For much of the past year I've been hearing SandForce wanted to be bought. The price? $300M - $400M. A bit too rich for OCZ's blood, but a figure that I felt wasn't too high given the immense technological advantage that SandForce enjoyed. SandForce's biggest issue? It needed a partner that would bring sound validation methodology and the resources to actually test SF drives. I mentioned to many players in the SSD and HDD space that they should simply buy SandForce and make this easier on everyone. Today LSI announced that it would be the company to try and do just that. 

Pending the typical closing conditions and regulatory approvals, LSI will acquire SandForce for $322M in cash plus assume another $48M in unvested SF stock options. LSI isn't much of a player in the consumer space but it hopes to use SandForce's controllers in a go at the enterprise market. A look back at the Vertex 3 in our Intel SSD 710 review shows just how strong SandForce's architecture can be in database server workloads. As I've written before, the enterprise space is where the high margin sales are and as a result many players in the SSD space are focusing on it.

For now don't expect anything to change with regards to SF drives in the client space, but OCZ's timing with Octane probably couldn't have been any better. 

Source: LSI

Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • MGSsancho - Thursday, October 27, 2011 - link
  • dgingeri - Thursday, October 27, 2011 - link

    oh, yeah, forgot about that thing. However, with LSI owning Sandforce, they'll be able to get the SSD controllers cheaper and could potentially make this thing cheaper. I'd like that.
  • A5 - Thursday, October 27, 2011 - link

    You used "LSI" and "cheaper" in the same sentence. Nice joke, had me going there for a second :-P
  • Troff - Wednesday, October 26, 2011 - link

    On the one hand I have a Vertex 3, so I'm the first guy to sign up for more betterer QA. Then again, I was hoping that would happen through cooperation with for example Intel. Time will tell I suppose.
  • farsawoos - Thursday, October 27, 2011 - link

    I'm going to play devil's advocate for a moment and say that the enterprise markets could really benefit from reliable SSD's. In my 8-10 years of working in the enterprise in IT, one of the biggest agents of "age" in a machine - laptops and USDT's in particular - is the hard drive. Older hard drives are, generally, considerably slower than those installed in newer families of machines bought by businesses (perp. storage, greater platter densities, better controllers, etc.). The user experience on traditional HDD's degrades to such extents that many users in many companies would just as soon have their desktop or laptop replaced, even though the only real problem with it is an aging HDD.

    Reliable SSD's in my particular field would give at LEAST another 2 years out of most workstation types. Our laptops for our mobile force would be faster with better battery life, our desktops would be faster with considerably lower power envelopes and noise. And now that SSD's are building encryption capabilities directly into the controllers, compliance-laden industries like mine (Healthcare) can start giving them serious consideration. It just comes down to reliability and up-front cost, and any company that can bring SandForce performance reliably and cheaply to my field not only brings all the benefits listed above to my field, but makes MY job considerably more entertaining, too! ;D

    Just my $.02
  • NandFlashGuy - Friday, October 28, 2011 - link

    Intel has "eaten their own dogfood", deploying SSDs across 55% of the workforce (as of end of 2010):

    They did see the tocal cost of ownership benefit of SSDs based on a 90% reduction in Annual Fail Rate.
  • zhangqq - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now