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 Post subject: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:44 pm 
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Hey Scott are SSD's as reliable as the enterprise class hard drives you recommend?. I have my pc with 3 Hard drives, two enterprise class drives in raid zero, and one just for backups/images. Is it worth it to upgrade the OS drives and the backup drive to SSD?. So that way I could just save/or re-purpose the three extra drives?. I would just have the one OS SSD drive and one for back up instead. I'm not sure about the prices of SSD drives these days either.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 12:56 pm 
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Before 2012 I would not have recommended SSDs for most people as the failure rate was simply too high. The problem is that SSDs are complex units with 3 main parts, including the flash memory chips, the controller, and the firmware (essentially the controller's operating system), and all of them have to be working perfectly to result in a reliable drive. Another problem is that there have been way too many players in the industry, especially a lot of smaller companies that don't have the resources to test and produce reliable drives in large numbers. This resulted in numerous product design changes and bug-fix firmware releases, with users essentially beta testing production drives.

However starting in 2012 the drives I've seen from the major manufacturers like Intel and Samsung have reached a level of performance and especially stability and reliability where I can now use them myself as well as recommend them to others. Right now I'm mostly recommending the Intel 520 series (that's what I'm using), but any of the current offerings from Intel or Samsung are also worth considering.

SSDs are still expensive at about $1 per GB, which is about 20x more expensive than standard drives and maybe 10x more than Enterprise class drives. However the prices are falling rapidly, and will probably be half of that in a year. Are they worth it? Well the SSD I'm using right now is about 3 to 4x faster (550MBps transfer rate) than the standard drive it replaced, and that has dramatically improved the overall performance of my system. After experiencing this level of performance I can say that I'll never use a standard HDD in my main working system again. For me 2012 was the year I changed from HDD to SSD, and so far I haven't been looking back. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 1:11 pm 
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Thanks for that detailed response Scott!. They still seem pretty expensive. I was looking at newegg and couldn't find anything below $300. I could just get one, and keep one of the enterprise class drives in the system for backup. I'm not sure how long it would take or how it would work backing up from and SSD to and HDD though...


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 1:19 pm 
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I would use the SSD as the main/boot drive, they are still too expensive for backup use, especially if you make multiple backups like I do. However even when backing up to a conventional drive, the SSD reads so much faster that the backup times are significantly reduced overall. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 1:26 pm 
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Searching on Newegg. I don't know what "MLC" or "SLC" is, what should I be looking for as far as that goes?.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 1:38 pm 
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SLC = Single Level Cell (one bit per flash memory cell), MLC = Multi Level Cell (two bits per cell), TLC = Triple Level Cell (three bits per cell). SLC technology drives are very expensive and low in capacity, they are almost exclusively for high-end Corporate/Enterprise use. MLC drives are generally for high-end consumer level products, while TLC drives are the least expensive low-end consumer market drives.

I would recommend choosing from one of these, and all in that selection are MLC. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:14 pm 
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Scott, when would RAID- or Enterprise-class HDDs be preferable over SSDs?


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:42 pm 
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Where large multi-TB storage is required as well as for backup. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:46 pm 
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Scott, would it be OK if one of two mass-storage drives inside a system is an SSD with an OS installation while the other one is an Enterprise-class HDD used for backup purposes?


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Sat Mar 30, 2013 8:28 pm 
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Yes, that would be perfectly OK. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:20 pm 
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Scott, do any SSDs from Samsung or Intel have a 3.5-inch form factor?


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Tue Apr 16, 2013 11:03 pm 
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No, but many include adapters that allow them to be installed in 3.5" drive bays. And if they don't such adapters can be purchased separately. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:30 pm 
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Location: Stowmarket, Suffolk England
Often modern ATX cases include fitments for 2.5" drives


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Tue May 07, 2013 8:01 pm 
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Location: St. Louis, MO
I don't mean to hijack this thread, and I know the last post is a little old, but, Scott, what are your feelings on the hybrid drives such as something like this?

http://www.amazon.com/Seagate-Momentus- ... hard+drive


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Tue May 07, 2013 8:28 pm 
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I've been using and recommending those drives for years! Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 12:18 am 
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Scott, name a hybrid drive with a 3.5-inch form factor that you would recommend.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 8:08 am 
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For a 3.5" hybrid I would recommend this 2.5" drive with this 2.5" to 3.5" adapter. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Sun Aug 18, 2013 7:00 pm 
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No offense, Scott, but I'm not certain if such a setup would work well for this PC.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:53 pm 
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A specific system was not mentioned. You asked for a 3.5" form factor hybrid drive I would recommend. The recommended setup will work in just about any PC that uses 3.5" form factor SATA drives. Did you mean to ask a different question? Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:13 pm 
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I apologize for the confusion. This PC utilizes neither an industry-standard case nor an industry-standard motherboard. I've been afraid that something might go wrong if a 2.5-inch hybrid drive with an adapter is used in the system, particularly when it comes to installation and removal.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Upgrade
 Post Posted: Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:21 pm 
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The specific case or motherboard doesn't matter, if it uses a 3.5" SATA drive then the setup I described would work. Scott.


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