Tuxera first to bring SMB compression feature to Linux environments

The new feature enables enterprises and storage-hosting providers to transfer files over networks with far greater speed, throughput, and less time than before.

HELSINKI, Finland, November 25, 2020 – Tuxera, a world-leader in quality-assured storage management and networking software, announced that the company’s SMB server implementation, Fusion File Share by Tuxera, now offers transparent compression to platforms outside of Microsoft Windows. Compression is being rapidly and widely adopted in the storage industry as a feature in memory hardware, file system implementations, and also networking protocols such as Microsoft’s server messaging block technology (SMB). The ability to compress files inline during transfer can significantly reduce bandwidth and transfer time. Microsoft released the transparent compression feature to their SMB protocol specification in early 2019. However, Tuxera is the first to implement SMB compression outside of Microsoft Windows, bringing this highly in-demand feature to Linux environments in enterprises around the world.

Remote working, virtualization, and large datasets burden networks

SMB is a ubiquitously used protocol for sharing files over a network. Migrating or copying large or many files over networks, including virtual private networks (VPNs), can place serious strains on network performance, cause bottlenecks, and take valuable time to wait for the transfers to complete.

Remote working, data-driven applications with huge volumes of data, and the growing use of virtualization technologies are all placing enormous demands on networks around the globe. This is especially challenging for organizations or hosting-solution vendors that transfer data over long distances with many remote locations and in potentially high-latency conditions. The ability to do inline compression during data transfers using the SMB protocol will substantially alleviate these challenges. The feature is especially beneficial when moving large files or big data over networks – such as virtual machine images, raw media files, devops, engineering, and life science data, or other applications with large files.

Compression is a “game-changer” to SMB protocol development

In March 2020, Microsoft Principal Program Manager Ned Pyle, called compression a “game changer” for SMB. Additionally, he presented the feature as “long-awaited” – with substantially less network congestion, low CPU usage, and drastically reduced file transfer time.

“We’re really excited to be the first to deliver SMB compression to enterprise customers,” says Heinrich von Keler, Director of Enterprise Solutions at Tuxera. “Windows is a dominant force in the market, though the enterprise world is heavily reliant on Linux as well and is adopting Linux at an exceeding rate. By bringing SMB compression to Linux, we can open up entirely new use cases for enterprise customers – especially for hosted storage and software-defined storage vendors. Operations that were typically done through other protocols can now be done in a cost-saving, time-saving manner using the widely-adopted SMB protocol instead.”

Optimization and virtualization are two main use cases for compression

“SMB compression is best put to use when network conditions are not optimal, or higher overall system efficiency is required, or hardware and power cost saving is a major factor. If the network is a bottleneck, then compression can speed up file transfers and reduce waiting time. After compression, there is less data during the transfer over the network,” says Szabolcs Szakacsits, CTO of Tuxera.

“This feature is also highly useful in Microsoft Hyper-V or virtual environments, where there are large disk images containing lots of repeated byte patterns. Those repeating bytes are easy to compress and can be moved rapidly over the network. So very large containers or disk images used by virtual machines can be migrated to another server with minimal downtime in between.”

Tests reveal that Fusion File Share by Tuxera performs compression on par with Microsoft’s implementation, with transfer speed-ups between 30 – 300% and network bandwidth savings between 20 – 70%, depending on the data pattern.

More data, more Microsoft, and more virtualization bring SMB to center stage

Tuxera’s implementation of the SMB compression feature comes in context of a recent report from the International Data Corporation (IDC) on the state of the Global Datasphere. IDC estimates the world will create, capture, copy, and consume 59 zettabytes (ZB) of data in 2020. This number will continue to grow rapidly, as the world will create more than three times the data over the next five years than in the previous five. Moreover, the IDC notes that the growth of the Global DataSphere is driven more by data consumed and analyzed, rather than data created. This particular insight ties in closely with the sharing of data and files over networks for multiple users and applications, which is the main use for the SMB protocol.

Concurrently, Microsoft solutions, where the SMB protocol was born, are becoming more dominant in the enterprise market as a whole. A recent survey by leading IT-marketplace Spiceworks revealed that 79% of respondents said their business primarily runs both Windows client and server operating systems. Moreover, Spiceworks indicates that business adoption of server virtualization will grow to 97% until 2022, with an impressive 60% of businesses using or considering using Microsoft Hyper-V as their preferred solution.

