A solid-state drive (SSD) is a nonvolatile storage device that stores persistent data on solid-state flash memory. Solid-state drives actually aren’t hard drives in the traditional sense of the term, as there are no moving parts involved.
A traditional hard disk drive (HDD) consists of a spinning disk with a read/write head on a mechanical arm called an actuator. An SSD, on the other hand, has an array of semiconductor memory organized as a disk drive, using integrated circuits (ICs) rather than magnetic or optical storage media.
An SSD may also be referred to as a solid-state disk.
Development and adoption of SSDs has been driven by a rapidly expanding need for higher input/output (I/O) performance. SSDs have much lower random access and read access latency than HDDs, making them ideal for both heavy read and random workloads.
Those characteristics make enterprise SSDs suitable to offload reads from transaction-heavy databases, to alleviate boot storms with virtual desktop infrastructure, or inside a storage array to stage hot data locally for off-site storage in a hybrid cloud scenario.
SSD form factors
- SSDs that come in traditional HDD form factors and fit into the same slots.
- Solid-state cards that use standard card form factors, such as Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe), and reside on a printed circuit board.
- Solid-state modules that reside in a Dual In-line Memory Module (DIMM) or small outline dual in-line memory module (SO-DIMM), and may use a standard HDD interface such as Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA).