SSD recommendations?



  • Thinking of buying a new computer. Thinking of putting a 256 GB SSD in the boot/application drive, backed with a 1.5 or 2 TB spinner to store media and such and backup the SSD.

    Right now, my only experience with SSDs is on my MacBook Air, which is admittedly fast as shit. If Windows 7 boots from an SSD is it as fast as shit as OS X is? Is the speed of an SSD worth the annoyance of having to periodically clean-off your boot drive?

    It looks like SSDs only come in 2.5" sizes... do you need an adapter to fit those into a standard 3.5" drive bay? Do they come with the adapter, or is it sold separately?

    Is there anything else I should know? Best brand maybe?



  • I don't have one myself, but my friend bought one for his Windows machine and says it's the single best purchase you can make to improve the performance of your machine.  He's extremely happy with it.



  • boot will take 22 seconds only with win 7 laptop. try windows 8 beta and boot will speed fastily to 10 secs.

    samsung make very good ssd of highest qality.



  • @Nagesh said:

    boot will take 22 seconds only with win 7 laptop. try windows 8 beta and boot will speed fastily to 10 secs.

    samsung make very good ssd of highest qality.

    That's a little disappointing, my MacBook Air can beat 22 seconds handily. Thanks for the recommendation.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Right now, my only experience with SSDs is on my MacBook Air, which is admittedly fast as shit. If Windows 7 boots from an SSD is it as fast as shit as OS X is?

    I don't use OS X but my PC boots really fast, the BIOS takes much longer than the actual Win7 boot screen, so yeah, fast as shit (I have not timed it but I think 10-15)

    @blakeyrat said:

     

    Is the speed of an SSD worth the annoyance of having to periodically clean-off your boot drive?

    Hmmm, it is really worth it to me but what are you talking about perioducally clean off your boot drive?  SSD need some care, some of this stuff is taken care of by win7 if the system is a clean install.

    http://www.computing.net/howtos/show/solid-state-drive-ssd-tweaks-for-windows-7/552.html

    This page provide some useful advice and hints.

    Also at least I, only put in the SSD the system and HDD intensive software, when I'm done with them I unistall them.  The other stuff I don't really care about I install on one of the spinners.  I have a 128 Kingston and it is only half full so I have plenty of free space.

    @blakeyrat said:

      

    It looks like SSDs only come in 2.5" sizes... do you need an adapter to fit those into a standard 3.5" drive bay? Do they come with the adapter, or is it sold separately?

    Depends, my kingston came with the adapter for 3.5 and 5.25 bays, some of the more fancy chassis come with bays for ssd and if the one you buy doesn't have an adaptor you can also buy one separately

    @blakeyrat said:

       

    Is there anything else I should know? Best brand maybe?

    You should of course do your research before buying, some of the SSD have issues such as bad firmware or sucky chips.  Also you should think if you want an SLC or an MLC as they have different prices.  Also take into account the nanometers as they influence how fast the cell wear off.

    I have heard good things about intel X-25 based ssd, other than that you should do a proper research but remember that nothing is free, there are drawback to almost anything



  • @Sutherlands said:

    I don't have one myself, but my friend bought one for his Windows machine and says it's the single best purchase you can make to improve the performance of your machine.  He's extremely happy with it.

    Yes. It improve batery life great deal. For some ssd bashing read jeff atwod's blog. Latest entry is on ssd only.



  • I have a 240 GB model in my laptop, forgot the exact make but it's based on the original SandForce controller. Boot time is 40 seconds, from when I hit the power button until the Windows desktop shows up. And when it hits the desktop, it's ready to go, you don't have to wait at all for additional services/programs to start up and quit thrashing your system drive. (My desktop system hits the Windows desktop in about 50 seconds but then I have to wait another minute or so before it'll respond to anything, and except for the storage it's many times faster than my laptop.) I never have to clean the drive off, but I specifically chose 240 GB because I knew that was over twice the size I needed at the time.