Tuxera’s SMB roadmap focused on performance, scalability, and advanced features

Tuxera’s roadmap for its Fusion File Share SMB implementation is to keep pace with Microsoft’s latest features, including advanced enterprise-grade ones such as compression. The company has a long-standing technical, business, and legal relationship with Microsoft and are part of their licensing program for the exFAT file system and SMB technology.

Fusion File Share’s transparent SMB compression feature has been built based on Microsoft’s documentation, ensuring seamless compatibility between Windows, Mac, and Linux environments. The “transparent” aspect of this feature is especially beneficial to end users, as no interaction is required on their part to compress or decompress files. Transparent compression is ready for immediate deployment with Fusion File Share to any interested parties. Contact us at sales@tuxera.com for inquiries.

About Tuxera

Tuxera is the leading provider of quality-assured embedded storage management software and networking technologies. Helping people and businesses store and do more with their data, our software is at the core of phones, tablets, cars, TV sets, cameras, drones, external storage, routers, spacecraft, IoT devices, and more. We help you store your data reliably, while making file transfers fast and content easily accessible. Tuxera is also an active member of multiple industry organizations, including JEDEC, SNIA, AGL, SD Association, The Linux Foundation, and many others. Founded in 2008, Tuxera’s headquarters are located in Finland, with regional offices in China, Germany, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the US.

For more information, please contact:

Head of Marketing, Tuxera

Tiffiny Rossi

press@tuxera.com

References:

    1. Microsoft, 2020, “SMB Compression: Deflate your IO”: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/itops-talk-blog/smb-compression-deflate-your-io/ba-p/1183552
    2. IDC, 2020, “IDC’s Global DataSphere Forecast Shows Continued Steady Growth in the Creation and Consumption of Data”: https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS46286020
    3. Spiceworks, 2020, “Data Storage Trends in 2020 and Beyond”: https://www.spiceworks.com/marketing/reports/storage-trends-in-2020-and-beyond/
    4. Spiceworks, 2020 “The 2020 State of Virtualization Technology”: https://www.spiceworks.com/marketing/reports/state-of-virtualization/


Tuxera strengthens presence in Japan by establishing a local subsidiary, Tuxera Japan KK

The move highlights the company’s commitment to supporting its Japanese customers.

ESPOO, Finland, and YOKOHAMA, Japan – November 19, 2020 Tuxera, a world-leader in quality-assured storage management and networking software, announced an official establishment of a Japanese subsidiary, Tuxera Japan KK, with its regional headquarters located in Yokohama, Japan.

With a large embedded software device market, Japan is home to many internationally leading device manufacturers in automotive and consumer electronics. According to BCC Research, the Asia-Pacific (APAC) market for embedded systems is projected to increase from $75.4 billion in 2018 to $99.9 billion in 2023.

Reinforcing regional support

For over a decade, Tuxera has been bringing highly reliable and fail-safe embedded file systems software to millions of devices worldwide. The company has also seen strong success in Japan in the past few years, especially with the growth of local partnerships within the consumer electronics and automotive software industry.

“We are excited to be strengthening the local Japanese team,” says Masashi Kuroko, Head of Japan at Tuxera. “It’s all about our promise to exceptional customer service. We look forward to continuing and improving our close, focused collaboration with local customers. With an official local presence, we will be able to use our industry expertise to support the growing needs of the Japanese market even more effectively than before.”

“Opening a Tuxera subsidiary in Japan is a great milestone for us,” says Tuukka Ahoniemi, CEO of Tuxera. “This past year, our company has seen immense success in Japan and in the APAC region overall. Establishing a new local entity allows us to accelerate our growth and support our Japanese key customers, some of the top industry players in the world, by having our experts work even more closely with them.”

Tuxera continues to see Japan as an integral part of its ongoing global strategy.

