OWC Previews Transwarp Software – Instant SSD Cache Solution

PR_transwarpOther World Computing today announced Transwarp, a revolutionary software solution that redefines traditional hard drive performance. Utilizing any SSD as a removable, flexible cache, Transwarp magically brings the incredible performance of solid state drives to any high-capacity hard drive. Transwarp will be available for preview at CES 2015 at OWC’s booth #30572 and is slated for release later this year.

Key Features:

  • Combines any SSD and HDD into an intelligent, fast volume
  • Achieve the incredible speed benefits of SSDs with the capacity of traditional hard disks
  • Quick and easy set-up
  • Maintains all data on the HDD
  • Compatible with any filesystem supported by OS X

With just a few clicks, combine any SSD and hard drive into a Transwarp drive — an optimized volume that provides a user with near-instantaneous access to their data. Transwarp intelligently caches the most frequently and recently accessed parts of the volume onto the SSD, vastly improving overall performance while safely maintaining a complete copy of the volume’s information on the hard drive.

Transwarp is unique in that it allows the SSD caching drive to be removed without damaging the volume or compromising any data on the hard drive, and unlike conventional cache, Transwarp persists even when the power is turned off. Once the SSD is reconnected, Transwarp seamlessly picks up where it left off, making it a great option for laptop users looking for the flexibility to be light on the road, but fast at home or in the office. Converting a drive from Transwarp happens as quickly as it is created, returning both drives to regular volumes within minutes.

Developed by the same team that brought SoftRAID to the Mac, Transwarp is set to revolutionize the possibilities of hybrid drives.

“Transwarp is an exciting and innovative software solution giving Mac users the best of both worlds in terms of performance and capacity, while maximizing flexibility and data integrity,” said Larry O’Connor, Founder and CEO, Other World Computing. “We’re excited to offer an exclusive first-look at OWC’s CES 2015 booth.”

Click here for more on OWC’s announcements from CES 2015.

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34 Comments

  • I have a hunch that other, more recent developments in the flash storage space may have eclipsed some potential benefits of the Transwarp concept.

    • Really? What developments?
      I am always open to altering my storage methodology… Although there is always a cost-benefit analysis done before I make changes.
      Best thing I have seen is the IBM FlashSystem 900, but it is cost prohibitive.
      My disc RAID (60) system can saturate my 10GbE backbone on a read, but writing is much slower (500Mb or so). I would like a solution to allow me to write hundreds of gigabytes (or a few terabytes) to the server at speed.
      If nothing else, this would be a nice option for people running older systems who might not be using (and might not be able to use) this new technology.

  • Is this idea dead?

    I love the general idea of the fusion drive; however, a 4GB buffer is all but useless is a server setting. My setup provides 128TB of total storage with 16TB being flash. Having the entire flash (or a large portion) work as an inbound write cache would allow the 10GbE to keep running at 10Gb.

    When you are shuffling around large video files, 4GB might represent 5% or 10% of the total file size.

    Please consider releasing this as it certainly would fill a need (be sure to support 10.11, please).

    • I am becoming frustrated trying to find a solution like this in the Mac world. The PC side has a product called PrimoCache which provides exactly this functionality (and more). I am getting tempted to replace my Mac server with a Windows server.

      Any particular reason this seems to have been abandoned? Is there at least a working beta version? I can see this being a nice addition to the SoftRAID driver.

      Just saying…

  • Hi OWC,

    Any news on this tech? I have a storage array that I’d love to add SSD caching to. Please keep us posted with any updates! If you’re no longer developing Transwarp, also please let us know.

    -H

  • CES 2016 has come and gone with no new info. Is the project still alive? If it’s not just say so. This way we could stop tormenting ourselves and move on.

    • As attractive as the concept seems, I would not be surprised to learn the engineering and testing requirements have become a bit grander than perhaps initially hoped. I’d still love to see Transwarp in action, though. OWC has come out with some killer products in recent years, so I still have hopes they’ll eventually roll this one out, too.

      • I fathom it proved to be a formidable technical challenge, for it both to work and be reliable. I am just hoping for a sign of life like “working on it’ or “hopefully in 2016”.

  • Is this product still going to be released, or has the price of dropping ssd drives made this solution unprofitable/obsolete?

  • Can multiple partitions benefit from Transwarp? For example, say my primary volume on a 2010 Mac PRo is actually split into three partitions. I install an SSD in an empty bay (or better yet, an Accelsior E2 card). Can the three partitions I described each be paired with a portion of the Accelsior card for acceleration via Transwarp? Or will Transwarp only be able to manage a single partition + SSD pairing?

    • Transwarp will be released using 1 HDD paired with 1 SSD to make a single Transwarp. This being said, Transwarp will be able to use 1 SSD and cache data for up to 16 volumes on any number of HDDs.

  • Any information on cost or a general time frame when we can expect this to launch?

    In addition, can the SSD used with this be a two drive raid configuration, or does the SSD used have to be single drive only? (I don’t believe that OWC makes any single drive thunderbolt SSD, but they sell other brands that may need trim?)

    • Hi Rich, Transwarp will work with any drive that is seen by the computer. If the two drive RAID is controlled in the enclosure and presented as a single drive to the computer then it will work with Transwarp. As far as release date and pricing, we aren’t ready to make any official announcements but be sure to keep an eye on the Rocket Yard for updates.

      • Actually, I was wondering if the transwarp drive can be a ssd raid, not the drive it is accelerating. There are both single and dual thunderbolt enclosures, and I wasn’t sure if a two ssd raid drive setup would work to boost my main 1tb hdd boot drive, or only a single ssd drive would work.

        thanks.

        • If the dual SSD RAID is presented to the computer as a single drive then Transwarp will work with it. Whether you use it as the caching drive or the primary storage drive.

    • It will work with any drive seen on the computer. A drobo will be presented as a single drive to the computer so it shouldn’t have an issue working with Transwarp.

  • I am interested to see how this compares to apple’s fusion drive and also how compares to a straight ssd performance.

    Also, I remember adding a Transwarp accelerator card to my Apple IIGS decades before, it really boosted the performace, so it was interesting to see the name pop up again decades later.

    • TransWarp lets you remove and replace the SSD drive without damaging your data.

      Fusion Drive is great, but you can’t remove the SSD.

      • Data Rundundency is a big advantage, as long as this works well with thunderbolt/usb 3.

        One of the main reasons I have not tried a homebrew fusion setup is simply because it involves terminal commands to set it up, hopefully this will be an easy to use app, or some kind of boot usb with automated setup.

        I am looking forward to more details and a release date, hopefully sooner than later.