Report: China-Based Yangtze Memory Starts 64-Layer NAND Production

Credit: YMTCCredit: YMTCYangtze Memory Technologies Co. (YMTC) has reportedly started volume production of 64-layer 3D NAND. The triple-level cell chips with 256GB capacity use the company’s in-house Xtacking architecture for bonding two dies together.

It is the company’s first process to go into high volume production. Digitimes’ sources indicate that the Chinese firm has gradually increased its 3D NAND yield and will be ramping its Wuhan factory to 100,000 wafers per month in 2020; although, that could further grow to 150,000 wafers per month. The sources also stated that its state-owned parent company, Tsinghua Unigroup, is constructing a 3D NAND memory fab in Chengdu with a similar wafer capacity, to come online in 2021-2022.

YMTC’s 256GB chips contain 64-layer TLC 3D NAND (which other companies started manufacturing in 2017) and are manufactured with its proprietary Xtacking architecture. The company unveiled the technology last year at the Flash Memory Summit. The chips are manufactured on two wafers. One wafer contains the ‘periphery’ CMOS logic, and the other one has the actual 3D NAND, based on common charge trap technology. The wafers are then bonded together with a process step, with billions of what it calls metal Vertical Interconnect Accesses (VIAs).

The benefit of this technology is a much more efficient use of die area. YMTC claims that die size is reduced by 25% because the area efficiency is over 90% for Xtacking, compared to less than 65% for conventional 3D NAND. It even estimates that at 128 layers, the periphery circuits would take up over 50% of the die area. Xtacking makes YMTC’s 64-layer 3D NAND within 80-90% the density of other’s 96-layer 3D NAND, it claimed. Other companies are also using or working on CMOS under the array technology though, albeit not by bonding two separate wafers.

Additionally, the company says that it allows for a modular approach to technology development, shortening product development by three months and reducing the manufacturing cycling time, the time the product is in the fab, by 20%.

Both wafers are manufactured by YMTC, with the logic wafer produced on a 180nm process. The architecture is also capable of a 3 Gbps I/O speed, which is over two times faster than common today and similar to DDR4. YMTC is working on multiple generations of Xtacking simultaneously; however, it intends to skip the 96-layer generation and move directly to 128 layers.

YMTC is a new, ambitious player in the NAND industry and plays a key role in China’s semiconductor ambitions. The company was founded in 2016 and has over 1,500 R&D engineers. Its CEO had previously worked at Intel and the manufacturing company XMC, now YMTC’s wholly-owned subsidiary.

EU: Right to Be Forgotten Doesn't Apply to US

Photo Source: GooglePhoto Source: Google

The Court of Justice for the European Union today ruled that a privacy law commonly known as the “right to be forgotten” doesn’t apply beyond the EU’s borders. Internet activists hailed the decision as a victory against online censorship, because it means that EU laws can’t force search companies to de-list results made in other countries, which would have given the EU outsized control over what data is available online around the world.

The premise behind the right to be forgotten is simple: people shouldn’t be haunted by their pasts forever. But in the modern era, companies like Google have made it near impossible for people to leave their pasts behind, with many of their most embarrassing moments just a few clicks away. That wasn’t a problem just a few decades ago; the right to be forgotten is supposed to give people the same chance of moving on.

Implementing the right to be forgotten is another matter. Some people, like celebrities and politicians, live in the public eye. How should their requests to have search results de-referenced (as the CJEU put it) be handled? Other people might want to bury search results, too, but at what point do they become a matter of public interest? And who’s going to make sure the rule isn’t abused to cover up information that should remain available?

This wasn’t a small problem. Google said in 2018 that it received requests to de-list 2.4 million URLs in the first three-and-a-half years since the right to be forgotten’s introduction. We doubt those requests have stopped in the interim, which means it’s important for the company to know exactly how the EU wanted de-listed results to be handled. Was it truly attempting to remove the results from the global internet, or just within its borders?

CJEU published an initial opinion in January saying it believed that applying the right to be forgotten outside the EU would set a dangerous precedent when it came to online censorship. The EU might have good intentions regarding the removal of certain URLs from search results. Would more oppressive governments like China, Russia and the like use the precedent set by the right to be forgotten to step up their own censorship efforts?

