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Are SSDs worth the extra cost?


ShyWriter

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Are SSDs worth the extra cost?

Summary: Whether solid-state drives are worth considering over disks will come down to cost calculations involving performance and the nature of your datasets.

By Manek Dubash for Back office | September 14, 2012 -- 11:29 GMT (04:29 PDT)

Can SSDs be as cost-effective as rotating media? That's the question posed by a thought-provoking analysis from George Crump, senior analyst at Storage Switzerland.

Your first reaction may be, "Of course not." But many find it's justified to pay for the extra performance, typically just for the data that's worth speeding up. For example, in a datacentre, you might speed up just a database's working set or, on a personal machine, just the OS and applications. Having the OS or a complex application such as Photoshop pop up in seconds is worth the price of entry.

As Crump points out, most cost-justification in the enterprise for SSDs is done on a cost per IOPS, not cost per GB. That way, you compare it with the cost of short-stroked disks, of whose capacity you might only be using 50 percent. The rest of the disk space goes to waste, along with the cost of spinning and cooling the things. SSDs score here.

According to Crump, they also score when you front-end a spinning disk system with an SSD cache but the performance calculation is more complex. Flash-storage vendors like to talk about how many extra IOPS you get and the time you save when using SSDs as a cache but never, in my experience, point out that this technique only works when the proportion of cache hits reach a certain level.

If there's a cache miss, you're into negotiations between disk systems:

  • Have you got this bit of data?
  • No.
  • OK. Do you know where I can find it?
  • Try over there.

Not pretty or desirable. But throw in some deduping and compression and, with luck and a following wind, you might claw back some half-decent capacity savings, though nowhere near the volumes you save when backing up multiple VMs or client PCs. That might bring the justification of SSDs closer into line.

In the longer term, and as flash memory prices fall, I wonder if we might not see more systems using some form of execute-in-place technology, where the distinction between memory and storage becomes more blurred, in much the same way as it is in mobile phones. I appreciate that's more in the way that it's described and used, rather than in reality.

In the meantime, flash-memory vendors mostly sell systems that use a disk interface between the computer — that is, the CPU and memory subsystem — and storage. Not only does this practice add upfront cost, as Crump points out, but it also adds to your opex, as you have to house and power those disk controllers, as well as keep their drivers up to date.

Alternatives are emerging, such as that from the likes of Fusion-io, whose PCI-E-connected flash memory storage goes some way towards mitigating this problem.

But for most organisations, this approach is both way too expensive and potentially limiting — just a single vendor sells the product so you'll need a strong justification.

Instead, when considering SSDs to boost performance, ask if it really is cost-justified, and whether your datasets are suited to the kinds of usage that SSD vendors envisage when showering you with shiny PowerPoint presentations.

SOURCE: http://www.zdnet.com...ost-7000004216/

Steve

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If you like speed - YES

THIS ^ x342. Seriously. I thought my PC was fast before I got an SSD. Then I got an SSD (a pretty good one ;)) and now it's so fast it makes my head spin. When getting to the desktop from a cold boot takes more than 10 seconds and that makes you impatient, you know you've gotten used to the speed of an SSD. That's how I am now.

I've gone SSD and I'll never go back.

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THIS ^ x342. Seriously. I thought my PC was fast before I got an SSD. Then I got an SSD (a pretty good one ;)) and now it's so fast it makes my head spin. When getting to the desktop from a cold boot takes more than 10 seconds and that makes you impatient, you know you've gotten used to the speed of an SSD. That's how I am now.

I've gone SSD and I'll never go back.

sounds cool i had the option to get an ssd with my laptop but i went for the bigger storage since i own alot of games.

even with the HDD i still boot up to the desktop in a minute

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If you aren't sure about SSDs and want to give one a cheap whack, noticed this deal - not sure if it's still valid..

Hot Deal: OCZ Vertex 2 120GB Solid State Drive for $49

Published on September 14th, 2012 | by Chip Chick Staff in Deals

ocz.jpg

The OCZ Vertex 2 120GB Solid State Drive (OCZSSD2-2VTXE120G) is on sale today for just $49.99 with free shipping after $30 instant savings and a $20 mail-in rebate. This is the lowest price you can find on this SSD, and one of the best deals ever in general for a speed solid state drive. Upgrading your laptop with an SSD is an easy and now cheap way to improve system performance, especially when loading up apps and shutting down and booting up your computer.

Get the OCZ Vertex 2 120GB Solid State Drive for $49

Steve

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hmmm ...

i have been threatening to go the ssd route .

my comp boots from a cold start in 30 seconds , the antivirus checks everything before it is actually "loaded" .

this includes a few background programs such as messenger , a stand alone gamma correction program , antivirus checking/updates , etc .

the start up from standby takes about 15 seconds .

i do not consider a comp ready to use until all the above is out of the road .

i took a look over at newegg ... the reviews on the posted drive are not all that great .

(bearing in mind the technical prowess of the individuals posting - grain 'o salt)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227551&Tpk=OCZSSD2-2VTXE120G

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@Shy: Hehe, OCZ is the brand I'm using.