About Tuxera

Tuxera is the leading provider of quality-assured embedded storage management software and networking technologies. Helping people and businesses store and do more with their data, our software is at the core of phones, tablets, cars, TV sets, cameras, drones, external storage, routers, spacecraft, IoT devices, and more. We help you store your data reliably, while making file transfers fast and content easily accessible. Tuxera is also an active member of multiple industry organizations, including JEDEC, AGL, SD Association, The Linux Foundation, and many others. Founded in 2008, Tuxera’s headquarters are located in Finland, with regional offices in China, Germany, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the US.

For more information, please contact:

Head of Marketing, Tuxera

Tiffiny Rossi

press@tuxera.com


Tuxera joins the Global Semiconductor Alliance

San Jose, Calif., and Helsinki, Finland – November 16, 2020 – Tuxera, the world leader in quality-assured embedded storage management software, is pleased to announce that they have become a member of the Global Semiconductor Alliance (GSA), the voice of the global semiconductor industry.

“We are seeing a data and information explosion across the global embedded industry landscape,” said Eva Rio, Product Manager at Tuxera. “In this environment, industry players we work with continue to find new use cases and ways of using data. At Tuxera we believe it’s vital that hardware and software systems work together in order to achieve the best performance, the flexibility to tackle specific workloads, and to create an overall better experience for each end use case. By working closely with hardware manufacturers we want to make sure the optimal storage decisions are made early in the development process. Tuxera delivers expertise to the embedded storage software side, so it’s a natural step to work even closer with hardware producers – and semiconductors are at the heart of the storage ecosystem.”

Tuxera builds and develops file systems, flash storage management software, and networking technologies. The company’s software is inside devices across the consumer electronics, automotive, industrial automation, and aerospace markets – helping people and major OEMs, Tier-1s, and device manufacturers store and do more with their data.

“We are very pleased to have Tuxera join the GSA,” said Jodi Shelton, co-founder and CEO of GSA. “Tuxera brings a wealth of industry knowledge to the Alliance and we look forward to their contributions to our industry events, interest groups and resources. As the GSA gains new members, we are ultimately supporting and enhancing the global semiconductor ecosystem.”

As a member of the GSA, Tuxera will benefit from the unique neutral platform provided for collaboration, where global executives may interface and innovate with peers, partners and customers to accelerate industry growth and maximize return on invested and intellectual capital.

About Tuxera

Tuxera is the leading provider of quality-assured embedded storage management software and networking technologies. Helping people and businesses store and do more with their data, our software is at the core of phones, tablets, cars, TV sets, cameras, drones, external storage, routers, spacecraft, IoT devices, and more. We help you store your data reliably, while making file transfers fast and content easily accessible. Tuxera is also an active member of multiple industry organizations, including JEDEC, AGL, SD Association, The Linux Foundation, GSA, and many others. Founded in 2008, Tuxera’s headquarters are located in Finland, with regional offices in China, Germany, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the US.

Tuxera Media Contact:

Tiffiny Rossi

press@tuxera.com

About GSA

GSA is Where Leaders Meet to establish an efficient, profitable and sustainable high technology global ecosystem encompassing semiconductors, software, solutions, systems and services. A leading industry organization that represents more than 25 countries and 250 corporate members, including 100 public companies, GSA provides a unique, neutral platform for collaboration, where global executives interface and innovate with peers, partners and customers to accelerate industry growth and maximize return on invested and intellectual capital. Members of the GSA represent 70 percent of the $450B+ semiconductor industry and continue to grow. Follow GSA on LinkedInFacebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and WeChat.

GSA Media Contact:                                       

Katie Olivier

kolivier@sheltongroup.com


Tuxera at TU-Automotive Europe 2020

Meet Tuxera virtually at TU-Automotive Europe on November 23–26, 2020!

TU-Automotive Europe is the largest conference and exhibition in Europe showcasing the future of connected cars and auto mobility.

Join us on November 23–26, when TU-Automotive Europe is back for 2020 – and 100% virtual. Tune in to talks from industry thought leaders and network with other professionals in this four-day program. Come meet Tuxera at the event, where we’ll be happy to answer your questions live and talk with you about everything automotive.

