Samsung tosses lifeline to Netlist NVDIMMs

Turns from Diablo litigation hell to Samsung heaven


Flash DIMM technology developer Netlist has signed a five-year joint development deal with global memory leader Samsung to produce non-volatile DIMMs, giving it a lifeline from years of litigation hell against Diablo Technologies over memory channel storage IP.

The basic concept is to put flash chips on DDR3 and 4 memory DIMMS, thus giving the flash memory channel access, which has lower latency than PCIe flash cards. Netlist and Diablo Technologies worked together on this and then separated, Diablo licensing the resulting Memory Channel Storage to SMART Storage.

SMART then produced ULLtraDIMM product using this tech, and Huawei, Lenovo (IBM servers originally) and Supermicro took it on in OEM deals. SanDisk bought that piece of SMART and inherited the Diablo licensing deal. Western Digital is now buying SanDisk.

NetList alleged Diablo misappropriated its IP and sued it, with Diablo countersuing, and the two entering costly and ongoing IP litigation hell.

Business results for Netlist have been poor. Revenues for its third 2015 quarter were a slim $1.6m, compared to $4.8m a year go. There was a $5.4m net loss; it was $4.1m a year ago. Ho hum, you think, this company is really struggling.

Step forward Sammy in white knight guise, with a gift of $8m cash from Samsung Electronics and a $15m investment in Netlist from Samsung Venture Investment Corporation. That $23m will come in very handy indeed. Netlist and Samsung intend to sample NVDIMM product to select customers in 2016.

This product will use Samsung DRAM and NAND, and Netlist’s HyperVault technology.

Netlist CEO and president C.K. Hong talked of this being a transformational partnership with Samsung.

They are intent on using open standards, adopting the Storage Network Industry Association’s NVDIMM-P (NV-P) scheme to describe storage class memory products combining the functionalities of persistent DRAM and block-accessed NAND Flash, and operating in the memory channel.

They say no system software modifications will be needed. Target application areas include big data analytics, virtualisation, in-memory database, online transaction processing and high performance databases.

By having such technology, Samsung will have a base on which to mount potential ReRAM chips and have a competitor to Intel and Micron’s 3D XPoint memory, along with the HP-SanDisk-ReRAM initiative. ®


Keep Reading

Tech Resources

What WAF is right for you

Applications are architected in many ways, but all need protection from threats. Learn the most important things to consider when choosing a WAF.

Three reasons you need a hybrid multicloud

Businesses need their IT teams to operate applications and data in a hybrid environment spanning on-premises private and public clouds. But this poses many challenges, such as managing complex networking, re-architecting applications for the cloud, and managing multiple infrastructure silos. There is a pressing need for a single platform that addresses these challenges - a hybrid multicloud built for the digital innovation era. Just this Regcast to find out: Why hybrid multicloud is the ideal path to accelerate cloud migration.

Top 20 Private Cloud Questions Answered

Download this asset for straight answers to your top private cloud questions.

How backup modernization changes the ransomware game

If the thrill of backing up your data and wondering if you will ever see it again has worn off, start the new year by getting rid of the lingering pain of legacy backup. Bipul Sinha, CEO of the Cloud Data Management Company, Rubrik, and Miguel Zatarain, Director of Global Infrastructure Technology at PACCAR, Fortune 500 manufacturer of trucks and Rubrik customer, are talking to the Reg’s Tim Phillips about how to eliminate the costly, slow and spotty performance of legacy backup, and how to modernize your implementation in 2021 to make your business more resilient.

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021