The NVM Express specification, developed cooperatively by more than 80 companies from across the industry, was released on March 1, 2011, by the NVMHCI Work Group (commonly referred to as the NVM Express Work Group). The NVM Express 1.0 specification defines an optimized register interface, command set and feature set for PCI Express® (PCIe®) Solid-State Drives (SSDs). The NVM Express 1.1 specification was released on October 11, 2012 adding additional Enterprise and Client capabilities. The goal is to deliver the full performance capabilities of current and next generation non-volatile memory, supporting at least a 10 year life of the interface, while standardizing the PCIe SSD interface to enable broad ecosystem support.
The significant advances in performance enabled by non-volatile memory-based storage technology, as embodied in PCIe-based SSDs, has demanded the surrounding platform infrastructure evolve to keep pace, to realize the full potential of these devices. A primary goal of NVM Express is to provide a scalable interface that unlocks the potential of PCIe-based SSDs now and at least a decade into the future. The interface efficiently supports multi-core architectures, ensuring thread(s) may run on each core with their own SSD queue and interrupt without any locks required. For Enterprise class solutions, there is support for end-to-end data protection, security and encryption capabilities, as well as robust error reporting and management capabilities.
The NVM Express Work Group is directed by a multi-member Promoter Group of companies that includes Cisco, Dell, EMC, HGST, Intel, LSI, Micron, NetApp, Oracle, PMC-Sierra, Samsung, SanDisk and Seagate.