    Some come with a 2.5" - 3.5" drive bay adapter (mine did) but not all have them, you can find them for around $5 online.

    Best brand is usually Intel. Apparently SandForce's second-generation controllers have a lot of firmware issues. The original ones are rock-solid, though. But Intel's drives seem to get the best marks for reliability, and the truth is most SSDs are fast enough that you'll never tell the difference between them unless you do some crazy stuff, so reliability is probably more important than speed.



  • I put in an Intel X-25M in my Win7 laptop and it boots in about 15s.  The SSD is just for OS and frequently used apps (Visual Studio, SQL Server, Photoshop) while I have a standard HDD for data (VS Solutions, SQL datafiles, etc).  I also moved my user profile & page file to the HDD and disabled hibernation since the SSD was only 80GB and I needed the space.  An SSD is definitely a good idea for heavy use machine and I'm glad I went with it.

    I am going to upgrade both of my drives in my laptop to new SSDs in the next few weeks.  I'm going to go with two Corsair Force 3 240GB SSDs.  I'm not planning to Raid them, but keep them separate like today.  One for OS and apps, the other for data files.  The Corsair Force 3 has the new Sandforce 2200 controllers and use async flash memory to keep cost down.  Based on some of the reviews I've been reading, you get in the range of about 500MB/s on both reads and writes under most use cases.  I think performance goes down when doing very large file operations (for example copying a 1GB file).  Since my laptop is primarily a development machine, I don't do a lot of large file ops so that shouldn't be a problem.  

    I was going to go with the Samsung 256GB SSDs until I read up on the Sandforce controllers and stumbled into the Corsair Force 3.   I don't think even the new Samsung SSDs can touch the performance of SSDs with the Sandforce controllers.

    I don't remember what came with my Intel X-25m, but I know the Corsair comes with the rails to install in a desktop.



  • Wow, thanks for the great info.



  • As a follow-up to mott555's post and mine, specifically his comment on Sandforce's firmware issues on the 2200 series, I would do some research before buying anything using the Sandforce controllers.  There are certain MOBOs that are still causing issues.  You might want to review this thread (http://forum.corsair.com/v3/showthread.php?t=97418) to see if you have one of the MOBOs that are having issues if you are considering a Sandforce based SSD.  

    In my case, I'm going to risk it since all indications are that the new firmware addresses my MOBO.

     



  • I get my SSD today, so I'll be spending this evening tearing the shit out of my computer and putting it back together again to install the thing. Whee.

    I ended up getting a 256 GB Plextor, because NewEgg was selling them cheap and it seemed to have good reviews. Annoyingly, it doesn't come with a 2.5->3.5 adapter, so I had to order one separately.



  • My boot time is down to 12 seconds, but I must have done something wrong when changing boot order, because now my BIOS takes ages. So the net gain is zero. (Maybe I somehow turned on full RAM check on boot?)



  • Serious question - how often do people actually reboot?  At home & work I just leave all my stuff on and let the sleep/hibernate/battery life take care of it.  I probably reboot every couple of months, usually because some software or update requires it.



  • @LoztInSpace said:

    Serious question - how often do people actually reboot?  At home & work I just leave all my stuff on and let the sleep/hibernate/battery life take care of it.  I probably reboot every couple of months, usually because some software or update requires it.

    I'm lookng forward to buying an SSD sometime soon for increased performance.  Fast boot time, however, seems irrelevant and unimportant.  Just for the heck of it, I checked today and from pushing the power button to fully usable was 1 minute 15 seconds.  Even if I did that once every day, it's a pretty insignificant amount of time.  Since I typically leave mine on for a couple of weeks at a time, boot time is even less significant.

     



  • @LoztInSpace said:

    Serious question - how often do people actually reboot?  At home & work I just leave all my stuff on and let the sleep/hibernate/battery life take care of it.  I probably reboot every couple of months, usually because some software or update requires it.