Here’s what CJEU said in today’s ruling:

The Court emphasises that, in a globalised world, internet users’ access — including those outside the EU — to the referencing of a link referring to information regarding a person whose centre of interests is situated in the EU is likely to have immediate and substantial effects on that person within the EU itself, so that a global de-referencing would meet the objective of protection referred to in EU law in full. However, it states that numerous third States do not recognise the right to dereferencing or have a different approach to that right. The Court adds that the right to the protection of personal data is not an absolute right, but must be considered in relation to its function in society and be balanced against other fundamental rights, in accordance with the principle of proportionality. In addition, the balance between the right to privacy and the protection of personal data, on the one hand, and the freedom of information of internet users, on the other, is likely to vary significantly around the world.

Intel, HP, Dell and Microsoft Team Up Against Trump Tariffs

Microsoft's Surface Go. Credit: Tom's HardwareMicrosoft’s Surface Go. Credit: Tom’s Hardware

Intel, HP, Microsoft and Dell are joining forces to oppose President Donald Trump’s proposed tariffs on $300 billion in Chinese goods, which includes laptop computers and tablets. Bloomberg first reported the news. The comment can be read in its entirety here.

The four companies have submitted joint comments in opposition to the escalation of tariffs on Chinese imports, suggesting that the practice would be bad for the industry and for people buying the goods. According to Bloomberg, the companies have said the tariffs are likely to hit during the back-to-school and holiday shopping periods, when lots of people shop for new computers.

Additionally, the companies wrote that “our most price-sensitive customers will be among the most significantly impacted.” The best case scenario, the companies say, is that consumers will use old models, though they may not have the best security features. But it could also, they suggest, “force some consumers to go with laptop altogether.”

These comments come during a series of public hearings on tariffs that started on June 17 and will run through June 25.

The Consumer Technology Association, an industry trade organization and lobbying group suggested in a study on Monday that prices of laptops and tablets could increase by as much as 19% the tariffs are put in place. 

In the comment, the four companies claimed to have spent $35 billion together on research and development in 2017, and the costs from tariffs could damage innovation and hurt jobs held by American workers by moving money elsewhere and would help manufacturers that aren’t dependent on sales in the United States.

Best Amazon Prime Day Gaming Laptop Deals 2019

The countdown to Prime Day has started. We’re now less than a week away from Amazon’s faux holiday. The retailer’s self-proclaimed Black Friday in July event is likely to usher in an influx of Prime Day gaming laptop deals. We don’t expect to see too many deals on high-end machines, but we expect to see good buys on low- and mid-tier machines.  

That said, our favorite Prime Day gaming laptop deal of the moment comes not from Amazon, but from Dell. The PC manufacturer is taking up to $700 off select gaming laptops. If you’re on a strict budget, the Dell G-Series laptops are your best bet. 

If you’re looking for a premium system, Alienware is also taking up to $1,700 off their gaming rigs. Naturally, the costlier systems are getting the biggest price cuts. Other laptop deals include:

More Deal Coverage

New Third-Gen Ryzen CPUs Listed by EEC: Ryzen 9 3900, Ryzen 7 3700, Ryzen 5 3500

A recent EEC (Eurasian Economic Commission) listing has revealed a multitude of unannounced third-generation Ryzen desktop processors, which includes the Ryzen 9 3900, Ryzen 7 3700, Ryzen 5 3500 and three other Ryzen 3000-series Pro chips. As with all preliminary listings, these could merely be placeholders that reflect certain models that AMD may or may not bring to market.

Credit: AMDCredit: AMD

The Ryzen 3000-series family currently consists of six members starting from the Ryzen 5 3600 hexa-core part up to the flagship Ryzen 9 3950X 16-core chip. New evidence has emerged that suggests AMD could capitalize on the Ryzen 3000-series’ traction and release a couple more SKUs to fill the price gap. The mainstream line allegedly gets the Ryzen 9 3900, Ryzen 7 3700 and Ryzen 5 3500.

SEP (USD)
Cores / Threads
TDP (Watts)
Base Frequency (GHz)
Boost Frequency (GHz)
Total Cache (MB)
PCIe 4.0 Lanes (Processor / Chipset)
Ryzen 9 3950X $749 16 / 32 105W 3.5 4.7 72 24 / 16 
Ryzen 9 3900X $499 12 / 24 105W 3.8 4.6 70 24 / 16 
Ryzen 9 3900* ? 12 / 24
65W ? ? 70 24 / 16 
Ryzen 7 3800X $399 8 / 16 105W 3.9 4.5 36 24 / 16
Ryzen 7 3700X $329 8 / 16 65W 3.6 4.4 36 24 / 16
Ryzen 7 3700* ? 8 / 16
65W ? ? 36 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3600X $249 6 / 12 95W 3.8 4.4 35 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3600 $199 6 / 12 65W 3.6 3.6 35 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3500* ? 6/12 65W ? ? 35 24 / 16

*Specifications in the table are unconfirmed

Credit: EECCredit: EEC

The Ryzen 9 3900 features the same 12-core, 24-thread configuration as the Ryzen 3 3900X. The non-X variant has a 65W TDP (thermal design power) rating, and as a result, the chip will likely come with lower operating clocks. The same could probably be said for the Ryzen 7 3700 eight-core, 16-thread part.

