TechMicrosoft Z1000 SSD: What Experts Are Saying About the World's Most Valuable...

Microsoft Z1000 SSD: What Experts Are Saying About the World’s Most Valuable Company’s Latest Innovation

A recently found SSD bearing the Microsoft brand indicates that the technology giant may be exploring innovative approaches to enhance its data center storage efficiency.

Revealed images of a Microsoft Z1000 SSD showcase a 1TB NVMe M.2 drive, reportedly featuring sequential read speeds of up to 2,400MB/s and write speeds of 1,800MB/s.

The Z1000 SSD, first unveiled by @yuuki_ans on X, is composed of components from different companies, such as Toshiba NAND flash chips, Micron’s DDR4 RAM cache, and a controller from CNEX Labs, a company renowned for its collaborations with data center hyperscalers.

Undergo Later improvements in capacities

In 2018, CNEX Labs concluded a $23 million Series D funding round led by Dell Technologies Capital, with participation from Microsoft’s M12 venture fund. Part of this funding was utilized to develop a proprietary advanced CNX-2670 controller, which delivered 550,000 IOPS, a 25% performance enhancement over existing M.2 form-factor SSDs at the time. The CNEX Labs controller depicted in the leaked images is CNX-2670AA-0821.

The SSD boasts a 960GB capacity, comprising four 256GB Toshiba BiCS4 96-layer eTLC chips, and includes a 1GB DDR4 RAM cache manufactured by Micron to optimize performance.

The “engineering sample” leaked on May 18, 2020, during global Covid lockdowns suggests that the drive is part of a broader range of SSD models. Its design allows for the potential addition of more DRAM and capacitors, indicating the possibility of larger versions.

Various possibilities for expansionTom’s Hardware highlights that “several unused solder pads are on both sides of the PCB, likely for additional capacitors. This suggests that larger versions of the Z1000 could include 2TB and even 4TB capacities, given that greater storage capacity would require additional DRAM and capacitors for data protection.”

This is not the initial instance of Microsoft exploring hardware design for its data centers, following its recent unveiling of self-branded silicon hardware to advance the integration and utilization of AI in businesses.

SSD: Microsoft Z1000 960GB M.2 22110 NVMe 1.2 Controller: CNEXLabs CNX-2670AA-CB2T(19y6w) Cache: Micron(D9VPP) DDR4 1GB TH40A1G8SA-075E NAND: Toshiba 3D eTLC – 256GB TH58LJT1V24BA8H(bics4 96L) https://t.co/pJegEYzsph

March 9, 2024

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