To prepare yourself for four days of illuminating automotive talks, check out some of these whitepapers on automotive file systems by our experts:

Solving data storage challenges in the automotive projects of tomorrow

Historically, automotive IVIs were literally read only. Functionality has been defined by the developer at the very beginning, with no major changes over lifetime. Consequently, the number of write cycles for flash memory was a no-worry. Now, systems have become much more complex with ECUs consolidated into domain controllers and hosting multiple functions on one SOC. The introduction of Android makes cars look like mobile phones, but with a higher lifetime of 10-15 years. Together with OTA updates, this results in many more write cycles that might make the flash wear out before end of life of the car. Fragmentation is observed to have an impact on performance in mobile devices – and could simply break an automotive system. Issues like FCA’s endless loop update from 2018, or the Spotify bug from 2016 with writing 5 GB per hour to flash puts further risk on future systems. We describe those effects more in detail, and suggest measures to mitigate the risks.

Download the whitepaper here.

The impacts of file system fragmentation on automotive storage performance

Groundbreaking studies have shown fragmentation to be a risk to modern automotive systems, potentially causing sluggish flash storage performance and even critical system failure within a car. This whitepaper examines in detail the ways that fragmentation affects the performance of an automotive system.

Download the whitepaper here.

See you at the event!


Find out more, and book an event pass

BOOK NOW

Too technical for a non-engineer?

Tuxerians hail far and wide, from a broad spectrum of backgrounds. Simon Wright started at the company during spring last year, joining our marketing team as Copywriter. Since then, he’s been putting finger-to-keyboard writing or editing many of the blog posts, press releases, whitepapers, and other Tuxera content that you may have read.

All the while, Tuxera has gone through some major changes – like rocketing forward with new leadership and gaining a crew of experienced professionals from across the Atlantic. What’s it like for someone at this company to see all of that, while still fresh on the job? What makes Tuxera an interesting environment for a non-engineer in the first place? We had lots of questions, and Simon was, thankfully, happy to help.

What got you interested in Tuxera as an employer?

Simon: I was seduced by the opportunity to write about cutting-edge technical solutions in a company that came across as down to earth, welcoming, and extremely international.

Were there any big surprises about the company, or about the realities of becoming a fabled Tuxerian?

Simon: Just seeing how much of an effort the company makes to care about its employees was a pleasant discovery. I’ve experienced helpful support with personal development, and chances to grow in different directions. In my short time here, I’ve also seen Tuxera go through some significant changes, but the feeling of me mattering as an employee has remained constant. The hoodies are also more comfortable than I expected.

What’s been the most daunting part about content writing in this highly technical field?

Simon: By far, the biggest challenge has been in building a comprehensive understanding of our range of products, their technical details, and the know-how that drives their development. The learning curve has been steep, but enjoyable and manageable. I've also learned a huge amount about the embedded industry in general – something new nearly every day.

What keeps you continuously interested in your job?

Simon: Getting to write about software that has a real, tangible effect on devices and data storage worldwide is very cool, because it’s technology that affects so many aspects of our lives. It’s also great to work with people who are so knowledgeable and passionate about tech – getting the chance to help communicate their expertise and excitement to audiences is something I find highly rewarding.

How do you see your journey here at Tuxera, from the beginning and leading up to this day?

Simon: It’s been a tremendous learning experience, and a lot of fun. I feel blessed to be working with very talented people – engineers, other marketing geeks, and everyone in between. I'm looking forward to seeing what the future has in store for Tuxera!

Protecting data integrity, together

Supporting each other and making sure all of us have our voices heard are major aspects of working at Tuxera. We know that in order to care about keeping the world's data safe and sound, we first need to care about each other. Simon is not the only Tuxerian to recently hop on board – we’ve had a ton of people join our global team over the past year. You could be the next one.


Interested in a career at Tuxera?

SEE OUR OPEN POSITIONS

 


Success story – Innovative smartmeter platform delivers long-lasting revenue-grade data using Tuxera technology

Tuxera Reliance Nitro™ and FlashFX Tera™ bring power fail-safe reliability and simulated product lifespan in excess of 30 years.