The Ryzen 5 3500, on the other hand, could be the successor to the Ryzen 5 2500X. If so, the processor would only be available to OEMs. The Ryzen 5 3500’s specifications remain a mystery as the EEC listing only exposed the chip’s 65W TDP. Since even the lowest Ryzen 3000-series part has six cores and 12 threads, the Ryzen 5 3500 could arrive with the same core and thread count.

SEP (USD)
Cores / Threads
TDP (Watts)
Base Frequency (GHz)
Boost Frequency (GHz)
Total Cache (MB)
PCIe 4.0 Lanes (Processor / Chipset)
Ryzen 9 3900X $499 12 / 24 105W 3.8 4.6 70 24 / 16 
Ryzen 9 3900* ? 12 / 24
65W ? ? 70 24 / 16 
Ryzen 9 Pro 3900 ? 12 / 24
65W
? ? 70 24 / 16
Ryzen 7 3700X $329 8 / 16 65W 3.6 4.4 36 24 / 16
Ryzen 7 3700* ? 8 / 16
65W ? ? 36 24 / 16
Ryzen 7 Pro 3700* ? 8 / 16
65W
? ? 36
24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3600X $249 6 / 12 95W 3.8 4.4 35 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3600 $199 6 / 12 65W 3.6 3.6 35 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 Pro 3600* ? 6 / 12
65W
?
? 35
24 / 16

*Specifications in the table are unconfirmed

When it comes to the Pro line, AMD has reserved names for the Ryzen 9 Pro 3900, Ryzen 7 Pro 3700 and Ryzen 5 Pro 3600. The chipmaker might add more later on, but for now, it appears that business users have three options. Considering that Ryzen 3000-series Pro and non-Pro models have identical TDP, it’s reasonable to expect them to perform the same.

How to Set Up a Raspberry Pi Web Server

One of the most popular uses of the Raspberry Pi is as a web server that lives on your local network. Whether you need an Intranet for your office or a small server for doing web development, the Pi is a great choice. In fact, at Tom’s Hardware, we have a local Pi web server that we use to deliver the content for our laptop battery test, which involves continuous surfing over Wi-Fi.

To get your web server working, you’ll need a Raspberry Pi that’s connected to your local network and running a fairly-recent version of the Raspbian operating system. These instructions will work on just about any model, including the powerful Raspberry Pi 4 and diminutive Raspberry Pi Zero W. If you need to install Raspbian, see our tutorial on how to set up a Raspberry Pi or, better yet, how to do a headless install (no keyboard or screen required).

1. Navigate to the command prompt / terminal. You can get there by hitting CTRL+ALT+T from the Raspbian desktop or connecting remotely via SSH if you have that configured. Some users also configure the Raspberry Pi to boot directly to the command prompt.

2. Update your packages by typing

sudo-apt-get update 

This will make sure that you get the latest versions of every file you download after this.

3. Install apache2 with the command:

sudo apt-get install apache2 -y

4. Install php for your sever by typing:

sudo apt-get install php libapache2-mod-php -y

5. Install mariadb so you can use a mysql database with your website. You start by typing:

sudo apt-get install mariadb-server

Then, after the download is finished. You must do the formal install by typing:

sudo mysql_secure_installation

You will be asked for a root password. You can leave it blank.

6. Install the php-mysql connector so php pages can access the DB.

sudo apt install php-mysql

7. Restart apache2 so all of the changes are running.

sudo service apache2 restart

8. Test your server. On the Raspberry Pi itself, you should be able to go to http://localhost and see a test page. From another computer on the same network, you should be able to get there by visiting http://raspberrypi.local or http://raspberrypi, provided that your Raspberry Pi’s hostname is raspberrypi. 

9. Build your website by putting html or PHP files in the /var/www/html directory.

Changing Your Server’s Host Name

By default, your Raspberry Pi’s host name is “raspberrypi.” But that’s not only a boring address for a website, but it’s problematic if you have more than one Pi on your network. Fortunately, it’s each to change the host name to something else.

1. Enter the Raspberry Pi Configuration tool by typing this in the terminal.

sudo raspi-config 

Alternatively, you can launch the windowed version by navigating to Preferences->Raspberry Pi Configuration from the start menu, but why like doing it via the command line utility instead.