@fivealive: Yep, I game too, but I play so few games that I have enough space for them all (just UT3, WfC and FoC at the moment, though I may install UT2K4 if I'm feeling nostalgic).

well my old computer had a 500gb harddrive same as my laptop and the harddrive was literally full id be lucky to have a gb of free space,

all of it was games.

for the laptop iv got to the point that i only install the games i want to play and once i havnt played em for about a month i remove em i try and keep the harddrive not so full as before.

because with my tower i had it full and i had games left over icouldnt install

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Yep, I'm picky with which games I install too. It is nice having them on the SSD though. I've never had games load and run this fast, it's awesome :).

ill definitely look into that then.

now my computer runs fast anyway and i dont get to long of loading screens but it would be nice to look into.

and its not so much that im picky its just that i dont want my harddrive full again and i dont want my anti virus to take an hour to scan the full hd or even longer

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Hehe, I hardly see the loading screens. They're usually gone so fast I don't have time to read the 'tips' and animations they like to display during those (and often they don't even have time to display the full animations).

It is awesome, and scanning is fast too, be it with MBAM or my AV.

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Hehe, I hardly see the loading screens. They're usually gone so fast I don't have time to read the 'tips' and animations they like to display during those (and often they don't even have time to display the full animations).

It is awesome, and scanning is fast too, be it with MBAM or my AV.

ah well since i installed skyrim my AV scan takse about 22 minutes for a full scan and mbam takes about 20 it self too thankfully quick scans on mbam only take like 2 minutes.

only issue with getting a ssd would be having to install the os and all the software and stuff again would just be a giant pain in the rear.

i guess i could technically just use windows backup and make a backup of my haddrive before i install the ssd and then just use that to get windows onto the ssd (just not sure how it would work)

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im using mse as well and as i said a manual full scan takes 20 to 22 minutes and mbam quick scan takes anywhere from a minute 10 seconds to 2 minutes it differs at times.

oddly enough though mse when it goes off at the time its set to go off at (12pm or around their)

it takes 27 minutes to finish.

never did figure out why a manual full scan is quicker then the scheduled scan

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well my old computer had a 500gb harddrive same as my laptop and the harddrive was literally full id be lucky to have a gb of free space,

all of it was games.

for the laptop iv got to the point that i only install the games i want to play and once i havnt played em for about a month i remove em i try and keep the harddrive not so full as before.

because with my tower i had it full and i had games left over icouldnt install

Perhaps i am missing something here but, why not a second plug in drive for games etc? 1TG's are common and not too expensive anymore.

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Perhaps i am missing something here but, why not a second plug in drive for games etc? 1TG's are common and not too expensive anymore.

i did have a secondary harddrive installed on teh tower and it was full was a 500gb hd and it was completely full of family pictures/videos and documents and a couple of computer games as well.

and as for the laptop i couldnt fit another harddrive if i wanted too no room for it.

also as i said iv been keeping the ammount of data i put on the laptop rather small.

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i did have a secondary harddrive installed on teh tower and it was full was a 500gb hd and it was completely full of family pictures/videos and documents and a couple of computer games as well.

and as for the laptop i couldnt fit another harddrive if i wanted too no room for it.

also as i said iv been keeping the ammount of data i put on the laptop rather small.

An external hard drive needs only a USB port on your laptop.

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An external hard drive needs only a USB port on your laptop.

ah true.

forgot bout those XD

ill have to look into finding cheap ones.

also the one major problem i have is most of my games are from steam and my understanding is that steam requires being on the os drive.

for security perposes and their anti cheat system.

so installing the games onto an external would be useless since it wouldnt work.

i actually own only bout a dozen games on disc the rest are all digital downloads

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Steam does not need to stay on the internal drive, you can get "steammover" and move it there at will. However, if you have only USB 2.0 ports on the laptop your games will be slow when run from the external drive. USB 3.0 is pretty necessary i think.

Given the hassles involved i would opt for a SS drive next time around and prices drop, having waited to see what the fail factor will be.....(wink) :P

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Steam does not need to stay on the internal drive, you can get "steammover" and move it there at will. However, if you have only USB 2.0 ports on the laptop your games will be slow when run from the external drive. USB 3.0 is pretty necessary i think.

Given the hassles involved i would opt for a SS drive next time around and prices drop, having waited to see what the fail factor will be.....(wink) :P

aah good to know that it can be moved.

as i said it was my understanding.

i guess iwas given false info on steam then.

meh either way a ssd isnt need right now really computer is fast enough as it is

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If you like speed - YES

Besides that.

* They don't generate heat and thus cooling becomes less of a problem and their application reduces both energy consumption and cooling costs.

* There are no mechanics so they can be used in hostile environments such as in mobile environments like automobiles and boats.

When I worked as a VAR Technician, one of our clients was a shipper out of Ports Elizabeth and Newark NJ and due to the vibrations of the engine and the rolling of the waves and swells, all systems *had* to be outfitted with specialty shock and vibration isolated drives. Some of the drives even had G-Force sensors. If the tube on the side of the drive is Red, the G-Force was exceeded and the warranty was voided. Solid State Drives are inherently ruggetized.

I wouldn't mind replacing the 21GB shock-mounted spindle drive used in the MyGig REN VES installed in my Dodge Grand Caravan SE.

REN_Radio_01.jpg

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