Assured data integrity and product longevity

The leader in technologies* enabling resourceful energy and water use needed to ensure its new line of smartmeters would securely and consistently store data. This new edge intelligence platform supports sensing technologies and dynamic applications at the device level. It delivers distributed computing power, control, and analytics for automated decision-making at the edge of the network. By bringing intelligence to field devices, the company is helping create a breakthrough sensing ecosystem to enable growth in global markets ranging from smart grid to the Internet of Things (IoT). The smartmeter platform enables easy integration of third-party devices, creating numerous possibilities for realizing the promise of the IoT, empowering smarter utilities and smarter cities worldwide. It embeds an operating system and processor into field devices and sensors, enabling real-time decision-making at the device level. Action at the edge reduces network traffic, eases the burden of transmitting high volumes of data back to the utility for analysis, and minimizes human intervention to perform tasks that can now be automated. A key differentiator in this company’s product offering is to outlast the useful life expected by its customers or mandated by government agencies.

* Company name cannot be disclosed due to NDA restrictions.

Equipment featured here may not be actual product discussed.

The challenge

Decision-making at the edge of the network relies on uncompromised data integrity. Bad data means bad decisions. The connectivity of the IoT means more data, gathered from more places that will increasingly become a core enabler for business process and revenue generation. Customers are looking for assurance that the data they rely on is revenue-grade and that the intelligence gathering devices they’ve invested in will continue to perform over decades of use. “With this new smartmeter platform we are able to offer our customers fast, consistent access to data that allows them to improve business operations and profitablity,” said the company’s Director of Firmware Engineering. According to this customer, Tuxera’s “products proved far superior to the open source alternatives we tried and we are confident they will provide the level of protection demanded by our customers.”

The results

Originally, the engineering team turned to us to address data reliability and boot time concerns with the open source alternatives found in standard Linux distributions. The ability of Reliance Nitro to incorporate an encryption module that was sufficient to ensure the security of customer data was also a key consideration. After incorporating Reliance Nitro file system and FlashFX Tera flash manager, the team conducted an extensive product lifespan simulation test with the goal of demonstrating both power failsafe reliability and greater than 20 year endurance.

“We successfully completed our lifespan testing simulating more than 20 years of our product use with over 1.2 billion SQLite3 database write transactions,“ said the company’s Senior R/D Manager. “The excellent support [they] provided us during the selection process helped cement our decision to use [their] products.” Although the lifespan testing that the company conducted gave them confidence in meeting the minimum lifespan requirement, the team continued to work with our engineers to ensure its configurations were optimized. This collaboration resulted in the extension of lifespan to between 28 and 32 years, giving the company confidence that its technology will continue to perform in the field and meet customers’ expectations for delivering revenue grade data. The flexibility of our solution to be configured easily to minimize data at risk while maximizing media life surpassed the capabilities of open source alternatives. Our comprehensive suite of test tools included with the product helped the company gain insights into how the product was behaving.

On several occasions during development and testing, the company was able to tap in to our expertise with flash memory to further improve the endurance of the media. “This company has one of the most comprehensive longevity test programs of any of our customers – all of whom have a high degree of concern for data reliability,” said Tony Questad, Director of Engineering for Tuxera US. “It’s rewarding when our products can be proven by independent evaluation to exceed the capabilities we design them for.” The company’s hardware design, incorporating Tuxera’s software, will allow its utility partners around the world to solve problems on a global scale. Products with a longer lifetime will reduce waste, and the intelligent decisions made will reduce resource consumption and provide for sustainable growth.

* This customer success story has been updated July 8, 2020. Datalight was originally mentioned as the software provider in this story. As of 2019, Datalight Inc. became a wholly owned subsidiary of Tuxera Inc. Tuxera now owns all of Datalight’s former products, including the ones mentioned in this project. Tuxera is dedicated to providing superior technical know-how in data storage challenges and responsive customer support.

Let us help you achieve your next success!

We’ll help you solve your data storage challenges. Get in touch with us for additional info, pricing, and evaluations.

Contact us

Reliance Edge Failsafe File System Availabile for Green Hills High Assurance INTEGRITY Operating System

In 2019, Datalight became a wholly owned subsidiary of Tuxera, Inc. This press release originally appeared on datalight.com. Updated July 7, 2020.