2. Select Network Options


3. Select Hostname


4. Tap Ok
to get past a warning about not using characters other than letters, numbers or a hyphen (but only if the hyphen is in the middle of the name).

5. Enter your hostname and hit Ok.


6. Select Finish.

7. Select Yes when prompted to reboot.

After you reboot, your Raspberry Pi will have its new name.

How to Set Up FTP on Your Pi Web Server

You won’t have much of a web server if you don’t put some web pages and media files in the /var/www/html folder. And while you could do all of your web development on the Pi, most people will probably want to write the code on their primary PCs and then copy it over. And one of the best ways to do that is via FTP. Here’s how.

1. Enable SSH on your Raspberry Pi if you haven’t already. You can do that by navigating to the Interfacing Options->SSH menu from rasp-config. Or, if you’re on the desktop, you can go to Preferences->Raspberry Pi Configuration and click on the interfaces tab.

2. Change the permissions for the /var/www/ folder (and all folders under it) so you can write files to it. To do this, you must enter the following commands.

sudo chown pi /var/www/html

3. Use an FTP client on your PC and make sure to set it to use SFTP protocol, not just plain FTP. If you’re using Windows, we recommend Filezilla, which is the leading free FTP app.


The default username and password are “pi” and “raspberry” as they are for SSH.

Dell S2419HGF 144 Hz FreeSync Gaming Monitor Is on Sale for $150

Credit: DellCredit: Dell

If you’re looking for a budget monitor for gaming, the Dell S2419HGF might just fit your needs. The Dell S2419HGF originally carried a $320 price tag, but it can now be yours for just $149.99.

Released in August 2018, the Dell S2419HGF is a 24-inch gaming monitor that flaunts a FHD resolution (1920 x 1080) TN panel with an impressive 144 Hz refresh rate when overclocked and has a 1ms (gray to gray) response time. Those specifications combined with AMD’s FreeSync technology, which works from 40-120 Hz, allow the S2419HGF to provide you with a fast and tear-free gaming experience and. The screen also features an anti-glare 3H hardness coating and has a max brightness level of 350 nits.

Overall, the Dell S2419HGF is a pretty versatile monitor. It supports height, swivel, tilt and pivot adjustments so you can accommodate the monitor to your linking. The monitor has a 100 x 100mm VESA mount and only weighs 16.6 pounds (7.6kg) in case you want to put it on a monitor arm. The Dell S2419HGF also puts a plethora of outputs at your disposal. There are two HDMI 1.4 ports, one DisplayPort 1.2 output, one USB 3.0 upstream port, two USB 3.0 downstream ports, one headphone-out jack and one audio line-out jack.

Dell backs the S2419HGF with a limited three-year warranty.

Should You Buy This Monitor?

Remember, if this is your first foray into high-refresh rate gaming, you’ll need to make sure you have a beefy enough graphics card. For more help on making sure you buy the best monitor for your needs, take a look at our PC Monitor Buying Guide.

We’ve also curated our favorite displays for PC gaming on Best Gaming Monitors page. And if you’re looking for something more premium, see our Best 4K Gaming Monitors page. 

Chinese Company Begins Mass Production of Homegrown DRAM

Credit: ShutterstockCredit: ShutterstockChangXin Memory Technologies (CXMT), one of China’s three DRAM fabs, announced at the 2019 World Manufacturing Convention that it has started to mass produce its homemade DRAM chips.

The Chinese government has been pouring billions of U.S. dollars into the country’s domestic memory industry with the objective of decreasing dependency on imports. However, Chinese DRAM makers have a long way to go before they can rival seasoned big names, such as Samsung, SK Hynix or Micron. According to TrendForce, Samsung, SK Hynix and Micron were the key chipmakers in the the DRAM market in Q2, with 45.7%, 28.7% and 20.5% market share, respectively. Together, they owned 94.9% of the DRAM pie.

ChangXin Memory Technologies is going all in to not disappoint Beijing’s expectations. The semiconductor company has reportedly invested approximately $21.1 billion into the DRAM project in addition to the $2.5 billion injected into research and development. ChangXin Memory Technologies has estimated a production capacity up to 120,000 wafers per month in its initial phase. It hopes to deliver them before the year ends.

