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Discussion in 'SSDs & Data Storage' started by DF-1, Jul 12, 2019 at 2:50 PM.
Where is it boys?
Sata 3 been out for 10 years.
It's called NVMe, and it's been out for years
There's also 12Gb SAS.. which has also been out for years.
But SATA is a holdover of 80's tech (the ATA part) and has extended it about as far as it can go. Spinners can't even take advantage of the 600MB/s that SATA 3 has, and it doesn't make sense to saddle new tech (i.e. SSDs) to such ancient protocols.
The next generation of SATA came and went. It was called SATA Express. It was a PCIe implementation of SATA which could transfer at speeds up to around 16Gbps. Unfortunately for the specification, NVMe devices started appearing about the same time and quickly became the storage interface of choice. The preference towards the latter was probably influenced by the fact that SATA Express only used two PCIe lanes while NVMe devices typically used four, allowing for far greater transfer speeds. Essentially, SATA Express was DOA. No more than a handful of devices in that interface ever saw the light of day. Technically, the U.2 specification (formerly SFF-8639) is an evolution of SATA Express, but this basically died immediately in the consumer market. The lack of adoption there was because Intel was really the only SSD maker that utilized it in consumer models. Companies like ASUS had U.2 connectors available on many motherboard models for a time, but when the SSD 750 series ultimately never got updated and no new models using the connector emerged, the port was dropped.
Technically, all modern SATA ports are actually SATA Express on the back end, but motherboard manufacturers opt for traditional SATA connectors instead of SATA Express or U.2 connectors.
Maybe when HAMR spinners have 4TB+ platters they may need greater than 600 MB/s. However 12Gb SAS already has this covered. I doubt this will have a large enough market in the consumer space for a SATA4 to be produced.
Outside of cheap mass storage or just cheap storage, spinners have all but disappeared from the consumer space. Streaming and cloud storage negate much of the need for ever increasing drive space while the size advantage of NVMe is cutting at the desireability of spinners in most markets.
So yeah, we can probably expect SATA to disappear altogether in the next few years. Consumer NAS devices will likely be the last holdouts.
SATA 3 is overkill for all future hard drives, and any future updates have been abandoned.
It's been replace by NVME m.2 connector for all future high-performance SSDs. This interface uses PCIe, so getting higher performance is as easy as upgrading your CPU/motherbbord's PCIe version.
But much like first-gen SATA3 SSDs were promising a lot more than they delivered, the new first-gen PCIe 4 SSDs are no faster than their predecessors.
SATA Express wasn't the next generation of SATA. It was just a hybridization of PCIe and SATA.
SATA-IO decided it wasn't cost effective to improve SATA beyond 6GB/s, especially since there was already an existing technology (PCIe) that could meet that need. So they made a poor attempt at providing NVMe support while still maintaining legacy AHCI compatibility.
In SATA mode, you got two plain old everyday SATA 3 ports that behaved just like every other SATA 3 port out there already.
In PCIe mode, the chipset's built-in AHCI controller was bypassed, and devices were routed directly to the PCIE root port. They appeared to the OS the same as an add-in card in a PCIe slot would.
u.2 is to SAS what SATA Express was to SATA.... but more successful.
Fair enough, but it's what sort of came next even though it wasn't a direct descendant of SATA in the traditional sense.