BOTHELL, Wash., SANTA BARBARA, CA– December 5, 2017 – Green Hills Software, the worldwide leader in high assurance operating systems, and Datalight Inc. (updated July 7, 2020: Datalight is now Tuxera Inc.), the leading developer of power failsafe file systems and flash memory drivers for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), are excited to announce the immediate availability of the Reliance Edge™ file system for Green Hills safe and secure INTEGRITY® real-time operating system (RTOS). Green Hills INTEGRITY is a leading RTOS for devices where proven reliability and security are imperative, such as the automotive, avionics, industrial and medical industries. Embedded developers select INTEGRITY because it delivers the highest levels of independent safety and security certification for mission and life critical systems while maintaining hard real time, deterministic performance.

When combined with Green Hills INTEGRITY, Reliance Edge provides fast, consistent, and deterministic mount times, ensuring users will have the ability to interact with devices quickly, even when recovering from power loss. Embedded engineers using INTEGRITY in their designs also benefit from Reliance Edge’s strict compliance with MISRA-C:2012 standards, as well as the availability of a complete Design Assurance Package that documents the product design and adherence to requirements. “Our INTEGRITY operating system is purpose-built for use in the most stringent safety and security critical systems,” says Dan Mender, vice president of business development, Green Hills Software. “We are pleased to have the Datalight Reliance Edge file system available for INTEGRITY, bringing its reliable, flexible and high-performing capabilities to our customers’ critical system designs.”

Reliance Edge file system offers critical power failsafe reliability and deterministic behavior required by today’s autonomous systems. The transactional architecture upon which it is built ensures that live data is never overwritten, providing rock-solid data reliability and maintaining complete metadata and file data integrity. “Datalight is proud to make the Reliance Edge file system available for embedded designs that use Green Hills INTEGRITY,” said Technical Product Manager Thom Denholm. “The power failsafe data reliability of Reliance Edge ensures the data these designs rely upon is completely secure and protected in the face of unexpected power loss.” Ultra-compact and configurable, Reliance Edge is provided in full source code and works with any block device storage media in systems using Green Hills INTEGRITY RTOS. Reliance Edge can use standard block device drivers to access a broad array of storage media, including eMMC, SD/MMC, NVRAM, USB mass storage, and SATA (or PATA) disks. Reliance Edge for Green Hills INTEGRITY is immediately available directly from Tuxera or its authorized resellers (updated July 7, 2020).

About Green Hills Software

Founded in 1982, Green Hills Software is the largest independent software vendor for the Internet of Things (IoT). In 2008, the Green Hills INTEGRITY-178B RTOS was the first and only operating system to be certified by NIAP (National Information Assurance Partnership comprised of NSA & NIST) to EAL6+, High Robustness, the highest level of security ever achieved for any software product. Our open architecture integrated development solutions address deeply embedded, absolute security and high-reliability applications for the military/avionics, medical, industrial, automotive, networking, consumer and other markets that demand industry-certified solutions. Green Hills Software is headquartered in Santa Barbara, CA with European headquarters in the United Kingdom. Visit Green Hills Software at www.ghs.com.

About Tuxera

Tuxera is the leading provider of quality-assured embedded storage management software and networking technologies. Helping people and businesses store and do more with their data, our software is at the core of phones, tablets, cars, TV sets, cameras, drones, external storage, routers, spacecraft, IoT devices, and more. We help you store your data reliably, while making file transfers fast and content easily accessible. Tuxera is also an active member of multiple industry organizations, including JEDEC, AGL, SD Association, The Linux Foundation, and many others. Founded in 2008, Tuxera’s headquarters are located in Finland, with regional offices in China, Germany, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the US.

 


Success story – Tuxera helps industrial machine manufacturer protect data despite power interruption

Tuxera Reliance Nitro™ ensures field reliability and data corruption prevention in pharmaceutical machine manufacturing.

Assured data integrity and product longevity

The adage “time is money” rings especially true for the factory automation industry. Manufacturing facilities are controlled environments where every aspect of production must be measured, analyzed, and refined to ensure product quality, safety, and to make the process as efficient as possible. Thus, even the shortest downtime can be extremely costly. A lapse in production can result in scrapped product, the inability to fulfill quotas, and delayed shipments. These very real concerns reinforce the importance of reliability in factory automation machines.

Industria Macchine Automatiche S.p.A. (IMA), a world leader in the design and manufacture of automatic machines for the processing and packaging of pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, food, tea and coffee, was experiencing data corruption in their machines. As a highly trusted company in the industry, with 41 manufacturing sites and about 5,500 employees worldwide, preventing customers from experiencing these issues was their top priority.

