Apple Flash-Booting MacBooks?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Apr 12, 2001
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Apple Flash-Booting MacBooks?



Appleinsider reports that Intel demonstrated their upcoming NAND flash-based laptops at their Developer Forum:

At the forum, Intel mobility chief Sean Maloney conducted a demonstration in which he booted two PCs, one with 256MB of flash memory, and the other without. The PC with flash booted in about half the time.
The advantages of incorporating Flash-memory into the laptops reportedly include faster booting, wake from sleep, application launching and longer battery life.

According to Appleinsider, Apple has been working with Intel to incorporate NAND flash into next-generation MacBooks sometime in 2007. Before this feature is introduced, however, the rumor site still expects (non-Flash based) MacBook and MacBook Pro revisions before the end of the year.

Rumors of Apple looking into this Flash-caching techology has previously been reported with claims that they may go into an "ultra-portable" laptop by Macworld San Francisco in January, 2007.
 

zwida

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2001
587
0
NYC
Been looking forward to this for years. I know that boot times have come down significantly in the last few years, but instantaneous on from startup would be pretty amazing.

Finally a true "computer appliance?"

Edit: And yeah, bring on the ultra-portable, all-flash laptop.
 

GFLPraxis

macrumors 604
Mar 17, 2004
7,101
404
What are the advantages of NAND Flash other than booting faster? Is it anywhere near regular RAM in terms of speed?

Is double booting speed worth the price?
 

Don't panic

macrumors 603
Jan 30, 2004
5,541
695
having a drink at Milliways
good news. i had wondered for a while why they don't start using flash memory. with the sizes they have now it should be doable, at least in parallel to regular hard drives, which can act as a internal back up/storage system.
 

storage

macrumors 6502
Jun 4, 2005
275
0
Don't panic said:
good news. i had wondered for a while why they don't start using flash memory. with the sizes they have now it should be doable, at least in parallel to regular hard drives, which can act as a internal back up/storage system.
Because they can only be used for X erase/write cycles.
 

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,239
4
interesting implementation, but this is just rumor and the title of this thread treats it as a bit more than that.....

obviously it has some benefits, but will be pricier as well. Apple does have a good place in the flash market now considering how many chips it buys, but does that really matter? no. because apple will be buying the parts from Intel who will be buying the flash chips. :rolleyes:

it will be a great, great day when hard drives in notebooks are flash.
it'll be a long wait though still.

glad to see Intel moving things forward though, hopefully.
 

appleguru1

macrumors 6502
Mar 13, 2003
307
4
Very interesting.. but unless we're getting 100+GB flash drives... I'll still want an hdd ;)

though.. it'd be cool to have some non-volitile flash memory to store the OS and other critical components on.
 

timmillwood

macrumors 6502a
Apr 7, 2006
957
1
I dont mind waiting a bit longer for my MBP if it has this in..

but will it only make booting quicker?

becuase i bet i will leave the computer on all the time, just letting it sleep.
 

PlaceofDis

macrumors Core
Jan 6, 2004
19,239
4
timmillwood said:
I dont mind waiting a bit longer for my MBP if it has this in..

but will it only make booting quicker?

becuase i bet i will leave the computer on all the time, just letting it sleep.
no it should help in other things that need to be quicly and frequently accessed by the OS. although i'm sure that it will have to be implemented all on the software side too, so i don't know if anyone would see any benefit from the start until its made to work well with the OS.

should also help the amount of data that gets stored during 'sleep' and waking up of your laptop.
 

brianus

macrumors 6502
Jun 17, 2005
391
0
I keep seeing articles like this. Don't really understand how it would work at a filesystem level. What would this do the the notion of "startup disks"? Would MacBooks ship with a special version of OS X where the OS was on flash but user and app directories were on the hard drive? Would you see multiple volumes? I'm surprised never to see these issues brought up when there's a discussion of using NAND in laptops.
 

iBookG4user

macrumors 604
Jun 27, 2006
6,596
2
Seattle, WA
appleguru1 said:
Very interesting.. but unless we're getting 100+GB flash drives... I'll still want an hdd ;)

though.. it'd be cool to have some non-volitile flash memory to store the OS and other critical components on.
64GB Flash memory drives are avaliable now albeit at a high price.
 

CalfCanuck

macrumors 6502a
Nov 17, 2003
551
0
A step towards the indestructable portable!

I'm sure that now that Apple is now such a big buyer of Flash RAM (i.e. nanos) that they can get pretty good pricing.

It's great to see Flash continue to spread into the portable market - I've been arguing for years here that Flash will take over the smaller storage iPods (no moving parts = $$$ saved on repair costs).

While this talks about integrating Flash into a regular computer, it would be cool when we finally see a 32 GB Flash based computer with NO MOVING PARTS! Using a combinatiuon of wireless I/O and weather roof sealing, it would be water and dust resistant and extremely robust able to be dropped.

(Anyone remeber that video about trying to destroy the nano? They even drove over it with a car and it still worked - I can't remember what it finally took, but I think they had to throw it about 40 feet into the air to fall onto concrete to kill it!)
 

jhande

macrumors 6502
Sep 20, 2006
305
0
Denmark
Hmmm.... a 12/13" Flash based notebook, with 10+ hrs battery life? Where's my credit card :D

Seriously, I've been waiting for this for years. 30-50GB storage would do me just fine.

With flash/battery/screen tech being where it is, I'd also be interested in a sub-notebook...

Must. Not. Say........ Newton..
 

p0intblank

macrumors 68030
Sep 20, 2005
2,548
2
New Jersey
I can't wait until these notebooks with NAND memory hit the market. The new Intel Macs boot faster than ever before, so these upcoming models will be insane. :D
 

Lynxpro

macrumors 6502
Feb 22, 2005
382
0
What about placing a sizable chunk of the OS into Flash Memory? And thus, we'd return somewhat back to the days when a computer OS resided on ROM chip independent of the system's main memory.
 

bloodycape

macrumors 65816
Jun 18, 2005
1,373
0
California
Sony is already using 16gig flash in their UX but the down side is it is pricey, and you have to order it from japan? Maybe apple can get a good deal on 32gig flash Samsung announced a while ago and use two of them?
 

CaptainScarlet

macrumors regular
Jul 25, 2002
137
0
CheeseLand
All I know is that I ordered a MacBook for my wife on the 8-24 and the damm book STILL hasn't shipped yet!! ack!!

Next time I'll order the ram later....
 

steve_hill4

macrumors 68000
May 15, 2005
1,856
0
NG9, England
PlaceofDis said:
interesting implementation, but this is just rumor and the title of this thread treats it as a bit more than that.....
I agree, without wanting to sound too argumentative, shouldn't this really be a page 2?