By Amber Huffman
We are catching our breath after the exciting and productive annual 2018 NVM Express Member Meeting and Developer Day earlier this month. We spent two days with over 200 folks gathered in one place discussing the past, present and future of NVM Express™ technology. It was a packed event and I want to thank everyone who attended, as well as contributed with content, presentations, and demos to make it great!
As many of you know, we started the NVMe™ journey back in 2009. The first few years were spent collaborating with industry leaders across the supply chain to develop the 1.0 specification, released in 2011. We announced industry deployment of NVM Express 1.0 at Flash Memory Summit in 2013 and in 2015 we gained widespread notice and momentum due to the speed and robustness of NVMe technology. NVMe was deemed “the insanely fast future” for SSDs and that prediction was spot on.
Fast forward to 2018 and NVMe continues to grow and flourish, meeting industry needs with no sign of slowing down. NVMe is the industry-recognized performance SSD interface, from the client to the datacenter, shipping in millions of units. We currently have 50 ongoing technical proposals with 130+ member companies working to advance NVMe via committees for topics like marketing, technical, management interface, and interoperability.
In 2017, we announced new features for the NVMe 1.3 specification related to client/mobile, datacenter/enterprise, debug, management and other areas including:
- Enabling bootstrapping of an SSD in a low resource environment.
- Emulated Controller Optimization for better performance for software defined NVMe controllers.
- Stronger sanitization features ensuring a simple, fast, native way to completely erase data in an SSD, allowing more options for secure SSD reuse or decommissioning.
- Streams to allow host workload hints that improve endurance and longevity of the SSD
- Virtualization enhancements to improve performance and latency in multi-tenant environments
In 2018, we have added a mechanism to enable better quality of service with predictable latency mode through NVM Sets and IO determinism. We are focused on the imminent completion of NVMe-MI™ 1.1 that will add standard management services for enclosures with many NVMe SSDs. In the second half of the year, we will complete NVMe-oF™ 1.1, that includes adding a TCP layer to round out the support for RDMA, Fibre Channel, and InfiniBand®.
NVMe is clearly the new language of storage and innovators are using it to write the future. Not only will NVMe revolutionize the data center and enterprise, but also performance demanding applications like virtual and augmented reality (AR/VR), big data and more.