Some of the prototype machines using the FAT-compatible file system, DosFs for Vx-Works, on compact flash media were experiencing data corruption due to unexpected power loss. In the majority of cases, where only application data was affected, machines had to be re-calibrated before restoring them to service. The delays impacted production efficiency, and caused the loss of work-in-progress product. If that wasn’t bad enough, in nearly 10 percent of cases critical system data was also lost because the entire file system became corrupted. System data corruption rendered the prototype machines inoperable and required the implementation of a disaster recovery procedure. The worst-case scenario could leave a machine offline for several days while waiting for the new compact flash required to restore it to operation. The repercussions of a major stoppage in production like this would be catastrophic for a manufacturing facility.

Equipment featured here may not be actual product discussed.

The challenge

Fixing this issue was IMA’s top priority, so they initiated a worldwide search for a file system that fulfilled their requirements. While prevention of data loss and corruption was the number one requirement, IMA also needed a solution that would integrate easily into their VxWorks environment and would also allow simple exchange of data with Windows-based desktop machines. During their search, they looked at several VxWorks-compatible file systems, including HRFS, which did improve reliability but couldn’t meet performance requirements nor exchange data with a Windows-based desktop system. Through an Internet research, IMA learn about Reliance Nitro from us and following an evaluation, determined that Reliance Nitro was the clear choice. Reliance Nitro is specifically designed to be power failsafe and has superior performance. Tuxera’s long-standing technology partnership with Wind River ensures its products work smoothly with VxWorks, and the Reliance Nitro Windows Driver (RNWD) enables file system data to be displayed on desktops using Microsoft Windows.

The results

IMA accomplished all of its goals with Reliance Nitro. To validate that the primary reliability objective was met, IMA ran a reliability test that compared Reliance Nitro and DosFS, and the results were quite telling. Power fail simulations were run every 30 seconds over a period of 48 hours, equaling 5760 tests. Reliance Nitro experienced zero corruptions, while DosFS returned more than 3,000 errors.

“Even one corruption would have been an issue for us,” said IMA Real Time Software Engineer Paolo Tagliapietra. “It would have prevented us from purchasing Reliance Nitro because any corruption of data can severely impact our customers’ production, resulting in loss of product, money and reputation.”

Fortunately, IMA identified the data corruption issues early and implemented Reliance Nitro quickly, leading its customers to experience very few instances of these failures in the field. In the time since IMA began turning to us for support, their machines have not experienced any data corruption due to these issues. Recently, the company upgraded its products to a new version of VxWorks, and Reliance Nitro continues to perform flawlessly. IMA’s favorable experience with Tuxera has prompted recommendations of the Reliance Nitro file system to other top European automation companies.

* This customer success story has been updated October 2, 2020. Datalight was originally mentioned as the software provider in this story. As of 2019, Datalight Inc. became a wholly owned subsidiary of Tuxera Inc. Tuxera now owns all of Datalight’s former products, including the ones mentioned in this project. Tuxera is dedicated to providing superior technical know-how in data storage challenges and responsive customer support.

Let us help you achieve your next success!

We’ll help you solve your data storage challenges. Get in touch with us for additional info, pricing, and evaluations.

Contact us

Success story – Tuxera & Airbus stream video from International Space Station

Airbus Defence and Space, Europe’s leading defense and space company, has selected Tuxera Reliance Nitro™ and FlashFX Tera™ for use in civil spaceflight equipment.

Mission-critical video data recording for the International Space Station

The Columbus Solid State Disk Video Recorder (COL-SSD) project replaces the old video tape recorders on Columbus, the European science laboratory module that is part of the International Space Station (ISS). The system records High Definition and Standard Definition video, but is also capable of storing high-rate data bit streams from scientific payloads prior to transmission on a downlink to a ground station.

The challenge

In the center of the COL-SSD, a 32-bit SPARC processor controls an array of 128 GB raw NAND-flash memory through which (video) data is streamed in real time. The memory is key to the flawless operation of the recorder over its expected lifetime use in ISS. In order to maximize NAND-flash lifetime, the data needs to be spread evenly across all memory cells. Since raw NAND-flash relies on a flash media driver to take care of this, as well as performing bad-block management, it puts a load on the CPU. Since the data potentially needs to be stored on the SSD, a reliable file system is an additional requirement. The selected file system must not steal cycles from the CPU and must not cause the system to enter an undefined state after a sudden power loss.

