MCS (Memory Channel Storage) architecture is a new technology that is likely to show up in servers shipping later this year. The idea behind MCS is to use regular NAND flash memory in place of DRAM memory to enable ultra-fast storage and also more memory.
The bus between CPU and memory is many times faster than that of even PCIe and Diablo Technologies, the company behind MCS, has said that this could reduce latencies by as much as 85%. Furthermore, the parallel design of the memory bus will allow system makers to increase flash in the system without worrying about diminishing returns.
Jim Handy, an analyst with Objective Analysis has this to say:
“Basically, you’d like everything to be in the RAM. Everything that’s on the storage is there just because it can’t fit on the RAM.”
Implementation requires a custom ASIC from Diablo Technologies and specialized software. At the top-end, MCS will enable systems to have up to 16GB of DRAM and 800GB of flash. With so much memory, servers can do more. For example, a social networking company which once required 25,000 servers could now make do with 5,000 because servers are so much faster and more efficient.