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Summary:

New PCIe flash memory cards from Violin Memory will allow for broad enterprise adoption, the company’s CEO says. But the company is not the first to that market.

Violin Memory's new 1.37 TB PCIe card
photo: Violin Memory

The flash-storage world keeps getting hotter. Ahead of its expected IPO, Violin Memory, which already offers flash memory arrays, is adding solid-state PCI-Express cards for servers to its lineup.

As the company branches out with four PCIe cards, with memory capacity ranging from 1.37 terabytes to 11 terabytes, it will bump up against several competitors, including Fusion-io, LSI and Virident.

The Violin Memory cards are bootable, which can save time and minimize frustration. They also use less air flow than other flash memory cards, so customers can pack more cards onto servers. The lowest-capacity card costs $3 per gigabyte, and the price goes up to $6 per gigabyte for the others.

“We believe this (1.37 terabyte) card, with its price-performance level density, will allow the industry to start a broad adoption over the next several years,” said Don Basile, Violin Memory’s CEO.

The company can rest assured of a market for the new cards. Toshiba, already a major flash memory vendor for consumer products, will have licensing and distribution rights for the new Violin Memory intellectual property.

Violin Memory is planning to go public at the beginning of May, All Things D reported. Basile declined to discuss the timing of the product launch in relation to the IPO.

The flash storage market is nothing if not active. Last May, EMC acquired XtremIO; two months later, IBM bought Texas Memory Systems, and Pure Storage said it had secured a $40 million Series D investment. Just two weeks ago, flash storage array vendor Skyera announced a $51.6 million Series B round of funding.

Widespread enterprise adoption of flash memory seems to be a matter of time. With its new products, Violin Memory appears to be in a better position to ride the market wave.

  1. Will Violin go to market with some solution like PernixData for PCI devices in virtualized servers?

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