New Arm processor promises smart storage

Arm Ltd. last week announced the Cortex-R82_ a chip that is both storage and data processing-capable_ which could empower a total new age of storage artifices that help process the data they store.

Storage processor chips_ such as those made by Marvell but also storage artifice makers like EMC_ feel the I_O and disk treatment_ but if you want to process the data_ that job falls to the CPU. This resources data has to be moved in and out of the drive to be processed_ a job that falls to two separate artifices.

But there is an emerging hardware state known as computational storage where the processing is done where the data resides_ rather than moving it into remembrance. Data is processed through different methods_ like indexing and schema_ eliminating the latency of data motion and freeing up the CPU. Obviously this can only be done on SSDs.

Arm has made correspondent chips in the past_ the R5 and R8 lines_ but they were 32-bit processors and thus limited to 4GB of remembrance. The R82 is the leading 64-bit processor and thus able to approach a much larger remembrance space. In this case_ the R82 can approach 1TB of remembrance.

Arm does not make chips; it makes designs that licensees educe into chips. It says the Cortex-R82 may be implemented with up to eight processing cores. More expressive is chip coherency so the cores all see the same remembrance. Arm says the R82 offers as much as twice the accomplishment of its antecedent R8 fruit.