From a engineering standpoint, ChangXin Memory Technologies has some catching up to do. The Chinese company’s DRAM chip allegedly still relies on the 18nm manufacturing process, while its competitors have already advanced to the 16nm and 12nm process nodes. Word on the street is that ChangXin Memory Technologies’ DRAM design borrowed inspiration from Qimonda’s technology. However, the firm has made several modifications to the design in order to reduce the influence of U.S. technology. Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit, one of ChangXin Memory Technologies’ comrades, reportedly had to cease production, due to the U.S. blocking the Chinese fab from acquiring U.S. components.

ChangXin Memory Technologies’ entry into the market is a very interesting move that could gently shake up the market. If the fab can close the technological gap and ramp up production, we could see DRAM prices falling even more in a few years.

Intel Core i5-9600K Now $230 At Amazon & Newegg

News of AMD eating Intel’s lunch might be a bit exaggerated, but the firm has certainly gone from table scraps to appetizers and scooting ever closer to the entrée as the next generation of Ryzen draws near. While we can’t wait to see how some of the mid-priced processors perform, some of us literally cannot wait that long to repair or replace their current PC. Newegg’s here to help with a deal that saves buyers over $50 off the Core i5-9600K’s original price.

Not to be outdone, Amazon’s matching Newegg’s offer, without announcing duration.  

Both sellers are offering free shipping, but the latter choice would score more points on my Amazon card. To buy or to wait is a question only you can answer!

Gigabyte's Aorus Z390 PRO Wifi is on sale in the UK with 25% off

The Gigabyte Z390 PRO Wifi is the perfect pairing for any K series processor The Gigabyte Z390 PRO Wifi is the perfect pairing for any K series processor

A high-spec Z390 Intel board for £151

If you’re going to invest in a high performance Intel CPU (like this awesome Intel Core i5-9600K deal), you’ll really want a high quality motherboard to go with it. For Intel’s mainstream desktop platform, that means a board with the Z390 chipset. Handily, Gigabyte’s excellent Aorus Z390 PRO WIFI has just hit its lowest ever price on Amazon UK.

A cut-down variant of Gigabyte’s Z390 Aorus Master, the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 PRO WIFI is aimed pretty squarely at gamers. Some of the fancier features include 12+1 power delivery via an Intersil ISL69138 PWM 7-phase controller, extensive cooling for critical components such as your M.2 PCIe SSDs, and of course a plethora of LED lighting options too.

The latter, in fact, is divided into four customizable zones – the audio circuit separation line, the rear panel cover, the RAM slots and the main Z390 chipset heatsink. So, this board doesn’t just perform, it looks great doing it.
 

● The Gigabyte Aorus Z390 PRO WIFI motherboard is available now from amazon.co.uk for £151.37 (25% off RRP)
 

Other highlights include a total of three full-length PCIe 3.0 slots with support for two-way Nvidia SLI graphics and three-way AMD Crossfire. The top two slots sport steel armour reinforcement and are hooked directly into the CPU, while the bottom full-length slot is wired up to the Z390 chipset and limited to x4 speeds. As for storage, there are six SATA ports plus a pair of quad-lane M.2 PCIe slots to satisfy all your storage needs.

Specifications

Chipset Intel Z390
Socket LGA1151
CPU Support Intel 8th and 9th
Power Delivery 12+1
Memory Support 4x DDR4 up to 128GB + 4,266 MHz Max
Networking Intel 9560 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi, Intel I219-V Gigabit Ethernet
Expansion 2x PCIe 3.0 x16, 1x PCIe 3.0 x4, 3x PCIe 3.0 x1
Storage 6x SATA 6Gbps, 2x M.2 PCIe X4
Rear I/O 5x USB 3.1 Type A, 1x USB 3.1 Type C, 4x USB 2.0 Type A, HDMI 1.4, Gigabit Lan, 5.1 Audio, Optical Out

The Z390 PRO Wifi has more RGB than you could throw thermal paste atThe Z390 PRO Wifi has more RGB than you could throw thermal paste at

Anything else…?

It may not be Christmas, it may not be Black Friday, or even Amazon Prime day, yet there’s still more goodies to have with this beauty. As the name suggests, the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 PRO WIFI comes complete with a high performance Intel 9560 802.11ac Wave 2 Wi-Fi module, plus an Intel I219-V gigabit ethernet controller for speedy network performance. As for built-in ports, you get two USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A, one USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C, three USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A and four USB 2.0 ports.

For the record, the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 PRO WIFI’s 12+1 power delivery makes for good overclocking headroom too, so it’s a good choice to pair with any unlocked K Series Intel processors. It also happens to be one of the fastest booting Z390 boards on the market. If you like a PC that gets up and running quickly, the Gigabyte Aorus Z390 PRO WIFI is a great choice.

Image Credits: Tom’s Hardware / Gigabyte