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SanDisk Releases 200 GB Ultra microSD Card And High-Endurance Model

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bit_user

Splendid
Herald
Write endurance is a big problem for dash cams. So, it's good to hear about that.

The only bad thing here is that SDXC uses exFAT, which is a proprietary Microsoft technology. You won't find it supported in any free Linux distro, and any device which supports it had to pay royalties to MS. I don't understand how MS pulled that one off, but I suspect it had something to do with brandishing its patent portfolio and possibly making the technology free for the memory manufacturers.

I'd stick with fat32, except for its 4 GB filesize limit. No good options.
:(
 

bit_user

Splendid
Herald

Didn't you notice the prevalence of SSDs at 120 GB, 240 GB, etc.? The sizes get even weirder for high-endurance enterprise drives. Basically (and I'm not saying for sure this is what happened here), they reserve some amount of the raw storage for use when blocks in the allocatable quota start to have (correctable) errors above some threshold.

It turns out you can actually do the same thing with a retail SSD, as the allocation threshold is software-accessible. I recently de-rated some 256 GB SSDs down to 224 GB. It not only improves longevity, but also sustained write speeds. It's not uncommon for people to de-rate all the way down to 75% of the native capacity.
 

digitalvampire

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The only bad thing here is that SDXC uses exFAT, which is a proprietary Microsoft technology. You won't find it supported in any free Linux distro, and any device which supports it had to pay royalties to MS.
While you are technically correct about exFAT support not being included by default in any TRULY free Linux distro, I think it is worth noting (to those less concerned with software freedom) that it is very easily added (if not already already included) and works without any problems in most every Linux distribution.
 

bit_user

Splendid
Herald
Thanks for the tip. The last time I checked, the only Linux exFAT implementation I found was a commercial one, and it wasn't clear to me whether/how an individual user could buy a copy.

I'd grudgingly, but willingly, pay up to like $10 or $15 for something like this, but I don't like not being able to plug an exFAT drive into an arbitrary Linux box and not be able to mount it. And it seems ridiculous that the device vendors would even use a patented technology like this. Maybe Microsoft strong-armed them and thoughts of Rambus' litigation against DDR SDRAM makers were fresh in their minds.

But the main thing that bugs me about this is that we're all paying royalties on this, every time we buy a tablet, smartphone, TV, or camera that supports exFAT (which also seems standard on all USB flash drives >= 64 GB). It'd be one thing if the technology offered real benefits, such as H.265, but I don't believe there really needed to be anything in filesystems for flash devices that's not either obvious or was already published well before any relevant patents were filed. Ultimately, the consumer is the one who pays the bill for patent trolls.
 

epobirs

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It's really quite simple.

1. exFAT solved a variety of problems facing device makers when the SDXC spec was being determined. The benefits are very real. File systems are not trivial matters, especially not when one considers the following feature:

2. exFAT was built-in on every version of Windows, including embedded (it first appeared in CE 6.0) since 2006, so it already had a massive installed base of supporting systems before the first SDXC device shipped.

3. The big players in the device business didn't have a problem with the cost. It was a clearly defined product with a plain value proposition, as opposed to the vague patents that have been at the core of so many disputes.

This is how stuff works in the real world. The number of different licenses involved in making something like a new flagship Android phone is very lengthy. It can play a major role in choosing vendors for parts. Smaller companies are inclined to go with vendors who take of all the licenses at their level, while a larger company might choose differently if it already has a direct licensing relationship with the IP owner.
 

epobirs

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56 GB is an excessive amount of reserve for wear leveling, especially in an SD card where such is rarely seen. The great majority of SD cards are not used for paging as a hard drive replacement like an SSD would be, so such levels of write activity problem for longevity.

I suspect this had more to do with the the actual physical volume of the chips. SanDisk wanted something to show off but nobody expects a lot of takers at that price. It's little more than a stunt. Samsung's latest generation of flash should allow the expected 256 GB microSD cards to hit the market at more reasonable prices within the year. 128 GB cards will come down under $50 and 256 GB will be premium priced around $150. Meanwhile, the top end for SD cards will go up to 512 MB.

At some point in the next 2-3 years, I expect to see a new competing standard to appear that up the performance level by abandoning the legacy issues that constrain SDXC. It will face a severe uphill struggle against SD's installed base momentum.
 
G

Guest

Guest
Is exFAT really a problem? I haven't yet found a memory card that couldn't be formatted to a different filesystem.
 

bit_user

Splendid
Herald
Read the article. It's a high-endurance model, intended for non-stop writing, in applications like dash cams. Those things will chew through standard SD cards in a matter of weeks.
 

bit_user

Splendid
Herald
I wish it were so, but at least my Sony camera just appears as a card reader and exposes the native filesystem.
 

bit_user

Splendid
Herald
And which filesystem can I use that will be supported by my camera, tablet, TV, and my linux PC? Fat32 is the only option I see, yet it causes problems for long video clips with its 4 GB filesize limitation. Yes, I do reach that, as my camera supports 1080p/60.
 
G

Guest

Guest


You can't use ntfs? I don't know those standards, honestly. I never feel safe unless I'm on btrfs these days. Something about the ability to scrub your data just doesn't seme like a luxury.

I feel your pain, I record some of my screen @1080p/60, space fills quickly. I do like to split files less than 4GB automatically, just because checksums, so easier to find corruption, less collision if you keep files small.
 

bit_user

Splendid
Herald
I'm pretty sure it won't be supported by most or all of my devices.

I up-voted you for that.
:)

Too many people are ignorant about RAID-5/6 and don't appreciate the need for scrubbing. Hopefully, filesystems like btrfs and ZFS will help change that.
 
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