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Wear leveling and its advantages

Posted: 16 Sep 2008     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:data storage  flash memory  wear levelling  program erase cycles 

Today's embedded systems use flash devices in data storage applications that may emulate a hard disc drive; these types of erase/write intensive applications have highlighted concerns about flash product life expectancy. Flash memory devices are limited to a finite number of program erase cycles. An embedded system's product life expectancy is tied directly to the flash use model and the number of PE cycles guaranteed by the flash device. Using proper flash management tools, the flash life expectancy can be extended to the point where the erase/write cycle limit has no consequence in many write-intensive applications. A common technique used for extending the life expectancy of the flash memory is wear levelling. It is good practice to properly evaluate a systems flash use model and to determine if a tool like wear levelling can be used to extend flash life cycles to meet system requirements.

This application note discusses wear levelling, its advantages and wear levelling mechanism itself.

View the PDF document for more information.

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