The Logic solution with Tuxera products

As the customer discussed their needs and requirements with Logic Technology, an authorized reseller of Tuxera products, Logic suggested our FlashFX Tera flash media driver software in combination with our Reliance Nitro high performance file system. These solutions fit seamlessly into the VxWorks operating system used by the customer. Further it supported the necessary storage size and the requirements with respect to reliability – especially the requirements regarding file system integrity under all circumstances, even if power fails during a write operation. The software was also configurable and could be tailored to the needs of the COL-SSD’s very special hardware architecture.

The results

The solution fulfilled the customer’s expectations. Extensive testing (as it is usual for spaceflight equipment) proved that all requirements have been met or exceeded. Especially the all-time file system integrity was “impressive,” according to the customer’s own assessment.

Video and data captured during ISS scientific experiments are of very high value, as many experiments can be carried out only once due to a limited number of samples or crew time (the samples have to be uploaded by space vehicles which are quite limited). Thus, under any circumstances, the scientific data must not get lost or corrupted. A reliable data recorder is therefore a crucial ingredient of any data management system used on board the ISS. According to a representative from Airbus, “The solution products have been very beneficial in achieving these challenging requirements. The product behaved as required. The close cooperation between our local development team, the Datalight* support team and Logic Technology during the entire project was another factor that contributed to our joint success.”

* This customer success story has been updated July 8, 2020. Datalight was originally mentioned as the software provider in this story. As of 2019, Datalight Inc. became a wholly owned subsidiary of Tuxera Inc. Tuxera now owns all of Datalight’s former products, including the ones mentioned in this project. Tuxera is dedicated to providing superior technical know-how in data storage challenges and responsive customer support.

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Success story – Cutting boot time in half for LG Navigator

Tuxera's FlashFX® flash management solutions deliver a superior user experience by reducing boot time.

Fast boot time means satisfied customers

LG Electronics, a well-known manufacturer of consumer electronics based in Korea, created a multimedia-enabled portable navigator for the North American market. The LN790 features a 4.3” LCD screen, Bluetooth hands-free functionality, and video-enabled playback. Ruggedness and fast access to data are important to consumers in this market, so the device was designed to boot directly from a NAND mass storage environment using Windows Embedded Compact (CE).

The challenge

LG product engineers had a difficult time getting the device to boot fast enough using Windows CE’s FAL/FMD flash drivers. At just over two minutes, the startup time did not match LG’s reputation for high-performance consumer devices.

As LG engineers went searching for solutions to the boot speed problem, they discovered that our FlashFX products use a more efficient approach to managing bad blocks than CE’s standard FMD/FAL drivers, which can speed boot time significantly. This difference is especially apparent when the device is using a large NAND disk, because boot time is somewhat proportional to the size of the flash. Why are our FlashFX products more efficient? Startup with FAL requires the driver to read more data as part of its mount sequence, a lengthy process particularly if the disk is large. In contrast, our solutions require a much simpler check of the media to complete the initial mount.

The results

After implementation of our FlashFX solution, LG engineers were delighted to discover that the device’s boot time was cut by more than half. By using our FlashFX solution instead of the native Windows CE drivers, LG designers were able to achieve the performance their customers expect from a premium-quality personal navigator. There was also an additional benefit they hadn’t counted on – support for over 300 flash parts means that the LN790 will be future-proof from flash parts going on allocation, unexpected price fluctuations, and end-of-life issues.

* This customer success story has been updated July 8, 2020. Datalight was originally mentioned as the software provider in this story. As of 2019, Datalight Inc. became a wholly owned subsidiary of Tuxera Inc. Tuxera now owns all of Datalight’s former products, including the ones mentioned in this project. Tuxera is dedicated to providing superior technical know-how in data storage challenges and responsive customer support.

Let us help you achieve your next success!

We’ll help you solve your data storage challenges. Get in touch with us for additional info, pricing, and evaluations.

Contact us