    Not often, but:

    1) Installing the SSD involved reinstalling OS, all patches, software, etc. So I rebooted a lot in the last two days.

    2) It's a quick and easy benchmark that conveniently takes long enough that you can time it without software or a stopwatch.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    1) Installing the SSD involved reinstalling OS, all patches, software, etc. So I rebooted a lot in the last two days.
    WTF?  All the various programs available for cloning a hard drive don't work with an SSD?   Well that certainly sucks.

     



  • @El_Heffe said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    1) Installing the SSD involved reinstalling OS, all patches, software, etc. So I rebooted a lot in the last two days.
    WTF? All the various programs available for cloning a hard drive don't work with an SSD? Well that certainly sucks.

    Jesus Christ you pedantic fucking dickweeds, can't you give it a rest for ONCE!?

    I CHOSE to reinstall the OS and software, ok? Happy? Are you ok with that wording, or are you just going to find some other thing to be a pedantic dickweed about? Oh here's one, you could reply, "but the OS is a type of software, your statement is redundant!" There I pre-empted your pedantic dickweed comment.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Jesus Christ you pedantic fucking dickweeds, can't you give it a rest for ONCE!?

    I CHOSE to reinstall the OS and software, ok? Happy?

    So... when someone else posts something without all the supporting information and you misinterpret them, it's their fault for expecting you to have psychic powers, but when you post something without all the supporting information and someone else misinterprets you, it's their fault again for being a "pedantic fucking dickweed"?

    I fear it may be too late for you, but can you at least accept that if you had worded your previous post along the lines of "When I installed the SSD I decided to reinstall the OS, all patches, software, etc. So I rebooted a [i]lot[/i] in the last few days" then this confusion would not have arisen?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Jesus Christ you pedantic fucking dickweeds, can't you give it a rest for ONCE!?

    I CHOSE to reinstall the OS and software, ok? Happy? Are you ok with that wording, or are you just going to find some other thing to be a pedantic dickweed about?

    No.

    Having installed, re-installed and re-re-installed Windows way too many times, with all the accompanying patches, drivers, applications, etc. I failed to anticpate that someone would deliberately go through all that when there was an easier way.   But then again, this is a comedy forum.  Being unfamiliar with SSD myself, and with SSD still being somewhat new,  I also thought maybe there was some incompatability with existing low-level software.  It's not like that hasn't happened before.

    In conclusion, the only thing I can say is:

     

     



  • @El_Heffe said:

      Being unfamiliar with SSD myself, and with SSD still being somewhat new,  I also thought maybe there was some incompatability with existing low-level software.  It's not like that hasn't happened before. 

    AFAIK, there is not, Win7 detects it automatically, in the rare case it doesn't you can make the changes manually, the commands are in the link I provided, but there should be no problem with cloning, as a matter of fact mine came with a cd that had a cloning software inside so...

    @Scarlet Manuka said:

    Filed under: <FONT color=#698d73>Seriously Blakey every post is a personal attack on you</FONT>

    FTFY

    WE ARE OUT TO GET YOU!!!



  • If you honestly think it's reasonable to make the logical leap from "installing MY SSD into MY computer involved reinstalling the OS" to "NO HARD DRIVE CLONING PROGRAMS WORK WITH SSDs! PANIC PANIC!!" then I guess there's not much I can say, other than: you are one crazy motherfucker.

    Sorry I can't replicate your crazy motherfucker way of thinking. BTW, my car had trouble starting this morning, so to you that must mean that ALL GAS IN THE UNIVERSE HAS JELLIFIED AND NO CARS WILL WORK ANYWHERE EVER AGAIN! PANIC PANIC!



  • @blakeyrat said:

    I'VE GONE OVER THE EDGE! YOU'RE ALL MOTHERFUCKERS WHO JUST DON'T GET ME! YOU ARE THE 1%!

    FTFY


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