Merom notebooks to launch OS from Flash memory

By Derek Sooman on February 9, 2006, 2:33 PM
One day not so long from now, we may well have an instant-on computer, thanks to Intel microprocessors that will be aligned around the Merom mobile processor. Utilising a new mobile platform named Santa Rosa (successor of the current "Napa" platform) new computers will have Intel's "Robson" cache technology, which will accelerate the start up of a computer using NAND Flash.

Robson is the codename for a technology that employs NAND Flash memory to boot a computer or launch frequently used applications. The advantage of using Flash to startup software does not only result in substantial acceleration, but will extend battery time as well: Today's hard drives can be responsible for up to 20% of the power consumption of a average computer system. If Flash can store all those small files that are permanently accesses on a computer, a hard drive would have to be activated less often - which, according to industry observers, could result in an additional 15-30 minutes of battery time in an average notebook.

User Comments: 7

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Vaulden said:
This will be interesting to see. Though if you are only gaining 15-30 mins of battery time I certainly hope the price is not significantly higher.
phantasm66 said:
We're not far off having the whole OS on laptop's NAND flash. This will make things very interesting. The thing in the article caches with Intel's "Robson" cache technology, but some time in the next few years we might get the whole OS on there.
gamingmage said:
This is very nice, especially for mobile gamers and constant users. Hopefully they can take this idea and expand on it to make it even more power efficient and to work with larger sized batteries.
Race said:
To go a step further.....I read an article recently in MaxPC that eventually you may be running your entire system through memory.One thing for sure....the speed and access times would be awesome.
PUTALE said:
well, it's been talked in varoius sites already about the possibility. With the HD coming with flash memory and windows kidn of gearing toward it, I think it's a real possibility that we will have instant on windows.
Need_a_Dell said:
This looks like a great improvement for the laptop crowd. An extra 15-30 minutes of battery juice is gold when you're out and about without your charger. It'll be great when we can everntually cut the HD out of the picture entirely and completely run laptops off of flash memroy. (Massive flash memory that is!)
nathanskywalker said:
Just something about NAND:[url]
/OEG20031023S0012[/quote] Now that is cool. In a way it is alot like RAM. The manner in which it is accessed, utilized, and then written over again. Of course, unlike RAM, it will evnetually run out. RAM will break down eventually of course, but not usually for a very long time. Now this is cool. I remeber reading an aritcle about NAND several months ago. And now it is being used in notebooks, wow i bet that i going to be expensive. And while 15-30min, may not be alot, there are people who would buy it, and just because it costs more. Seriously, some people, tell them the truth. It boots up almost instantaneously, and it costs more....hmmmm... "must be better". And yes it is. And while i'm all for instant boot up, i wanna compare prices before i pay roalty for a little conveince. With proper care, any good machine can get a good boot time.
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