Optane’s Last Gasp: Intel’s Final Persistent Memory Roadmap Leaks

Renowned hardware leaker HXL has published what is claimed to be Intel’s Optane Persistent Memory Roadmap. The slide details the company’s upcoming Persistent Memory 300-series modules, codenamed Crow Pass, for Intel’s next-generation Sapphire Rapids and Emerald Rapids processors. 

Intel’s Optane PMem 300-series Crow Pass modules will offer substantial performance improvements over predecessors, as they will use a DDR-T2 interface featuring a 4000 MT/s to 4400 MT/s data transfer rate. This will result in up to 3 GB/s 2R1W random bandwidth, as well as up to 6 GB/s 2R1W sequential bandwidth per module.

Furthermore, Intel promises an up to 25% opportunistic bandwidth increase per CPS. Although the new modules will be significantly faster than their predecessors, they will still consume about 15W. 

(Image credit: @9550pro/Twitter)

Intel will continue to offer Optane Persistent Memory modules in 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB capacities. And since Intel’s upcoming Eagle Stream platform features an eight-channel memory subsystem, up to 4TB of 3DXPoint memory will be supported.

Another improvement of Intel’s Crow Pass modules is compliance with FIPS140-3 level 2 requirements. On the hardware side of things, the modules will still use AES-256 encryption though, just like previous models. 

While Intel has officially abandoned its Optane memory business and there will be no new SSDs based on 3DXPoint memory, the company is still on track to release another family of Optane Persistent Memory 300-series modules for its Eagle Stream platform, based on its 4th and 5th Generations Xeon Scalable processors, codenamed Sapphire Rapids and Emerald Rapids. These Optane PMem modules will serve Intel’s Xeon Scalable platforms in the next few years, when there’s a need for a lot of relatively inexpensive memory near the CPU.