- Jun 16, 2020
- by Brad Litwin
Whether you’re an expert web designer or a blogger looking to build your own site, your project’s performance depends largely on your hosting server’s storage technology. This is why storage device manufacturers keep developing better solutions that support faster and more powerful web hosting. One such solution is Non-Volatile Memory express (NVMe) technology.
This is a relatively new communication interface that takes advantage of high-performance Solid State Drive (SSD) tech to deliver even better storage speeds. This makes it ideal for large-scale projects requiring a lot of power.
In this post, we’ll explain what NVMe hosting is and discuss the benefits it offers over regular web hosting. Let’s get to it!
What Is NVMe Hosting?
NVMe is essentially a new logical storage device interface that offers some advantages over other legacy protocols. When web hosting servers make use of storage drives that incorporate NVMe, we call this ‘NVMe hosting.’
Storage devices and their interfaces have evolved significantly over the years. Most modern devices make use of SSDs. Presently, the majority of SSDs still rely on Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) connections which were adapted from older Hard Disk Drives (HDDs).
However, it wasn’t long before the much faster and more powerful SSD technology reached its threshold with SATA. The older connection interface deterred SSDs from delivering faster speeds as originally intended. Today, NVMe SSDs not only offer better and faster hosting than HDDs, but also SSDs with the SATA interface.
There are different types of NVMe hosting available. Considering that it is presently targeted at enterprises, most hosting providers only offer NVMe hosting on Virtual Private Servers (VPS), dedicated servers, and cloud servers. However, there are a number of vendors who still offer NVMe storage on their top-tier shared hosting plans.
Apart from speed and performance, there are other ways you can benefit from using NVMe web hosting. In the next section, we’ll show you how NVMe hosting trumps the regular SATA-based version.
What Are the Benefits of Using NVMe Hosting? (4 Key Points)
There are many advantages that NVMe storage technology offers in web hosting. Let us take a look at those we consider to be the most important.
1. NVMe Hosting Provides High Performance
One of the major reasons why you should consider using NVMe hosting is the performance edge it offers. This is achieved by using a different architecture from legacy SATA drives. The performance of a storage device depends largely on its ‘queue management’ and NVMe does this efficiently.
NVMe drives support multiple Input/Output (I/O) queues – as many as 64,000. Even more interesting is that each of these queues can have up to 64,000 entries. This is a huge contrast from what you get on older interfaces. For example, SATA can only accommodate 32 entries in one queue.
Furthermore, with NVMe the host software can generate as many queues as the controller allows for based on the system configuration and the expected workload. NVMe also uses an intelligent ‘scatter/gather’ I/O system to minimize CPU overhead on data transfers. This lets the system change priorities as the workload demands.
This way, applications can execute several I/O requests simultaneously. In the end, what you get is lower latency, more reliability, and faster server response times. NVMe drives using a 16-lane Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI) Express configuration can deliver up to 16 Gbps throughput – several miles ahead of the SATA interface’s 6 Gbps.
In the near future, NVMe drives are expected to deliver even faster speeds and performance. The major limitation appears to be NAND technology, which is at the core of SSD. However, manufacturers are working hard to improve flash memory, which means NVMe will also get a substantial boost.
2. NVMe Is Highly Energy-Efficient
Although NVMe delivers high performance, it also consumes less power. A perfect combination of high performance and low power consumption is the dream of every web hosting provider. NVMe technology is a much greener solution compared to older storage device interfaces.
It is common knowledge that SSDs consume less energy than their HDD counterparts. NVMe SSDs improve even further on the energy efficiency of SATA-based SSDs.
The intelligent queueing and workload allocation system makes it possible for the drives to use a low-power standby mode to reduce energy consumption significantly. When idle, they can conserve power by as much as 97%. This makes them an ideal option for new data centers and large enterprises.
3. NVMe Helps AI Systems Deliver More Innovation
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) systems are well known for their high demand for processing speed and power. NVMe meets these needs adequately. This explains why more enterprises are turning to this storage solution to drive their AI initiatives. If you’re in the AI/ML industry, you don’t want to miss out on the high performance and low latency that NVMe hosting offers.
In machine learning projects, the phase of training a model often requires a great number of resources — bandwidth especially. At the moment, NVMe still remains the only storage protocol that delivers both high bandwidth and low latency simultaneously. As such, you can leverage these benefits to achieve accelerated data flow and high responsiveness.
4. NVMe Users Enjoy a Better User Experience
With better hosting speed and performance, you’d expect users to generally enjoy a better experience overall. With significantly better response times and enhanced queuing, both your service consumers and employees can get more work done in less time. As a result, your business becomes even more profitable.
Slow access to data often results in slow web pages, which can translate into a negatively impacted user experience eventually costing you a good number of your customers. Fortunately, this isn’t as much of an issue with NVMe hosting. You can be sure that an NVMe server will always deliver top-notch user experience for any of your projects.
NVMe Hosting Conclusion
NVMe hosting offers a host of advantages over the regular SATA-based hosting solutions — HDD and SSD alike. As such, it’s no surprise it’s quickly becoming a favorite for enterprises and large scale businesses.
Apart from the evident performance advantage, NVMe hosting also consumes less power — a dream come true for the web hosting industry. The technology also encourages more innovation in the future, and delivers improved user experience in general.
What do you think about the adaptation of NVMe hosting in different industries in the future? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!