I am so relieved finally to be able to talk about my experience using USB 3.0 on a Mac. It's a wonderful, seamless experience that is so well-integrated you might not notice it except for the performance. At over 200 MB/s, though, it blows FireWire out of the water and is even faster than nearly any device you're likely to throw at it. CalDigit USB 3.0 PCI Express Card … [Read more...] about USB 3.0 For Mac Is Here!
Why do some data storage solutions perform better than others? What tradeoffs are made for economy and how do they affect the system as a whole? These questions can be puzzling, but there are core truths that are difficult to avoid. Mechanical disk drives can only move a certain amount of data. RAM caching can improve performance, but only until it runs out. I/O channels can be … [Read more...] about The Four Horsemen of Storage System Performance: I/O As a Chain of Bottlenecks
Apple updated the ultra-slim don't-call-it-a-netbook MacBook Air this week. Along with a wimpy out-of-date CPU, the new Air features all-SSD storage of an entirely new and apparently proprietary type. Let's take a look and see what we can see. Just The Facts You might want to read my piece about Unconventional SSDs: PCI Express Mini Card (Mini PCI-E) or the updated … [Read more...] about Apple’s Unconventional New MacBook Air SSD
With Apple almost certain to introduce a new MacBook Air, questions have turned to the specifics of the hardware to be used. A leaked pre-production photo features an odd memory configuration (not to mention four batteries), a device I immediately recognized as an SSD-on-a-stick. With this high-profile introduction of a new SSD stick form, I thought it was time to cover these … [Read more...] about Unconventional SSDs: PCI Express Mini Card (Mini PCI-E)
PCMCIA and CardBus slots were universal and popular a decade ago, but the advent of PCI Express meant reengineering the old standby. The result was ExpressCard, a never-popular compromise that mixes PCI Express and USB into a confusing and little-used mashup. With few modern laptops including an ExpressCard slot and fewer users, a fair question to ask is "where did it all go … [Read more...] about ExpressCard: A Sure Thing That Failed