Earlier this week Crucial announced its first SSD caching solution: the Adrenaline SSD. The drive will be available in a single capacity: 50GB with 64GB of 25nm MLC NAND onboard.   The controller is identical to the Marvell design used in the m4. Crucial tells me that the firmware is identical to what you'd get on a normal m4. Adrenaline will ship with some SSD caching software for Windows 7 but Crucial wouldn't tell us which package will come with the drive.
The target market is users who want a simple way to upgrade their slow hard drive based machines without the hassle of migrating data or the price of a high capacity SSD. Expect to see the drive ship before the end of Q1.
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  • applestooranges - Thursday, January 12, 2012 - link

    "...Why not just use it as a boot drive?.."

    Because a boot drive is horribly inefficient compared to dynamic caching. Think about it, if you spend money on expensive SSD bits, you want to actually USE them. If you install your OS and apps on the boot drive, you are wasting all that capacity with tons of files and data that never even gets used most of the time (especially wrt the OS). Caching software does a much more effective job at keeping all your "hot" data, apps, boot, etc. on the SSD, and keep the cold data off the SSD and in the slow HDD. Also, if Crucial uses a write-back cache, like Corsair did with NVELO, then both reads AND writes are accelerated. Boot drives are pretty lame in comparison to caching.
  • relativityboy - Sunday, January 15, 2012 - link


    I remember when windows 98 came out with boot optimization.. after it learned which programs got loaded at launch it would re-frag the drive so it was one continuous headseek. Cut boot times in 1/2. Having that kind of advantage (but for active work) would be ideal.

    Funny thing is windows vista/7 had that flash chip caching tech that never took off. I wonder how this is different...
  • Shadowmaster625 - Thursday, January 12, 2012 - link

    I know of about a dozen windows XP machines that could really use an SSD cache but will not be upgraded to win7. Yet all these caching solutions are only available on 7.
  • geniekid - Thursday, January 12, 2012 - link

    "50GB with 64GB of 25nm MLC NAND onboard"

    What does that mean? That 14GB is being used for caching, and 50GB is user accessible?
  • Rolphus - Thursday, January 12, 2012 - link

    I would assume the other 14GB is used for overprovisioning to handle cell failures etc. Most SSDs do this.

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