepping stone towards the adoption of next-generation NVM.
There are many NVDIMM-N manufacturers: Micron, SK hynix, AgigaTech, Smart Modular, Viking, Netlist, and several others. We at Plexistor have already tested DDR4 NVDIMM-N cards from most of these vendors and although it is not a plug & play technology yet, it is almost there. We have no doubt that it will get there in less than a year.
Welcome to the era of NVDIMM cards